The Marvel edition of Funkoverse has given me a bit of a Mandela Effect, but after digging through my (vast) collection of figures and game boards, I can confirm that Iron Man, Black Panther, and the inevitable Thanos are brand new to the collectible board game. Maybe it’s because they feel like the perfect characters for this battle arena-style game that I just assumed they were always there, but after playing through each of the scenarios included with the new Avengers Core Set and Thanos Expansion, I’m convinced that they’re some of the best characters to ever join the Funkoverse roster.
Before I get into the characters themselves, I have to commend Funko on the board redesign. The Marvel set still features the same double-sided board as the other sets, but instead of one full-sized map and one that only covers about a third of the board, the designers have reshaped the small side so that significantly more board space is used. It’s a square battlefield with slim margins on the sides that have been repurposed as built-in cool down tracks, and it's probably my favorite board ever. It doesn’t hurt that it's a Wakandan Lab filled with tiny details like different Black Panther costumes either.
The scenarios are surprisingly basic. All four are themed like training exercises, but none of them feel especially Avengers-y. The Thanos expansion more than makes up for that though, but we’ll circle back to Thanos later.
The core set includes Iron Man, Captain America, Black Widow, and Black Panther. While one might have expected Thor and Hulk rather than Widow and Panther, it's still a great lineup. All four characters have abilities that feel perfectly inline with their characters. Cap has ranged shield-throw abilities and abilities that inspire his teammates, while Iron Man has his ultra-powerful Unibeam and an Override Protocol, which gives him extra moves at the cost of potentially taking damage – which feels very on brand for Stark. Black Widow is appropriately tricky and agile, able to move around quickly and even swap spots with allies, while Black Panther probably has the coolest moveset in the game. His vibranium suit allows him to build up energy and unleash it in devastating AOE attacks. Combined with his ranged pounce, Black Panther can jump into the middle of a skirmish and unleash hell on his enemies. I’ve had a lot of fun mixing the Avengers with other sets to put them up against the likes of the Golden Girls, dinos from Jurassic Park, and of course, the Bat-Family.
While I’m slightly unimpressed by the core boxes game modes, I’m absolutely in love with the Infinity War scenario included with the Thanos expansion. Infinity War is a game mode called Ultimate Scenario where teams compete to collect all of the Infinity Stones. The big twist is that instead of a traditional 3v3, one player gets to play Thanos in his Ultimate Form versus a team of three. It's the first asymmetrical game mode for Funkoverse, but it works surprisingly well. I would love to see more Ultimate Scenarios in the future, but for now Infinity War has become my group’s default game mode. It has such a strong theme that is immediately recognizable to everyone, and it makes for really exciting battles.
Thanos has a regular ability card and an ultimate ability card, which means he’s the only Ultimate Form character so far. Funkoverse is at its best when it's inspiring creative combinations and the Marvel set does that for my group wonderfully. As soon as we finish one game, someone has an interesting idea for a way to combine heroes and items for a rematch. I don’t get excited about Funkoverse every time there’s a new set, but the Marvel set has done a great job of reminding me what I love so much about this game.
Funkoverse Marvel 100 and Marvel 101 were provided to TheGamer for this review. You can learn more about Funkoverse on Funko Games’ website.