Sixty days from now, we will be playing a brand new game. Marvel Superstars will be burning up tables from coast to coast. Although the full set of cards and comprehensive rules have not been revealed yet, there is enough information to begin an explanation of how the game is played.
The Human Torch card that started this post is a Leader character. Each game will begin with a Leader in play for each player. Leader characters have specific abilities and team affiliations, but they have no resource cost. Leader characters have 50 health points that must be decreased by your enemy through combat and abilities. When those 50 health points reach zero, you lose.
A Leader character has no resource cost, so it can be considered “free”. Supporter characters and Action cards require resource points to play. You have to “pay” for them by turning resource cards sideways.
Xavier’s School is a Base Resource card. Each game begins with three Base Resources in play for each player. Each turn you will be able to play one more resource to build up your “bank”. As the game progresses, these resources are turned sideways whenever they are used to pay for Actions and Supporters. Turning a resource sideways shows that it has already been used that turn. When the turn is over, all resources will be returned to their normal orientation so they can be used again.
That Thing is a Supporter. He has a resource cost of 6. In order to play him on your side of the board, you will need to turn 6 resources sideways. If you can afford that, he will be able to attack the enemy on your turn. When he attacks, you turn your Thing sideways.
If your Thing chooses to attack an enemy Leader, that attack might be intercepted by an enemy Supporter. In that case, your Thing will have to redirect his attack.
If your Thing survives to live for another turn, he will be vulnerable to enemy attacks and abilities. The Iron Man above is a Supporter that can take out other Supporters by paying 6 resources, as shown by his game text. Activated abilities like this do not require the card to be turned sideways, but they can only be used once, and only on their contoller’s turn.
Your Thing might also be eliminated by an Action card before it can attack. The Reupulsor Ray will do the job for only 1 resource point, but only if the enemy Leader has 6 charges. Charge counters are added to a Leader character whenever its controller plays an Action card.
If your Thing does get to attack the enemy Leader, he will do 7 damage by himself. He will take damage as well. If the enemy Leader damages your Thing for 7 or more, your Thing will be eliminated. Damage is cumulative, so characters will be weakened in combat even when they are not eliminated.
The game text on that Thing also gives him more strength when you control the other members of the Fantastic Four. One of those may be Jessica Alba.
Invisible Woman does not have as much Force as some Supporters, but her Health value and ability more than make up for it. She will be able to save a whole lot of damage with the size of her back end, and with her constant Leader protection. She can intercept attacks by turning sideways, and many times she will survive to absorb more damage on another turn. She will also say goodbye for today’s Basic Superstars lesson.
We hope you are getting a better idea of how Marvel Superstars will be played, as we continue to blueprint the basics. Monday we will survey several strategies that are already alive in the previews on PlayMarvel.com. See you then!