In HeroClix, most gamers typically gravitate towards high-damage, high-attack pieces, especially the ones that can move and attack in the same turn. Pieces with 11 or 12 attack, 3 or 4 damage, and either Charge, Running Shot, or Hypersonic Speed are the “Most Wanted Clix.”
I am not one of these gamers–in fact, the pieces I choose for my collection could be labeled “second-stringers” at best. If I have a 10 attack showing among my teams, it’s an unusual team for me. Most of my teams are made up of support pieces and a few solid but not overpowered pieces. It’s only when people begin to play against me that they realize those smaller pieces are actually serving another purpose besides attack: they are all Mystics. And they are FAR stronger than my opponents recognize, until it’s too late.
What Is The Mystics Team Ability?
The Mystics team ability (not to be confused with the “Mystical” keyword!) is indicated by any of the following team symbols on a HeroClix figure’s base:
Any of these three symbols, printed on the back of a character’s dial, mean that if an opponent attacks and successfully damages this figure, the attacking figure takes 1 unavoidable damage. It’s a “You hurt me, I hurt you” strategy–very reactive in playstyle, since it depends on the other person making a successful attack.
Mystics In Practice
This might seem counterproductive at first. Why would someone want their own figures to be damaged? Doesn’t that mean you’ll be beaten faster?
Not necessarily! 😀
Run Lots of Support with Mystics
Here’s the primary beauty of the strategy: more often, the people I play against are not running pieces that have Support (the ability to heal a friendly character). I, however, am running one or two pieces with Support (also known as “Medics”). If one of my Mystics pieces takes a wee bit too much damage and is in danger of being KOed, I simply get him or her back to a Medic while some of my other Mystics pieces take over. In a few turns, my hurt Mystic is back on top click, and the opponent’s pieces have likely taken more damage in the meantime, either from a Mystic hit or from actually being attacked.
Run Wildcards with Mystics, Too!
One way I love to run Mystics pieces is to run them with a bunch of Wildcards–a list of Wildcard team symbols follow:
The reason? Wildcards can copy the Mystics team ability. Suddenly, Young Superman is a Mystic–you deal him damage, you take a damage! Spider-Girl is a Mystic, too–you deal her damage, you take a damage! And so on.
So, if my whole team is full of Mystics such as these, and you don’t have a Support piece, you are in trouble. True, your pieces might deal more damage to mine at first, but I likely have more Wildcard Mystics ready to fill in for the one who’s running back to the Medic. Not only that, but the Wildcard pieces help round out the team with some higher damage and attack, as well as some strong abilities of their own, like Charge, Incapacitate, or my favorite, Super Senses. (I roll a 5 or 6–your attack misses my character. I roll a 1 through 4–my character takes damage, which means yours takes a damage, too. It’s a win-win!)
Important Pieces of Strategy
This team ability works best if you have a lot of small point-value characters rather than a few large point-value characters. Having a Mystic over a hundred points is great, but you’re not going to have a lot of room for support, other Mystics, or Wildcards. My favorite strategy is to actually choose two of the cheaper Mystics (Zatanna Zatara, Jason Blood, Nightshade, etc.) and build my team full of Wildcards and Support from there. That way, I have the Mystics team covered, but I also have room for attacking pieces that will likely take some damage along the way.
Try the Mystics team ability sometime if you’re looking for a different way to win. Sometimes, an opponent’s successful attack can work against them!