WildStorms CCG Complete Rules Compendium
During the lifespan of the WSCCG, there have been rule changes, clarifications, and errata that alter the game play and make what is printed in the rule books and player's guide obsolete. This compendium is an organization of all the information you need to play WildStorms! These rules are considered OFFICIAL.
Credits & Sources
Game Design & Original Rulebook: Drew Bittner & Matt Forbeck
Additional Materials: Phil Jaros, Max Jeray, Shannon Wanner, Christopher Crowther, David Stallard, & Adam Bishop
Based on information found in the 1997 Best of WildStorms Rule Book, 1996 WildStorms Player's Guide, 1997 Legends Solitaire Set Rule Insert, and additional notes compiled by fans and confirmed by the game designers.
For scans of the 1995 Limited Set Rule Book, click here.
For scans of the Legends Solitaire Edition Rules Insert, click here.
Table Of Contents
Welcome to WildStorms: the Expandable Super-Hero Collectible Card Game, in which heroes and villains battle to determine the fate of the world. Share in the excitement as you protect the world from the forces of evil—or enslave humanity with your criminal brilliance!
WildStorms is set in those parts of the Image Comics universe frequented by the WildC.A.T.s, StormWatch, Team 7, Gen13, and WetWorks. If you keep your eyes open, you might find visitors from elsewhere—even from outside the Image Universe!
For ease of explanation, these rules assume that there are two players playing the game. Once you learn the rules, it’s possible to play with as many people as you like.
What You Need To Play
All you need to play WildStorms are two players and some WildStorms cards. Each player should have at least 50 cards on hand. If you want more cards, 15 card booster packs are also available.
It’s helpful to have a piece of paper and a pen to keep score, as well as a handful of markers (pennies or glass stones work nicely) to keep track of certain effects of cards in the game.
Two For One
WildStorms is actually two games in one: the standard game and the campaign game.
Some of the cards are only useful in the campaign game. If you’re playing a standard game, remove these cards from your deck before you start. These cards are identified by the presence of red text.
Other cards are useful in the standard game, but have additional value in the campaign game. These cards have mixed black and red text.
The first part of this rulebook covers the standard game. The second part details the campaign game. The standard game is much easier to learn, so play it a few times before moving on to the campaign game.
The Object Of The Game
In WildStorms, you use your characters to pound your opponent’s characters into the dirt so you can claim control of the battlesite you’re fighting over. When you claim a battlesite, you win the battle.
Winning A Battle
To claim a battlesite, you need to earn a certain number of points. This number is found on the battlesite over which you’re fighting. This value changes depending on which battlesite is in play.
You earn points in two ways:
1. K.O.’ing your opponent’s characters.
2. Meeting conditions set by certain types of cards.
Keep a constant running total of your points. The first player to earn enough points to meet the goal listed on the battlesite instantly wins the battle.
Keep in mind that players cannot fall below 0 points. If a card or action would take a player below 0 points, it instead reduces them to 0 and the remainder is discarded immediately.
The Playing Field
The playing field is set up as shown in the diagram.
This is the territory occupied by the battlesite and all the characters fighting over it—where all the action takes place.
Resources And Discards
Your playing deck is known as your resources. During the game, you draw cards from your resources to use in the game. When you’re finished with a card, you put it in your discard pile. Exception: killed characters are removed from the game. All discards are kept face down, and no one is allowed to look through them.
Certain cards allow you to look through your resources for another card. Unless the card specifies otherwise, always reshuffle your resources after doing this.
The sideboard is an area in which you can keep characters that are in play but not at the battlesite. Cards that mention your holding area or staging area are referring to different sections of your sideboard. In the standard game, cards that are moved to your holding area are out of the game for all practical purposes. However, you’ll probably use your staging area frequently.
Your holding area is a place to keep characters that have been knocked out of the battle for some reason (but not killed).
Your staging area is where you keep characters that are on their way to the battle. You can have no more than 30 points of character of equipment cards in your staging area at any time.
If your staging area is ever overfilled, you must empty it down to 30 or less points of characters and equipment during your next Recruit and Equip phase [see Recruit and Equip Phase].
Certain cards will instruct you to move a character to the sideboard. Note that any time a character is moved to your sideboard, it is entirely healed.
There are several types of cards. In all cases, if the rules on a card contradict the rules in this book, play by the rules on the card.
Most of the time, it should always be obvious who owns each card, but if there is ever any chance of mix-up, be sure to somehow mark who the card belongs to. Pennies or glass stones work well for this, or you can simply turn the card so that it’s always facing the player who owns it, even if it’s in front of another player.
