You can find a video version of this review here: Marvel Champions: Quicksilver Hero Pack Review – YouTube
Gotta Go Fast
Quicksilver has an interesting playstyle that can ironically be on the slow side with a decent bit of setup. The beauty of his design is that he never feels that way.
There isn’t a dead card in his kit. Each one really contributes to the fact that it feels like you’re playing a hero with super speed, and that’s pretty impressive for a card game.
Like Ant-Man and the Wasp, Quicksilver is part of a duo that uses the Teamwork keyword. In his case, he partners with his sister, The Scarlet Witch. Unlike Ant-Man and the Wasp, the team-up effects are actually worth using.
Scarlet Witch isn’t released in the US yet, so while teamwork can be used with his matching Scarlet Witch ally, it’s inconsistent. But you can already see the level of power that’s going to accompany a duo playing both characters.
Pietros Alter Ego ability is to discard two cards and draw two cards and he can draw a third if Wanda is in play. You can sort of use it as a second mulligan too, which is nice. Once he is matched with Wanda, it becomes a bonus mulligan with an extra card giving him an instant 7 card hand at the start of the game.
Like Swarm Tactics, Order and Chaos should not be a basic card. It’s only usable with Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, and both will have their own copy. But having a cancel treachery effect with bonus damage just for playing together is absolutely nuts and makes Swarm Tactics look pitiful by comparison.
Enough about teamwork, because Quicksilver can stand on his own just fine. He is potentially one of the strongest heroes to date. While nowhere near Doctor Strange’s level, he can keep up with Captain America. Yet, I don’t find him over tuned, because he has very clear weaknesses you have to account for, unlike Mr. America’s Ass.
Quicksilver can be built to do one thing really well while doing a little bit of everything else. His strengths and weaknesses bank on his ability to use his super-speed to ready himself after using basic power…once per PHASE. That’s right, he can attack or thwart twice, and instantly ready himself after defending, or even defend twice.
Now that doesn’t seem all that useful as a 1, 1, 1, hero. But he also has an upgrade for each stat in his kit. Some might find it hypocritical that I found Wasps stat boosts boring but not Quicksilvers, but it’s the execution that matters. In addition to Quicksilver’s stat upgrade cards, he has several copies of Always Be Running… Which allows you to ready him again for just a single resource.
Even though he requires a bit of setup, every turn feels like you are being the most frustrating hero possible against the villain. A villain reaches for his blueprints, but you have already snatched them, punched two minions in the head and stole his lunch from the locker.
A defensive Quicksilver feels untouchable and aggression embodies that meme. “You’re already dead…”
Justice Quicksilver feels like running by a villain and scattering his papers all over the ground, only to do it again, and again. Leadership feels like a bunch of people dancing to distract the villain while he picks their pocket, several times, just for fun.
His strength is further enhanced any turn you manage to play Maximum Velocity. A +2 to all stats the whole round is insane on Quicksilver for both offensive and defensive purposes. Even without his basic power, Double Time is no slouch. Choosing between any combination of two thwart or two damage is a great value for a 2 cost card.
Friction Resistance has to be one of the best resource generating cards in the game since it readies whenever he does, and Quicksilver readies, a lot. If he ever does need to take a break, Serval Industries lets you slap some of those Always be Running cards back into your deck.
Quicksilvers entire kit feels cohesive mechanically and really sells the feeling of moving quickly. He is extremely versatile, able to selectively thwart schemes or slap minions at his leisure. He can defend himself and be right back in the action ready to defend again, or take a bullet for an ally if need be. Just…don’t block Ultron for Hawkeye, just, don’t.
Quicksilver also has downsides, and that’s important to make him fun to play. He is very squishy and needing to recover in alter ego can really slow his stride. Even the tiniest bits of damage add up and can become dangerous when playing him.
Protection can negate this and make him pretty untouchable, but the trade-off is you will need to power up more to actually beat the villain. Any effect that can force him to exhaust, especially after he has already defended, can be brutal. On top of it all, it’s difficult for him to work with expensive cards.
Quicksilver really benefits from playing at least one, if not more of his own cards per turn. It can be difficult to work in cards that cost 3 or more resources, even stuff like Avengers Mansion will just slow him down.
By that same token. His worst aspect is arguably leadership. He doesn’t have the room to play strong allies, so cheap ones mostly chump block for him. Though I did enjoy playing him with a One for All build, which boosted his basic powers.
Quicksilver comes with a nice spread of Protection and Basic cards. You might be tempted to turn your nose up at Civic Duty and Adrenaline Rush. But the fact that they can sit on the field until you need them, and not your hand actually gives them some viability.
