If you don’t know, I’m a massive X-head. Been a fan since the classic cartoon and an avid reader ever since, especially right now in Jonathan Hickman’s Krakoa era. When Wizkids contacted me to give my thoughts on the new X-Men release, themed around The Rise & Fall Of The Shi’ar Empire storyline, I jumped at it! But they sent a lot,(a whole brick and more), and I thought it would be fun to just look at some of the best highlights of X-Men: Rise & Fall. Now understand, I’m not the world’s foremost Heroclix expert so this analysis aesthetic as well as how their powers fit the character!
Tempo was kind of a surprise for me since she’s an incredibly deep cut, though she’s gotten some shine lately thanks to features in Marauders as well as a part of the voting pool for the new X-Men team. But the buckethead is here and she’s gotten a pretty good rendering in miniature thanks to the bucket translating easily and covering up harder to adapt facial features. I’m also a sucker for these mid-flight minis. As a character, she’s mostly in a support role due to the nature of her powers. Those powers are pretty potent, though, since she can buff a character’s speed by 3 (up or down) each turn. Pretty useful when you need a boost or to lay a trap.
#9 Moira Mactaggart
Moira, like Tempo, got points just for being a surprising addition to the lineup. Interestingly this is her “classic” Moira look, one she hasn’t worn in a long while and certainly not during her current time as Moira X, the many-lived mastermind behind Krakoa. Moira is also a support character (she’s even cheaper than Tempo), but has a lot of powers at her disposal. The only real acknowledgement of her status on Krakoa is her “Many Lives of Moira Mactaggart” power, which is a fairly standard regeneration.
This is a cosmic-focused set inspired by a storyline set in the Shi’ar Empire, so there’s plenty of Starjammers to be found. I also got a Corsair and a Reza in the block that Wizkids sent me. But Ch’od sticks out from the rest thanks to a fantastic sculpt (on an uncommon character) that really captures the size of the big lizard man. He’s also accompanied by his best buddy Cr’reee, who doesn’t do much but he’s there for moral support. Ch’od is a good “big” character for your team with a lot of versatility and unique powers that help him protect others and scavenge junk from the terrain for his own use.
Blob is another big boy character that got a great mini in this release. He’s rocking his “Krakoan bartender” look and the more laid back attitude he’s developed. Mr. Dukes is a brute type who excels at close quarters combat and sheer survivability. And having very cool sunglasses.
#6 Sebastian Shaw
I won’t lie to you, Sebastian Shaw sucks. But on the Heroclix maps, he’s a pretty cool character that actually has rules that reflect the in-comics status quo of Krakoa. See, Shaw has a power called “Krakoan Revival” that is new to the set and is shared by a few characters. The power lets you resurrect fallen allies like the people of Krakoa can, but at the cost of emboldening the enemies of humanity like Orchis (and their space gorillas) to send in tokens to battle you by proxy. His Kinetic Absorption abilities are also in evidence, helping Shaw take a lot of hits as the game goes on.
Destiny is just a character who translated well to HeroClix design wise and I’m glad that Mystique finally has her wife to hang out with (though I got weird X-Force assassin Mystique rather than cool skull mystique but eh, we take what we can. Destiny is also a support (I think I like those) who helps her fellow mutants to rally while having control of out comes (as she does) and the level of stealth we’d expect from her.
#4 Omega Red
Omega Red is a weird, weird villain who’s a bit of a relic of the Cold War but fun nonetheless. He recently appeared in Benjamin Percy’s X-Force, where he’s working with vampires and maybe Dracula? Don’t worry about it. He’s got a cool figure and a lot of neat powers that let him be a menace anywhere on the board. He’s even brought along Kotik!
So, Blackheart isn’t really an X-villain, operating more as a villain for supernatural heroes like Doctor Strange or Ghost Rider. But damn, that is a cool looking piece of plastic. His powers are pretty strong and, thanks to his connection to the Hellfire Club (go with it), he can summon lots of mooks to fight off opponents when he doesn’t want to bring his formidable strength to bear.
Malice is a total weirdo but I find that very endearing about her, especially in this form where she’s possessed Polaris aka Lorna Dane. The mask and hair are patently ridiculous in the way comics often are, and I love that the Malice necklace is still visible. Her powers are mostly mimics of Lorna’s, hilariously, but she can “vessel hop” if needed into a different character nearby to gain control. It’s thematically consistent and I dig it.
#1 Brood Queen
One of the rarer figures I got in my pull, the Brood Queen is a pretty big and detailed rendition of the classic character. Much like Blackheart. The Brood Queen is a monster maker who’s offspring can help her fight and defend her from atttack. Most of her powers exist to control them or keep her as out of harm’s way as possible.
You can shop all of the releases in X-Men Heroclix: Rise & Fall at the Wizkids shop or at your FLGS!
Images via Wizkids
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