Marvel Legendary X-Men Expansion (397 Piece)
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- New card Type: epic masterminds! if you thought their regular version was hard, turn the card over!
- New card Type: heroic bystanders! when rescued they join the fight!
- New card Type: horror cards! escalates the difficulty even further!
- All cards contain original art!
- This is not a stand alone product, core set is required for gameplay
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The Marvel legendary X-Men expansion consists of almost 400 all new playable cards. All new cards consist of 15 new heroes, 6 new villain groups, 6 new Masterminds, and 4 new henchman groups! fight against powerful Masterminds including onslaught, shadow King and the dark Phoenix! new schemes! new bystanders! great heroes include Psylocke, Banshee, cannonball, dazzler, Legion and beast with X-Men team affiliation!.
Legal DisclaimerLegendary: X-Men 1-5 players, ages 14+, 30-60 minutes By Upper Deck
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|Item Dimensions||3.5 x 8 x 11.5 in||3.2 x 8 x 11.2 in||3.1 x 11.6 x 7.75 in||5 x 9.02 x 2.01 in||3.25 x 1.5 x 6.25 in||1.5 x 4 x 6.5 in|
|Item Weight||2 lbs||2.1 lbs||2 lbs||—||—||7.48 ounces|
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Two schemes in this set require cards from older sets, with one requiring the Sentinels henchmen group from Heroes base set and the other the Jean Grey hero set from Dark City. You can substitute both, the Sentinels with any other henchmen group (says as much on the scheme itself), and Jean Grey can be substituted with Time-Traveling Jean Grey from Secret Wars 2 or even Phoenix from this set as she is still the same character, just under a different name. You'll lose some theme when doing this but the gameplay aspect should be close to the original intent.
A whopping 6 new keywords and 4 new card types for this massive set, so take your bathroom break now before diving in.
X-Gene - This keyword on Hero cards is always followed by another icon. If you have that icon in your discard pile when you played it, you get its effects. For example, a card with X-Gene (STR): Draw a card means if you have a STR (Green Hulk Fist) Icon in your discard when you played this card, you draw a card. You can buy cards with gold before playing X-Gene cards to force a trigger sometimes, and this keyword also works well with Berserk. Segue to....
Berserk - Found on Hero cards, cards with the Berserk keyword require you to overturn (or "mill") the top card of your deck. If that card has attack, you gain the overturned card's printed attack value (if you overturned a card with 3 attack value, you get +3 attack). Some cards have multiple Berserk effects that require you to overturn multiple cards, potentially gaining a good deal of extra attack that turn. Cards with both gold and attack work as long as the attack on the overturned card has a value greater than 0, but overturning gold and/or the new "attack" stat in Piercing Energy does nothing. Yet another segue to...
Piercing Energy - A new type of attack stat, cards with Piercing Energy are made obvious by having a different icon (energy explosion) than the original attack icon (Wolverine slashing claws). Piercing Energy is an attack stat that attacks the target's point value, and not its actual attack. It shoots straight through (ignores) any modifiers (such as +Attack from a scheme) and extra fight requirements (such as SHIELD Clearance or Elusive), but does not work on targets that have no point values (such as Villains you gain as Heroes when you beat them, like Thor Corps, or Heroes that act like Villains in the city). Very powerful in some cases where the active Scheme is making enemies super tough, or against mechanics like Human Shield, which once again we segue into...
Human Shield - A keyword on Villains, this mechanic represents them taking hostages and hiding behind them. Human Shields are bystanders taken by the Villain, and remain face-down until rescued by the players. To rescue them you must spend Attack equal to the Villain's attack, but instead of beating them as normal, you get a random face-down bystander on the Villain. Villains cannot be defeated until all their Human Shields are first taken care of. This is a mechanic we've seen before in Legendary, but now we have an official keyword for it, and the mechanics work a bit differently than before. Human Shields are still bystanders, which means Villains escaping with them causes all players to discard, along with any other effects for escaping. As mentioned, Piercing Energy gets around this mechanic, and defeating Villains with Piercing Energy automatically rescues all of their Human Shields.
