Monday, January 21, 2013

Our thoughts on Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game

At our local gaming club meeting hosted by our Local Gaming Store, Marty and I got to play Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building GameSo, we thought before too much time passed we would share our thoughts on the game since it is one of the newest deck building games on the market. So instead of reading two blogs, we are just going to combine our thoughts here to keep things simple. (Marty's comments are in red and I am in blue)


Not going to explain in detail how the game is played, but on a high level, everyone around the table is trying to defeat a Mastermind before certain conditions are met which is determined by the Scheme card. If the conditions get met, then everyone loses. Just like all deck building games, you have ways to buy cards and you have cards you use to fight with. To be honest, if you have played Thunderstone or Ascension, then you have played this game. On to the discussion:


Overall Impression
It was a typical deck building game. Each game you have a different Mastermind to fight and different heroes to choose from. The resource/attack values were the typical fare where some cards produce resources to purchase more cards and others provide attack strength to defeat enemies. As you build you deck you must balance those resources. Overall, I think it is a great intro deck building game. The cards were easy to understand, the theme was nice and I liked the variety in how you can tailor the game for various winning conditions. The artwork on the cards was nice and the wording on the cards was easy to follow. 
What I liked
One unique element of the game was as henchmen moved through the city, the location they were in could affect them in a positive or negative way. The semi-coop element was also nice. If you didn't work together you were not going to be able to beat the Mastermind. But you also had to defeat henchmen and rescue bystanders as a means to get as many victory points as possible for the final tally. Requiring the different Marvel teams to work together (Avengers, X-Men, etc.) was also a nice touch.  I enjoyed that you had to defeat the Mastermind in order to win the game and not just beat the other players by scoring the most points. I think the dynamic of the henchmen moving through the city was interesting and if you couldn't beat them, there could be penalties to the group if they escaped. I liked how the locations in the city will change conditions on the cards and I really enjoyed the dynamic that you needed to play one style of card first to get the effect on the next card played.
What I didn't like
I guess I've played enough deck building games to feel there wasn't enough different in this game to make it feel fresh. In addition, I didn't feel the theme was used very well. The powers of the super heroes just didn't make any sense. Why does Spider-Man give me the ability to draw the top card and put it in my hand if it costs 2 or less? I never felt like we were endangered of losing the game. Even the people that owned the game said they have not had a challenge in this game, so it might be that they need an expansion to ramp of the difficulty. Even when a henchman escaped our capture, the consequences to our decks were not that bad.
Buy, Pass, Wait
PASS: When I first heard this game was coming out, I was very excited about it. And if I had never played a deck building game before it would probably be a buy for me. But there is just not enough from this game to separate it from all the other deck building games currently on the market. WAIT: I was going to buy this game last year, but glad I waited until I got to play it and now have decided that I am going to wait until I see how the expansion may impact the game. I love the Marvel Universe and would like to add this game to my collection, but I want more of challenge when playing a coop game. I want to believe I am going to lose and this game didn't produce it.

Thanks for reading and appreciate others thoughts on this game.