Have you ever wanted to team up with a bunch of other superheroes & take down supervillains? And, then see who did it better by comparing score cards? Did you also want to use your powers to subdue regular heroes and villains and make them do your bidding? Were you aware that punches can be transformed into kicks?
DC Comics Deck-Building Game | Video Review
All the Kicks you can Punch, and then some. Nick reviews the DC Comics Deck-Building Game from Cryptozoic.
DC Comics Deck-Building Game | Overview
If you answered “yes” to any of the above, you might have what it takes to be the next great DC superhero, in The DC Comics Deck-Building Game from Cryptozoic Entertainment. Two to five players take control of iconic members of the New 52 version of the Justice League, Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and Aquaman (don’t laugh). Using your powers, you gain the strength necessary to take down some of the nastiest villains in the DC Universe.
DC Comics Deck-Building Game | Mechanics
You do all of this through deck-building. This is the same mechanic used in games like Dominion, Ascension, and Legendary. You start off with Punch cards that give you power, and Vulnerability cards that do nothing. However, on your turn there are always five cards from the main deck available to purchase using your power (called the Line-Up). These could be other hero cards, villains, superpowers, equipment, or locations, and they’re always better than your starting cards. You also can buy Kicks, as well, which are always available. Once you buy these cards, they go into your discard pile, and on future turns when you reshuffle, you may draw them and use them. In this way, you “build” your deck and make it stronger.
DC Comics Deck-Building Game | Heroes & Villains
Of course, you’re a superhero, so you have a special power than can help you. At the beginning of the game, each player gets a random card representing one of the Justice League. Each one has a special ability that make buying cards and defeating supervillains easier. For example, Green Lantern gives you a +3 power bonus if you play three or more different cards costing one or more on your turn. The Flash lets you draw one extra card the first time a card special effect lets you draw a card each turn (and he always goes first, of course).
In addition to the special effects the main deck cards have, they are also worth victory points. Whoever has the most of these points at the end of the game is the winner. The game ends when you run out of supervillains to fight. This is a separate stack of cards that the superheroes must burn through, which includes such lovely people as the Joker, Darkseid, Lex Luthor, and Deathstroke. Each supervillain has a cost to defeat them, which is usually much higher than the line-up cards. When you defeat them they go into your deck just like other cards, and you can use their special ability later. They’re also worth far more victory points than the line-up cards. But beware; when a new supervillain is revealed from the stack, all the players are subjected to First Appearance Attacks. If you can’t use a special defense card against it, something bad may happen such as discarding your hand or taking a dreaded Weakness card (-1 point at the end of the game).
DC Comics Deck-Building Game | Theme
The DC Comics Deck-Building Game lacks quite a bit in theme. It doesn’t make much sense that you can use your Punches to buy Kicks, or that you use your power to subdue villains and put them in your deck as playable cards. And why are the Justice League all fighting each other for points anyways? The game also suffers from some very overpowered cards, which are clearly better than the others and make the game a bit unbalanced.
DC Comics Deck-Building Game | Does it Rival Deck Builders of the Past, Present & Future?
Even so, this game is a solid, easy to learn deck-builder. It’s fast, light, and fun, and a great “gateway” game for newcomers to the hobby. Even if the theme doesn’t make sense, the artwork on the cards is great, and most people can identify DC Comics characters, making the game that much more accessible. You may quickly move on to heavier titles, but it’s still a great game for the comic book lover in all of us. Just try not to be too tough on those heroes you beat up, okay?
DC Comics Deck-Building Game
4 out of 5
by Board Game Brawl