Read the introduction to the series here. Catch up on previous articles here.
E102 INFINITY GAUNTLET
Based on the classic 1991 miniseries.
–newer maps with letters and numbers along two edges.
–eight extra tokens marked somehow as the Infinity Gems (event tokens). I use gem tokens that match the colors of each Infinity Gem condition.
–a ton MORE tokens distinct from both your normal action tokens and the event tokens. These’ll be the power tokens.
–Paper to keep track of extra points scored.
PLACEMENT: The Corner of the map where A and 1 intersect is Corner 1; Corner 2 is the next corner clockwise around the edge of the map, and so on. When instructed to place an effect token by an effect of this event dial, roll 2d6 to determine where the determination of placement begins based on the result: Corner 1 (1-3), Corner 2 (4-6), Corner 3 (7-9), Corner 4 (10-12). Next roll 2d6 amd count a number of numbered rows away from the corner equal to the result, then roll 2d6 and count a number of lettered columns away from the edge in that row equal to the result. Place the effect token in the nearest square of unoccupied clear terrain.
WHAT IT MEANS: Tedious placement of tokens that’ll occur all game long. You may want to do a few test runs before the game just to get a feel for Placement so it won’t slow the game down even more.
THE GEMS AND THE GAUNTLET: This scenario requires eight special tokens, clearly labeled with the eight effects listed below (one per token). These are event tokens.
WHAT IT MEANS: Try to pick some markedly distinctive from both the players’ normal tokens and from each other to minimize confusion. I use tokens corresponding to the Infinity Gem colors.
THE GEMS APPEAR: At the beginning of each turn, if the effect token for an effect indicated on the dial is not currently in the game, place the token for the effect on the map, as explained in Placement and as determined by the player whose turn it is.
WHAT IT MEANS: Tedious placement of tokens that’ll occur all game long.
I SEIZE IT FOR MY OWN!: Effect tokens can be carried by any character, but a character may only carry one effect token at a time. When a character picks up an effect token or carries an effect token at the beginning of your turn, you can choose which one of the numbered options of an effect a character can use; the character can use the chosen option as a free action.
WHAT IT MEANS: Fun stuff, since each token gives brand-new power options. No way to plan for this stuff.
SUCH POWER… TOO MUCH POWER!: Each time one of a player’s character uses an option of a Gem Effect, place a power token in front of that player. After that use of the effect resolves, that player rolls 2d6 and adds 1 for each 100 points (or fraction thereof) of the character’s point value; if the result is equal to or less than the number of power tokens in front of that player, remove all power tokens and roll a d6: on a result of 1-3 all effect tokens carried by that player’s characters are dropped, on a result of 4-6 only the most recently used effect token is dropped. When a character carrying an effect token is successfully hit by an attack and the result of the attack roll is doubles, the character drops the effect token (even if it takes no damage from the attack).
WHAT IT MEANS: You have to roll to see if you can hold onto the Gems. You’ll always add at least +1 to the result…the more powerful the character (points-wise), the better the chance of not losing the Gem.
IN SEARCH OF A NEW MASTER: When an effect token is dropped, the effect ends immediately and the token is placed as explained in Placement and determined by the player whose turn it is.
WHAT IT MEANS: You got it…tedious placement of tokens that’ll occur all game long.
TURN THE DIAL: Each time a character is defeated and each time a character is hit with a critical hit and at the end of each round.
WHAT IT MEANS: The dial will turn steadily, and faster with KOs. No camping on conditions you like.
WIN CONDITIONS: Defeating a character carrying an effect token scores 50 additional victory points per 100 points (or fraction thereof) of the defeated character’s point value (maximum 150 additional points per character defeated); defeating a character not carrying an effect token scores 50 fewer points (minimum 0 victory points total per character; scored victory points can’t be negative).
WHAT IT MEANS: Resisting the temptation of power may be worth it, especially for low-point characters. Consider fielding one or two highly effective cheapies on your squad.
Okay, that’s all the super-tedious stuff out of the way. Now for the fun part…the Gems!
GEM EFFECT: SPACE (Purple, slots A-E): Choose one: (1) This character, (2) another character, or (3) any standard object, place the choice in any square of unoccupied clear terrain.
