Expand the Marvel Multiverse With 'Legendary: Secret Wars'

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Secret Wars, Marvel’s most recent crossover extravaganza, ended last week, but fans of Upper Deck’s Legendary Deck Building Game can continue the inter-dimensional adventure with the Legendary: Secret Wars expansion.

Legendary Secret Wars Box Cover Art - Photo by Gerry Tolbert
Legendary Secret Wars Box Cover Art – Photo by Gerry Tolbert

The game requires the Legendary base game for play, but adds several new characters, card types and game modes. The Bribe, Teleport, and Multi-class mechanics from previous expansions carry over, as well.

What’s In the Box?
Updated Rules
350 new cards:
14 new heroes including Dr. Strange, Thanos, Lady Thor, Miles Morales, and Old Man Logan
6 New Villain Groups
3 New Henchman Groups
4 New Masterminds
8 New Schemes
30 New Ambition cards (Used in the new “A Player is the Mastermind” mode)
15 New Sidekick cards (new mechanic)
And a new Unique Bystander – the Banker

Mastermind
Secret Wars introduces an all-new play mode that allows one player to take on the role of the Mastermind. Ambition cards make for more chaotic and increasingly more difficult game play for hero players. The Mastermind can still recruit heroes from the HQ and fight villains in the City, but the Ambition cards augment their abilities and even directly damage the hero players.

Sidekicks
These new hero cards can be purchased on your turn for 2 points. On subsequent draws, they can be returned to the Sidekick draw pile in exchange for the ability to draw the top two cards from your deck. Several of the new heroes included with the expansion have the ability to recruit one or more of the Sidekicks on your turn, and the mechanic is backward-compatible with all previous expansions.

New Sidekick Card
New Sidekick Card

Cross-Dimensional Rampage
Since this expansion deals with the multiple dimensions in the Marvel Universe, several versions of each hero may exist in the same game. Hulks and Wolverines from the base game and all of the expansions can be used as part of the hero pile. When the Mastermind or another villain triggers the Cross-Dimensional Rampage mechanic, players can utilize any of the multiple variants of a given character to nullify the effect.

Pros & Cons
While this expansion adds several interesting and difficult scenarios, the villains can be a bit overpowered compared to the heroes from the base game. The included 14 new heroes balance well with the new villains, however, even if they aren’t all easily recognizable to less-than-hardcore Marvel fans.
The new Mastermind mode is fun and challenging and the new mechanics add the flavor you’d expect from the Secret Wars storyline.

The Verdict
Whether you’re a hardcore fan of Legendary or Marvel Comics in general, there’s a lot to love and not much to dislike about the Secret Wars expansion. More casual players may find the game a bit tougher than the original, but that’s to be expected from an advanced expansion. Overall, if you like Legendary, it’s well worth your time and money.

You can purchase Secret Wars on Upper Deck’s website, from Amazon, or at your friendly neighborhood game store.

Disclaimer: Upper Deck sent me a copy of ‘Legendary: Secret Wars: Volume 1’ for review.

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