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Subject: First time owner of the game, a few questions: rss

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Jacob Gowans
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1. I just picked this up last weekend, haven't played it yet. I almost always sleeve my games, but am wondering if I should w/ 500+ cards. I picked up the base game plus Scholar, Unity, Miss Information, and a couple environments. What are your thoughts? I own enough sleeves to do the job, but am wondering if it's worth the time.

2. Do you recommend starting with the most "basic" heroes and villains for first time play?

3. Any peripherals worth picking up to enhance the experience like damage counters, etc?

4. Any other general advice?

Thanks in advance.
 
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Nerds call me
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1. These cards will hold up fine without sleeving.

2. I do, although some folks have said starting with a more advanced Hero, like Absolute Zero, really showed them how deep and fun this game can be. Personally, I started with Absolute Zero and hated it.

3. The status tokens and oversize Villain cards are useful. Also, use the damage tokens as HPs.

4. This game is all about creating a fun narrative. Each Villain and Hero plays very differently. Throw in a random environment and you got yourself a great game that stimulates the imagination and creates a unique storyline each time you play. Have fun! It's a great game.
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Peter Schott
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1. I personally tend not to sleeve and from my understanding, sleeving these cards will result in all of them not fitting in the box very well. Totally your call, but I'd at least try to play it before deciding if you want to sleeve it or not.

2. Baron Blade + Megalopolis for villain/environment. Heroes - Wraith, maybe Haka, Legacy for a support character (he's not a hard hitter most times), Ra or Tempest for damage dealing. Hard to say because the characters really do play differently. Absolute Zero has a pretty steep learning curve and it takes a while to really make him effective. Tachyon works, but you want to understand her deck a little to use her effectively.
I'm almost positive that GtG website had a listing of villain/hero/environment difficulties. You'll probably also want to try to take a team of 4 for a first play. That means someone may play two or more heroes. It's doable in a solo format, just have to manage the decks.

3. Some people have used rolldown dice or knitting counters for damage. If you just got the game, you probably got the HP trackers so you're probably in pretty decent shape for starters. Try those out and see how they work. Try other things if those aren't doing it for you and you want to invest further in the game.
There were some large cards with 1-100 for villains and 1-50 or so for heroes that could work with maybe a washer/ring of some sort to track "max" hit points and some other marker to track "current". I think they may be in the files section here. They can work, but you need to print and provide the appropriate items to track.

4. Expect that you may have a difficult time with some of the heroes and combos that the teams make up. Some combinations just don't work well.
Don't forget to deal the four starting cards for each hero's hand. I forgot that my first game and lost spectacularly.
Look through the decks for the heroes to get a feel for what's there and how it might work to your advantage.
Read through some session reports here and some of the other posts to get a feel for how the game plays.
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Chris D
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paschott wrote:
1. I personally tend not to sleeve and from my understanding, sleeving these cards will result in all of them not fitting in the box very well. Totally your call, but I'd at least try to play it before deciding if you want to sleeve it or not.

2. Baron Blade + Megalopolis for villain/environment. Heroes - Wraith, maybe Haka, Legacy for a support character (he's not a hard hitter most times), Ra or Tempest for damage dealing. Hard to say because the characters really do play differently. Absolute Zero has a pretty steep learning curve and it takes a while to really make him effective. Tachyon works, but you want to understand her deck a little to use her effectively.
I'm almost positive that GtG website had a listing of villain/hero/environment difficulties. You'll probably also want to try to take a team of 4 for a first play. That means someone may play two or more heroes. It's doable in a solo format, just have to manage the decks.

3. Some people have used rolldown dice or knitting counters for damage. If you just got the game, you probably got the HP trackers so you're probably in pretty decent shape for starters. Try those out and see how they work. Try other things if those aren't doing it for you and you want to invest further in the game.
There were some large cards with 1-100 for villains and 1-50 or so for heroes that could work with maybe a washer/ring of some sort to track "max" hit points and some other marker to track "current". I think they may be in the files section here. They can work, but you need to print and provide the appropriate items to track.

