GEN CON ’18: Hands-On With Marvel Legendary’s MCU Set

Gen Con 2018 has officially wrapped and all of Tabletop’s biggest names came out to show off what they’ve got coming soon.  Upper Deck was present with an enormous booth to show off new editions of thier LEGENDARY deck building game and I was able to book a demo for the just-released “Legendary: Marvel Studios Phase 1”.   This set is based on all the MCU movies leading up to the first Avengers movie so don’t expect characters like Black Panther or Doctor Strange to pop up in this, yet.

If you’ve never played, Legendary is a cooperative game where players are each dealt a deck of 12 cards of which they take 6 cards.  All players start with lowly shield agents and are supposed to use the various “buy” values to build their decks with Hero cards.

Characters like Hawkeye and Black Widow have pretty low prices so they are very good for the early game and confer bonuses such as additional draws from the deck to increase buy value per turn, or attack buffs.  And you’ll need a lot of attack power because every turn, villains will spawn in the sewers. 

Villains each have their own health and will progress all the way to the bridge of the city in 4 turns.  When they get past the bridge, they will be united with the mastermind.  The mastermind is the ultimate objective for players to defeat.  My play session was against the Iron Monger from the first Iron Man movie.  Masterminds will also have a random scheme drawn from the deck and applied to the matchup.  For our play session, Iron Monger was working with Loki and helping villains get teleported to Asgard to help Loki conquer the throne.  If 12 villains got past the bride, we lose.  Villains span film characters from HYDRA Agents to characters like Whiplash and Abomination.

The play session provoked instant cooperation with my fellow players as we advised on which hero powers we should prioritize buying, as many carried buffs pertaining to color and affiliation with a particular hero.  For instance:  Hawkeye and Iron Man are considered tech heroes and if both cards were played in one hand, Iron Man would get an attack buff that he could use to take out a tougher villain like Whiplash.  The progression of the game is mostly focused on building a deck with strong hero cards and KO-ing your weaker ones to ensure you’re getting a strong hand every time.  KO-ing only happens on certain cards so it’s important to make the most of these occasions.

My demo unfortunately didn’t cover a whole game due to time but I was able to get into the late game proceedings and had a pretty powerful deck.  My team had hit Iron Monger 3 out of the required 4 times to kill him so we were pretty dang close to winning.  This was my first time playing Legendary and as a guy who isn’ t too familiar with tabletop games this was relatively easy to pick up.

A rep from Upper Deck said that an expansion set based on Spider-Man: Homecoming is also available for purchase on top of the core set and that players can also play with the non-MCU edition of the Marvel game if they want to mix and match from factions like the X-Men and Fantastic Four.

I would highly recommend picking up Legendary: Marvel Studios Phase 1 when it hist retailers later this year! The game had a soft release at Gen Con with limited numbers so it would be very hard to find, or availble online for a hefty price.

Be sure to check out other Gen Con 2018 Recap coverage here on Don’t Feed The Gamers this week.  Follow us on Twitter and check out some of the latest news from DFTG:


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