It is no exaggeration when I say that Marvel Crisis Protocol has been a bit popular. Ever since its announcement earlier this year fan speculation and activity have been almost through the roof.
Joining the ranks of the core game, and bringing a whole new faction we now finally get Black Panther and Killmonger, the first releases of the Wakanda faction.
Black Panther is a bit of a thing really. The movie was a phenomenal piece of cinema and made well over a billion dollars at the cinema, as well as being nominated for loads of awards. The character was also a big success in the comics where he made his 1966, the first real hero of colour and not just a hero he was also a king!
Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the character broke many norms and conventions when he made his debut. America was going through a strange time, with racial segregation only becoming illegal the year before the character made his debut.
Black Panther is a strong character, a true leader of men and has led not only his own nation but also been the leader of the Avengers at times. A fearsome warrior, a brilliant scientist and highly intelligent, T’challa leads from the front and often by example!
You may have a brief grounding in the history of the Wakandan mercenary and revolutionary known as Killmonger from the Black Panther MCU movie as portrayed by Michael B Jordan and one of the best villains in the movies so far. But the character in the comic books is far more in-depth and has a long history with Black Panther.
N’Jadaka as he is known in Wakanda was the son of Wakandan N’Jobu who was dupped by Ulysses Klaue into help overthrow T’Chaka; the rightful king of the country and father to the future Black Panther. The coup goes wrong and N’Jadaka and his family are forced to flee to America following the death of his father, where he beings his life long hatred of T’Chaka and T’challa.
Taking the name of Erik Killmonger, N’Jadaka grows up and ends up becoming an elite special forces soldier and eventually a mercenary for hire. He finally returns to Wakanda and tries to usurp the throne from T’challa. Unlike his nemesis, Killmonger can’t take the Heart Shaped Herb that gives the Black Panther his or her powers due to not being of royal bloodline and the attempt to do so almost kills him. He is a very intelligent man, graduated top of his class from MIT, a brilliant tactician and cunning opponent, who really wants his people to be free to share all the wonders of Wakanda with the rest of the world!
The Black Panther and Killmonger Expansion is now finally available for the excellent Marvel Crisis Protocol from Atomic Mass Games, this adds a brand new faction Wakanda to the game and gives another level of depth to play. My video unboxing and thoughts are below, followed by a more in-depth look!
Both Black Panther and Killmonger miniatures are multipart plastic kits, each will require assembly before you can use them. Both kits come on a single sprue and are pretty rigid in the approach to posing the models.
Black Panther is made up of seven parts and a base and is perhaps the most dynamically posed model in the entire range so far, looking like he has just leapt from the pages of a Marvel comic book. The pose is extremely well animated and has such smooth lines of motion that it looks like it could pounce on you at any moment. The only gripe with Black Panther is that his legs didn’t want to seem to fit into the body without leaving a gap big enough to park a Vibranium meteor in! Still, with some green stuff it soon vanished.
Killmonger is armed with two weapons, a spear and a dagger and both look lethal yet ceremonial. The animation is really good and very crisp and the face is totally striking, complete with top knot or man bun whatever the hip kids are calling them these days! He is posed with one foot resting on the statue of a panther, and an arm outstretched as if to motion a foe to just try fate. The majority of the sculpt is flesh, with the character only wearing combat boots and fatigues, and his toned torso will be a dream to paint for those who love to paint flesh tones and is an ideal candidate for the Contrast range of paints from Citadel!
Black Panther and Killmonger Expansion comes with the Wakanda Affiliation card! This is like the Avengers/Cabal card that is found in the core set and lists all the characters who are affiliated with the faction. As well as Black Panther and Killmonger the other two affiliated characters are Shuri (T’Challa’s sister) and Okoye. More may be added in future expansions to include characters such as Man- Ape/ M’baku and Everett Ross!
Team Tactic Cards
The Black Panther and Killmonger Expansion comes with three brand new Team Tactics cards for use in your games.
Battle Lust: This is an unaffiliated card and is reactive. At the of a move action made during an allied character activation, that character may spend power equal to its size to play the card. Once played that character’s next attack made during this activation may add dice equal to its size to the character. Whatsmore this attack also will push target models away Small if it is successful in damaging.
Usurp the Throne: This is a Killmonger card and if he spends 3 power to play this card, Killmonger then gets to add two dice to his attack rolls when attacking the character with the highest threat value. If he dazes or KO’s that target, he scores to victory points!
Wakanda Forever: This is a Wakanda affiliated card. Any number of allied characters from this faction may spend a power to play. Each character who spent power may immediately perform an attack with a power cost of 0!
Black Panther Character Card
As with all of the other characters in the core set, this expansion comes with character cards for the models provided. The Black Panther is a renowned fighter and highly intelligent character who not only leads the people of Wakanda but has also been the leader of the Avengers in the past!
Stamina. Black Panther begins with a Stamina of 6 which is a good, solid amount and allows him to last a little longer in battle. His flip is also 6 which gives him an extra edge over some of the other characters found in the core set.
Movement. Black Panther is fast, really fast and as such he moves Long. This allows him to seize objectives and tear up the tabletop very quickly, and when used with some of his powers makes him deadly!
Size. Black Panther is a human size coming in at 2.
Threat. Black Panther has a threat level of 4 which is on par with most of the other characters in the game so far.
Defense. Black Panther is an all-around excellent fighter and is armed with some of the best technology in the world. He has a physical defense of 4 which is one of the highest so far in Marvel Crisis Protocol and has 3 defense against energy and mystical!
Abilities and Powers
Strike: This is a physical attack that has a range of 2, damage of 5 and power cost of 0. This ability gives power equal to the damage it causes and before any damage is rolled the target character suffers from Push and is pushed away short from the character!