Many times, the cards refer to “you”. This refers to the person playing or in control of the card. This is usually the card’s owner.
Active Vs. Inactive
Characters that are at the battlesite and capable of using cards and attacking in combat are active. Characters that are K.O.’d, killed or in a sideboard are inactive. These terms are used on the cards to help determine which cards can be played on which characters. Only active characters can use their special abilities.
These are heroes, villains and other drawn from the pages of WildStorm Productions family of comics. They attack and defend, win or lose, according to your skill and strategy.
Most characters are unique [assume they are unless their card says otherwise]. That means there can only be one of them in play [in a sideboard or at a battlesite]. For example, if Grifter is in play, no one can put another Grifter into play.
However, if a unique character is killed or otherwise removed from the game, that character’s card can reenter play – even under a different player’s control. Just like in comic books, death is rarely permanent.
Some character cards are nonunique. There is no limit on how many copies of this card can be in play at the same time.
Each characters card describes how that character works within the game.
Abbreviation: C. This number represents the character’s power and skill in brawling with foes, either barehanded or with a close combat weapon such as a knife.
Grifter’s Close Combat is 4. He’s good with his fists.
Abbreviation: R. This number represents a character’s ability to use weapons that can attack from a distance, like a gun. Characters must have a ranged weapon (basically anything that’s not a close combat weapon) to make a ranged attack.
Grifter’s Ranged Combat is 5, but he needs a weapon to use it.
Abbreviation: D. This number represents a character’s ability to avoid injury, whether due to armor or simply being fast enough to dodge attacks.
Grifter’s Defense is 5. He’s fast, agile and very durable – definitely near the upper range for a human.
The Notes Box
Any special abilities the character might have are listed here. Some of these abilities are followed by a number which tells you how powerful that ability is. Others stand alone – you either have them or you don’t. Some of these abilities are described later in these rules. Most are explained on the cards themselves.
When a power is listed in parentheses, it is latent and cannot be used until activated – usually by the play of a special card.
Grifter is Gen-Active. He has Tech 2, Coda Training, Subterfuge and he’s a Weapons Expert. His Psi 5 is latent.
Most characters are part of a team – they work, train, fight and sometimes live together. This affects how well they can work together and support each other in the game. Some characters belong to more than one team.
Grifter belongs to the WildC.A.T.s and Team 7. He knows how to fight best alongside people from these teams.
This is the number of points it costs to put this card into your deck [see Deck Building], and the number of points it costs to bring this card into play. It’s also the number of points that a player earns for K.O.ing this character, besides any point for equipment it has.
These are maneuvers, tricks, and extra efforts used by characters during combat. Some enhance your character’s attacks or defenses, while others negate a foe’s defenses or attacks.
Combat cards are played only during combat. Most combat cards are discarded once the combat is over, as their effects only last for that combat, but some cards describe additional longer-lasting effects. Keep these cards on the table next to the character they affect until the effect is over.
Combat cards that affect ranged combat (R) apply to any kind of ranged combat. This includes Psi, Energy Blasts, Thrown Objects, etc.
This is the number of points it costs to put this card into you deck.
It costs 1 point to put a Dodge card into you deck.
Attack And Defense Cards
Combat cards fall into two categories: those that benefit the attacker and those that benefit the defender. To make it easier for you to tell them apart at a glance, we’ve color-coded the categories. Attack cards have a green title, and defense cards have a blue title.
Attack cards can only be played on attackers, and defense cards can only be played on defenders.
These represent tools, weapons, armor, magickal objects, vehicles, etc. Equipment cards can be given to any character [as long as any special requirements are met], but they can only be played during your Recruitment Phase. When you play an equipment card, place it under the character you’re playing it on, so that the text on the card is visible.
The Personal Forcefield permanently adds 3 to a character’s D. If you put it on Grifter, it would make his D [5+3 =] 8. Since it’s armor, you cannot play another armor card on Grifter unless you discard the Personal Forcefield first.
This is the number of points it costs to put this card into your deck and to put this card into play. It’s also the number of points you earn if you K.O. a character using this card.
Characters can only have one of any type of equipment card. The equipment’s type is listed on the card in all capital letters [example: ARMOR]. You can replace an equipment card with a card of the same type only if you first discard the equipment card already in play. It costs nothing to discard an equipment card and you can do so during your Recruit and Equip phase [see Recruit and Equip Phase]. No one earns points for equipment that’s discarded voluntarily.