Soaring Flight - A keyword found on Heroes, when cards with this keyword are recruited from the HQ, you set them aside instead of placing them in your discard pile, and gain these cards as extra cards at the end of your turn. This is a slightly different take on Wall-Crawl, which has a similar effect on cards you recruit with that keyword.
Lightshow - A keyword found on Heroes, when you play 2 or more cards with the Lightshow keyword, you choose one of your Lightshow abilities to take effect. Regardless of how many Lightshow cards you play, you may only choose one Lightshow effect to go off, but you must play at least 2 or the Lightshow keyword does nothing. Mostly if you decide to recruit Heroes with this ability, you are committing yourself down a path or you risk making your Lightshow cards less effective.
Dominate - A keyword on Villains, usually as an Ambush effect, this represents that Villain using mind control or similar powers to turn Heroes against you. This keyword takes hero cards from different locations (out of player's hands, the Hero deck, etc), stacks them on the Villain, and gains +1 Attack for each of their dominated Heroes. When defeated, the player that defeated the Villain chooses where those Hero cards go, but only up to 1 Hero per player...any extra are KOed. If they escape, they take any Dominated Heroes with them to the Escape pile.
Traps - A new type of Villain card, these cards represent challenges the Heroes must overcome in a timely manner. When these cards appear, the current player has until the end of their turn to fulfill the Trap's requirements, or they must suffer the consequences. Consequences vary in severity but mostly set you and possibly your teammates back. Traps are not Villains and never enter the city. Beating the trap helps avoid the consequences, but also scores you the points on the trap itself.
Epic Masterminds - If you ever thought Legendary was too easy, this is for you. All Masterminds in this set are double-sided; they have their normal side and an Epic, hard-mode side supplemented with tougher mechanics, higher attack, and more brutal Master Strikes, plus some twists you may not see coming. Which side you use is up to you at the start of the game, but keep in mind some Masterminds in this set are already very tough...their Epic version might be soul-crushingly hard, which is not for every kind of gamer. Be prepared before you take the plunge.
Horror cards - Mostly used for Epic Masterminds, this new card type adds difficulty to your game in various ways. Some are Ambush effects that happen instantly and go away, but many of these effects stack and last the entire game, so while some effects may not be as powerful as others, as the game progresses and more Horror cards come out, it can overwhelm your group pretty quickly.
Heroic Bystanders - Themed after the New Mutants X-Men spin-off group, these all start the game in the Bystander stack. When rescued, they are added to your deck to join the fight, representing the first time Bystanders have done anything other than just go into your Victory Pile. The first printing promo for Legendary X-Men is a bonus Heroic Bystander: Magik.
Re-uses the Divided card type (Split cards) from Civil War. Legendary X-Men is also the first set to provide Token cards, which come out for specific effects from cards in this set. Token cards have their own icon to signify its status as a token, but are otherwise still fairly easy to mix up with all the other cards.
Adds 15 new playable heroes to the game and no new teams, and all of them are X-Men team - Psylocke, Beast, Kitty Pryde, Havok, Polaris, Jubilee, Dazzler, Colossus & Wolverine, Banshee, Legion, Aurora & Northstar, X-23, Phoenix (Jean Grey), Cannonball, and Longshot. Would have been nice to get the seemingly forgotten X-Force team some backup, but its probably done to keep things more simple. Most of these Heroes are fairly strong, with Havok and Banshee standing out in my limited games so far.
6 New Masterminds - Dark Phoenix, Onslaught, Shadow King, Deathbird, Mojo & Arcade, ranging from very tough to fairly annoying. Dark Phoenix may have the new crown of the toughest Mastermind in the game. Remember that all of these Masterminds are double-sided and have an Epic hard mode side.
7 New Villain groups - Hellfire Club, Shi'ar Imperial Guard, Dark Descendants, Shadow-X, Sisterhood of Mutants, Mojoverse, & Murderworld.
