Previews: Deadpool and Shifting Focus

I wanted to try something a little different for Clix Fix today. Seeing as we’re in the lull that is Winter and Spring sets, I figured I would take this opportunity to look over the new Deadpool that was shown at the end of December and what I’d like to see.

On December 27th, we got a nice little surprise from Game Trade Magazine in the form of two spoilers (our first set) from the upcoming Deadpool & X-Force set. I’ve talked about how much I’m looking forward to this set, and the revealed sub-themes and confirmed characters has really pushed my excitement over the edge. The fact that we’re getting Shiklah, Deadpool’s very sultry and fantastic wife, put a huge smile on my face as I haven’t shipped anything with Deadpool since Siryn. We got to see the rare version of Deadpool – his sculpt is on the main page of Clix Fix, in the white outfit, otherwise known as X-Force Deadpool.

I want to talk about this version of Deadpool since he has quite the awesome trait that ushers in the first of his kind for Marvel: Shifting Focus. Not only are we getting a myriad of new DP’s, he gets the Shifting Focus mechanic, and as I stated on the main page, I honestly have no excuse to leave DP off any of my local teams moving forward. Anyway, this is big news as the Shifting Focus Superman made quite the splash for a while. The mechanic is seriously an awesome one as it gives you a lot of bang for your point buck and provides you with lots of answers. What better way to spend points than on a character than can completely change to different forms on every turn?

Let’s take a look at his dial and details before I plunge into what this means and what I would like to see for his other Shifting Focus pieces.

Deadpool is 037a, meaning he’s a rare and there’s also going to be a Prime version of this piece (which will probably have the same sclupt or slightly different). He comes in at just 75 points, has 7 range with a single target, and standard combat symbols. That all makes sense for the character. He’s got the X-Force, Assassin, Detective, and Soldier keyword which is great; one of the things I love about Shifting Focus is the potential to weasel one in on a theme team and shift to another piece that you need. Soldier is a wonderful keyword, so that’s good news.

Wade has 7 clicks of health, putting him 15 points cheaper than Shifting Focus Superman with the same amount of health. Seems good. For his dial, his movement is pretty awesome; 12 for two clicks, 11 for three, and back up to 12 on his last two. He’s rockin’ a special movement power for his first five clicks, and Phasing/Teleport for his final two. His attack is completely vanilla with no powers, and ranges from 10 to 11, and ends with two clicks of 9. Defense is pretty high; 18 with Super Senses for two clicks, 17/16 with Combat Reflexes, and two final clicks of 16 Super Senses. For damage, we get 3 for his first two clicks, and 2 the rest of the time. He’s got Shape Change on clicks two and six, and Exploit Weakness on those three Combat Reflexes clicks. Overall, his dial isn’t very aggressive and hyper mobile which makes sense given his role.

So, this version of Deadpool has a trait, which is Shifting Focus. If you’ve played the mechanic before, there’s nothing new here. If not, you basically get to sideline each version of Deadpool with this trait (which should be four if history repeats itself) and once per turn, you can give him a free action to swap him out with a different version of himself on the same click. He’s also got that special movement power:

YOO HOO! I’M OVER HERE NOW SPANKY: Deadpool can use Phasing/Teleport normally or as a free action. If he activates it as a free action, roll a d6 and replace his speed value with the result.

That is music to my ears. Back when Deadpool was first starting out, he had a teleporter that Weasel built for him which he heavily relied on. This power perfectly represents that. While he’s not as good of a ‘porter as Nightcrawler, this gives Wade a free movement between 1-6 in which he ignores everything on the map. That means if you need to get Deadpool the hell out, you can go a minimum of 13 squares (if you roll a 1, and use Phasing/Teleport afterwards as per the normal rules), and a maximum of 18 squares (you roll a 6). This also means that Deadpool has a somewhat-better Charge/Running Shot, but not as good as Hypersonic Speed move and attack power. The concept that Wade can blink to wherever he needs for free every turn is nothing to sneeze at, and although is stats don’t look that great to dish damage, it goes without saying that this will be a huge asset to his Shifting Focus brigade.

The only issue I have with this Deadpool is that he doesn’t really feel like the X-Force version of the character. If this were true to the books, this feels more like old-school, late 90’s Joe Kelly Deadpool than Mutant Assassin Team. Deadpool made a lot of calls that others weren’t comfortable with (okay, maybe Fantomex was okay with them) and he wasn’t afraid to get violent as is his nature, but this dial doesn’t really reflect this. It’s a very minor issue I have which I can totally live with because the piece is overall amazing!


