Marvel Legendary first thoughts

I managed to get one of the last copies of Marvel Legendary available in Canada this afternoon after stupidly letting one slip out of my hands earlier in the week. If you want an quick review of the game that describes it well. The game is, as far as I can tell, sold out at the manufacturer and, if Calgary is any indication, sold out at retailers as well. The distributor that Trilogy Gaming Club got my copy from was out and from my discussions elsewhere it appears that most, if not all, distributors in Canada are sold out.

I was interested in the game but what really got me to go out and get a copy was my two five year old twin girls who are, for some reason, crazy about the game. We watched some videos on the Crits Happen website and they immediately wanted the game and also started making their own hero and villain cards using paper, scissors and some Marvel Hero stickers they had handy.

Marvel Legendary is a deck building game of super heroes fighting against the machinations of an evil Mastermind (either Loki, Magneto, the Red Skull or Doctor Doom) either with 2-5 players or alone using the solo rules.

Players pick a Mastermind to fight and then a Scheme that the villain is trying to achieve. Villain groups, henchmen and Scheme Twists are added to a deck that is used to populate a city as villains and henchmen try to escape the city and the mastermind attempts to get all of the Scheme Twists out of the Villain deck in order to win.

Players build up their decks buying heroes and then using the abilities on their cards to fight villains and henchmen in the city and also fight the Mastermind. If the players can fight and beat the Mastermind four times they win, if the Mastermind can hold off the players and reveal all the Scheme Twists then the players lose.

The game has eight Schemes that have different effects in the game including additions to the Villain deck. The more players the more Villains and henchmen in the Villain deck and the more difficult it is to keep them escaping from the city and the more cards get pulled form the Villain deck bringing the Scheme Twists to the top quicker.

The game comes with a board to help keep the cards organized and a number of thin card stock dividers to help keep the cards separated.

I have so far only played it solo, with the help of some enthusiastic five year olds, but it seems like a very good system. The Schemes allow you to play each of the four Masterminds in different ways and the way that the Hero and Villain decks are built, in conjunction with the Schemes, means that the amount of replayability is quite high.

The art on all the cards suffers from being the same for each villain and hero so there is a bit of sameness that permeates the game and some of the Masterminds and Henchmen are odd matches. For example Doctor Doom is available as a Mastermind but none of the Fantastic Four are available as heroes. I suspect that this is to allow for the addition of more popular heroes to later expansions. Despite these minor issues this already looks like a great game and I can’t wait to play it some more and try it out with a few friends.


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