It’s been a little while since the last bonafide Heroclixin’ update, it’s true. Ye olde blogger has been a bit bogged down in minor RL annoyances compounded with viewing old movies and TV shows on DVD — and, of course, playing actual games of HeroClix. Planning to get things back in gear in May. Thanks for visiting in the meantime; I’ll make sure to always post at least one new item a week at minimum if at all possible, no matter how tired I am.

Lately, I’ve been doing a fair amount of Figure Flush. Look for an update this coming week featuring my take on ‘clix fielded for the first time. 

There was an interesting thread on HCRealms yesterday titled: “How do you ‘Clix?” It was really asking about other fans’ buying habits.

Here’s how I do.

  • I used to buy a brick of each full-sized set. But with the exception of the recent Superman and The Legion of Super-Heroes set, I haven’t done that in years. Instead, I stick to sealed events and low-level impulse buys and trade for the rest.
  • Usually, I only focus on characters or dials I like. So with each set, at least a few will jump out as must-haves. But through trades and sealed games, I usually still end up with about the full set.
  • Gravity Feeds/CTDs are trickier. For one, they don’t lend themselves to sealed game opportunities. The rarity scheme is also rather terrible, making it difficult to randomly pull that last little piece from a given set you’re still after. I’m always a bit torn between buying none and too many.
  • Fast Forces are purely character-based for me. Starter sets used to be a must-buy when only one came a year. Now it depends on what elements are in said starter and the quality of the contents. For example, I got AvX X-Men to get a new Namor. But I buckled down and got an Avengers one as well to get the best Spider-Man yet. I skipped the Winter Soldier one because while I like some of the characters and the map and need the new objects, the missing Powers And Abilities Card was a dealbreaker. Similarly, last year’s Iron Man 3 starter coming out with the 2012 rulebook RIGHT BEFORE the 2013 rules prevented me from dropping those dollars.
  • A major complication in my attempts to slim my collection is the growing number of “completion” themes I have going. The biggest example is the “Black box,” my collection of every black character in HeroClix. (This has bled over into a subtheme of characters who simply have the word “black” in their name: Black Adam, Black Widow, Manchester Black, etc.) Another is a full roster of characters toting bow and arrow — the Archers like Green Arrow, Hawkeye and Legolas.
  • And then there’s ridiculousness such as the team including Goblin King, Mojo and Amanda Waller — the Fat team. Like I said: Ridiculous.

Some years ago, I wrote about wanting to play a team of nothing but different version of Robin, The Boy Wonder. Well, I did this past weekend, with the following team:


Robin [Arkham Origins] 72 + Batman Family ATA 4
Robin [Arkham Asylum] 66
Robin [Streets of Gotham 048] 59 + Batman Family ATA 4
Robin [DC 10th Anniversary] 52 + Batman Family ATA 4
Robin [Batman Classic TV] 50 + Batman Family ATA 4
Robin [Brave and the Bold] 43 + Lunge 5
Robin [Crisis 001] 35
= 398 points.

The scenario was no figure greater than 100 points and no resources.

But this team went 1-2 ONLY because I won a roll-off in the 0-KO first round. It’s that terrible. For so many reasons.


  • Leadership only on the CHEAPEST character. The extra action was welcome on the swarm team, but was otherwise a waste.
  • Too many without Stealth…
  • …particularly the mobile fighters.
  • 2 damage all around with little exception.
  • The only 3 damage was on immobile attackers.
  • One Perplexer.


If only I’d followed my own advice from this very blog, written in early 2011:

At 79 points, he’s a lot, yes. But dumping the marginally useful Batman Family ATA in favor of maybe a couple more Lunge feats would’ve carved the room. Or I could have used Robin [Teen Titan 001] either at full 75 points to get better Leadership or at 50 for cheaper opening Outwit.

The point being, it’s no good having a swarm team when the swarm can neither hit nor damage opponents.

I mean, this is how bad this team was: Heroclixin’s Number Three Worst Fig of 2013, Battle Guy 009, mopped the floor with it along with others of his Justice Forever squad.