4. Expect that you may have a difficult time with some of the heroes and combos that the teams make up. Some combinations just don't work well.
Don't forget to deal the four starting cards for each hero's hand. I forgot that my first game and lost spectacularly.
Look through the decks for the heroes to get a feel for what's there and how it might work to your advantage.
Read through some session reports here and some of the other posts to get a feel for how the game plays.


I agree with almost everything here. The only thing is that instead of Megalopolis I would pick Insula Primalis or Ruins of Atlantis. As Megalopolis slows down the heroes so much that a first time player may get bored with it.
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Scott Bender
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The only other thing I could add is that the sweet spot for this game is four characters. I've never played three or five but I've heard from others that three can be tough and five tends to be too easy. I usually play two players with two characters each. If playing with three you might consider adding a "sidekick" (one character starting out flipped to incapacitated, no deck).

I also second the "count down" approach to tracking HPs rather than tracking damage taken. So many effects are targeted to highest or lowest HP that just tracking damage taken can be kind of cumbersome.

If you have a pretty consistent group that you will be playing with, you might consider "specializing" in 2 or 3 heroes each. Each hero plays very differently, has it's own role and strength, and can take a game or two to master.

I love this game, and it is currently near the top of my all-time faves. I find that this game captures it's genre more than any other game (of any type) I have ever played. If you are a comic book fan you're going to have a great time!
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Roberta Yang
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The sweet spot for this game is four heroes, but teams of three and five heroes are still very much playable and fun. It's not like certain other games like Battlestar Galactica where "the sweet spot is five players" means "don't even bother playing with any number of players except five".
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Edna Lindebury
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Regarding sleeves: given how small the decks are that you're working with at any given time, I decided to go super cheap and sleeved mine with penny sleeves. You won't be able to fit them in the box, but if that doesn't bother you just look up Penny Sleeves on Amazon and you should be able to find 10 packs of 100 sleeves for a little under $9. Basically you could have ALL of the cards sleeved for under $20 which is what really sold me on using them.

Regarding 3p games: I've probably played 50 games now 3p and I like it a lot. I actually haven't played enough games with more to really be able to comment on the difference, but I can tell you that the game is pretty solid with 3. I believe we've defeated every villain except the Chairman and Cosmic Omnitron with 3 so even if it does play harder than it does with 4 or 5, it's still not impossible to kick some butt against the harder villains.
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Jon Ben
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I also think the game is best with 3 heroes. It's harder and often still not hard enough for my liking. It also makes solo play more manageable.
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Ira Kalina
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Definitely concur with the idea of Baron Blade and one of the two easier, basic environments to start (Megalopolis or Insula Prime). I would hold back on Absolute Zero, Bunker and Fanatic on the first play. I would also lean against Ra because I didn't love him on first play (and it slowed my desire to buy the game which I later both and really enjoy).

If you have iOS, I strongly recommend sentinel sidekick app for tracking all of the hit points.

Good luck.

 
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Richard Herrera
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1. I personally have sleeved all my cards with the mayday card sleeves and I can fit all of the enhanced edition/rook city/infernal relics heroes/villains/environments in the box. For Shattered Timelines, that has to go in a different box with the counters and tokens, but there should be another expansion, Vengeance, coming later this year that will have a large box like the EE. Eventually, I will probably put ST in that box.

2. Even though it will probably be a near cakewalk (I have indeed lost to Baron Blade once when teaching someone the game), playing against Baron Blade in either Megalopolis or Insula Primalis gives you an idea of how a particular hero's deck works, allows you to refine strategies fairly easily if things start to go awry, and let you learn the turn order without having to react to too many things. Some decks really stick it to you when you play them.

3. While not necessary, the oversized villain cards are nice. You get the regular cards in the basic set, but it is kind of nice to have everything on one page and not go back and forth forgetting to flip two cards. There are a few hp trackers that people have uploaded in the files section and one person in the forum created wheel-based hp trackers. If you already have some of these trackers in other games, use them here as it saves you having to change out tokens constantly.

4. I would start with level 1 difficulty heroes always when teaching. Legacy is one of the simplest and most balanced heroes, so he should be included in most games. I also recommend my favorite, The Wraith to learn how to combine cards for more damage, and Tempest or Ra to understand the benefits and detriments of elemental damage. Finally, I would recommend Tachyon to learn how to use a deck to its full advantage over time.

