—or— “How To FAIL at HeroClix in Every Conceivable Way.”
So I played my Ginger Girl team of
Giganta [Legion of Doom Fast Forces 006] 100
Crystal [Inhumans Fast Forces] 100
Harlequin [World’s Finest] 90
+ Hulkbuster Torso 10
= 300 points
Heroclixin’s written about Giganta before. The same tactic of pushing her to start non-stop Quaking enemy formations was still viable, so I wanted to field her one more time in Modern Age before her June 1 retirement. Same went for FF Crystal, who would be my chief support piece and secret weapon with her supreme Barrier and Smoke Cloud and Telekinesis skills. Finally, Harlequin was the face of the future and the lead attacker on this mini-swarm crew. The Torso would give her the armor needed to survive to the end of these matches.
I was under no illusion that this team would make the cut to the four elimination rounds, or even have an overall winning record. But I was going to have some F.U.N. trying, and would claw at least one earned win, I figured.
I sort of figured wrong.
ROUND 1, In Which I Meet My Once-Per-Tournament Game-Killing Rookie Error Quota
Faced Nick “Balls of” Fury [NFAOS 056] equipped with Brainiac [SM/WW], Jean Grey [Uncanny X-Men Fast Forces 002], Weasel, Blind Al, and Indigo Power Battery which would force me to get very close to fight. Fine; that’s what I wanted anyway. According to plan, I soon got to where Giganta could Quake the first three listed about. But both Fury and the Decoy-assigned Jean got their Shape Change rolls, and Weasel wasn’t KO’d either, leaving me in a bad spot. From there, it was a hard-fought game of trying to counterattack the unscathed Fury to recover from the lost attack opportunity, especially with Jean able to keep him and his support extra mobile.
It wasn’t until round 2 that I remembered Giganta’s Battle Fury.
ROUND 2, In Which I Suffer The Worst Critical Hit Ever And Am Buried In An Avalanche
Here I faced Superman [Trinity War 050] equipped with Parallax and with the Sinestro Corps Battery. Whoof…-2 AV against a steady 20 DV. I had to ensure as much attack opportunities as possible to have a chance, so I forced him to over extend a bit, giving me a shot on Superman with Harlequin’s Jack In The Box. I needed an 11 to hit but didn’t mind trying because Giganta’s Flurry, Harlequin’s Psychic Blast, and Crystal’s penetrating damage Smoke Cloud were all coming behind it.
I rolled the absolute worst: a 12.
The critical hit knocked him out of range of ALL those other attacks and didn’t even result in any more damage because of Invincible. Worse still, Superman’s SP immediately healed the damage done.
Later in the round, after losing both teammates, Harlequin made a half-Sidestep to stay in hindering terrain. But she got stranded there by his Hypersonic Speed hit and I couldn’t do a SINGLE ______ THING to even give her a chance at fighting back, running away, any useful thing because of that solitary, meaningless Sidestep…the Avalanche Effect.
ROUND 3, In Which I Am Blindsided and Distrust My Own Gut and Am Undone By A Judge’s Ruling
My opponent fielded Iceman [Uncanny X-Men 051] equipped with Proselyte and assigned Greed [Trinity War S104], Greed [Trinity War 065] equipped with Ion and assigned Omega Drive, and Atomica [Crime Syndicate Fast Forces 007] all with the Indigo Battery. Winning map, he selected the Thunderbolts Sub and crept up the hall with Sidestep, using free Barrier to wall up.
I guess after two straight losses, I got skittish and forgot my game plan: to rush the enemy before they are ready. And so I passed up a chance to Charge Giganta up to smash his Barrier and punch him while carrying Harley who could Sidestep in the gap and sic Jack on ’em. Thus I was shocked when he Outwitted Giganta through walls (Omega Drive) so the Super Strength-imbued Iceman could one-shot her.
From there, I found Harlequin unable to act when Iceman used Sidestep to activate his Ice Wall attack that froze her completely in place until the end of the turn. And here is where the judge killed any chance of my comeback: He ruled that the Ice Wall’s end-of-turn removal prevents end-of-turn free actions. I didn’t think it was the right ruling, but I couldn’t argue why at the time.
Here’s why, as told in the official WizKids Info Network’s rules forum, in relation to another “end of the turn” effect with identical timing:
- Free actions may be given during the end of the turn phase, but not after clearing action tokens.
So yeah. I could have at least put up a fight with the free actions granted by her trait. Maybe it’s enough to KO Atomica, at least.
ROUND 4, In Which I Am Denied A Fair Fight.
My poor showings and other players dropping out left me with a bye.
ROUND 5, In Which Wits and Dice Fail.
My final foe had a two-headed team of Steve Rogers [NFAOS 051] equipped with Ion and Balls Fury. He got map and picks the Age of Ultron New York map, one that has virtually no cover against Fury. So I forced him to come to me, a little bit. Out of caution, I built a Barrier for Crystal, knowing the building was no cover against this pair.
I am SO TIRED of losing to off-map stuff. In this case, I didn’t build quite enough Barrier to cover for Ion-granted TK and Crystal was crippled.
I wasn’t out of it yet, though, managing to KO Fury and wear Rogers down good and well even after Giganta and Crystal fell. But in the end, I couldn’t roll a stupid 6 to hit a stupid 16 for just a stupid two damage in three stupid tries to win.
Sigh. I’m so glad so much of what doomed me in Rounds 2 and 3 — batteries and entities — is going away. I need to figure out how to stop pratfalling like in Rounds 1 and 5 and avalanching like in Round 2. And I suppose I need to be ready to argue the general rules that I seem to know better than most. This is the second time I’ve been undone by a reasonable-sounding but incorrect ruling on basic powers and timing at one of these big events this year.