This performance is quite the opposite of the first time I ran an all-Robin team, which was built something like this:


Robin 79 (Crisis veteran)
Robin 66 (Arkham Asylum)
Robin 43 (The Brave and the Bold)
Robin 35 (Crisis rookie)
Robin 30 (Batman Alpha)
Boy Wonder [Crisis LE] 40

=300 points. It did surprisingly well, most notably taking on a Lex Luthor/Brainac duo fig back in 2010, when all these were still Modern Age. I should have remembered that stealthed Outwit was the only reason it could function.

Future builds will look a bit like this:

Lead Outwit: either Crisis Vet Robin or TT Robin at either cost. The latter doesn’t start with the power on his top price, but can push right onto it. he also has both Batman and Titans TAs, and a special power granting either Incap or free Smoke Cloud.

Cheap tie-up swarm: in Golden Age, this is B+B Robin or no one. In Modern, the 25-point TV Robin can fill this role a little better at nearly 20 fewer points.

Damagers: if used more aggressively than in this game, the Arkham Origins Robin could work. I did a lot of early Sidestep with him to save actions when I should have run him near the front lines to threaten foes much sooner.

Perplex: This team needs it bad. Arkham Asylum Robin is good for it in Golden Age. Modern Age limits me to Streets of Gotham 012 Robin, a short-lived 100-point bloat with the power traited. I might just settle for 10th Robin’s Enhancement instead and trust in Outwit to nudge up damage output for melee.


This weekend, AvX is mercifully coming to an end. I am so sick to death of seeing those same 10 starter figs on the map all the time. Perhaps I’ll do a post on the few teams I did like.




No. 3


Yeah, she’s Golden Age. But so are a fair number of brand-new figs these days. And like Brother Voodoo, she’s become one of those pieces that’s so good that she’s an auto-pick. She needs a fix.

The trouble with her is her epic action trait that allows her to repeatedly deal multiple characters penetrating damage practically anywhere on the map without an attack roll while she stays in her starting area. Just the threat of Loudwater can force opponents to bunch up in the center of the map, which is usually a killzone itself.

Free-damage effects should always have some element of risk. This one has absolutely none. Even for an epic action, it’s bonkers.
Heroclixin’s fix:

I CALL ON THE LOUDWATER!: Once per game, if she has zero action tokens, give Arwen an epic action; she can use Smoke Cloud as a free action regardless of range and line of fire, but the first token must be placed in any square on the edge of the map and she may place 1 additional hindering terrain marker per 100 points of the build total; after action resolves, deal 2 penetrating damage to each opposing character occupying a square into which a marker was just placed. Give Arwen two action tokens.

She did this move once in the movie on her home turf and had to wait for just the right moment to unleash it; it was an all-or-nothing technique. That’s the way it ought to work in the game. Once per game, but with a bigger bite to still make it worth using that one time.




Almost all are too powerful for too few points and have no real counters outside of about a dozen silver bullets in the game:

  1. Catwoman [DC 10th Anniversary 015]
  2. Iron Man [Marvel 10th Anniversary 009]
  3. Iron Man [Fear Itself 300]
  4. Phantom Girl [Superman and the Legion of Super-Heroes 008]
  5. Disintegration Beam [Invincible Iron Man S101]

Wait. Are there only about a HALF dozen? Really? That’s unacceptable.

Therefore, Heroclixin’ proposes the following rewrite to this standard power:

OUTWIT Give this character a free action to counter a power or a combat ability possessed by a single target opposing character until the beginning of your next turn. Any game effects with a duration specified by the countered power or combat ability are removed. A character using this power must be within range (minimum range 6) and line of fire to the target and can counter use of an attached resource or relic as though it were a combat ability.

This kills off resources as the almighty crutch they have become but isn’t nearly as harsh as the silver bullets mentioned above. It draws the Outwitters’ fire from a character’s natural powers and abilities, so it balances itself out.



I somewhat like that he’s a silver bullet for the One Man Army. But this is the SIF debacle all over again.

