Dr. Strange Phil here, or Dr. Phil for short. I’ve been having a blast over the last 18 months playing Marvel Crisis Protocol! Learning how to play and getting familiar with all of the amazing heroes and affiliations on my own has been a great journey, but it also is a lot to comprehend and keep straight. For my own sake mostly, I’ve been trying to compile some tried-and-true information on all of the different affiliations, and I want to share and learn from the community, so I started this blog: A Crisis of Protocol! This way I can keep an official record of my best strategies and ideas for the game, and hopefully start some conversation or inspire others with their own teams.

For images of the blog, I am going to try and stick with pictures of my own models as well as some Marvel-themed canvas paintings of my own! I started my painting journey through miniatures and the larger scale of MCP really pushed me to up my painting skills. I had so much fun I started painting portraits of my favorite models on canvas. My regular opponent is my wife, and her favorite character is Scarlet Witch, and I like M.O.D.O.K. so at some point I painted this portrait of the two facing off in a final confrontation. I guess they are about to play a game of MCP?

The two of us play competitively in that we both really want to win, and I follow the meta in terms of what gets played at competitive events. As a way to organize our play, we even played a tournament between the affiliations we have access to. Here’s the results! Looking back at the original Tournament of Champions writeup, I feel like I’ve learned a lot about the game since then. We’ve played a few more games since, and I’ve been keeping track of the scores for each affiliation. Since the numbers aren’t high enough to completely eliminate the natural variance and fun factor of MCP, you can take this as an introduction of myself: the numbers reflect my own play style and strengths and weaknesses as a player. (For example, my organizational skill is on display with the fact that Midnight Sons is out of order!)

These stats were generated without fixed rosters, but I’ve been able to create a roster for each affiliation now and will be releasing those to you here over the next few months. Maybe you’ve guessed what else this is all coming to, but it’s time for T2: Tournament of Judgement! This time, I’ve set up a seeded bracket and it’s provided below with a few ground rules.

After each round, I’ll share the results and provide my current impressions of the next two challengers. The next matchup will be decided randomly. For the first match, we’ll be playing…Defenders vs. Cabal!

Defenders: I am obviously big fan of Dr. Strange, so I love that there are three different affiliations in which he can really shine. In this one, Dr. Strange gains the ability to cast a portal at Range 5, and his whole team can change their attack type and give out the Hex condition. The main strength of Defenders is that Hulk is affiliated, so mostly Defenders games start by choosing Dr. Strange, Hulk, and Wong, and then picking literally any hero from the collection you feel like playing with since you’re already affiliated Defenders. Scarlet Witch is affiliated, and I actually think she has an interesting amount of synergy with Dr. Strange in that she has better than average defense dice, a good health pool so wants to be healed, and would love to take that portal if it can ever possibly come online. I have had success without Hulk or Switch and running Blade and Wolverine, and I think Valkyrie is also interesting to try too. The theme here would be attrition-based heroes with built-in mobility that sometimes struggle with their attack type being not ideal. Blade’s mystical attacks are pretty bad against Dr. Strange, Sorcerer Supreme, Magneto, or Magik, but they have solid enough profiles. Wolverine and Valkyrie have all physical attacks and get the opportunity to hit that Mystic defense. I ended up settling on Valkyrie and Black Panther as my aggressive combat pieces. Clea can help with teleporting Hulk or Switch, and I added Winter Soldier to help hold backfield objectives and do his normal killing things, except with Mystic attacks.

Cabal: The team had middling to bad performance before bringing Malekith and Red Skull, Master of Hydra into the fold. Since then, I haven’t yet worked out my Malekith formula as to the perfect combination of Advanced R&D and Place superpowers, but I sure am trying. I don’t have Lockjaw, so I that’s the one thing I haven’t tried, but OG Red Skull and Medusa have both worked great for me as enablers for Malekith and combined with Advanced R&D he’s definitely getting that charge to anywhere he needs to Turn 1. I guess the challenge I’m currently facing is how to apply that same game plan to every situation. I find that playing wide against Malekith and focusing on objectives is a reasonably good strategy against him, so the effort on the part of the Cabal player definitely isn’t over once they’ve figured out that magical Turn 1 combo. I always fail on the timing of Dark Reign, so that’s another reason I’m bad at this faction, but that card of course can be extremely powerful when used. Juggernaut is a solid tanky hero that can use AR&D after picking up an extract, and Zola can maybe hold a backfield objective while throwing out rerolls to Malekith. Mystique is really strong on this team, with Dark Reign she can do tons of damage and her Deception is perfect for bringing someone into range of Malekith to kill.

That’s all for now, but stay tuned for an update on T2: Tournament of Judgment. And for the first roster review, we’ll be focusing on Weapon X. I must be the expert on them since I’m undefeated…right?

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