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This is the final entry in a seven part series on superhero games. This entry is about X-Men Under Siege.

This is a board game from the 90s, so it has that “classic” feel to it. There are 18 figurines of the different characters to choose from, and each character also has a small board listing Fighting Skill, Durability, and Intelligence and special abilities. The Fighting Skill number tells you how many dice you get to roll in a fight, Durability is how many dice you can roll to remove Hits from your character, and Intelligence determines how many cards you can have (total Intelligence of your 2 smartest characters). You begin the game with 2 characters with the chance of getting a third.

The board consists of 6 levels of the Mansion, and each level has a certain number of rooms to explore. Along one side of the board is a number line which is used for battles. You play cards to move your characters to different levels and rooms to explore. Each room has a small square which you flip over during exploration. If the square is blank, nothing happens (you keep the square since it’s worth points later). If the square says “X-Men” you get an additional character (if you don’t yet have 3). If the square says “Evil Mutant” you flip over an Evil Mutant (EM) card. You place the small square at the bottom of the number line and the level marker to the number indicated on the EM card. Some of the numbers have a red blood mark on them. If you lower the EM’s HP to or past that number, you receive a token (worth points later). When you defeat the EM, you keep the EM card (worth points later). If you manage to clear enough rooms (the level indicates how many), you have cleared that level and get the level marker (worth points later) along with any remaining room tokens. Each room square, blood token, EM card, and level marker is worth 1 point at the end of the game, and the player with the most points wins.

There are some special cards that let you move to a level where an EM is being fought (the level is blocked to normal movement) or that give you a third character.

If during battle you take damage equal to or greater than your HP (indicated by the X-Men symbols on your character board), your character has to recover. If on your next turn your character still has more hits than HP, that character dies.

The game does take awhile to play, and I imagine it would take longer with 3-4 players instead of the 2 we played with. Professor was able to clear almost all the levels by clearing the required number of rooms, but it seems like this would be more difficult with more players. The individual player has to have the required number of rooms cleared, not the total from all players. So needing to explore every room will definitely lengthen the game.

The fact that everything is worth just 1 point at the end feels a bit unbalanced. I defeated Magneto (the strongest EM), but he was worth just as much as a low level EM (like Avalanche). Professor was clearing levels left and right, but again, those were only worth 1 point each at the end. We played a little more cooperatively than others might, so we were helping each other battle EMs. If we’d been playing more competitively, I don’t see the incentive to go help. It seems I’m better off clearing rooms and levels and fighting my own EMs. The more times my opponent has to use his turn to recover, the better.

This is probably a game we’ll pull out every now and then for nostalgia, but it won’t be something played regularly.

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