The Infinity Gems are coming to Marvel: Crisis Protocol. The tabletop miniatures game, released earlier this year by Atomic Mass Games, will be adding some of the most iconic items in all the Marvel Universe later this year. Several upcoming Character Packs will feature Infinity Gem cards, a brand new item that certain characters can wield to gain special abilities. ComicBook.com spoke with Will Shick, the head of Atomic Mass Games, to learn more about the Infinity Gems, how they'll change Marvel: Crisis Protocol, and whether the Gems mean that a certain Mad Titan will be wielding the Infinity Gauntlet in the game.
ComicBook.com: Some fans have noticed that several upcoming Character Packs have Infinity Gem cards included in them. What exactly do the Infinity Gems do in Marvel: Crisis Protocol?
Will Shick: Infinity Gems are special cards that players can take when building their Team Rosters. When building their squads for a mission, players include a Gem by paying its Threat cost and attaching it to a character in the squad. Each Infinity Gem grants their bearer additional Power (the resource characters use to activate certain attacks and superpowers in the game). More importantly, each Gem gives the character who wields it access to the Gem’s ability, which in the game is treated as a new superpower the character can use.
Can any character use the Infinity Gems, or are they limited to only certain characters?
Only certain characters are capable of wielding the power of the Infinity Gems. Certain characters like Loki or Corvus Glaive have the Superpower keyword Gem Bearer (X Gem). This superpower allows the character to use the specified Gem(s) listed in parenthesis. Each character can only take a single Gem to battle with them.
By limiting the Infinity Gems to certain characters we were not only able to use the Gem Bearer superpower as another way to help define that version of the character on the tabletop, it also allowed us more control in balancing the Infinity Gems and the characters who could use them to ensure that using them was a fun and interesting option, rather than a must have for every squad.
From a game and character design standpoint, I really love how this opens up so many future possibilities. After all, Thanos isn’t the only one who’s wielded the Infinity Gauntlet. Adam Warlock, Steve Rogers, and even Gamora in recent events have all commanded the power of all six Infinity Stones. Not to mention that so many other characters have found themselves in possession of the power of a single Gem.
How did you decide which Infinity Gems to include in the Character Packs?
The decision on which Infinity Gems were included in which Character Packs was based on a combination of looking at current Marvel storylines like the recent Infinity Wars arc and really thinking about which Gems added the most to each Gem Bearer’s overall role in the game.
Overall I feel like we struck a really good balance between drawing from the source material and also using the freedom of the Marvel Universe to create some really fun and thematic options for people when building their squads.
How do the Infinity Gems tie into the upcoming Thanos miniature that you teased a month ago? After all, he had two variants of the Infinity Gauntlet in his possession - one with the Infinity Gems and one without the Infinity Gems.
When we set out to create Thanos for Crisis Protocol, we knew that we wanted the Mad Titan to be playable in both standard games and to be one of our multi-player Ultimate Encounter raid bosses.
I can’t spoil too much yet, but in normal games Thanos does have access to the Infinity Gems and his ability to control them and harness their power is simply beyond anyone else’s.
But where his mastery over the Infinity Gems really shines is in his Ultimate Encounter form. For a quick overview, Ultimate Encounters are a special 2 vs 1 multiplayer game mode for Marvel: Crisis Protocol. In an Ultimate Encounter, 2 players take on the role of the Crisis Team and each player controls a squad of characters chosen from their collection. Together these two players and their squads must work together to try and take down the third player who controls the Cosmic Threat. In Ultimate Encounters: Thanos, the Cosmic Threat player controls Thanos wielding all six Infinity Gems whose own powers are amplified to incredible heights thanks to being combined within the Infinity Gauntlet.
In order for players to have options when building and painting their very own Thanos, we included two different head and arm options so they could decide exactly how they preferred their Thanos to look on the tabletop.
While some of the Marvel: Crisis Protocol miniatures use costumes clearly inspired by the Marvel movies, I couldn't help but notice that the Infinity Gems seem to skew towards the comics versions, as they're referred to as Gems instead of stones and you didn't include a Gem with the Vision character pack (as he has nothing to do with the Gems in the comics, but obviously has a significant tie in the movies.) Does that mean we'll see the gems' powers more in line with how they're used in the comics?
Our inspiration is definitely grounded in the comics rather than the MCU, but as all great things which share a universe often do, the two do overlap and influence each other. For us though it always comes back to looking at the comics for design.
Does the Infinity Gems mean the inclusion of an Infinity Watch? Are we going to get a Pip the Troll miniature?
While I can’t comment on future releases, certainly the Infinity Watch has been a powerful force that has appeared over and over again in different forms throughout the history of Marvel. So, I certainly wouldn’t bet against seeing this affiliation appear in some form in Crisis Protocol.
When can we expect the other Infinity Gems to appear in Marvel Crisis Protocol?
All six of the Infinity Gems will be releasing leading up to the arrival of Thanos. So be sure to keep an eye on Atomic Mass Games’ social media feeds and our website for more info!0comments
The Marvel: Crisis Protocol Core Set and several character packs are available now.