Greetings HeroClix Fans!
Today we kick off previews for the next set, DC HeroClix: Teen Titans! What better way to start than by showing off the two new innovations to HeroClix, the SwitchClix base and the new Team Dial mechanic. Today, we’ll get familiar with how these dials work and the stats and combat abilities of a Team Dial, and in the next couple of articles, we will look at the bulk of the dials for the characters. With this in mind, let’s start off than with a titular Team Dial, straight off the cover of the classic Marv Wolfman and George Perez run of the same name, New Teen Titans!
First, Team Dials are on a 2×4 base in most cases, or on a 2×2 dial for smaller teams. New Teen Titans is on a 2×4 base. Team Bases will generally come with 1 or 2 figures, and in either case, the rest of the figures for a team will be packed in the regular 5 figure boosters. It’s important to note that the 2×4 Team Dials in this set will be playable right out of the package, and that the New Teen Titans Team Base comes with three figures!
The Team Dials have a new Team combat icon as well as an Asset Dial. On the 2×4 base, the Asset Dial will be on one side of the Team Base and the normal dial with powers and combat stats will be on the other. For a 2×2 Team Base, the Asset Dial will be a separate standard size click dial.
Looking at the back of the New Teen Titans character card, we see that Team Dials are defined as the following: “Characters with the new Team combat icon symbol are Teams. A Team has locations on it where figures from corresponding SwitchClix bases can be placed. Each such character is called a team member.”
Let’s begin by taking a look at #T001 New Teen Titans’ Team Base and use the three SwitchClix figures that come with it (#063 Cyborg , #064 Raven, and #065 Wonder Girl.) as examples for this exercise.
“When you add a team to your force, you must pay the cost of the team. For each team member that begins the game attached to the team, increase the point value of the team by 5 points. A team must have a minimum of 3 characters (15 points) attached at any given time unless a game effect says otherwise. Each team member attached to the team must have an asset ability listed on its character card whose icon matches the icon of the asset ability listed on the team’s character card. Team members begin the game attached to the team while their SwitchClix bases may be included in your sideline. Teams and team members can’t be assigned resources, can’t roll to pick up a relic, can’t become a pilot of a vehicle unless a game effect specifies otherwise.”
The New Teen Titans Team Dial costs 465, 365 or 265 points to play. Let’s go with the experienced level, which uses the 365-point Team Base. Cyborg, Raven and Wonder Girl cost 103, 96, and 135 points, respectively. But since they will be added to the Team Base and since you can’t have fewer than 3 members, they each cost 5 points. This brings our total to 380 points. We’ll also add Robin, Kid Flash, Changeling, and Starfire to bring the total to an even 400 points and include all team members; however, for this article we’ll only focus on the three team members that come with the Team Base.
If you choose to play Cyborg separate when you construct your force, with all other figures attached to the New Teen Titans, the Team Dial will now cost 395 points, and you must pay Cyborg’s 103 points, allowing you to have a force at 498 points. The downside to this is Cyborg cannot be attached to the New Teen Titans, and the New Teen Titans would not be able to use the Cyborg ability on the Asset Dial. More on that in a bit.
Also of note is that there are a few characters in the set that are named on more than one Team Dial, but have a specific figure for each Team Dial. Take Cyborg, for example. There are two different versions of Cyborg in the set, each from a different point in his career, and unique to a specific Team Dial. Robin, however, will work on two different Team Dials.
All figures that you wish to include as part of a team start the game attached to the Team Dial. But don’t worry; we’ll get to letting a figure do its own thing in a bit. Also, your Team Dial and the figures that split off can’t be assigned resources, pick up relics or pilot vehicles. A Team Dial gets its own special abilities that do make this worthwhile:
“The Team combat icon symbol also grants the following abilities. None of these abilities can be countered. If this character uses Earthbound/Neutralized, it can still use these abilities:
1 – Working Together
“Give this character a power action and it may be given one action as a free action for every 100 points or fraction thereof of its point value. These free actions may be used for any action, but you may only give the character up to 1 move action, up to 1 power action, up to 1 close combat action, and up to 1 range combat action. Any number of these free actions may be used to make either a close or ranged combat attack.”