Now that I’ve discussed the dial in detail, I want to talk about what I’d like to see out of the (assuming) other 3 Shifting Focus pieces. If history repeats itself, that leaves 2 commons and an uncommon. Let’s get to it.

Common #1 SF Deadpool – Since X-Force was used for the rare, I’d like to see the newest version of Deadpool as the first common. This keeps us up with the times in terms of what Deadpool has been doing in the books (okay, he isn’t on X-Force anymore). For his dial, I’d like this piece to be a ranged combatant as modern Deadpool uses his swords a bit less than he does his arsenal of weapons. Some Ranged Combat Expert would probably be in there, as well as Running Shot. I wouldn’t give him Stealth as Deadpool has cared less as the years go by about keeping himself covered and more about just killing anything he can before he sustains too much damage. Maybe something along the lines of AoU Movie Starter Hawkeye where he can use Ranged Combat Expert as a free action but only when he has no action tokens. Heck, we could even have a special damage power or other trait that lets him pick his arsenal power much like the different weapons from the Punisher Van. That would be really nifty.

This version of Deadpool would probably have a decently high attack and a low defense to really get the point of assassin Deadpool the board. As for defense powers, I’d probably go with Super Senses or Toughness to mitigate that lower defense value. One thing is for sure; Deadpool shouldn’t ever have anything higher than Toughness unless he’s rockin’ armor. Maybe a combination of Super Senses and Energy Shield/Deflection?

Common #2 SF Deadpool – I feel like we should get an old-school, Joe Kelly Deadpool, kind of like how the old Mutant Mayhem Deadpool was with that same old-school costume. I really liked that suit and I feel like it should make a return. For his dial, this should be the close combat piece that has a short range as a backup via pistols. Blades/Claws/Fangs would have to be a necessary here, and I would be okay with Stealth as the older version of Deadpool was a taaaaad bit more careful than he is today. Perplex would have to be present as no one wrote his banter better than Kelly did. He could even have a special Perplex that let’s him subtract two values from an opponent as long as one isn’t damage or something along those lines.

His attack should still be high since Blades characters should have high attack and low damage so that they’re kind of a gamble, which is perfect for Wade as that matches his personality. Combat Reflexes would probably be my preferred defense as the old-school wade relied a bit more on the fact that his history included Black-Ops and his mastery of martial arts.

Uncommon SF Deadpool – Rather than giving each version of Deadpool a way of healing (which we can see the rare is lacking), I think one of the Shifting Focus pieces will be a regenerative version, and I can’t think of a better time than when Deadpool’s healing factor was accelerated so much that the Cancer in his body couldn’t keep it in check. This would be a great way to have a piece that really doesn’t do anything other than heal really well. Perhaps his movement, attack, and damage values would be crummy, and he could act a little bit like Gluttony did from Trinity War where he can’t take more than one damage at a time. He could have a really nice healing function, but it would be slow so you couldn’t zap him back to your starting area and heal back up to full in one turn. I’d love to see something along the lines of his trait from Web of Spider-Man, but without the emphasis on him getting hit; just like a Regen, but based on what you roll, he heals to a different amount (maybe with 1 healing him just a single click, 2-5 healing him 3, and a 6 healing him to click #1).

His defense should be pretty good though; this version of Wade was practically unkillable, but he also couldn’t really do anything. I’d probably equip him with like a 19 along with Invincible or Impervious (Pen/Psy should still work against him since it’s a Psychic attack), but again, terrible stats otherwise.


 

That wraps up my first Preview article; I don’t want these to be a heavy theme, just something that I occasionally do. I felt like I had some knowledge and info to give regarding where the character could go, so that’s what led me here. Did you end up liking this post? If so, I can do more in the future.

While I await ideas from you, the readers, on future articles, I’m looking to review each of the 2017 Convention Exclusives which should be wrapping up soon (if they aren’t finished today). Also, if you didn’t see the news, Deadpool & X-Force got pushed back to March while TMNT 3: Shredder’s Return was pushed up to February. That means that come next month, you’ll be seeing some more Turtles content while I, uh, patiently? wait for Deadpool news. See ya next week!

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