Saturday, May 12, 2007


Heroclix_2Heroclix-- published by WizKids Games-- is a game where you build teams of heroes, villains or shady in-betweeners and face off against one or more opponents. Better than a videogame, more visual than most card games (and this from a guy who co-designed the WILDSTORMS! CCG back in the '90s), it's a gaming tour de force.

The game is built around "clix," which are individual characters posed atop black plastic disks. Each disk has a custom dial with information on it: attack, defense, movement, and other special qualities, including any team affiliation, and point value. This last is important, because teams are built with points.

Characters move across grid-lined maps, some flying and others using their own two legs (even at superspeed, like The Flash or Quicksilver, or leaping like the Incredible Hulk), then engage in combat. Two dice are rolled and added to the attacker's score; if the total exceeds the defender's defense value, the attack succeeds. The defender's dial is turned a number of "clicks" (hence the name) equal to the attacker's damage score-- characters like Superman and Wonder Woman dish out a LOT of damage, while folks like your average Hydra agent... not so much. When the dial is spun around far enough, the character is KO'd and out of play.

Sounds simple, right? Ah... but there are so many permutations, given the diverse array of powers, that no game plays the same.

Starter sets are available pretty widely (or have been), at chain bookstores such as Borders or Barnes & Noble as well as local hobby shops-- I buy my sets at Big Monkey Comics in DC. Clix can also be found plentifully (and often very cheaply) on sites like eBay and Amazon. Give the game a look if you're in the mood for some superheroic faceoff action!

(Update: Monday, April 16) I played this weekend at Big Monkey, taking a team of five JLA heavyweights against a group of seven middle-to-heavyweight JSA'ers. Got my clock cleaned. It was a great lesson in how to pick your clix strategically (Dr. Mid-Nite heals injured clix... who knew?) and how to use the terrain to best advantage. The game told me I had a lot to learn, but I'm eager to play again!

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