I would also recommend looking through each deck and seeing what you may be up against or what your strengths and weaknesses are when using that deck. While you may fall in love with one deck, try playing something different. You would be surprised what kind of things you can do with some of these characters. Plus it gives someone the opportunity to fall in love with your deck when teaching and you know how to best support the other characters.

Finally, I would say when you have thoroughly trashed a villain for the 4th or 5th time, try them on their advanced mode and really have a good fight!

*Edit* Also, print out some of the promo heroes in the files section as they can change how some characters decks are played (or create some nice stories). I'm sure others will also chime in to pick up the expansions if this game really is your cup of tea.
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Ken Marley
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According to the Sentinels statistic report:

3 Heroes: 63% win rate
4 Heroes: 85% win rate
5 Heroes: 75% win rate

So 4 heroes seems to be the easiest difficulty, when playing with the H mechanic. But I find the win rates of 3 and 5 heroes to be fine.

Also if you are having difficulties, add Legacy. He is the most powerful hero.

Baron Blade in Magapolis is a good learning environment, but interestingly the Baron becomes more difficult outside Megapolis and Insula Primus. If you want a tough Baron fight play him in Rook City.

Here is the statistics url: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/lv?key=0AqClP82b_XgZdGJK...
 
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Brook Gentlestream
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I don't recommend using Absolute Zero for the first game, but I do recommend trying out a mix of different characters. Make sure you have at least one solid damage dealer like Wraith or Ra for your first game.
 
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Kevin Walsh
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Based on various apparently bad experiences, I don't think Tachyon is a great character for a first game.
 
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John Shanahan
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Interesting, on Tachyon. She was the first hero I played, and really enjoyed her. Mileage varies, I guess.

And I second the "countdown" method of tallying damage. My son and I did it that way for the first time last night, after two games counting up, and it made the whole "lowest/highest" thing soooo much easier. Certain time of night, I don't want to be doing the math. :-)
 
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Brook Gentlestream
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Yeah, Tacheyon's fun, even for a first-timer, so long as the player knows ahead of time that discarding cards is a GOOD thing.
 
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Andrew Arenson
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I think for a first game you might want to try Absolute Zero, Argent Adept, and NightMist vs Iron Legacy on advanced mode in Rook City.

Just kidding.
 
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Jon Ben
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arenson9 wrote:
I think for a first game you might want to try Absolute Zero, Argent Adept, and NightMist vs Iron Legacy on advanced mode in Rook City.

Just kidding.


Yea but some people would probably get a kick out of that for a first game. This whole idea of recommending heroes for first games is silly, there is no right answer. People in these forums consistently recommend people buy their first expansion based theme. I think that same advice works well for this question too. Just pick the hero that looks the coolest to you, then pick a villain the same way but keep in mind their difficulties.
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Richard Herrera
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JonBen,

I think >G recommendations of heroes is actually really good because they give the new player a scaled difficulty to try out. I agree that once someone plays a couple of games, they should then look to the card decks and pick a favorite deck based on what they like. I mean, worst case scenario, if someone picked Visionary expecting to deal damage while fighting the Matriarch or Spite in the Ruins of Atlantis/Mars Wagner Base, it might sour their first experience (or burn their brains). Start easy and work your way up. Then turn it up to 11 by doing the advance mode.
 
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Jon Ben
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eggroll20xd6 wrote:
JonBen,

I think >G recommendations of heroes is actually really good because they give the new player a scaled difficulty to try out. I agree that once someone plays a couple of games, they should then look to the card decks and pick a favorite deck based on what they like. I mean, worst case scenario, if someone picked Visionary expecting to deal damage while fighting the Matriarch or Spite in the Ruins of Atlantis/Mars Wagner Base, it might sour their first experience (or burn their brains). Start easy and work your way up. Then turn it up to 11 by doing the advance mode.


I agree that the complex ratings are useful when first starting. People can weigh the coolness factor against their desire for complex play. However, there is nothing in this game that is very complex even for a new player. If they are new to games completely then perhaps I would be more concerned. On the other hand if they are a BGG backer who have had an account for 2 years and own 50+ games...
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