A little history for players who don’t remember HeroClix circa 2007-08: SIF = Structural Integrity Field. It was a special object that prevented terrain from being destroyed. So what some players did was use a double Barrier team to hide all game long with an underbuilt team, which used to determine the winner in a 0-point game instead of going to a roll-off.

This is the new version of that, effectively, if a player runs a OMA or even a slightly tentpoled team. The Highfather team can simply KO the likely less dangerous teammates of the imPacted figure and just refuse to attack the target of the Pact until time runs out.

It’s like a football team allowed to do the “victory formation” for an infinite number of downs. It’s like a pitcher with a lead being allowed to walk batter after batter and instead of forcing baserunners home, they’re forced out at the plate.

It’s completely against the spirit of the game.

Therefore, something like this needs to happen:

THE PACT: At the beginning of the game, you may announce a pact. If you do, the highest point character on your force and the highest point character on your opponent’s force (300 points or less) can’t target opposing characters with an attack until one of them has taken damage from an attack or they are the only 2 characters on the map. If the chosen character is the only remaining character on its force before either of the above occurs, it can target all but the highest point character on your force. This ability can’t be ignored.

This keeps the advantage and control of the game tempo in Highfather’s favor, but it gives the victim a chance to at least play the late game.




No. 6

Super Strength


Though it was helped a little by the added ability to set down objects as well as pick them up, Super Strength still suffers from the modern game’s scarcity of objects. Now, with ultra-light objects in the game, this power may have even less to work with. So Heroclixin’ proposes the following:

“SUPER STRENGTH: When this character moves due to its own action, it may either pick up an object or place an object it is holding. The object must be picked up from or placed in either a square the char acter occupies or an adjacent square. If this power is lost or countered while this character is holding an object, immediately place the object in the square this char acter occupies. As a power action, this character can make a close combat attack to destroy a wall or blocking terrain; place a standard light object in an adjacent square.”



Science Police Officer

So this 45-point cheapie can do this:

“TACTICAL DEPLOYMENT: When an opposing character within 8 squares is given a free action, if that character has been given a non-free action this turn, after actions resolve, deal that character 1 unavoidable damage.”

It’s overpowered, but this character’s SP is something the game’s needed for a little while now: An answer to free actions. The problem is that this SP is stackable if one runs multiple Sci-Cops. It’s like multi-targeting and hitting a bunch of Mystics TA enemies.

But without, y’know, actually having to make an attack roll. Or even attacking at all.

It’s a bit too much free damage on top of the board control caused by deterring free actions. So here’s Heroclixin’s rewrite:

“TACTICAL DEPLOYMENT: When an opposing character within 8 squares is given a free action, if that character has been given a non-free action this turn, after actions resolve, deal that character 1 unavoidable damage if it has not already taken damage from this effect this turn.

It’s free damage. One is enough.


No. 4


Incap got a nice boost with the 2013 rules that addressed many of Heroclixin’s concerns with the expensive attack power. But Incap could still stand to improve by becoming a standard, non-silver-bullet answer to the game’s growing problem of free actions.

Heroclixin’s fix is essentially the same as in 2011. Add this line:

INCAPACITATE Give this character a close combat or ranged combat action to make an attack that deals no damage. If the attack hits, give the target an action token; if the target already has 2 action tokens, deal the target 1 penetrating damage. Hit targets can’t be given free actions until the beginning of your next turn.

And finally this power is worth every point, all the time, while free actions have a natural predator at last.


Next: How to fix the top 3 busted figs/tactics in HeroClix.


No. 8
Brother Voodoo

He survived the first Watch List intact because its changes affected him. However, he’s still such a good piece and priced so cheaply that he’s almost an auto-pick for any competitive team today. And whenever any element is an auto-pick, there’s likely a game balancing issue.

The trouble with BV is that he can use Mind Control, an expensive power, for free every turn of the game with ease while not paying the full cost of this MC ability because it’s essentially absent from his dial when he doesn’t have exactly 1 action token — thus getting around the point formula, which normally bloats the cost of multiple MC clicks. This MC is also BETTER than normal MC — again, for less cost.