Certain types of equipment cards [like special sights or ammo] are played on weapons instead of on characters. Just like with characters, a weapon can’t have more than one of any type of enhancement attached to it at any time. If you want to change enhancements, the old enhancement must be discarded before the new one can be played.
Plot Twist Cards
These cards are used to turn the tables on an opponent by introducing random events, strokes of luck [good and bad], altered battle conditions, or chances to earn points.
Some of them are temporary, while others are permanent. Plot twists can be played anytime during the game by any player, except during a Draw or Attack phase. Each plot twist card has three sections.
The Notes Box
Who the plot twist can be played on and what effect it may have are described here, as well as any limitations on using the card.
Mysterious Disappearance can be played on any character to heal and depossess it.
This tells how long the card’s effect lasts during the game. Once the card’s effect is over, discard it.
The effect of a Mysterious Disappearance card is instant.
This is the number of points it costs to put this card into you deck. Unlike equipment or power enhancements, you do not earn points for plot twists attached to characters that you K.O.
Mysterious Disappearance costs 5 points to put into your deck.
These are special kinds of plot twists that are clearly labeled with all capital letters. They’re played on battlesites, but only one can be in play at any time. You can’t play an obstacle on a battlesite that already has one; however, if an obstacle is removed by the effects of a card, then a new one can be played.
Cards that give you a chance to earn points can be vitally important in the game. These cards are side missions. When you meet the conditions written on the card, you earn points that count toward winning a battle.
These are strategically important locations over which battles are fought. The object of a battle is to control the battlesite. Each battlesite card has the following details on it.
Points To Control
This is the number of points you must earn at this battlesite to control it and win the game.
You need to earn 40 points to win a battle at HALO Enterprises.
The Notes Box
Any special effects of the battlesite are listed here.
HALO Enterprises adds 1 to the Defense of any WildC.A.T. at the battlesite.
This is the number of points you earn by controlling this battlesite. This is only important in the campaign game.
Changing Battlesites During A Battle
Certain cards, like Lord Entropy, allow you to change the location of the fight mid-battle. When one battlesite is exchanged for another, all players lose all the points they've earned in that battle.
These are special artifacts of power won in a campaign game when a battlesite is controller by a player. They are kept in your sideboard and can be used at any time. They grant the controlling player special advantages. They are not used in the standard game.
Some prizes require the use of counters, like pennies or glass stones. You won the Orb of Teleportation in a battle. You then place the card on you side of the table and place 3 counters on it. Each time you use the Orb’s power to move a character, you remove one counter. When all the counters are gone, the Orb is useless – unless you find some way to recharge it!
There are three rules you must follow when building a WildStorms resource deck:
1. You can have no more than 3 copies of any single card in your deck.
2. You can have no more than 200 points worth of cards in your deck.
3. At least 30 of these points must be in character cards, and at least another 30 must be in equipment cards
Remember that battlesites and prizes don’t go into your resource deck. They don’t cost points and are kept separate.
Getting New Cards
Unlike traditional card games, WildStorms cards are collectible. When you purchase a starter deck [like the one in which this rulebook came], you get only a fraction of all the cards available. There are hundreds of cards in the set!
You and your friends can trade cards as much as you want, just like trading sports cards. Wheeling and dealing can be as much fun as actually playing the game.
The only restriction on trading is that you cannot trade cards in the middle of a game. You are only allowed to use the cards that start the game in your deck.
Tuning Your Deck
One of the challenges of WildStorms is changing you deck, experimenting with new combinations and finding ways to give yourself a better chance of winning. Here are some hints to get started.
We recommend playing with at least 50 cards in your deck. Running out of cards can prove fatal. That said, the fewer the cards in your deck, the better chance you have of getting out that vital card at a crucial moment.
Try to build you deck around one team or two compatible teams. If you don’t, you’ll never be able to use teamwork and Leadership. By using those tactics, a well-chosen team of weak-to-moderate characters can take out a mismatched assortment of powerhouses.
It’s a good idea to make your deck 20-25% character cards. Recruiting characters is vital, and with any fewer you may have a hard time drawing characters to recruit.
For your first few games, use the battlesites requiring the least amount of points to win – just until you get the hang of the game. Then, if you want to play a longer game [or if you think a longer game would suit your deck or style of play], choose battlesites with higher point totals.
There are a few steps each player must complete before a game of WildStorms.
