What’s in a Global? Tips and Strategies for Using Global Abilities

Posted: May 4, 2016 in Rules, Strategy
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!


I have an article that might help players understand Globals and how to use them more effectively. Let’s start from the beginning, so that we can include players of all skill levels.

What is a Global Ability?

A game effect denoted within the text box of a character by the keyword “Global:“, the effect happens if the prerequisite energy cost is paid for. A Global game effect is available for both players to use even if they do not have the die available for them to purchase.

That definition can be found in the World’s Finest Rulebook (newest rulebook at time of writing).

Keyword “Global:”

Many characters and actions have keywords in their textbox. You can find a Lexicon of keywords on The Reserve Pool. Keywords are bold text words that have a particular meaning.

Batman, Terror of Crime Alley

This card has two abilities: Vengeance and a Global.

Global Cost

Global Abilities will have a cost associated with them. If you look at the Batman, Terror of Crime Alley card above, you can see it says “Global: Pay .” This means you must pay a Fist or Wild Energy to be able to use Batman’s Global Ability.

Not all Global Abilities cost a Fist Energy or even a specific energy type to use. Some have a cost of Generic Energy. Generic Energy is usually shown as a number inside a dark circle. If you look at Wasp, Founding Avenger, you’ll see it says “Global: Once per turn, pay 2.” This means you can use two of any energy you have. If you have an basic action die showing an energy face, you can choose to use it instead of paying with energy types.

Some Global Abilities have an energy cost and additional cost. Blue-Eyes White Dragon, Monstrous Dragon is one of that requires you pay an additional cost for its Global Ability. It says “Global: Pay and knock out one of your monsters…“, which means that you must pay the Bolt Energy and KO one of your characters in order to use the Global Ability.

Each Global Ability has its own cost that you must pay in order to use the ability.

Using a Global

Global Abilities can typically be used by either player on any turn, with a few exceptions. There are particular times during a turn that players can use Globals.

Turn Order, found on the back of rulebooks:

Clear and Draw Step
  • Move all energy dice from your Reserve Pool to your Used Pile.
  • Draw 4 dice from your bag; refill it from the Used Pile if necessary.
Roll and Reroll Step
  • Roll the 4 dice you drew plus any in your Prep Area.
  • Reroll (all at once) any of those dice that you wish.
Main Step
  • Field characters by paying energy equal to their fielding cost.
  • Use action dice. Place them Out of Play when finished.
  • Purchase dice by paying energy equal to the cost. Place them Out of Play.
  • Both players can use Global Abilities.
  • At the end of this step, place unfielded characters Out of Play.
Attack Step
  • Select attackers. Resolve effects that occur due to attacking.
  • Assign blockers. Resolve effects that occur due to blocking.
  • Use action dice. Place them Out of Play when finished.
  • Both players can use Global Abilities.
  • Assign and resolve damage. Resolve effects that occur due to damage or knock out.
Clean Up
  • Move unblocked attackers Out of Play.
  • End all effects and clear all damage.
  • End turn. Move dice from Out of Play to the Used Pile

During both the Main Step and the Attack Step, the turn player (active player), has priority when using Global Abilities. This means that they get to use any of the Globals they choose, before their opponent. When the active player is done, they pass priority to their opponent so that their opponent has a chance to use Global Abilities as well.

Types of Globals

Unlimited Global Abilities are ones that you can use as many times as you have the resources to pay for them and they can be used on either player’s turn. You can use the Global on Invulnerability, Basic Action Card as much as you want and on any turn you want, so long as you have the Bolt Energy to pay for it.


Limited Global Abilities will typically instruct you on how to use them. They can only be used once per turn or only on your turn. Parallax, Source of Terror and Wasp, Founding Avenger have this type of Global.


A Reactive Global Ability can be played outside of your normal Global windows, but they are not usually unlimited in uses. This means that they must have a trigger for you to use the Global and you can only use it once per trigger. Human Paladin, Lesser Emerald Enclave has a reactive Global.

Strategy and Tips
“Once Per Turn”

Some Global Abilities will say “Once per turn”, like Resurrection, Basic Action Card or Red Dragon, Lesser Dragon. Once per turn simply means that you can only use each copy of the Global once each turn. If both players have Resurrection as one of their Basic Action Cards, a player can use both Globals. When you have a powerful or useful Global Ability that’s a Once per Turn Global, being able to use both copies is very beneficial.


This is not the fire related kind of burn. The term ‘burn’ in a TCG or Dice Masters refers to damage that can be done directly to your opponent or a character. Magic Missile, Basic Action Card is a card that has a burn type Global Ability. You can only target a character with the Global on Magic Missile but you can do it as much as you have the energy for. You can also use this Global on your opponent’s turn. Your opponent has access to this Global Ability, so if you bring Magic Missile as one of your Basic Action Cards, be sure you keep that in mind.