Since we are using the New Teen Titans Team Base at 400 points, we can give it a power action to make 4 free actions as listed above. As an example, Doctor Light is adjacent and has done 2 damage to New Teen Titans, so they are on click #7. New Teen Titans can make a close combat attack against Doctor Light, be given a power action to use Running Shot, make a ranged combat action with its 7 range and Penetrating/ Psychic Blast, and then may take a move action to get to where it will be in the best position for next turn.
2 – Practiced Maneuvers
“This character can use Improved Momvement: Elevated and Characters. This character may occupy squares of different elevation.”
Team Bases have the Improved Movement ability and ignore elevated terrain and characters. This means they never need to roll breakaway and once they are moving they don’t need to stop when they become adjacent to an opposing character. Team Bases are also the first figures in the game that can be on more than one elevation at a time.
3 – Solo Adventure
“Give this character a power action, remove any team member from the team and insert it into its SwitchClix base. The character is placed adjacent to the team on its SwitchClix base turned to the first click number color that matches the team’s current click color. If removing the team member from the team would mean that the total point value of removed team members exceeds the point value of the team, then the team member can’t be removed. When a removed character has multiple starting lines, its point value and starting line are considered to be the first starting line other than an orange starting line preceding the click it is on when placed on the map.”
A power action can be given to New Teen Titans to have a team member leave the dial. This can be as a normal power action, or the power action you are allowed to take as one of your four free actions from the Working Together ability. Cyborg, Raven and Wonder Girl can all be removed from the Team Dial, one power action at a time, since they add up to 334 points and are below the 400 points the New Teen Titans dial costs as we are using it. Beyond that, no other figure can be removed or the point total off the Team Dial will exceed the point total on the Team Dial.
4 – A Team Reunited
“Give this character a power action when it is adjacent to a character that was a team member earlier in the game. Remove the character from its SwitchClix base, place it on the team and remove the SwitchClix base from the map.”
This one is easy enough; a power action can be given to the Team Dial to reattach a figure.
5 – Team Coordination
When counting characters for a themed team do not count the team as a character, instead each team member counts as a character. At the beginning of the game when a team is part of a themed team, choose: Themed Team Probability can be used normally or it can’t be used and the team can use Probability Control.”
When using the New Teen Titans Team Dial with all 7 members attached, you get +7 to your map roll on a Teen Titans theme team (the only keyword this Team Dial has). At the beginning of the game you have to choose to give a Team Dial Probability Control, or use the normal rules of Theme team PC.
And now, let’s have a look at the New Teen Titans dial. First off, New Teen Titans have a trait called Titans, Together Forever, which makes it so they can’t be targeted by Mind Control or Penetrating/Psychic Blast if all team members are attached. This makes the Invulnerability on the first couple of clicks, as well as all damage reducers on the dial, that much better.
New Teen Titans begin play able to use Charge to take the fight right to an opposing figure and do their printed 4 damage, or choose to use their bigger base size to move into adjacency with more characters and use Quake. On their second click, New Teen Titans get a couple of clicks of their first special power, Not Sidekicks Anymore, which allows you to choose at the beginning of the turn to use Outwit, Perplex or Probability Control for this turn. Around this point in the dial, Invulnerability is replaced with Super Senses as New Teen Titans attempt to avoid attacks. On the last click of this section of dial, Plasticity will allow New Teen Titans to keep adjacent opposing figures locked in place so they may pummel them with Close Combat Expert.
At this point in New Teen Titans’ dial is their Experienced 365-point starting line. This section continues powers already present on the dial, as Plasticity, Super Senses and Close Combat Expert are all still on the dial. The second click sees a small stretch of Toughness to reduce a bit of damage. The next click sees New Teen Titans switch tactics to a more ranged combat power set as Running Shot allows some move and attack, and Penetrating/ Psychic Blast with a 7 range will make sure damage sticks. The Not Sidekicks Anymore special power also returns to the dial at this point.
This power set will continue to start the 265-point Rookie starting line of New Teen Titans, along with a new defensive special power called Training Every Weekend at Titans Tower, which allows the use of both Toughness and Combat Reflexes. This special power works well as New Teen Titans goes back to a close-combat orientated dial with the return of both Charge and Quake. The Not Sidekicks Anymore special power sees its last click for a bit in this stretch of dial as well. The next stretch of dial changes close combat tactics as Plasticity will make break away harder for opposing figures as they can pummel away harder with Close Combat Expert. Invulnerability returns after a long time off the dial.
At the end of their dial, New Teen Titans again focuses their attack with primarily range-based powers as both Running Shot and Penetrating/Psychic Blast will cover the rest of the dial. A couple clicks of the Training Every Weekend at Titans Tower special power will protect them, before a closing click of regular Toughness shows up. Also on their last click is one more click of the Not Sidekicks Anymore special power.
The Indomitable combat ability will allow New Teen Titans to act two turns in a row without fear of pushing damage. For theme team play, New Teen Titans only have the option of using the Teen Titans keyword to build around, but in a set named for them, there will be plenty of figures available to use.
Now let’s take a closer look at something both distinguishes Team Bases and makes them an exciting play experience, Asset Dials!
The Asset Dial
“A team base has a second dial called an Asset Dial. This may be a second dial on the team’s figure base or an accompanying dial. The Asset Dial begins the game on the green starting line. The opening will show: (a) asset icons matching to the team members that make up the team, (b) the Team combat symbol or (c) special powers.”
The standard combat dial on a Team Dial does a fairly good job of representing what a team like the New Teen Titans can do, but it is hard to get the individual abilities of characters captured and still have the dial be effective, so we came up with the Asset Dial. This extra dial lets the individual characters on a Team Dial have a chance to stand out, while still making the Team function. The Asset Dial will give access to up to 2 icons at a time, whether they are team members, the team itself, or special powers. Referring back to the character card, we see this:
“When asset icons appear, the team can use the asset abilities referenced by each of those icons so long as the corresponding team member is attached to the team. When the Team combat icon appears, you may choose any member attached to the team and use the asset granted by that character’s icon.”
For example, if Starfire, Changeling and Robin are all attached to the Team Dial, on click #1 of the Asset Dial, Robin and Starfire are showing, so the New Teen Titans can use the Flight ability, Defend, and Outwit, and only adjacent figures can use Outwit against them. On click #3, Wonder Girl and the Special Power icon are showing, so New Teen Titans can use Super Strength and the Flight ability, and their special power, We Go Where We’re Needed, that says to give New Teen Titans a power action and place them adjacent to the highest point opposing character, then make a close combat attack as a free action. On click #15, Changeling and the Team combat icon combat ability are showing, so New Teen Titans can use Shape Change, as well as any team member ability.
“Asset abilities can be countered as if they were a combat ability. At the end of your turn, you may roll a d6 and turn the asset dial that many times to the left. If the Team combat icon icon is showing at the end of your turn, this roll is required.”
It is important to remember that an opposing figure can use Outwit to counter these abilities. If you like the click you are on, you can choose to remain there, so you continue to have access to those abilities. Or, at the end of your turn, you may roll a d6 to get abilities that will be more useful. If the Team combat icon ability is showing at the end of your turn you must make this d6 roll.
As good as the New Teen Titans dial is, the Asset dial can enhance it and make it better as more of the required Teen Titans are attached to the team base. As the icons for the necessary character come up, (or the Team combat ability to access any attached character ability) the power or ability stated for them can be used. So what does each team member bring to the New Teen Titans?
The Changeling icon allows New Teen Titans to use Shape Change. The Cyborg icon says that New Teen Titans can’t be the target of opposing characters’ Probability Control. The Kid Flash icon allows New Teen Titans to use Hypersonic Speed and when they do, modify their speed value by +2. The Raven icon says that when New Teen Titans are not adjacent to an opposing character, they can use Regeneration. The Robin icon allows New Teen Titans to use Outwit and only adjacent characters can target them with Outwit. The Starfire icon lets New Teen Titans use Defend and the Flight ability. The Wonder Girl icon lets New Teen Titans use Super Strength and the Flight ability.
The Team Ability icon (marked with an “I”), called We Go Where We’re Needed says to give New Teen Titans a power action and place them adjacent to the highest point opposing character, then make a close combat attack as a free action.
This is a lot to absorb today as we introduce the new Team mechanic and how it interacts with the new SwitchClix pieces. And it has shown a hand full of Teen Titan figures on the Team Dial. In the next two articles, we will show off the dials for all seven of these figures. So be sure to check back as we preview more figures from the upcoming DC HeroClix: Teen Titans set!