Black Panther has been one of Marvels hidden masterpieces for over fifty years now, the first comic book to feature a non caucasion lead as its main protagonist and this was at a critical time during the civil rights movement in America!
The characters created by legends Stan Lee and Jack ‘King’ Kirby have gone on to become firm fan favorites since their inception and over the years have changed with the times to suit more a modern era. While many will be familiar with the characters of both Shuri and Okoye from the hugely successful Black Panther movie, they are both quite new characters and only date back to the late 90s
Created by Reginald Hudin and John Romita Jr. Shuri made her debut back in 2005 in #2 of the rebooted Black Panther comic book. She is the younger sister of T’Challa the legitimate king of the African nation Wakanda and the hero known as Black Panther! Trained since birth in martial arts, she is a formidable fighter, and has even taken on the role of Black Panther during her older brothers absence. However it is her technical intellect that sets her way above most others in the comic books, with her intelligence being one of the highest on Earth, far more advanced than either Tony Stark, Reed Richards or Victor Von Doom and she is only 16 years old!
Okoye is another new character to the long-running history of Black Panther, having first appeared in 1998. Created by Mark Texeira, Christopher Priest, Okoye is a skilled warrior and member of the Dora Milaje, a group of warriors that act as bodyguard to Black Panther and the throne of Wakanda. She is much more than a bodyguard however and has on times been the voice of reason for T’Challa offering advice that he needs to know. One of the most skilled fighters in the world, Okoye is as deadly as she is beautiful!
The Shuri and Okoye Expansion is now finally available for the excellent Marvel Crisis Protocol from Atomic Mass Games, adding to the brand new faction Wakanda. My video unboxing and thoughts are below, followed by a more in-depth look!
Since Marvel Crisis Protocol was launched late last year, the one main criticism that has been leveled at the game is that the miniatures contain way too many small pieces. Assembling Captain Marvel and Ultron in the core box set is a bit of a nightmare as Captain Marvel’s forearms need to be glued onto upper arms and legs on Ultron are in many pieces. Normally for a miniature kit, this isn’t really that much of a problem, but when the parts are extremely small and liable to vanish forever if you drop them onto a carpet, then problems can arise!
Okoye is pretty straight forward to assemble so I will look at her first. The miniature is very dynamically posed with her Vibranium staff ready to reposte any attack. Extreme care really needs to be taken when you assemble the miniature as the staff is very thin and liable to break if you just try and twist it from the plastic tree, use good quality side snips to make sure that it doesn’t break and be extra careful at the to of the staff as its very thin! Attaching the staff to her arms is again a little problematic as it may not marry up correctly and I ended up using superglue and accelerator to make sure that mine stayed in place. Other than that Okoye is a simple model to put together.
Shuri, however, is a whole different ballgame!
The miniature is posed very dramatically, leaping forward with one leg bent under her body and the other outstretched straight behind her, it is this leg that attaches the miniature to the small terrain piece to make it look like she is leaping. While the fluidity of motion is not in question, it is a very small contact point to hold the miniature in place and I can see this snapping in the future!
The main problems, however, are once again the small components that make up the miniature. Like Captain Marvel, Shuri’s arms are made up of multiple pieces, one of which is only about a millimeter across. While you do get two spares of the smallest part, it is very easy to drop them as they are so small and you will have a difficult time trying to find them again!
This is what makes a good miniature bad sadly. The pose and sculpting are first class, but when you have eyesight problems it makes it a very daunting task to assemble even before you begin.
The Shuri miniature also suffers from the fact that her head is made up of three parts, which only adds to the frustration when assembling. There is a quick tip that was posted on the Marvel Crisis Protocol Worldwide Facebook group, sorry I can’t find the post to credit the poster but they suggest to cut off the headpiece and glue it into place while the top of the headpiece is still attached to the sprue. I did this and it made it so much easier, though I still had to attach the ponytail which I did with superglue and kicker to make it less painful.
I understand and appreciate that Atomic Mass Games is a new company and mistakes are bound to be made, but this really does need addressing in the future. Like Star Wars Legion, Marvel Crisis Protocol is aimed at new gamers who are drawn into the hobby by the success of the movies! Making miniatures that have such small parts or unnecessary assembly is a good way to alienate your target audience. Make the parts one piece rather than lots of smaller ones, it is pretty much that simple!
Team Tactic Cards
The Shuri and Okoye Expansion comes with two brand new Team Tactics cards for use in your games.
Advanced R&D: This is an unaffiliated card and is an active card. Advanced R&D allows a character to spend up to five power to play the card. For every point of power spent by the character, they may choose an allied character and give them a point of power! This is a great card for characters who may sit on a lot of power such as Hulk or MODOK and can basically turn them into batteries for a turn. The downside is that each model may only receive one power rather than all five!
Vibranium Shielding: This is an active card for the Wakanda affiliation. Either Black Panther or Shuri may spend X power (with X being the number of power spent i.e. 3) between 1 and 5 power in total. During this round, any allied characters that are within Range X (power spent) will gain the Invunerablity special power which reduces the amount of damage taken to a minimum of 1.