Nerves of Steel providing energy for defense cards makes the reactive ones a lot stronger since you don’t need to hurt your hand size next turn quite as often. Never Back Down is a fantastic and cheap defensive reaction that stuns. But I find Side Step a little underwhelming. I’d nearly always want to play a different reactive defense card over it.
Beat Em Up also doesn’t impress me. It could find use against specific villains, such as Ultron, but I can’t see it being a popular card. Brute Force is an aggression card that is like an Adrenaline Rush but with piercing. However, you don’t have a choice of when you can use it and that’s kind of a bummer.
Multiple Man is interesting. It’s an ally that can provide a pinch bonus somewhere or several chump blockers all while thinning your deck. Sense of Justice is the Nerves of Steel equivalent for Justice. While United We Stand grants some healing to leadership, further straying away from the ally sacrifice meta. I approve. Warlock could be a great ally with the right support since he has an innate healing power.
Overall the new cards outside of Quicksilvers kit are a mixed bag. There are some good ones, okay ones, and forgettable ones. Nothing stands out to me as a potential staple, but I do find that many of them enhance the deckbuilding variety, which is all you can really ask for.
This is usually the part of the review where I sigh heavily and express disappointment into how the nemesis set impacts the game with all the force of light a breeze. Well, Avalanche decided to shake things up and rattle my usual opinion.
Quicksilvers Nemesis set is designed the way I’d like to see all future sets designed. Each card hurts you in some way. Avalanche only has four health and will probably get yeeted pretty quickly, but it doesn’t matter. He has incite 2 AND forces you to exhaust or take damage.
If you manage to wipe away his Side Scheme, Extortion of Seismic Proportions, that’s fine. It already had incite 1 when it entered play. Earthquake is nasty on its own, but even if it’s used as a boost card, you can’t escape its wrath.
The exception is Vibration Resistance, which doesn’t have a boost effect. But it makes up for it by indefinitely reducing the damage Avalanche takes by 1 unless you exhaust to remove it and it can be attached to the villain.
I’ve always felt that drawing Shadows of the Past should invoke some fear or at least a groan. I think a lot of nemesis sets are an inconvenience at best, and simply a dilution of the encounter deck at worst. Quicksilvers nemesis set is an actual threat that’s painful to draw, and that makes it well designed.
As I mentioned before, you feel like you are playing a supersonic superhero. The sheer grace of his innate power lends itself really well to capture the feel of the hero and his kit serves to solidify it without making it clunky or awkward. Always be Running is the star of the show and exemplifies his playstyle even further.
You could easily picture Speed Cyclone in your mind as he weaves between an army of goons at barely perceptible speeds. Double Time has that feeling of being punched once only to find that Quicksilver blackened both your eyes.
Even his alter ago form is fairly fitting, he and his sister work together to acquire resources and form plans. Most of the other cards outside of his kit make sense as well and I largely have no thematic complaints about the pack. A nice change of pace from how I have recently felt about the games thematic direction.
Out of the Box
Quicksilvers premade deck, while by no means perfect is one of the most solid ones released so far. Its purpose is to make Quicksilver a defensive powerhouse as he builds up and whittles the villain down.
There are some nice synergies featured between the aspect cards and his own kit. Protection is a great way to learn how to play him, since it mitigates his extremely squishy nature.
It’s not really lacking in any one department. There are a few choices that can be swapped out for something more efficient, but you could open the box and play against standard villains with no issue. His weaknesses are still present of course, but it’s an all-around decent deck to get you up and running.
Quicksilver has quickly become one of my favorite heroes. He feels strong, but without trivializing the game, and it does take some skill to use him effectively. Sloppy play will result in a defeat fast enough to give you flashbacks of Age of Ultron. But that’s really the hallmark of great hero design. Easy to pick up, difficult to master.
You feel his super-speed within his playstyle, and his entire kit is fun to use. He is adaptable with most aspects, and it’s really interesting to try to build around his unique power.
His Nemesis set is solid, and the premade deck is decent. The rest of the cards in the pack might not put a pep in your step, but they diversify the deck-building potential even further.
If you’re interested enough in Marvel Champions that you are reading this review, it’s an easy buy. Even if you aren’t a huge fan of the character in general, his playstyle is unique and a lot of fun.
You might also be interested in my review of the Marvel Champions Core Set.
- Great new hero with a playstyle that feels fast
- A solid nemesis set shakes things up
- Some solid additions to the Protection and the basic card pool
- The hero has clear strengths and weaknesses
- The pack retains Marvel Champions signature thematic flair
- The Team Up mechanics seem interesting
- The premade deck is well constructed
- The team up effect will be inconsistent without the currently unreleased, Scarlet Witch
- Order and Chaos is only useable with Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, and should not be a basic card
- Some of the cards outside of Quicksilvers kit aren’t terribly interesting