Hello MCPeeps! I’m going to start a series on commonly asked questions I see in the whichcords or rules I often see confused. First up are phases, turns, activations and rounds.
To begin, I’ll define each term.
Rounds, from the rulebook, are first described on page 14. Phases are described here as well.
A game of Crisis Protocol is played over six rounds. Each round is broken down into three phases: Power, Activation, and Cleanup.
Turns from the same page.
During the Activation Phase, players alternate taking turns. During a player’s turn they can play any number of Team Tactic cards and activate one character that does not have an Activated or Dazed token. The player who has priority takes the first turn. As soon as the previous player has declared their turn is over, the next player begins their turn
From the same page, a bit about activations.
Players alternate turns until there are no more characters that
can activate. During a turn, a player either activates a character or
passes. A player who activates a character may make actions, use
superpowers, and interact with objectives with that character.
Basically, there are 6 rounds of play in MCP. Each round consists of phases. In the Activation Phase, PLAYERS get turns. On those turns, players may choose to activate CHARACTERS. I emphasized those key words because they clear up most of the confusion about this subject. Players get turns, characters get activations.
Real world example time! Character cards here for clarity.
It’s round 2, at the beginning of the activation phase. Player 1 “Mac” has priority, and thus gets the first turn. Mac decides to play the active Team Tactic Card “Disarm” then pass, not activating any characters. It is now player 2’s turn! We’ll call player 2 Larry. Larry activates Sin, and attacks an enemy twice, then uses her super power “Partners in Crime” to activate Crossbones before Larry’s turn ends. Sin’s activation ends, and Crossbones’ activation begins. Crossbones moves and attacks. Before Larry’s turn ends, Larry plays the Team Tactic Card “Dark Reign”.
So each player got a turn, but one only played a team tactic card and passed, the other used a super power to activate 2 characters in 1 turn.
Let’s go back to Larry’s turn, and see how it could interact with some once per turn abilities. Let’s say Sin and Crossbones are playing under the Midnight Sons affiliation. Their leadership ability, “Bump in the Night” specifies once per turn. So even though Sin and Crossbones activated separately, it’s still taking place during one turn, so only one may use “Bump in the Night”.
Now let’s say they’re playing under X-Force, and want to use Cable’s leadership ability, “Wetworks”. Wetworks is worded as once per turn for each allied character, so both may use Wetworks once during their activation, even though it’s taking place on the same turn. Another thing to mention is that characters like Venom with his So Many Snacks superpower can counter attack an opponent’s character during their activation, and can use Wetworks for these attacks even if they used it previously during their activation because it’s a new turn.
This has interesting implications when using Captain America (Steve Rogers) Leadership ability “A Day Unlike Any Other”. It can be used once per turn. This includes opponent’s turns. For example, Cable can use A Day Unlike Any Other during his activation to make his Bodyslide by One power cost only 1 power. Then if during his opponents turn he’s targeted by an attack, he can reduce Telekinetic Shield to 1 power as well, because it’s a new turn.
There are also some abilities that can only be used once per round, like one part of Storm’s leadership ability, X-Men Gold. The place part of her ability can only be used one time total throughout the round. It also specifies it must be used on a character’s activation, so not only does it need to be the Storm player’s turn, the character that is placed must also be activating. They can use it before, between, or after both actions, but it has to be during a character’s activation.
Hopefully this has cleared quite a few things up. If anything was confusing or I missed something please comment or hit me up in discord at Mattomattick #6965, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for reading, and tune in next time for I Will Rules You!
Link to part 2!