Character Focus – Spider-Woman

Spider-Woman is the only character that we haven’t covered so far, so we thought that it was about time that we did!  Released in The Rise of Red Skull campaign expansion, Spider-Woman has some unique deckbuilding options.  Let’s take a look!

Hand Size 6 and 11 Hit Points are average, but 3 Recover is low.  She also has a trait that is currently relevant, Spy.  This will allow you to play cards like Spycraft without needing to have an ally in play with that trait.

She has got two abilities, the first of which is the most talked about.  Double Agent means that you have to choose two aspects instead of just one when deckbuilding, but must include an equal number of each.

Being able to mix two aspects does sound very powerful, but it’s balanced by the fact that you must include an equal number of cards for each aspect.  This nicely limits some of the broken combos that might have otherwise been possible and stops Spider-Woman from being the best character on her own tier at the top (which is a good thing to stop).

It does provide some interesting combinations though.  Want to make a stunlock deck?  Use Aggression and Protection.  Want a strong allies deck?  Use Leadership and Protection.  Want a good all-rounder?  Use Aggression and Justice.  You can make Spider-Woman do whatever you’d like to do, which definitely gives her a lot of replayability.

The second of her abilities is that she can look at the top card of any deck.  This has some interesting uses, such as looking at the top card of your own deck so that you can see what card you’d discard when using Hulk, see what the top card of your deck is before deciding whether to use Avengers Mansion on yourself or one of your team-mates, or even just look at the top card of the encounter deck to see how much of a boost the Villain is going to get.

It’s not an amazing ability by any means, but it does have a small benefit.  Overall, I’d say that her Alter-Ego form is not very appealing (as her deckbuilding ability could just as easily been printed on her Hero form, but for space reasons that isn’t the case).


Her basic stats are poor, but you’re almost never going to be stuck with them because of her Superhuman Agility ability.  This ability gives her +1 to her Thwart, Attack, and Defence until the end of the round for each different aspect she plays a card from that round.

Thanks to her Double Agent ability she must include two aspects in her deck rather than one, but as you’ll see below, she has all four aspects represented in her hero cards.  This means that it is possible (if unlikely!) to trigger her Superhuman Agility four times in one round.

Most of the time her stats are going to be two or three via this method (not including cards like Morale Boost, etc) which is fairly good.  When combined with card effects that ready her (such as Earth’s Mightiest Heroes or her own card, Self-Propelled Glide), it becomes even better.

There seems to be two routes to go with Spider-Woman:

  1. Focus on her Superhuman Agility ability and try to boost her stats as much as possible while using as many ready effects as possible.
  2. Focus on her Double Agent ability and come up with some interesting combinations that wouldn’t otherwise be possible.

Captain Marvel is slightly expensive for four resources, but her ability easily makes up for that; every time you use her to attack or thwart you get to draw a card!

This is the kind of ally that you’ll want to keep around as long as you can.  You might want to consider cards that heal her (First Aid or Med Team) or increase her Hit Points (Honorary Avenger or Team Training).  Overall, she’s a good ally.


There are two copies of this in her hero cards and it’ll help you pay for the majority of her cards.  Not much to say about it other than you’ll want to get it into play as quickly as you can.


As far as Alter-Ego support cards go, this one’s pretty good.  Since the vast majority of your deck is going to be aspect cards this will almost never miss and it will often give you a choice of cards to draw.  This can help with getting more aspects to trigger her Superhuman Agility ability.  Great card!


As mentioned earlier, Spider-Woman has cards from every aspect as part of her hero cards.  This means that it’s possible for her to gets up to +4 to her stats from her Superhuman Agility ability.

The first of these aspect cards is Venom Blast.  She has two copies of it and it’s very good for two resources (it has the same cost as Haymaker but does the same damage as Uppercut).  It hits hard enough to take out most minions and can also knock chunks out of the Villain.


Spider-Woman has two copies of this card and it’s one of the most powerful cards in the game, especially for solo play.  Status effects are a great way to control the Villain and for two resources this will cancel two activations.  Almost always worth playing whenever you draw it.


She’s got two copies of this as well and it’s another great card.  Healing three damage and gaining a Tough status card is amazing for two resources.  Another great card!


Spider-Woman has two copies of this card and it’s pretty good for one resource, especially as you can remove threat from more than one scheme.  This makes it very efficient at getting rid of schemes.  Another good aspect card!


There are three copies of this in her hero cards.  Being able to ready Spider-Woman for one resource is quite good, especially if you are trying to maximise her Superhuman Agility ability. Not much else to say about it; handy card!


SUMMARY

  • Due to her Double Agent ability, she is a very flexible character and can include some combinations of cards not available to any other character.
  • Has some very powerful event cards.
  • Two main ways to build her depending on which ability of hers you want to focus on Double Agent or Superhuman Agility.

Spider-Woman is the first character to have unique deckbuilding options and it definitely puts her in the top half of the characters so far in terms of effectiveness.  However, needing to have an equal amount of each of the two aspects that she chooses for Double Agent stops her from being too over-the-top.

I think that she is an interesting character and thankfully not as stupidly powerful as I was worried she might have been.  I’ve used her a few times now and still haven’t explored all of the possible combinations.  Anyway, that’s all for now.

Cheers,

Tim

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