1. Choose one battlesite from your collection. Put away your prizes and other battlesites – you won’t be using them.
2. Shuffle your remaining cards and ask your opponent to cut your deck. Draw seven cards and set the remaining cards face down to your left. These cards are your resources. If you don’t draw any characters, you may show your hand to your opponent, then toss it back into your resources and repeat this step. You can only throw your cards back twice. You must keep your third hand.
3. Randomly determine which player goes first.
4. The second player places his or her chose battlesite face up in the center of the table.
Order Of Play
Once setup is completed, the battle is ready to begin. Starting with the first player and then alternating back and forth, you follow the order of play below. When you’re done, it’s your opponents turn. Play continues until someone wins the battle.
After you play a card, you must permit each of your opponents to play a card before you play another card. If there is a question as to who can play a card first, start with the player to the left of the person who played the first card, then proceed clockwise around the table. Once a player plays a card in response to the first person, start the process over again.
1. Draw Phase
2. Switch Ranks Phase
3. Attack Phase
4. Recruit and Equip Phase
5. Discard Phase
Each of these phases is described in full below.
If you have less than 8 cards in your hand, draw enough cards from your resources to fill you hand to 7. Otherwise, draw 1 card.
If you run out of cards in your resources, continue playing. You just can’t draw any more cards.
Switch Ranks Phase
You have two ranks in which to place your cards. The rank closest to you is the rear rank. Characters in this rank are only able to make and be affected by ranged attacks [as well as some special kinds of attacks]. Characters are recruited into this rank when brought to the battlesite from your hand or you staging area. K.O.’d characters also go in this rank.
The next rank is front rank. Characters in this rank can make and be affected by any kind of attack.
If you don’t have any characters in your front rank, your rear rank automatically becomes your front rank.
During this phase, you can move as many of your characters as you like from the rear rank into the front rank and vice versa.
At this point, you may use any of your characters in your front and rear ranks to attack any opposing characters. Each character can make a single attack, and you can make these attacks in any order you like, but you must declare them all at once.
Use the following procedure for each attack:
Play combat cards.
These are described in full below.
Declare which of your characters are attacking, and which opposing characters are being attacked. Each character may attack a single opponent.
You cannot attack one of your own characters [unless it’s somehow under another player’s control], but any others are fair game.
At this time, you also declare how each character will attack; close combat or ranged combat [including Psi, Energy Blasts, or Thrown Objects].
Play Combat Cards
If your attack needs help to succeed, play any appropriate combat cards you have. Remember, the defending player can use defense combat cards, too! Once you are both finished playing combat cards, move on to the next step.
WarBlade attacks Zealot in Close Combat. He has a C 6, and her D is 6. Since his D meets or beats her D, the attack will succeed. However, Zealot plays a Leg Block card, adding +1 to her D, making her D 7. WarBlade then plays a One-Two Punch, adding +2 to his C, making his C 8. At this point, Zealot has no more cards to play (or at least none that could raise her D to 9 or more), so the combat is over, and she is injured.
Compare the attacker’s chosen combat value to the defender's Defense. Total up all modifiers from plot twists, equipment, combat cards, and so on.
If the attacker’s modified attack number is equal to or higher than the defender’s modified Defense number, the defender is injured.
When a character’s Defense is over whelmed by an attack, the character is injured. The first injury a character suffers leaves it stunned. A second injury leaves the character K.O.’d. If a character is injured a third time, the character has been killed.
When a character is stunned, turn its card sideways. A character suffers no penalties for being stunned.
When a character is K.O.’d, flip its card face down. It is now inactive. Then move it to your rear rank. If you don’t have a rear rank, create one with this character. If you manage to heal the character, it remains in your rear rank until you move it.
K.O.’d characters can do very little. The only plot twists that can be played on K.O.’d characters are those that can heal them. You cannot play equipment cards on them or move them out of the rear rank. You can move everyone else back so that all characters are in a single rank, but as soon as two ranks are formed, all K.O.’d characters must be in the rear rank.
When a character is killed, move its card [and any cards attached to it] to your killed pile. Do not put it into your discard pile. Certain cards can bring dead characters back from into play. Unless a card states otherwise, counters and "Once per battle..." conditions remain with that character.
Killed characters cannot do anything. They cannot be returned to play by healing cards that don’t refer to killed characters. You cannot play equipment or combat cards on them, and you can only play those plot twists which specifically permit you to do so.
Earning Points In Combat
When you K.O. a character, you earn points equal to that character’s point value, plus the point values of any equipment cards attached to that character. If a character you K.O.’d is healed [becomes un-K.O.’d], you lose points equal to its point value, plus the point value of any equipment still attached to it.