Kinetic Blast: An energy attack that has a range of 2 and deals 6 damage at a cost of 3 power. Kinetic Blast allows the character to ramp up the attack by adding up to 3 power (for a total of 6 power) and increase the damage pool by one die per power!
King of Wakanda!: (Leader): T’Challa is the rightful king of the nation of Wakanda and a true leader among men. This allows any affiliated character to re-roll a dice at the cost of 1 power!
Mantle of the Black Panther!: (Active): This power allows Black Panther to reroll any number of its attack dice at a cost of 2 power!
Pounce: (Active): At a cost of 2 power, Black Panther may throw himself (yes you read that right he throws himself) Small, he suffers no damage but can only do this once per activation!
Vibranium Armour (Innate/Reactive): If this character is attacked by either physical or energy attacks, for a cost of 2 power it may add two dice to its defense pool! Update: Due to gremlins in the works, yes that’s right I will blame gremlins, I miss read the card and the Black Panther Vibranium Armour is an Innate power on his healthy side that costs no power to use and allows you to use blanks as defense. Sorry for the mistake and thanks to Jason Irwin and everyone else who spotted this gaff!
Vibranium Armour changes when the card is flipped, see above!
Killmonger Character Card
The second character card in the expansion is of course for Killmonger! This card really takes into account how deadly the character can be and given its average threat cost, makes this a very good choice to take in a fast-moving team!
Stamina. Killmonger begins with a Stamina of 6 like Black Panther, though he drops down to 5 once he is flipped. Still, 11 damage is not something to be ignored.
Movement. Unlike Black Panther who tears up the battlefield, Killmonger moves at a more moderate pace and has a movement of Medium.
Size. Killmonger is a human size coming in at 2.
Threat. Killmonger has a threat level of 4 which is on par with most of the other characters in the game so far.
Defense. Killmonger is a highly trained soldier and remarkable fighter who can adapt very quickly. Like Black Panther he has a physical defense of 4 and has 3 defense against energy and mystical!
Abilities and Powers
Vibranium Weapons This is an energy attack that has a range of 2, damage of 5 and power cost of 0. Once the attack is resolved the character gains power equal to that dealt and on the roll of a wild the attack gains the Piece trait which changes one of the defenders successes to a blank!
Black Ops Strike: An physical attack that has a range of 3 and deals 7 damage at a cost of 3 power. Black Ops Strike allows the character to be placed with range 1 of the target, effectively giving the character a free move action! Whatsmore on a wild the attack also gains the Stagger special condition!
Charge!: (Active): This card costs an action to use and 2 power. Once played the character makes a move action followed by an attack action, basically giving them two actions for the cost of one and 2 power!
Special Forces!: (Reactive): This power may be used during the calculate success step of attack and for a cost of 1 power allows the character to choose blocks instead of hits as successes!
Focused on the Kill: (Innate): IF Killmonger makes an attack against a character its already attack against that turn it gains an extra two dice to its attack roll!
Kill Count: (Innate) If this character dazes or KO’s an enemy character it gains a kill count token and may reroll 1 attack die for each kill count token it has!
The only change to Killmongers’ card once it is flipped over is that he loses a stamina going down to 5!
The Black Panther and Killmonger expansion also comes with its own Crisis Card detailed below
Mystic Wakandan Herbs: Fact or Fiction!: This is an Extraction Crisis Card and costs 15 threat. The card has you pick up the strange and mysterious Herbs that give Black Panther his powers, scoring 4 victory points. Once a character is holding the herb it can only perform move action per turn, adds one dice to physical attack rolls and is classes as immune to slow and stagger!
The Black Panther and Killmonger Expansion also comes with tokens to represent the Heart Shaped Herb and Vessels as well as Wakandan icons for use in your games! As always these are of really high quality and punch out easily!
So that is the Black Panther and Killmonger Expansion for Marvel Crisis Protocol! Overall the whole range of models has been first rate and each seems to build on the shoulders of those that come before it. The quality of the artwork on the cards is often ignored but always striking and totally sets the scene, and the miniatures are both extremely well animated and pull off exactly what they were designed to do.
Both characters are ideal for seizing and holding objectives in play and once the second expansion in the fact which will feature Shuri and Okoye who will add to the support element of the faction, really rounding it out.
A good line up to take is Black Panther, Killmonger, Shuri and Okoye and Black Widow, this will extremely fast and hard hitting with enough stamina to withstand even heavy hitters such as Crossbones or MODOK. Black Panther is extremely fast and the ability to use is Pounce he can effectively cover half of the table in one activation if he moves twice, moving almost 17 inches! This will be ideal for missions that involve gaining more points for taking more distant objectives.
Killmonger is a beast once he gets a few knockouts under his belt, and I can see that if he is teamed with Venom they could present a serious problem for almost any character. Venom softens up the targets, Killmonger cleans them up and both gain from the attacks!
There was a lot of hesitation when the prices for the expansions were first revealed way back in August, with some stating that paying almost $40/£35 for two miniatures was inconceivable and just plain silly. That said, other games companies often charge double that price for a single miniature or character model and those people don’t seem to bat an eye at paying out for those!
Atomic Mass Games is still a very new studio, and this is their first release, and sure there are bound to be a few issues along the way and there were a few complaints about the size of some of the parts on a few of the characters in the core set being way too small and fiddly. This is true in many senses but as I just stated they are a new studio and one that is not run by people who have no idea how the industry works. With dozens of years experience behind them, the studio staff know what works and are willing to listen to what others see as unworkable! So I think that the naysayers may soon eat their words.
Please check out the links below for more Marvel Crisis Protocol