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Top 10 Figures of 2008

#1:  Chief
DC Crisis

Reviewed 02.23.2009

Average Rating: See Below

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale
1 being the worst. 3 ... average.
5 is the highest rating

Rurouni KJS

After the last three high-flying, high damaging pieces, it may come as a surprise that the #1 figure of 2008 in my book has poor movement, only ever has 1 damage and will almost never make an attack: the wheelchair-bound Chief, from the Crisis set.

 

Reviewed in May (http://www.pojo.com/heroclix/COTD/2008/May/15.shtml) the Pojo consensus rated him a bit BELOW 4 out of 5...by far the worst rating of this top ten list. But that was for a slightly different game, before the rule changes that came with the Fantastic Four starter set last summer. And that makes for a whole ballgame for Chief here, who sports:

 

1. Perplex.

Since the summer's rule change on this support power, it's easily as potent as Outwit and belongs on every team if possible. Chief has it and he has it for a decent price, especially given that he also has...

 

2. ...Outwit.

The other power that belongs on every team. Chief gives you both at once. That's key, as you'll see once you see reason #9.

 

3. Support.

The third support power that, while not as game-changing as it once was, is still nice to have.

 

4. Mastermind.

Could keep him in the game much longer than his pithy 15 DV would suggest. Especially because...

 

5. ...his Mastermind has the bonus of allowing him to shunt damage to higher-point pieces sharing his keyword(s).

It's nice to toss a crippling 5-damage hit to FCBD Iron Man who'll reduce the damage to 1. Which leads to...

 

6. Scientist keyword.

There are some very solid pieces with this keyword, making for some potent generic theme teams.

 

7. Outsiders.

In addition to his other ways of messing with the playing field, he's got this TA to nix modifiers granted by powers or team abilities. Sometimes this is better used on friends than foes -- Darkseid (#6, remember?) could deal his full penetrating damage, or Colossus' Fastball Special partner could retain normal combat values.

 

8. Manipulate.

This version of Leadership allows him to grant a teammate the ability to dodge pushing damage 2/3 of the time. This is awesome and has swung more than a few games in Chief's favor. I personally took down an E2 Superman with this tactic. Or, it can be used as normal Leadership (and should be, once the Manipulate limit is reached).

 

9. SO feat-a-licious.

When the rules changed last summer to allow Special Powers to use feats, Chief's playability jumped up even more. He can use Brilliant Tactician, Contingency Plan, Invigorate, Getaway, Thwart, Dissent and Outsmart all at once. But just having any one of those is enough. And it's this mid-year improvement, more than anything, that wins his spot on this list.

 

10. Only 63 pts.

Consequently, even expensive feats don't hurt his playability, as he's supplying most every support power you'd need. And if opponents focus on taking him out, they neglect attacking the 200+ points of actual fighters on your team to their peril.

 

Back in the old days of HC, you could field a "pit crew" of a Paramedic, a Con Artist and R Black Panther to gain Support, Perplex and Outwit on your team for less than 50 points, and there are other advantages to that sort of build over The Chief. But he fills all those roles and others besides. Just as with the old pit crew, any team with Chief is going to be a better team with him on it.

 

ANY team.

 

Because of all that he brings to the table, The Chief is my number one HeroClix piece of 2008.

 

...

 

Okay. I know some readers are wondering: "Wait. What about [insert name of strong figure here]? HOW COULD YOU LEAVE OFF [insert name of strong figure here]?!!?" Well, be here next week for my long list of Honorable Mentions...and perhaps a bit of a mea culpa here or there.

 


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