Funko Games' Marvel BattleWorld: Series 2 Treachery at Twilight Review - Unquestionably Better Gameplay, but Repeat Characters Weigh it Down

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Funko's Marvel Battleworld franchise is back with a host of new characters to collect and new mechanics to explore in Series 2 Treachery At Twilight. Perhaps most impressive is the sheer scalability of the game present in Series 2, as the new gameplay additions shake things up just enough without overwhelming or pushing things too far in any one direction. The collectibility ramps up with a bevy of new hero mash-ups, though a few characters make a return appearance, bringing the overall impact of the wave down a bit. The core game remains unchanged, but it feels more challenging and most importantly more fun with every new element, and it's hard to call that anything but a win across the board.

Those who are interested in seeing how the core game plays can head to our Series 1 review, and the good news is that nothing in that core set of mechanics has changed. That said, there is a way to upgrade your base experience, as Funko has released a Premium Pieces Pack that upgrades the cardboard Danger Tokens into plastic pieces as well as your old Danger Coin into a holo-foil version. Even the Thanostones get a plastic upgrade and become reusable, and to top it all off the $8 set comes with my favorite version of Groot (Spider-Island Groot) in the game thus far. This is not at all required mind you, but for someone who plays the game quite a bit it, I wouldn't go back to the cardboard now that I have them, as they give the game's look on the table just a touch more pizazz.

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(Photo: ComicBook)

What should absolutely be added to the mix however is the Talon Fighter, which retails for $15 and comes with the stylish Talon Fighter vehicle (complete with translucent base) and a similarly slick 2099 Black Panther figure. Both of these immediately give your presentation some pop, but it's the mechanic they bring with them that stands out most. In series 1 fans could add Thanos' ship to the game, which increased the challenge and gave heroes another major obstacle in their path. This vehicle balances the scales a bit, but it retains enough of a random factor to not completely tip back the scales.

The Talon Fighter allows you to forgo your attack that turn and hop in the vehicle instead, no matter where you are on the board. If you hop in you'll find two dials to spin that contain symbols, which correspond to symbols on the various Battles on the board. Once you spin you pick one of the Battles with a matching icon to move to, and then you release a token from the back that dictates whether you hit or not. The benefit to this is that you aren't rolling a number, so you have a 50% chance to hit, which is invaluable on some of the higher Battle numbers. You can whiff though and add a counter to the Danger track, so you do have to weigh your options before jumping in. With some of the higher Battle numbers in this set, this is an invaluable addition, and provides one more piece of strategy to consider on a player's turn.

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(Photo: ComicBook)

The same goes for the Collector's Tower, which immediately makes an impression with its eye-catching design and adorable Collector perched on top. This $15 addition has you turning dials and moving platforms as you attempt to knock a special Twilight Die from its spot at the bottom, but gameplay doesn't stop if you don't succeed. Most times your die will exit out of the side, and you'll just play that attack as normal. If your die exits the front though, it will allow you to command the Twilight Sword base (which you attach to your character for the rest of the game) and utilize the Twilight Die, which packs enhanced attacks.

Again, the presence of a Dice Tower is helpful just on its own, since you will be rolling dice each and every turn for the most part, and the Twilight Die provides another welcome power upgrade to help with some of the more difficult battles. That includes the Twilight Dragon battle that is revealed once the Sword is claimed, so you get a bit of everything when you end up adding this particular expansion to the game. Not required by any means, but worth seeking out if you want to get the most out of the experience.

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(Photo: ComicBook)

That brings us to the new wave of heroes to collect, and while there are some amazing additions to the lineup, this wave just didn't quite meet the first wave's high bar. You'll absolutely love standouts like Capwolf, Lady Octopus, Ghost-Spider-Wanda Maximoff, Hulk 2099, Hobgoblin, and Ghost Rider 2099, and the Twilight variants look fantastic. Unfortunately, there are a lot of retreads in this wave, and I mean that not in terms of reusing a sculpt, but more in terms of character choice. This wave features several characters from Series 1, including Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Spider-Ham, Throg, and Groot, and four of those are also included in the Twilight variants.

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(Photo: ComicBook)

Now, the sculpts are more detailed and feature more cinematic poses this time around, so they have been upgraded and improved, but this wave alone includes three Groots already, and one of them seems rather close to the last version. Same with Spider-Ham and Spider-Man 2099, who comes in two different costume colors but is essentially the same figure, and honestly you could say that about Agent Venom too. To give credit where it's due though, the new Throg is lightyears better, as is the new Captain Marvel, so in those cases I think it was worth it.

Marvel BattleWorld: Series 2 Treachery At Twilight delivers new gameplay additions that make the game unquestionably better and more exciting, but that is weighed down by a wave of characters that feels dull due to the number of repeat characters and sculpts included. There's a lot to love here though, so if you're already invested in Marvel's Battleworld franchise, you will not be disappointed with what Series 2 brings to the experience.

Rating: 3 out of 5

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Marvel BattleWorld: Series 2 Treachery At Twilight products are available in stores now.

Have you enjoyed the new additions to the game? Let us know in the comments or as always you can talk all things tabletop and Marvel with me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB!