Yesterday, CMON’s Marvel United: Multiverse Kickstarter campaign announced a second new expansion box bringing more heroes and villains to the game… and they’re all more mutants! That’s right, CMON has dipped into one of Marvel’s most-popular alternate timelines to announce Marvel United Multiverse Age of Apocalypse box!
There’s no question that Age of Apocalypse is Marvel’s most-popular and well-known excursion into an alternate timeline parallel to 616 other than the expansive Ultimate Universe. Based on that, it’s no surprise to see the box pop up here – especially since it checks off four unique X-characters we were missing.
(See my Guide to Marvel Universe Events – Age of Apocalypse for details on how to read the entire event.)
Am I pleased? Not entirely. I think this box brings both good choices and questionable choices with it.
The good choices are very good choices: we get playable heroes of Nate Grey and Morph, and some seriously scary villains in the form of AOA Apocalypse, Holocaust / Nemesis, and Dark Beast.
That’s five key mutants we were missing from the massive list of possibilities in my prior post on the campaign.
It’s the other pair of choices that I question, plus one conspicuous absence.
As you can see on the cover of the box, this set includes Sabretooth in his familiar AOA costume as well as his sidekick Wild Child. What isn’t obvious from the box art is that the pair of them are a single sculpt with a single set of heroic cards.
This is a bummer, since it means we don’t have a standalone Wild Child sculpt we could homebrew to use with X-Factor and Alpha Flight, nor do we have an independent set of heroic Sabretooth cards (his prior release is a villain, not an anti-hero).
A prior “team-up” pair of Kitty Pryde and Lockheed were sculpted separately from each other, and the War of Kings box has a standalone Lockjaw, so there was precedent for Wild Child to stand on his own as a “pet” on a leash. The odds of getting him as his own solo sculpt seem incredibly low.
Next, there’s the conspicuous absence. This set absolutely should have Sugar Man to complete the original four AOA Refugees who crossed over to 616! Sugar Man is ultra-creepy, his sculpt would look cool, and he’d be much more at-home in the context of this box than as a standalone Stretch Goal. It seems like an odd oversight not to squeeze him in.
Finally, I question the value of an additional Magneto as a hero. He’s in the X-Men core box! I know CMON needed someone major to put in the front of the crowd on the box and I’m happy it’s not another Wolverine, but I’m not sure what AOA Magneto gives us as a distinct character other than the opportunity for CMON to make up a new card mechanic.
Instead of Magneto, CMON could could have picked someone popular who was not in the X-Men core box. Last campaign, people went absolutely wild for Nightcrawler as one of the final stretch goals and AOA Nightcrawler is awesome. AOA Iceman and Sunfire are other terrific choices, since their AOA looks are unique (and in Sunfire’s case, iconic). Heck, AOA even has Kitty using Wolverine’s claws!
There were so many more-interesting multiversal choices that could’ve promoted a previously-seen mutant rather than repeating Magneto, who is still readily available at retail in the core box. To be fair, they did give this version of him a much more interesting card dynamic.
Enough grouching and backseat-board-game-designing. Will I still buy the box? OF COURSE. I’d probably buy it just for Nate Grey and Nemesis / Holocaust. I suspect we’ll see Sugar Man slip in as a stretch goal, and I can always design my own heroic Sabretooth deck.
With this second additional expansion box announced, fans are hotly debating what further boxed expansions are likely to arrive. Based on prior campaigns, it seems likely we could see an additional 3-5 expansion boxes in addition to stretch goals – another 1 before this weekend, 1-2 more next week, and another 1-2 before the campaign ends on February 9th.
Now we have one of Marvel’s most-obvious alternate timelines in a box, and CMON has already tipped that a Spider-Geddon box is headed direct-to-retail later this year. What will those 3-5 other boxes be? Let’s set some odds? [Read more…] about Marvel United: Multiverse enters the Age of Apocalypse! (plus, predicting the 10 most-likely expansion boxes)