The token requirement was intended as a limiter, but it’s actually worked out to be the opposite. So here’s Heroclixin’s suggestion for the No. 8 Needed Change, a rewrite for Brother Voodoo’s trait:

“MY SPIRIT BROTHER POSSESSES YOU: When Brother Voodoo gains an exactly one action token, he can immediately use Mind Control as a free action. He takes no damage from this use of Mind Control and he and his target modify their attack values by +1 this turn.”

Heroclixin’ thinks this is the most streamlined change. It puts a little more risk into consecutive uses of the power by effectively making it a push, but maintains BV’s power level.



Here’s more of that positioning-free play that concerned Heroclixin’ in the No. 9 entry.

“LINK TELEPATHICALLY: Friendly characters within 4 squares can draw lines of fire and count range and squares from the square of any one friendly character within 4 squares of Tellus.”

Granting any ally an extra eight squares to shoot or whatever is too much, especially given certain unintended game effect consequences like 250-pt Enchantress being able to super-Poison from that distance (because her SP treats those squares she counts as adjacent). And it’s not comic accurate: Tellus only works with Legionnaires anyway. So Heroclixin’s No. 8 Needed Change is either this rewrite:

LINK TELEPATHICALLY: Friendly characters within 4 squares that share a keyword with Tellus can draw lines of fire and count range and squares from the square of any one friendly character within 4 squares of Tellus.

or this one:

LINK TELEPATHICALLY: Friendly characters within 4 squares can draw lines of fire from the square of any one friendly character within 4 squares of Tellus, but range is counted normally from the character drawing line of fire.

So a 4-range character could still only see 4 squares out, instead of the 12 that Tellus’ trait currently allows. Again, it’s more than enough to be able to see around corners or past characters this way without the warping effect on range.


Next: Something new, something old, and…?


No. 10 [tie]
Injustice League team ability

This was on the 2011 list and it still hasn’t changed for the better. Worse, there are actually new characters recently given the TA, and it never gets used. So the No. 10 Most Needed Change in HeroClix is to change this:

“Whenever a character using the Injustice League team ability attacks an opposing character that was attacked by another character using the Injustice League team ability this turn, the action does not count toward your available actions this turn.”

to this:

“When a friendly character makes an attack, attacks made by other characters using this team ability against the same opposing character don’t count toward your available actions this turn. At the end of your turn, remove an action token from each character that used this team ability to make an unsuccessful attack this turn.”

It maintains the original gangpile-on-one-guy spirit of the TA but gives it some use for today’s much smaller teams.

No. 10 [tie]

Same as before, using Regen should never cause pushing damage.

No. 9
Iron Pharaoh’s Golden Falcon, Soaring trait

The game’s trend toward positioning-free play is worrisome. This one goes beyond previous attack-from-start-zone offenders in that the Falcon’s LOF can’t be blocked by ANYTHING on an outdoor map and that it’s impossible to tie up or attack or ANYTHING.

In fact, there’s a rumor that the set Iron Pharaoh appears in, Invincible Iron Man, may have been designed before Wolverine and the X-Men and that the outrageous original version of that set’s Spiral figure was intended as a silver bullet against I.P. and others bad game design decisions like him.


If only WizKids would realize that silver bullets are also bad game design decisions. But they haven’t yet, and so the below rewrite is the No. 9 Needed Change:

“GOLDEN FALCON, SOARING: When Iron Pharaoh is first placed on the map, place a Falcon special terrain marker in an adjacent square. Give Iron Pharaoh a free action to move this marker up to 3 squares. Iron Pharaoh can draw lines of fire and count range (up to 3 squares) from the Falcon marker for a single action using his printed damage value and Improved Targeting: Ignores Hindering Terrain, Ignores Elevated Terrain, Ignores Outdoor Blocking Terrain, Ignores Characters.”

It’s enough that he can attack around corners or, in time, from clear across the map. He shouldn’t have the ability to counter with Outwit AND shoot a target for massively enhanced damage.


Next: More broken stuff that needs repair