I don’t pretend to understand HeroClix, but it seems pretty popular among crowds that might’ve played Dungeons & Dragons 20 years earlier. But I didn’t really get D&D, either.
In any case, this article in the Columbia, Mo., Daily Tribune does a nice job explaining the game’s rules and appeal — the latter to the tune of more than 250 million figures sold since HeroClix debuted four years ago.
Subtle nuances such as strengths and superpowers all play into an intricate strategy system that’s crammed into a 39-page rulebook accompanying each starter pack — a $15 kit that comes with six figures, dice, cards, maps and more.
While deciding between the top hat and the thimble is the extent of character selection in Monopoly, choosing between Hawkgirl and Batman in HeroClix might mean trading Hawkgirl’s ability to fly for Batman’s ability to attack from a distance.
Each character has specific powers derived from his or her respective comic book, which makes a character’s value different in every scenario. Lots of water? Players will lean towards characters that can swim. Hilly terrain? Choose someone who can fly above it. Kryptonite surface? Avoid Superman.
There’s also a handy explanation of the “combat dial,” which probably means something to people who play.