WHAT IT MEANS: Nowhere is safe from the character with this gem. An enemy Batman hiding in a bush? Bring him to the light with option 2. Your own Batman have this gem himself? Put him behind a bush with option 1. Note, also, that this effect is not any sort of action; feel free to attack or move normally afterward! This gem is fine for any character.
GEM EFFECT: MIND (Blue, slots C-F): Choose one: (1) Use Mind Control or (2) use Incapacitate; for both options, modify the character’s attack value by +2 and make the attack as if the character has two range lightning bolts and a range of 8.
WHAT IT MEANS: The character becomes Mutations and Monsters’ Mastermind for a turn. Best for characters who’ll be fighting at mid-range.
GEM EFFECT: SOUL (Green, slots F-I): Choose one: (1) Use Exploit Weakness and Steal Energy (but heal the character of damage equal to the damage taken by the target of the attack) or (2) use Support (do not subtract 2 from the roll of the d6) or (3) use Regeneration (do not subtract 2 from the roll of the d6) or (4) use Poison (but deal damage equal to 3 minus the number of each adjacent opposing characters).
WHAT IT MEANS: Equally effective in close quarters and in the rear field. It does almost zip for ranged fighters, so you’ll want your bricks or support players to grab this gem.
GEM EFFECT: REALITY (yellow, slots A-D): Choose one: (1) Choose a standard power (including named powers using the power) or an ability (including team abilities); the chosen power or ability is countered on all opposing characters until the beginning of your next turn or (2) choose an opposing character; all of the character’s powers are countered until the beginning of your next turn or (3) use Barrier, Outwit or Perplex (but modify the chosen combat value of the target character by +2 or -2).
WHAT IT MEANS: You’ll want to consider fielding Power Cosmic or Quintessence to protect against this effect; Fortitude won’t help. Note also that no line of fire is needed for those first two options. A character with this gem ought to hide if it can.
GEM EFFECT: TIME (orange, slots B-E): Choose one: (1) Roll a d6; before the beginning of your next turn, this character can use Probability Control a number of times equal to the result (but only once per roll) or (2) until the beginning of your next turn, all friendly characters 6 or fewer squares away to which this character has a clear line of fire can use Super Senses (if they can’t already).
WHAT IT MEANS: Rerolls galore. The best character to use this gem is a mid-range fighter or mobile supporter able to see the fighting field.
GEM EFFECT: POWER (Red, slots E-I): Choose one: (1) Until the beginning of your next turn, this character can use Impervious (but add 1 to the result when rolling the d6, maximum result 6) or (2) this character can modify its damage by +2 (to a maximum damage value of 5) and can use Exploit Weakness or Psychic Blast (as if it had a range of 10).
WHAT IT MEANS: Try to get this gem on your fighters.
GEM EFFECT: EGO (Brown, slots A-B, G-L): Choose one character carrying an effect token and roll a d6. On a result of 1 or 2, until the beginning of that character’s player’s next turn all effects of the chosen characters effect token are ignored; on a result of a 3-6, the character drops the effect token.
WHAT IT MEANS:
Getting tired of a gem messing up your game? Snuff its effect with this effect. No line of fire needed, either. Naturally, Ego isn’t affected by itself.
THE INFINITY GAUNTLET (White, slots J-L): When the Infinity Gauntlet effect token is placed, all other effect tokens are dropped and all other effect tokens (except Ego) are removed from the map. When the Infinity Gauntlet event does not show on the dial, the Infinity Gauntlet event token is dropped and removed from the battlefield. This character can choose up to one option from each of the gem effects described on this event card (each use of an option places a power token normally).
WHAT IT MEANS: for a few rounds, whoever has this gem is like unto a god. Keep a high-speed character around to grab this (or the Ego) token ASAP.
(Just got an image of Lightspeed with Phenomenal Cosmic Powah™.)
SUMMING IT UP: Although it’s very complicated to play, and as mentioned, full of tedious placement of tokens all game long, this remains one of the event dials that won’t inordinately punish certain team builds. Pick up and play!
I believe that does it for the Secret Invasion set’s event dials. Next time we’ll look at Arkham Asylum’s offerings. ‘Til then…!