Monday, September 26, 2005

Heroclix Rant: Mind Control

If you play Heroclix much, you probably don't use "Mind Control" with your figures that have the power. Why?

Because it's no easier than a regular attack; because most of the figures you'd really want to control are over 100 points and your figure would take a click of damage for the effort of Mind Controlling them; because your Mind Control is going to end in one turn and your "victim" will be looking to make someone pay for it.

Wizkids has wisely been using "Feat Cards" as to "fix" the powers and abilities that are dissatisfying to players, and Mind Control is a prime candidate. It's also an easy fix, with a Feat Card something this:

"Mind Slave"

Prerequisite: Mind Control

This figure may use Mind Control as a free action, takes no damage from using it, and may use Mastermind on any adjacent Mind Controlled figured. Their attempts at Mind Control succeed on a one-die roll of 4, 5, or 6.

10 points.

The high-point figures with Mind Control could use the card, but probably won't; you'll still want to use them to just do damage to the opponent (besides, most high-point characters with Mind Control only have a few clicks of it, not enough to make the cost of the card worthwhile).

But the effect on all the lower-point figures with Mind Control, the ones with the measly little Attack Values, would be profound. Regardless of how low their AVs sink, they'd have a 50/50 chance of controlling an opposing figure. All those sad figures who never use their Mind Control (like Poison Ivy, Scarecrow, Saturn Girl, the tragic twins Kobra and Brother Blood) and the Mad Hatter (who has nothing but Mind Control) would be immediately playable.

Better yet, you'd be using them the way they are used in the comic books; not as direct combatants, but as a means to turn your opponent's forces against him. And, yes, it makes these figures' influence on the game more powerful than their points would suggest; but that's exactly why comic book characters Mind Control others, folks -- to control someone more powerful than they are.

Wizkids, please do this before you put out a Dr. Psycho clix, or there won't be any reason to play him, either.


Anonymous said...

There was a time, when the game first started, when Mind Control was extremely powerful. It was once my favorite strategy. You are correct, Mind Control is pretty much an afterthought these days. I like you feat, but to make the Mastermind part work, you'd have to word it that the opposing figure remains Mind Controlled on the opposing player's turn -- right now the figure reverts back to enemy control as soon as the action is over.

Scipio said...

I accept your eminently sensible suggestion as a friendly amendment, k26!

It allows a figure to control another continually, if the rolls go right. Combine a Mind Controller with a Probability Controlller and you're in business for some serious havoc...

Amy said...

It makes me sad to think that Eclipso is a "crap" figure, due to this limitation.

Doesn't make it not true, but it's still sad. See, this is why we'll never see a Starro clix. Because no one (at least not around me) plays Mastermind, either.

Then again, I play with more than a few people who play variations on:

*Ultimate Thor/Black Adam/KC Green Lantern/other beatstick
*cheap perplexer (aka, rookie Harley Quinn, Con Artist)
*cheap prob controller (Jinx, Domino)
*Trick Shot

...until special abilities can be cool enough to break up that hunk of cheese, you're not going to see a lot of the "goofier" abilities get too much play.

Jarred said...

Thanks for your article, pretty useful piece of writing.
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