Keep a constant running total of your points. If you meet or beat the number of points required to control the battlesite at any time, you instantly win the battle.
Recruit And Equip Phase
You can put into play up to 10 points worth of characters or equipment cards from your hand per turn. The point values for characters and equipment are surrounded by a “sunburst” pattern; these are the only two types of cards that you spend point to bring into play. Please note that you do not spend points to use Plot Twist or Combat Cards, unless the card’s effects specifically require it.
Unused points do not carry over from one turn to the next.
Recruit and equip points are entirely unrelated to points you earn to win the battle. Do not confuse the two.
If you have a character card in your hand, you may recruit it [put it into play] by paying its points costs. To do so, place it in your rear rank, face up and straight up so that you can read it. The card is now active. If you have no rear rank, make one with your new recruit. If you have no other character on the table, this rank instantly becomes your front rank.
Alternatively, you can recruit characters from your hand directly to your staging area, building up a pool of characters that can be launched at once. This gives you the chance to recruit and strengthen weaker characters instead of throwing them to the wolves against a powerful opponent.
Characters in your staging area aren’t actually at the battlesite, so they cannot attack or be attacked, nor can they use any special abilities to affect the battle. Until they are on the battlefield, they can’t affect the battlesite in any way. They are inactive.
You can never have more than 30 points worth of characters and equipment in your staging area.
You have Grifter [7 points]. Spartan [8 points] and Lonely [2 points] in your hand. You could recruit any one of the characters, or Grifter and Lonely [9 points], or Spartan and Lonely [10 points], as these total area all 10 points or less. You couldn’t recruit Spartan and Grifter [15 points] or all three characters [17 points], though as you wouldn’t have enough points.
If you have an equipment card in your hand, you can equip a character with it [put it into play] by paying its point cost. Place the card under the character receiving the equipment, positioning the card so that the text shows. You can do this to any character in play [at the battlesite, in a staging area or in a holding area].
You may choose to equip an opponent’s character, enabling you to gain additional points if you can K.O. that character. However, the player controlling the character can refuse the equipment. If this happens, return the equipment to your hand.
The equipment stays with the character until you either move it, it is destroyed, or something else happens to remove it. During this phase, you can move equipment between characters who are at the battlesite [but not in the staging area or the holding area] by paying the card’s point cost again. Equipment cannot be given to a K.O.’d character, although it can be taken from one.
This does not affect the point total of the player that K.O.’d the character. You don’t lose points just because your opponents moved equipment from a K.O.’d character to an active character. Instead, think of it as a chance to earn those points all over again!
Remember, characters can only have one of any type of equipment card, and equipment cards can only have one of any type of enhancement.
You have Grifter in your hand, along with a Shotgun [3 points] and VAD PP30s [4 points]. You can recruit Grifter [7 points] and still have enough left over to equip him with the Shotgun. You wouldn’t have enough to give him the VAD PP30s, though. On you next turn, you may discard the Shotgun and give Grifter the VAD PP30s.
Moving From The Staging Area
During this phase, if you do not spend any points to recruit or equip characters, you can move any and all characters from your staging area to the battlesite, making them active. This does not cost any additional points, since you’ve already paid to recruit and equip these characters.
When they move from the staging area to the battlefield, characters automatically begin in the rear rank, just as if they’d been recruited from your hand.
Recruiting From The Holding Area
You can also recruit certain characters from your holding area [in the event that you have any there – this is more common during the campaign game]. These characters often have equipment attached to them. If you want to bring their equipment into play along with them [it cannot come with them them], you have to pay for that, too.
Only characters with Flight, Teleportation or a Vehicle can be recruited from the holding area. If you like, you can leave any or all of a character's equipment behind by not paying for it when you recruit the character. Any equipment left behind goes directly into your discard pile.
If you have more than 7 cards in your hand, you must discard down to 7 cards. If you have 7 cards or less, you may discard up to 3 cards from your hand if you wish.
That’s basically the game. However, there are some extra wrinkles that you’ll need to know about.
Teams train hard and function as a unit, providing support and watching each other’s backs. Characters on the same team can use teamwork to enhance their effectiveness. A characater can willingly forgo an attack to add +1 to a teammate’s attack. This means that weaker characters can make a decisive difference in battles in which they could not make an effective attack of their own.
Teamwork cannot be used to affect a character’s D.
