Thursday, August 16, 2012

Marvel Super Hero Squad TCG: Hero's Destiny Has Arrived!

Marvel SHS: Hero's Destiny Box!
(Set One)
The hotly anticipated first expansion to the Marvel Super Hero Squad Trading Card Game, Hero's Destiny, has arrived!
Hero's Destiny
(Set Two)
I eagerly unwrapped the cellophane off of the box. Right away, you'll notice that the logo for the Super Hero Squad has changed on the box, the booster packs and (most worrysome) the cards themselves. Where it once said "Online" it now says "TCB." "What's the big deal?" you might ask. Well, examine the two card backs at the right. Very similar, but that minor difference would clearly give both you and your opponent some information about each card. Your opponent not only sees the back of the card on top of your deck but also that of the cards in your hand. To very skilled players, this would be a huge advantage in-game. So this fact now forces you to use card covers if you wish to use cards from both sets. Upper Deck isn't off to a good start with me already.

The booster packs themselves bear the colorful images of Daredevil and Warmachine. The heroes seem to have been chosen at random (except the art for both heroes comes from cards in this set), unlike Foundation, which used the Avengers VS X-Men theme. There are no starter decks available for this expansion.

I carefully started opening packs. Right away, I noticed a few things.

A super rare card
with the new formatting
First, the super-rare cards have really changed their look. They really stand out from the other cards now. They have a white border and a uniquely stylized blocking symbol. The blocking symbol has the black background replaced with a shiny foil (silver) one. The white border may make it seem as if the blocking symbol is larger and tilted at a different angle but it isn't - it has the same size, shape, and orientation as a common card. These changes, while they appear to be minor and superficial, make a huge difference aesthetically. In a large stack of cards you can pick out the super rares almost instantly just by thumbing through quickly. The white border really makes use of the rainbow foil effect and the blocking symbol jumps out when set on the foil background.

Secondly, the rare cards are packaged facing the opposite way of the rest of the cards in a booster pack. Super rare cards are not packaged this way - they're facing forward. I have no idea why it would be this way but that's the way it is. These two pictures were taken of the cards fresh out of two booster packs:

See the super rare card (forth in from the right)? It's facing the same way as the other cards.
See the rare card (forth in from the right)? It's the card that's upside-down - you can see the back of the card.
This is the way they all come in the packs!
Finally, while a large number of the cards you love from the online game have made their way into this expansion, there are a large number of cards that do not yet have a counterpart in the online game. Some of these cards are from the upcoming "Dark Justice" online expansion that hasn't been released yet, some are from soon-to-be available card quests, but others have no revealed plans for online introduction.

These new cards are the most exciting thing about this game and I can't wait to try them out. Over the upcoming days, 1LR will be highlighting these new cards so keep checking back!!

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