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Jacob Stick
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Ho, boy. This one took a LOT of testing to get just right. I had to change several thing multiple time to get this to be not so unwinnable. That being said this one is certainly a puzzle and is more difficult in Solo Player, but if you figure out how to be feel proud of yourself for sure.
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Nick Fury had seen it coming for a while and had gone into hiding to weed it out, but SHIELD was compromised. Captain America had started to see it as well and now they are working with any hero that they could trust in order to stop the corruption from spreading. A secret project has also been released and is leading the evil faction from within. Who or what is causing this? Is that Thor leading the charge?

1-Player
Expansions you will need to play: Civil War, Captain America, Secret Wars Vol. 2
Scheme: Dark Reign of HAMMER Officers
Mastermind: Ragnorak
Henchmen: Cape Killers
Villain(s): SHIELD Elite, Registration Enforcers
Heroes: Nick Fury, Steve Rogers (Director of SHIELD), Elsa Bloodstone
Special: Added an additional villain group, because otherwise it is impossible to win.

2-Players
Expansions you will need to play: Civil War, Captain America, Secret Wars Vol. 2
Scheme: Dark Reign of HAMMER Officers
Mastermind: Ragnorak
Henchmen: Cape Killers
Villain(s): SHIELD Elite, Registration Enforcers
Heroes: Nick Fury, Steve Rogers (Director of SHIELD), Elsa Bloodstone, Vision, Tigra

3-Players
Added Villain(s): Great Lakes Avengers

4-Players
Added Villain(s): Great Lakes Avengers
Added Henchmen: Maggia Goons

5-Players
Added Villain(s): Great Lakes Avengers, Superhuman Registration Act
Added Henchmen: Maggia Goons
Added Hero: Luke Cage
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Jacob Stick
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Solo

The Ubiquitous
Game 1: Evil Won!
Game 2: Evil Won!
Game 3: Evil Won!
Game 4: Evil Won!
Game 5: Good Won!
Player 1: 93

2-Players

Usuba
Game 1-10: Evil Won!

SABird
Game 1: Evil Won!
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Incidentally, what stats do we need to report?
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Jacob Stick
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TheUbiquitous wrote:
Incidentally, what stats do we need to report?


Number of players and points at the end of the game and whether you won or not.
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So far I've lost the solo four times so frustratingly that I didn't bother to count points! I'll count points the next time.

Man, this is a tough one, (and an interesting puzzle for sure.)
 
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Jacob Stick
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TheUbiquitous wrote:
So far I've lost the solo four times so frustratingly that I didn't bother to count points! I'll count points the next time.

Man, this is a tough one, (and an interesting puzzle for sure.)


Indeed, I was hesitant to put it up until I could at least beat it once. It takes a good KO deck build to get it off, but also KOing too much also hurts you. Figuring out the balance is the toughest. No need to count points on losses, most people don't. Some do though.
 
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The other half of it is recruiting just the right cards to keep others in the HQ and keep Ragnarok manageable. This means the two-class Elsa Bloodstone is basically an auto-buy/KO, because otherwise Ragnarok is bumped up by four extra attack in a game when you have to get rid of those HAMMER infiltrators next to the Mastermind.

My strategy the third time was to deplete the Officer deck. In solo, this was no mean feat---and it was worth the peace of mind, as the last two Scheme Twists never effectively "fired", but the Robot Thor still had two Mastermind Tactics beneath him at game end.

So technically, by Hoyle, it was 3 losses and 1 draw.
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Jacob Stick
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TheUbiquitous wrote:
The other half of it is recruiting just the right cards to keep others in the HQ and keep Ragnarok manageable. This means the two-class Elsa Bloodstone is basically an auto-buy/KO, because otherwise Ragnarok is bumped up by four extra attack in a game when you have to get rid of those HAMMER infiltrators next to the Mastermind.

My strategy the third time was to deplete the Officer deck. In solo, this was no mean feat---and it was worth the peace of mind, as the last two Scheme Twists never effectively "fired", but the Robot Thor still had two Mastermind Tactics beneath him at game end.

So technically, by Hoyle, it was 3 losses and 1 draw.


That is a really interesting strategy. It had occurred to me that it was a possibility to pull off, but I never thought it would have been possible in Solo mode. That is really interesting.
 
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A first-turn recruitment of that Covert Nick Fury is a real champion of a card if you're trying for it! What with all the S.H.I.E.L.D. Clearance, it's actually really useful anyway in this setup. Aiming for this also powers his rare, as you can imagine.
 
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OK, fifth time's the charm.

93-point win, on the last turn. That is, unless we need a Final Blow.
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Jacob Stick
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TheUbiquitous wrote:
OK, fifth time's the charm.

93-point win, on the last turn. That is, unless we need a Final Blow.


Final Blow Optional unless stated otherwise.
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Stephen Mills
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I have to say this is the first challenge, or any game, where my frustration and feeling of powerlessness, has made me throw my cards down at the table! My precious cards!

The scheme is pure Evil. I hate S.H.I.E.L.D. Clearance (I pull my hair out in pure, pure, arghhhh)

Ragnarok's Master Strike destroys the hope held in hands.

And Captain Marvel's escape effect just is the last straw!

Four losses. Two handed.

One abandoned game when I realised I forgot Maria Hill has S****D Clearance when next to the MM.

Four bent cards from the impact on the table after this sequence, Capatain Marvel escaped, a Master Strike, another Captain Marvel escape and a scheme twist ended the game.

