Gen Con 2012 – Review – Legendary, Marvel’s Deck-Building Game by Upper Deck

Along with my friend Dan, I was able to sit down with members of the Upper Deck team to play their newest entry at a Marvel comics’ based card game, Legendary.  The game is a deck-building game meaning you start off with a few cards and through moves that improves your deck throughout the game. I’ve played a few deck-building games, but this one has stood out to me as the game has a neat mechanic in that it fights back, forcing you to team up with other players to beat the game.

The game has a few cards you play with, there’s Heroes such as members of the X-Men or Avengers, Villains, like Magneto (who we played against) or Loki, Bystanders (who hurt you if you fail to save) and what I’ll call actions (don’t remember their official name) like Cyclops Blast.  The game has you attempting to take down a main villain, while other villains attempt to escape.  If you allow 12 villains to escape, you lose.  Your goal is to defeat the main villain while building up your deck in strength and points.  It’s as simple as that.

The mechanic of taking on the villain is what’s interesting to me.  It forces you to work with your opponents, instead of just attempting to screw them over.  It makes you think and cooperate which adds a dynamic I haven’t experienced in this type of game.  It also brings a great feel to the game that fits the material it’s based on.  While the X-Men or the Avengers fight as a team, they’re also individuals who often want to be the one to be in the spotlight and save the day. That’s reflected through that mechanic.

We played through the entire game and definitely took a bit to get into the groove of things defeating villains.  About 4 or five escaped before we took down Magneto and most importantly, it was fun.  I enjoyed it.  The game’s mechanics were great and the art solid.

What made me cringe a bit was the price, which we were told was about $60, but that’s for the entire game, about 600 cards.  The game was fun, but not sure it’s quite worth the $60, it feels more like a $45 game, which I’d have no problem plopping down.  But, we’ll see what the deal is when the retail price is officially announced.  It’s a great game though, and I absolutely recommend checking it out.

Art: The art is is solid, featuring original work. That makes it great not just for fans of the game, but also fans of the comic. You get to see art you normally wouldn’t see and everything I looked at was solid. Score: 9

Mechanics: The game play is top notch that reflects the material it’s based on. You’re attempting to come out on top with the highest score at the end, but fighting villains also forces you to work with others, otherwise you both lose. That’s a great twist which really changes up the game play enough to keep me coming back often to play. Score: 8.5

Product: The cards looked and felt great and the box looked nice as well.  There’s a hell of a lot of cards included in this game.  I believe there’s a mat that comes with the game too, going off of what we played on.  All together, there’s a lot there and what I saw was of high quality product that made me check out what I was playing with as much as the mechanics fo the game. Score: 8

Overall: The game was fun with pretty unique mechanics. The cards were beautiful with unique artwork. The game play was easy to understand and complicated enough to make me pay attention and think through what I needed to do. There’s also the aspect of having a goal to meet as a team and as an individual. Overall a solid product, it’s only the price that I have reservations about at all. The game should be out in the fourth quarter, about November. Overall score: 8.5

Publisher: Upper Deck

Art: 9 Mechanics: 8.5 Product: 8 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Graphic Policy was able to review the game for FREE at Gen Con.

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