Claymore and Dozer are both part of the WetWorks team, and they’re facing off against Grifter, who is in his player’s rear rank [so he can’t be attacked in close combat]. Claymore has Ranged Combat 3 and no weapons. Dozer has Ranged Combat 5, plus a Machine Pistol [+2 to Ranged Combat]. Grifter [Defense 5] has a Personal Forcefield [+3 to Defense], making his Defense [5+3 =] 8. Ordinarily, neither Dozer nor Claymore could injure Grifter, but if Claymore skips his attack, he can add +1 to Dozer. That would give Dozer a modified Ranged Combat number of [5+2+1 =]8, just enough to injure Grifter [unless his player comes up with some defensive combat cards].
A character’s special abilities are listed in the notes box of the character’s card. Special abilities are divided into three categories: labels, skills, and powers.
Labels tell you something about the character [ex: that it’s a Cyborg] and allow that character to use or to be affected by certain cards.
Skills are extraordinary talents that are ranked by a number [example: Psi 4].
Powers are qualities that do not have a number [example: Flight].
The most common of these are explained here. Other special abilities are described on individual character cards.
The following are used in WildStorms.
Crossbreed. A human/Kherbium hybrid [ex: Maul].
Cyborg. Bionically enhanced or synthetic lifeform. [ex: Attica].
Daemonite. An alien from the planet Daemon. It cannot survive in Earth’s atmosphere and must inhabit a human or humanoid body [ex: Helspont].
Gen-Active. Powers are derived from exposure to the Gen-Factor or from being the offspring of a Gen-Active character [ex: Deathblow].
Kherbium. An alien from the planet Khera [ex: Emp].
Kindred. A mutated animal-create. [ex: Dingo].
Seedling. Powers are derived from exposure to the comet effect [ex: Battalion].
Supernatural. Vampires, Werewolves, etc. [ex: BloodQueen].
Symbiote. Bonded with a metallic symbiote [ex: Dane].
These skills are each independent of a character’s combat values [C, R and D] and each other. They do not affect each other in any way.
Many characters can shoot bursts of energy to injure their foes from a distance. The skill’s point value represents how powerful the bast is and how well the character can use it.
An Energy Blast is considered to be a ranged combat attack. It is subject to the same advantages and limitations and can be affected by combat cards and powers that influence ranged combat.
Control of occult forces and knowledge of the supernatural are both part of the Magick skill. Magick works as an all-or-nothing boost to either C, R, D or a skill number, OR as a way to mimic other special abilities.
To use Magick, the Magickal character must forgo an attack that turn. If the character has already attacked during the turn, it can’t use Magick until your next turn begins. The chosen effect lasts until the character uses Magick again, either to mimic a different special ability or to enhance a combat or skill number.
Magick can be added to any of that character’s combat or skill number during a player’s turn. The Magick number cannot be split up. It must be applied entirely to one combat value or skill number.
For instance, if a character has Close Combat 3, Ranged Combat 2, Defense 4 and Magick 3, it could use its Magick to boost its Close Combat to [3+3 =]6, or Ranged Combat to [2+3 =]5, or Defense to [4+3 =]7.
If a character’s Magick is not being added to a combat or skill number, the character can instead duplicate any special ability listed on any active character card of either player. Labels cannot be mimicked by Magick, nor can any kind of equipment or prize.
Spartan is active at the same time as Savant. With her Magick skill, she mimics his power of Flight. She cannot attack during that turn, but she can use the power immediately. If she uses Magick again for some other purpose, the power instantly fades.
If the Magick-using character mimics a skill, that value is automatically equal to the character's Magick skill.
Special Note: If a power can normally only be used a limited number of times, a character using Magick to mimic that power is subject to the same limitations. Example: Magick cannot be used by any character to mimic Teleportation more than once per battle.
Powers of the mind, including telepathy, telekinesis and pyrokinesis, are noted by a character skill in Psi. Much like Energy Blast, Psi skill allows a character to make a ranged attack without a weapon.
Opponents use their normal Defense [or their Psi, if that value is higher] against their attacker’s Psi skill number, plus any plot twists or combat cards. Armor does not help unless the armor card states that it protects against Psi.
Some characters have latent Psi skills [shown on their cards in parentheses]. Latent Psi cannot be used for attacks until activated, but it can be used to defend against Psi attacks. Latent Psi is activated by certain cards or unique special abilities; use a marker on the character to indicate when this occurs.
Computer wizardry, engineering and mechanical genius are shown by a Tech skill number. Tech permits the character to use certain types of technological equipment or plot twists.
Some extremely strong characters can lift large objects, like boulders or cars, and fling them at opponents. As with Energy Blast, the skill number represents both the power and accuracy of such an attack.
