Uncanny X-Men – Feature Pt.3 – Beast
Today we have the third article from Dom, as we continue to join him with his Uncanny X-Men journey. Today, he is going to be taking a look at Henry McCoy, more commonly known as Beast!
Beast – Oh my Stars and Garters!
The next part in a continuing series on Web Warrior Protocols – focusing on the Uncanny X-Men in Marvel Crisis Protocol. This time, we’re looking at Beast.
Who is Beast, and what can he do?
Henry ‘Hank’ McCoy aka “Beast” is one of the founding members of Charles Xavier’s X-Men, and he’s one of the most instantly recognisable. My first experience with Beast as a character was in the 90’s X-Men Saturday morning cartoon, and he was one of my favourites. A huge blue creature with a penchant for Shakespeare and Dostoevsky, he’s certainly considered to be one of the more unique characters in the team.
In Marvel Crisis Protocol, Beast makes up one of the X-Men’s 3 threat options. Card-wise Beast has a slightly above average 6 Stamina, a Medium move value and he’s Size three (With a medium base). Beast has a spikey defence line of 4 Physical, 2 Energy and 3 Mystic. He has two attacks on his character card – Acrobatic strike which is a 0 cost, and Animalistic freestyle which comes in at 4 power.
Acrobatic Strike is a Range three Physical attack that rolls five dice. If you roll a Wild Beast gets placed within one of the target of the attack. This, as you can imagine, happens exactly when you don’t want it to happen. Now, it can be a great way to force Beast into a contesting position, but it can also drag you away from your contesting position.
Animalistic Freestyle is a range two Physical attack that throws six dice. This attack costs 4 Power and has a range of effects. The first of the special rules is that once the attack is resolved, Beast inflicts the Bleed special condition upon the target. Secondly we have Float Like a… which triggers on the roll of a Wild. Before Damage is dealt, Beast pushes the target away small, provided that they are Size three or less. The last special rule of this attack allows Beast to move Medium once the attack has been resolved. This gives Beast another way to bounce back onto a Secure following bonking a weak target and stealing an Extract.
Frankly these attacks are pretty middle of the road. The movement tricks are nice but they’ve got a real chance of messing up Beast’s placement. They’re not overwhelmingly strong, but it’s important to remember Beast is not a beat-stick.
Beast has a few superpowers to flesh-out his card. First up we have Baser Instincts which is a short but sweet throw. He can throw terrain, or enemies, that are size two or less. This can be useful for throwing a model off a secure once you’ve ambushed them using your Acrobatic Strike.
Next up we have Stars and Garters. After Beast rolls his Defence or Dodge dice, he can spend up to 3 Power to reroll up to 3 of his Defence dice. Now, the key thing to bear in mind here is the recent ruling around when you pay for these rerolls. I won’t go in depth, but you can find an explanation for the ruling here from RichMid Gaming.
The penultimate superpower for Beast is Disconcerting, Yet Provocative! Beast gains one power every time he rolls a Skull. This goes for every dice roll, including interacts, so make sure you’re rolling often – He needs all the power he can get for Stars and Garters! Last but not least, we have Wall Crawler, which allows Beast to move over obstructions unabated.
Why should I be using Beast?
Honestly, I don’t know if you should. As I’ve mentioned in my previous articles, I’m new to Marvel Crisis Protocol and he’s been a bit of a liability thus-far. His big bonus comes from the fact that he can be used to flip-over using Storm leadership. As he’s on a medium base, you can use him to leverage more shooting from Domino or Cable. You can also use him as a trampoline for a character to grab a middle objective as your first activation. Other than that, Beast can access the First Class card allowing him to interact with an Objective for free.
Personally, I find Beast manages to make his way into my roster as a tool to staying within affiliation in lower threat-level games. Beast generally fills out the core of my squad alongside Storm and Domino, with Beast making way for Lizard whenever I can squeeze him out.
To wrap up, I can see what he potentially brings to the table but in my games he’s often (sadly) found wanting. I’m keen to hear if the community has managed to figure him out. Comment below if you’ve found Beast to live up to his namesake and what you’ve done to make him work.
As always, please leave a thumbs up if you enjoyed reading, or a thumbs down if you didn’t! Dom very gratefully writes these articles for free in his spare time, so please feel free to comment any thoughts you have! Dom is going to be continuing this series here on the blog, so please follow the blog if you want to see both his and my own future posts!