Shuri Character Card
As with all of the other characters in the core set, this expansion comes with character cards for the models provided. Shuri is one of the most intelligent characters in the Marvel Universe, easily surpassing Tony Stark, and she is still only a child. She has however been trained to take on the mantle of Black Panther should anything befall her brother and as such is not to be treated lightly or underestimated!
Stamina. Shuri begins the game with stamina of 5, and once she has taken enough damage to flip she has a further 5 stamina!
Movement. Shuri has average speed for her size and her movement is Medium
Size. Shuri is a human-size coming in at 2.
Threat. Shuri has a threat level of 3 which makes her a good choice as a supporting character in your roster.
Defense. Shuri is average at defense and has a Physical, Energy, and Mystic defense of 3.
Abilities and Powers
Panther Gauntlets: This is an energy attack that has a range of 5, damage of 6 and power cost of 0. This ability is more defensive in nature as no matter how many hits it inflicts to the target, the target only takes 1 point of damage. However it is ideal to deny objectives as it pushes targets away Small, and always gives Shuri 1 point of power if she hits.
Sonic Crush: An energy attack that has a range of 2 and deals 7 damage at a cost of 4 power. Sonic Crush causes the Stun special condition and on a wild causes Stagger!
Super Genius!: (Reactive): This power costs 1 power and allows Shuri to count shields instead of hits during the calculate phase.
Upgrades: (Reactive): This is a variable power cost and may cost up to 3 power. An allied character may within range 4 of Shuri may reroll a die for each power point spent.
Head of Wakanda R&D (Innate): Whenever Shuri rolls dice, after the effect is resolved Shuri gains 1 power if she rolled at least 1 skull!
Okoye Character Card
The second character card in the expansion is Okoye, General of the Dora Milaje and all-around badass! Much like Captain America Okoye is used to soak up damage that would otherwise take out other characters. She is fast and deadly and able to really keep up with other superpowered characters, but best of all shes only a Threat of 2 which makes her a must for any Wakandan faction
Stamina. Okoye begins with a Stamina of 4 which flips over to 4 once shes damaged enough to do so.
Movement. Okoye moves at Medium, making her pretty fast for a nonpowered character
Size. Okoye is a human-size coming in at 2.
Threat. Okoye has a Threat of 2 which puts her as one of the cheapest models to use in the game, alongside Black Widow
Defense. Okoye is an all-around average when it comes to defense and has Physical, Energy, and Mystic all at 3
Abilities and Powers
Strike This is a Physical attack that has a range of 2, damage of 4 and power cost of 0. Once the attack is resolved the character gains power equal to that dealt!
Vibranium Spear Blast : An Energy attack that has a range of 4 and deals 4 damage at a cost of 0 power. After the attack is resolved Okoye gains 1 power!
Vibranium Spear Thrust : A Physical attack that has a range of 2 and deals 5 damage at a cost of 4 power. On a Wild, this attack gains the Pierce trait and a further Wild gives the attack Flurry which allows the character to make a further Strike attack!
Bodyguard!: (Reactive): This card costs 2 power to use. When an allied character is the target of an attack within range 2 of this character and this power is used, the character instead becomes the target of the attack regardless of range or LOS
General of the Dora Milaje!: (Innate): Okoye may reroll one die during her attack or defense rolls!
Martial Artist: (Innate): When Okoye is defending against Physical or Energy attacks within range 2, she adds blanks as successes!
Another great release for an already great game, but sadly it is marred by the assembly of the miniatures! If the multipart approach had been ignored (as after all these are not multi-pose miniatures like Space Marines) and each limb been tooled as a single piece then this would have been an outstanding kit, but sadly the small parts bring it down when they shouldn’t really do so. The detail of the sculpts is excellent and both miniatures once you finally get them assembled look amazing, its just the sheer task of assembling them in the first place that lowers the value of the product.
Both models are excellent to paint up however and I have to admit that I was really relaxed and enjoyed painting them both up once they where finally assembled. I used Citadel Contrast Paints for the majority of both models as they are in very bright and vibrant colours and this seemed to work extemely well and was very rewarding in the end.
Game-wise however both Shuri and Okoye are rock solid on paper and do exactly what they are designed to do, offer support to Black Panther and Killmonger. Shuri is ideal for pushing foes off objectives so that they can be claimed and is a walking battery of power due to her gaining power every time she rolls a skull or if she hits and add this to her Upgrades ability and she becomes a great asset for her allies. Team Shuri and Okoye with Killmonger and Black Panther and then throw in Black Widow for 2 Threat or better yet Venom for 4 Threat and you have a pretty hard-hitting team that can not only take the fight to the enemy but keep them from gaining points by constantly pushing them away from objectives! A great addition to the game but sadly at a cost.
Please check out the links below for more Marvel Crisis Protocol