It is considered a ranged attack. It is subject to the same advantages and limitations and can be affected by combat cards and powers that influence ranged combat.
Certain powers are active all the time, while others need to be activated. Powers can be activated and deactivated at any time, unless their description says otherwise.
When a character’s power is active, place a marker on the character’s card to indicate it. Remove the marker when the power is off. As long as the marker is in place, the character is using the power.
When using Flight, a character cannot be attacked in close combat by a character that cannot fly. Also when flying, a character is not in any rank. It’s above the battlefield.
A character can enter the battlesite flying. After that, a character can only begin flying again during your Switch Ranks phase.
If the character attacks a nonflying character in close combat, move it into your front rank – that character cannot fly again until your next Switch Ranks phase.
The character is also able to move from the holding area to the staging area during and Intermission [see Campaign Games rules].
While the character is active, it gives any character from its team [not including itself] a +1 bonus to any attack. Leadership bonuses are not cumulative, though you may use Leadership and teamwork bonuses together.
If you have two [or more] active character from the same team with Leadership, they may give each other a bonuses from Leadership. This means, everyone on the team – including the leaders – then gets +1 to any attack.
A character with Rage adds 3C and subtracts -1D until the beginning of your next turn. While using Rage, the character cannot benefit from or contribute to teamwork or Leadership and must attack in close combat [it cannot make any kind of ranged attack].
A character with Subterfuge can make a close combat attack from any rank against an oppose character in any rank [but not against flying characters]. However, the attacker cannot benefit from teamwork or Leadership.
Also, a Subterfuge attack cannot be made against a character on the same team, even if attacker and defender are on opposing sides.
A character must forgo an attack to use this power, even if it is listed as a power or an ability on a piece of equipment.
The Campaign Game
When you’ve played the standard game a few times and want a new challenge, try a campaign game. In a campaign, you play a series of battles with InterMissions between them. The nature of a campaign game is more strategic than tactical, as you try to maximize your gains and minimize your losses over a set of battles. Each game affects the next, so it’s important to get off to a strong start, but even players who are down by a couple of games can rally to win.
Winning A Campaign Game
To win the campaign game, you need to earn a number of points that you and your opponents agree upon before you start playing. Once one player has totaled that many points during the InterMission at the end of a battle – no matter how many battles it takes – the game ends.
You can play to as many points as you like. We recommend a goal of 100 points to start. The higher the goal ,the longer the campaign.
Building a deck for a campaign game is just like normal, except for two changes in the deck-building rules:
1) The total point value of your deck is limited to the campaign point goal plus 150 points.
2) You must have the equivalent of the campaign point goal in character and equipment cards, and at least half of these [pointwise] must be character cards.
Just as in the standard game, you can only have three of any given card in your deck.
Setting up a campaign game is slightly different from setting up a standard game. Follow the steps below:
1. Choose one battlesite and one prize from your collection. Put away your other battlesites and prizes until the next battle.
2. Shuffle your remaining cards and ask your opponent to cur you deck. Draw seven cards and set the remaining cards face down to your left. If you don’t draw any characters, you may show your hand to your opponent, then toss it back into your resource and repeat this step. You can only throw you cards back twice. You must keep your third hand.
3. Randomly determine which player goes first.
4. The second player places his or her chosen battlesite face up in the center of the table.
5. The first player places his or her prize face up beneath the battlesite card. Both player may see what the prize is so they what they’re fighting for.
Order Of Play
Each battle in a campaign game is played just like a battle in the standard game. After the first battle, though, players are likely to have characters in their holding areas that they can recruit into later battles. To learn why this is so, read on.
When you kill a character in a campaign game, you lose a number of points equal to the character's point value, plus the value of any equipment attached to that character. This should discourage you from killing off characters – otherwise you or your opponent might run out of characters before either of you reaches the point total you have chosen for victory.
The periods between battles in a campaign game are known as InterMissions. During this time, the player total the points they’ve earned and prepare for the next battle.
The InterMission proceeds in this order:
1. Total points.
2. Move characters
3. Prepare for the next battle.
If you won the battle, pick up the battlesite card and the prize and place these into your sideboard. You earn the number of points listed on the battlesite, and the prize is your to use throughout the game.
Both players then total up the points that they’ve earned. If either player has more than the agreed-upon point goal [for instance, 100 points] the game is over and the player with more points wins. If the game’s not over, keep fighting!
Once the battle is over, all K.O.’d characters and any cards attached to them go back to their owner’s discard pile. Dead characters remain out of the game, as do any cards attached to them. Keep them to one side, as they could still be healed by certain cards and returned to the game.
