Toy collectors got game. No, we're not talking about the latest MICHAEL JORDAN action figure from McFarlane Toys. Think smaller, much smaller. Heck, think miniature. Yep, we're talking about the latest craze to sweep the nation: WizKids' MARVEL HEROCLIX: INFINITY CHALLENGE game.
"Game? But you just said it was for toy collectors!" Well, it is. For both actually. At its core, HEROCLIX is a miniatures-based game for two or more players. Each person creates a team of characters and "battles" (through dice rolls and some nifty chart wheels) his opponent. But the really nifty part is that each character is like a miniature little toy. Sure there's no articulation, but you'll be able to collect some of your favorite Marvel teams from the Avengers to the X-Men. (Yes, you can even collect the Defenders!)
Besides picking up a starter box that includes tokens, a playing board and eight randomly packed figures, gamers/collectors can grab a booster pack containing four random figures. And with over 150 different miniatures in HEROCLIX 's first release, there's plenty to go around. And yes, you diehard collectors out there will be happy to know that there are roughly six levels of rarity for the figures, from common all the way up to the ultra-rare unique figures that feature variant or special characters. A fun game, neat miniatures and highly collectible aspect all make for one hot craze.
"We have been very happy with the results so far," says WizKids Advertising & Public Relations Manager James Mishler. "Our goal with the HEROCLIX line was to provide an accessible, quick, and most important, fun superhero miniatures game. So far, from the feedback we have received, we have been more than successful. The only real complaints that we have received tend to be the fans that wanted to see their favorite hero right away, and didn't find him or her in the first set. We plan on fulfilling those wishes as soon as possible."
Using a special Combat Dial, players can move and fight with their characters. Attached to the base of each figure, the Combat Dial contains a figure's speed/move, attack, defense, range and damage statistics. All the stats you'll need for each character are contained within the Combat Dial, and change as the game progresses. You'll also be able to use characters' special abilities and superpowers to fly, knock your opponent around or even smash 'em in the head with a lamp post.
All that gameplay stuff is great, but toy collectors are also getting in on the action, looking to create a miniature collectible army of Marvel characters. And while there's some big guns like CAPTAIN AMERICA, SPIDER-MAN and WOLVERINE out on the playing field, other notable characters are nowhere to be seen. DR. DOOM ? THOR ? IRON MAN ? Heck, even the entire FANTASTIC FOUR are sitting out this round. But no worries, they'll all be making an appearance soon.
"Marvel has an incredible collection of heroes and villains, great and small," says Mishler. "We wanted to take full advantage of that, as it enabled us to provide a wider variety of figures than if we simply included the heavy hitters. This allows us to provide as many different figures for the collectors as possible while also adding to the game a wider variety of abilities and power levels. Never, ever underestimate the abilities of the lower level figures... those S.H.I.E.L.D. AGENTS and MEDICS can be very powerful, and determine the fate of far more powerful figures!"
WizKids is also releasing a DC HEROCLIX game later this year. Look for the li'l buggers in comic book and gaming specialty shops everywhere. And if you don't see them right away, look a little harder. Remember, they are miniature after all.
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