5 New Henchmen groups - Shi'ar Patrol Craft, Shi'ar Death Commandos, Hellfire Cult, Sapien League, & The Brood, along with 8 new Schemes wrap up the set.
- Off the bat, this expansion is a love letter to X-Men fans. It adds practically any X-Men worth their salt into the game that wasn't already there, as well as a who's who lineup of Masterminds and Villain groups from X-Men stories throughout the years. After this set, practically every X-Man who isn't a C-Lister or worse is in Marvel Legendary, and one can only hope they'll do an Avengers set to fill out all the holes on that roster like they did with this one.
- From the sheer magnitude and dread in facing a villain as powerful as Dark Phoenix, to surviving a Shi'ar invasion force with Deathbird, this expansion has the most exciting encounters we've seen in a long time. They even managed to get Arcade, seemingly straight out of his 1992 SNES Arcade's Revenge video game where many remember him from, pinball death traps and all. Just mechanically and creatively you can tell there is a huge difference from the quality of these new Masterminds vs. the ones we got from Civil War.
- Traps are a welcome new sight in the villain decks, both thematically and gameplay-wise, all while being easy to understand.
- Love Epic Masterminds as a whole as it adds a new level of challenge to this game that they seemed to mostly whiff on with the entire "Play As Mastermind" theme from Secret Wars. After years of playing Cryptozoic Deck-Builders and their "Impossible Mode" baddies not really being impossible, I suspect Upper Deck's take on it, with the supplement from the Horror cards will actually live up to that billing.
- More keywords...just, wow, at this point they've proven this to be a trend they won't buck. Civil War gave us 4, but this set ups the ante to 6 new ones and even more new card types on top of that to boot. Once again I can only see this as a negative, both in having to remember so many of them and in teaching new players, when the game already had lots before this set. They really need to just start re-using their older keywords, not only so they'd have more impact, but to make this game a bit easier on newer players.
- On the subject of keywords, some of them are more lackluster than others. Soaring Flight is just a re-hash of Wall-Crawl for the most part, X-Gene is just bland and uninteresting, and Human Shield/Dominate are mechanics that have existed in the game for awhile, but now just have a shiny new keyword and slightly altered mechanics (the Madelyne Pryor Mastermind from Secret Wars for example, basically has Human Shield as a trait without the added attack requirement of Human Shield, while Thanos stole Heroes from player's decks, but didn't get the attack bonus/rescue effect from Dominate). I would have been just as happy if the only keywords in the set were Piercing Energy, Lightshow, and Berserk.
- While they hit home runs with many things in this expansion, they struck out on Schemes yet again. Clearly they're running low on ideas, when one scheme is basically Galactus's Master Strike, another is How-To-Play Legendary Encounters, and we are given yet another scheme that uses Jean Grey heroes in the Villain deck. I did like the Sentinels Scheme, and it could be argued Master Mold should have been a Mastermind in this set, but most of the Schemes here are more plain and generic than ever.
- If you're already struggling with storage space for this game, almost 400 more cards isn't going to help with that. Upper Deck has said they have a solution in the pipeline, but never said when that's coming out...meanwhile we are stuck trying to find new ways to carry this game around as elegantly as we can, with each new expansion throwing a wrench into those plans.
Overall this set is amazing and in my opinion probably their best expansion since Dark City, ironically yet another X-Men heavy expansion. Especially if you are a X-Men fan looking to fill out your Legendary roster with X-Men, or just want to duke it out with Dark Phoenix, this expansion is about as must-buy as it gets. After dropping the ball with Civil War for us, and mostly leaving us uninterested with Deadpool and Noir, this has our group excited again to put this game back at the front of the queue on game nights.
The only wrinkle is the variability in difficulty with the new mechanics. Many schemes are now either too easy or too hard, depending on which Masterminds and Horrors you add. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but it's harder than it used to be to find a scheme that is challenging without being overwhelming.