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arrowFixing HeroClix

Fixing HeroClix
The Le (02/05/2009)
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Fixing HeroClixI’ve been an avid fan of HeroClix for many years now, and I’ve been a judge since Marvel Critical Mass. For better or worse, a lot has changed since the old days of Infinity Challenge, so let’s just get right to it.

Special Powers
First introduced with Marvel Avengers and then DC Justice League, Special Powers are a great way to bring something different to the able and have some more comic-accurate figures. Personally I hate Special Powers. It totally breaks the spirit of HeroClix, which was originally designed as a game that didn’t need cards or separate pieces of paper to track. Even worse, every new set seems to introduce a dozen new FAQ pages because of it.

That being said, I would argue that we simply can’t get rid of Special Powers. That’s right, I hate them, but I think they should stay. The fact is that Special Powers have indeed made the game more interesting, and there are a lot of them that were made just right (JL Joker, JL Green Arrow, Avengers Winter Soldier, MM Danger). However, there is still just far too many of them out there (and many stinkers at that). I think the best solution is to cut back on the number of pieces that have Special Powers.

Think about this: each set is limited to 60 figures. By my count, there are 47 figures in the DC Crisis set with Special Powers. Forty-Seven! That’s absurd. If you really want to make Special Powers feel “special”, then cut it down to 25 figures; that’s a healthy 42% (compared to the 79% in DC Crisis). Honestly, do we need yet another figure that can use Perplex but only on its own combat values? Clearly the designers are handing out Special Powers “just because they can.”

Hawkeye Special Ability


I think some of the newer Giants rules are right on. It doesn’t make a lot of sense that you can now use Telekinesis on Giants, but that’s fine by me since it makes Giants far more useful. However, it’s still pretty hard to use a Giant-focused team successfully (without Trigon) because they are just so limited to what they can do well. After all, most of their strengths are also their greatest weaknesses. Giant Stride is a good start at making them cooler, but it’s silly that they can only taxi someone if they have zero action tokens.

So I propose this: all Giants should have the transporter ability (which comes with the Move and Attack ability). Why not? A Giant should be able to carry every turn if it wants to. The Move and Attack ability also makes a lot of sense to me; it should be able to walk past and slap you whenever it feels like it. It’s not unbalancing at all since that ability also carries a -2 penalty to the attack roll. In one fell swoop, Giants would become very cool in my opinion.


Much like Special Powers, Keywords simply break the concept of playing the game without the need for cards. It is a far bigger offender of this than Special Powers, because there are a number of game mechanics that forces you to look at many different cards during the game (Monster Hunter, Mutations and Monsters Professor X, etc). While I am not a fan of the theme team mechanic, I think that can stay. However, HeroClix really needs to do away with powers and abilities that forces you to look up Keywords (Warbound, Inside Information, Secret Invasion Mr Fantastic, etc). No, I take it back – the theme team mechanic needs to go too. I like Keywords as a way to add flavor to the game, but it should remain only that. Keywords should have no impact on game play at all.

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Your Comments:
I have come up with a format that simplifies everything! I call it "classic".
Here are the rules:
No feats,atas,bfcs, or relics.
All figures must be uncarded.
Use the original rules(after erratas)

Go have fun

Posted by: clixaholicrex on 6/4/2016 11:56:12 AM
Remember when Heroclix was a game you had to know little about to get into and bring barely anything? I do too. *sigh* Resources spoiled the game for me. Everyone plays resources, and if you don't, you're crippled.

Posted by: Rocolo on 5/22/2015 3:15:36 PM
@Kragnorak Yes I still feel this way. In my opinion, HeroClix is no longer about balance -- it's now about making everything overpowered in order to sell more boosters.

Feats might be gone, but it's now replaced by highly broken Relics, an overabundance of Colossals, over-complicated Vehicles, and a Players Guide that is now over 200 pages!

Sadly, The simplicity of HeroClix is gone.

Posted by: The Le on 4/3/2014 8:17:05 AM
@The Le,

5 years later, do you still feel this way? I like Special Powers, but I agree that too often they don't feel special. Also, with the SLoSH set, I've never seen more overpowered traits! (Move and attack for free without getting an action token or pushing, for example)

With undercosted resources, the competitive game is more broken than ever. The bottom line is that for the price of one of the old feat cards on one character, you can slap a powerful resource on 3 or 4!

Posted by: Kragnorak on 4/3/2014 7:35:09 AM
I agree with you, that I disliked Feat & Battlefield Condition cards as soon they were introduced. I did not collect or use them. In fact, when Super Powers were introduced w/ the "Avengers" set, that was my cut off point. Simpler games are funner b/c they are easier to remember & teach new players.

Also, the Keywords allowing Prob. Control, I might've liked this idea more if it applied to Team Abilites, which it doesn't. smh Alot of them seem Generic, which I feel defeats the point of a team specifically working together.

Posted by: RockxHero on 8/4/2013 12:35:00 AM
I like special powers, in general. I just don't enjoy being on the receiving end of them!
And personnally, I think the 10% Feat card rule should be raised just slightly to, say, 20%. @Ste: I love feat cards, but 4 copies is going overboard.

Posted by: Owlman166 on 10/8/2010 9:00:18 PM
I Agree with most of what your saying, especially with regards to proportional points costing on feats and the over use of SPs.
Only issue i see with the costing is space on the card to print the restrictions?

As for the 10% rule, i think this has really got to stay; a lot of feats are too cheesey as it is so lifting that limit just opens the game up to more abuse.
As for owning 4 copies of Fortitude... Why??? is one copy not enough? do you really need multiple copies of the same card to use it more than once??? i mean its hardly like its a playing piece, im not asking someone to imagine that coin there is another hydra agent, the text is there clear as day to read on the first card so why would you need a 2nd? Fortitude is a bad example of a feat to use in this way but say lucky break which was in the Xmen danger room starter (which sees a lot of use in my circles) is a great way to round out a team and may be taken 2-5 times over just to fill in the points. But few if any people own multiple copies due to its placement in a starter. maybe im a product of house rules or a lax tourny location but one copy should be and is enough where i come from... oh dear i've started ranting again!

As for team abilities, yeah we need more! sinestro and thunderbolts being great examples, and going the ATA feats and key words way doesnt go far enough for me and acts to over complicate things for the new guys

Posted by: Ste on 6/25/2010 11:13:37 PM
200 teams and they all do the same three things. That would fix it, and as strong as that is would replace theme teams. Feats would be 10 percent limit based on figure cost maybe? Ah, hurts head.

Posted by: Bungalo on 5/31/2010 3:22:17 AM
What about leagues? I'd love to start one in my store but I'm not sure where to go or how to do it.

Posted by: Chris, Again on 4/10/2010 4:03:41 AM
Chris, there is no longer a "formal" method to becoming a judge, since the old system has been abolished. Anyone can become a judge now -- just talk to your local store and ask if you can run some HeroClix tournaments for them and voila... you're now a judge!

Posted by: The Le on 4/5/2010 1:31:21 PM
how does one become a judge?

Posted by: Chris on 4/5/2010 12:48:53 PM
Reprinted feats are considered "Errata". So yes, you *can* use your older version of Fortitude, but you must obey to the text on the newer version.

Also, the older version is considered property of the set it was released to. So a "DC Legacy Fortitude" is still property of DC LEGACY -- which means it won't be legal in Restricted tournaments since DC Legacy has been retired.

Posted by: The Le on 9/15/2009 9:46:39 AM
can you use the old fortitude on new pieces even though it does not have the prerequisite on the new one.

Posted by: brandon waldron on 9/14/2009 2:47:43 PM