Active characters are moved to their owner’s holding area, along with any cards attached to them. They can be recruited from here during any upcoming battle.
Prepare For The Next Battle
This is similar to setting up for the campaign game, with a few small differences.
1. Choose one battlesite and one prize from your collection. If possible, these must be different from any battlesites or prizes that have been controlled or won in previous battles during this campaign game. Put away your other battlesites and prizes.
2. Shuffle and draw in the same manner as before.
3. The loser of the last battle decides who goes first.
4. The second player places his or her chosen battlesite face up in the center of the table.
5. The first player places his or her prize face up beneath the battlesite card. Both players may see what the prize is.
Although WildStorms was created around a two-player format, adding more player can make the game more challenging and interesting. Of course, they also make the games longer and more involved.
There are two different types of multi-player games: free-for-all games and team games. One new rule applies to both types, though.
In multi-player games, you’ll need to use markers to keep track of which characters have attacked during a full turn around the table. During your draw phase, place a maker on each of you characters. When the character attacks or forgoes an attack to do something else [example: using teamwork], remove the marker.
Characters can only attack during their player’s turn, but they can use teamwork to assist other players’ characters during any attack phase. To have one of you character assists another player’s character using teamwork, remove the attack marker. If the character doesn’t have an attack marker, it cannot use teamwork.
A character can only have one attack marker on it at a time.
The Free-For-All Game
In this kind of game, it’s everyone for themselves. Bargains are struck and broken as quickly as the bodies of killed characters are carted off the battlefield. Making alliances can be a key to victory, but you cannot trust anyone forever. In the end, only one can win.
In free-for-alls, the number of points you need to earn to control a battlesite remains the same. The competition for those points is going to be tough!
Temporary alliances can be very useful. Players may make arrangements to use teamwork to support each other and can even give other the benefits of Leadership. Remember, only characters from the same team can use teamwork to help each other.
The benefits of Leadership can be given and taken away at will. The player controlling a Leader must announce whether or not his characters will leader another player’s characters. He or she may revoke this benefit at any time. This can leave another player hanging if he or she’s counting on that +1 attack bonus!
Players cannot combine their points to control a battlesite – There can be only one winner in a battle.
Using this option, players divide into two equal teams, and each team cooperates to defeat it’s foe. Member of each side must alternate seating around the table so that no two member of the same team are sitting next to each other.
In team games, the number of points needed to control a battlesite increases by 50% [rounded down] for each player over two. For example, if you have three players and you normally need 20 points to control the battlesite, you now need 30.
For a quicker game ignore this rule.
The players on your team are partners, working together towards a common goal. Teamwork and Leadership can be used freely between partners’ characters. Sideboards, holding areas, and staging areas are maintained by each player and are not shared among team partners. Players can only recruit from their own resources.
Players pool all points they’ve won to control the battlesite. When one side has enough points to control the site, that side wins the battle.
After you’ve had a chance to play a number of games of WildStorms, you may decide that you want to try playing with a few variations. Here are some suggestions to get your started.
If you like, you can play without a battlesite. Simply set a point value to play to. The first person to each that goal wins the battle. If for some reason you don’t have a battle handy anyway, use this option.
Increase the number of cards permitted in your hands to eight, nine or ten. This increases the odds of drawing that perfect character, plot twist, or combat card. However, this increases the risk of running out of cards!
Heroes And Villains
In this variant, one player has only heroes in his or her deck, while the other has only villains. In this way, you can create massive battles between good and evil, just like in the comic books.
This variant only works when the players implicitly trust each other to not cheat. Character recruited to your staging area may be kept face down, so that your enemy does not know who is entering play. Remember, you can only keep 30 points worth of character and/or equipment in the staging area at one time.
A character with Magick may only mimic an ability for as many turns as it has points in Magick. Add one marker to the character's at the end of each of your turns that the mimicked ability is in use. This mimicked ability is lost when the number of markers equals the character’s Magick skill number.
Of course, the character with Magick can simply mimic the same power again, as long as there’s still an active character with that power. It just has to forgo another attack to do so.
Tapestry [Magick 6] duplicates another character Flight power. She may remain aloft for six turns or until she uses Magick for someone other reason. By comparison, Soma [Magick 1] could only stay in the air for one turn.
If you want to play even more high-powered games than the current rules for deck building permit, you can change the limitations. Try to allow up to 5 of any particular card in your deck, or raise the points allowed to 250 or higher. It’s all up to you. Just make sure that you and your opponent are playing by the same rules.