Pure Evil

...

Will try again, just need to breathe
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Stick with it! It's so worth it, and so satisfying, if you manage to pull it off!
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Jacob Stick
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usuba wrote:
Will try again, just need to breathe


I know exactly how you feel. I had to change later incarnations of the game over and over again until I found something that worked. This one is all about strategy. There is some luck that played into it, but find that way to win.

I, too, raged quit my own challenge trying to figure away to win.
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Stephen Mills
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Ok this is going to beat my previous record, six losses in total (+1 abandoned gane) and only once in all those games have I hit the Mastermind, one time only! I'm going to try two more times because I'm stubborn, but after that you can stat me
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Maybe don't worry about Villains without escape effects? In this setup, that's an illusion. The real game is all around the Mastermind.
 
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Stephen Mills
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ok this is it, stat time

two player
10 games: Evil won every time

I honestly believe this is impossible and suggest an extra villain group as you did for the solo player.

I noted in a previous post that I hit the MM once, but after posting that I realized that I had confused it with another game. So I was in fact unable to hit the MM once in any of the ten games, a personal record for that too! Sometimes I got Ragnarok's attack down to 8 but twists took me out before I could hit him, other times I was just short by one attack, but most of the time I just couldn't get anywhere near him.

As far as twists were concerned the majority of the time I lost on twist 4 and 5, once I think going out on 6 and once on 7.

As far as strategies, I think I did my best, aiming to reduce the HQ to as few hero classes as possible, hitting Twisted Maria Hill as much as possible but could end up drawing her four times in a hand, thinning my deck contiuosly and letting Villains escape helped to turn over unwanted HQ hero classes. I got Tigra's rare three times, Nick Fury's twice, but I never got to play them. I struggled in some games to get Savior but made that work for me in some.

Overall an enjoyable challenge, super frustrating in late game double twist draws when I thought I had a hope, very quick games too.

Moving on to Issue #8
 
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Steve Bird
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2 Players
Evil Wins!

We were doing so well! Two rare cards were in the HQ at the beginning, and we'd recently been able to acquire both of them. We had whittled the Officers fortifying the Mastermind down to one. Then Sharon Carter escaped and fortified the Officer deck. Then a Twist hit. Then another.

"Fortify the S.H.I.E.L.D. Officer stack. While it's fortified, whenever any number of S.H.I.E.L.D. Officers become Villains, an extra one becomes a Villain."

Darn you Sharon Carter! Darn you to Heck!

We've set it back up to try again tomorrow.
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Garry Nagata
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I'm a newbie to the game having only played a dozen or so solo games using the advanced solo rules. But I have read many of the posts and have learned a lot from the gaming community. I do have two questions, regarding this scenario. I have not been able to locate any answers to these questions, so if they were previously answered, then maybe I can just be directed to where I can find them:

1. If a twist comes up and a SHIELD Officer is placed next to the mastermind, are the officers fortifying the mastermind? I don't see any language as such in the scheme description, but if not, these officers are not really doing anything.
2. The scheme says that Evil wins if there are 7 officers next to the mastermind. But shouldn't it really be stated as 7 twists next to the scheme? Otherwise, you can fight just one of those officers and come away with no less than a draw in this scheme.

Thanks for any clarification that can be provided.

 
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Jacob Stick
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gmak wrote:
1. If a twist comes up and a SHIELD Officer is placed next to the mastermind, are the officers fortifying the mastermind? I don't see any language as such in the scheme description, but if not, these officers are not really doing anything.


No. They are not Fortifying the Mastermind, but they are part of the lose condition.

gmak wrote:
2. The scheme says that Evil wins if there are 7 officers next to the mastermind. But shouldn't it really be stated as 7 twists next to the scheme? Otherwise, you can fight just one of those officers and come away with no less than a draw in this scheme.


Also no. The scheme tells you to place a Shield Officer (SO) next to the Mastermind for each Scheme twist that has come out of the villain deck. So the first scheme twist will place out one SO, if that one is defeated and another Scheme Twist comes out then two are placed next to the Mastermind and so on and so forth, making you lose if no matter what at the seventh Scheme Twist. Now if you are having a hard time beating the SO next to the Mastermind well then you will lose by the fourth scheme twist, because 1+2+3+4= the seven or more lose condition.

Does that help?
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Garry Nagata
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MasterGM wrote:
gmak wrote:
1. If a twist comes up and a SHIELD Officer is placed next to the mastermind, are the officers fortifying the mastermind? I don't see any language as such in the scheme description, but if not, these officers are not really doing anything.


No. They are not Fortifying the Mastermind, but they are part of the lose condition.

gmak wrote:
2. The scheme says that Evil wins if there are 7 officers next to the mastermind. But shouldn't it really be stated as 7 twists next to the scheme? Otherwise, you can fight just one of those officers and come away with no less than a draw in this scheme.


Also no. The scheme tells you to place a Shield Officer (SO) next to the Mastermind for each Scheme twist that has come out of the villain deck. So the first scheme twist will place out one SO, if that one is defeated and another Scheme Twist comes out then two are placed next to the Mastermind and so on and so forth, making you lose if no matter what at the seventh Scheme Twist. Now if you are having a hard time beating the SO next to the Mastermind well then you will lose by the fourth scheme twist, because 1+2+3+4= the seven or more lose condition.

Does that help?


Yes, your explanation clears up all of my misunderstandings. Now I realize why this challenge is so difficult to win. Thank you very much, Jacob.
 
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