Some characters can do damage directly to your opponent, like Wasp, Founding Avenger. These Global Abilities are extremely powerful and are probably only going to be a Once per Turn activation. If you and your opponent both have Wasp, you can use each copy of the Global Ability, as stated above.


Taunt is a term used to describe an ability to force a character to attack, even if the opponent doesn’t want to attack with that character. Characters like Phoenix, Redd and Bane, Professional Criminal have Global Abilities that allow them to taunt a character into attacking. This is another Global Ability that your opponent could use against you. If you’re using characters that need to stay in the Field Zone for their abilities to work, your opponent could taunt them into attacking and either KO them with a blocker or just let them through so that your dice go to the Used Pile.


I just covered this card in my CCW article yesterday, but I want to talk about this particular Global ability because of how popular Parallax is becoming. Using his Global to reroll characters or other dice is really useful, but you have to know your limits. I’ve made the mistake of rerolling a Hulk die with only two energy in my Reserve Pool, and Hulk landed on his level three side that cost three energy to field. Using this Global Ability requires quick, calculated thinking so you don’t mess yourself up. Parallax specifically states that you can only use his Global before your Attack Step. Your opponent cannot use his Global Ability on your turn, because he specifically says, ‘your Attack Step’.


I’ve covered this card in a CCW article in the past. This is a Global that I feel is almost essential for your survival against Bard Blitz. If you aren’t using Ring, Lesser Gear or Ring, Epic Gear on your competitive team, I feel like you should seriously consider it. Using this Global can get you a Sidekick to help you block against the Blitz or a Wild Energy to use for whatever Globals you may have to counter the Blitz. Some teams may not have room for Ring, but it’s worth looking into if Blitz is a big enough threat in your local meta. It’s too early to tell if Blitz will still be a threat post Civil War and TMNT.

Relentless and Swords of Revealing Light

Our first banned cards in Dice Masters. I’m not sad at all to see these cards banned. I’ve never been a fan of Relentless, Basic Action Card or Swords of Revealing Light, Basic Action Card (ask my husband – I basically banned him for using them at our FLGS before the ban). But the reason I want to mention these particular cards is because of the timing of their Global Abilities. Global: Pay . Target character cannot block.” This type of Global must be used before the Attack Step. That’s because, the next opportunity to use Global Abilities is during the Attack Step, but after blockers are assigned. This is something to keep in mind as new sets and new Global Abilities (or similar ones) are released.

Professor X Shuffle

Professor X, Recruiting Young Mutants has a very useful Global Ability and I’m not sure how it started at our FLGS, but we call it the Prof X Shuffle. This type of Global can be used on either player’s turn and as much as you have the energy to do. This is another Global that you need to be a little careful with. If you shuffle too many Sidekick dice from your Used Pile to your Prep Area, you could take damage. If you can’t draw four dice, you take one damage and gain one generic energy for each die you can’t draw. So if I draw two dice and don’t have anymore dice in my bag and I can’t refill it from the Used Pile, I will take two damage and gain two generic energy. Some folks get so focused on what they have in front of them that they forget to check their bag. I’ve lost games because of the shuffle, but I’ve also won games because of it too. I had decided to take two damage and get my two generic energy to help purchase a Hulk, Green Goliath against a Blitz team. It worked to my advantage since I knew I had a Polymorph Action Die in my draw. This put me ahead of the Blitz and helped me win. Moral of the story – know when to shuffle and know when to hold.

Distraction and Blink – Transmutation

Global Abilities on cards like Blink – Transmutation, Basic Action Card and Distraction, Basic Action Card are intended to removed attacking characters from the Attack Zone and place them back in the Field Zone. You can use this Global to your own benefit with a character like Black Widow, Tsarina or a team that uses Lantern Ring, Limited Only By Imagination. You can also Distract your own characters back into the Field Zone so that you have blockers during your opponent’s turn. You can also use these Globals to push your opponent’s characters back so that you don’t take damage or have to block.

Blue-Eyes White Dragon

Blue-Eyes White Dragon, Monstrous Dragon’s Global Ability has an additional cost to the energy. You must pay the Bolt Energy and KO one of your characters in order to reduce the cost of the next die you purchase by two energy. His Global does not say that you must do it on your turn, which means you can pay a Bolt Energy and KO one of your characters on your opponent’s turn. You do not get to purchase a die, but this would get you more dice to roll on your turn. You could block your opponent’s characters with a Sidekick, then during the Globals part of the Attack Step, use Blue-Eyes Global to KO the Sidekick. The attacking character is still considered blocked and you have an additional die to roll. There are ways to use this to your advantage with characters like Black Manta, Deep Sea Deviant and Takedown, Basic Action Card.

Human Paladin

Human Paladin, Lesser Emerald Enclave is a great counter to characters that have life sucking abilities on them, like Green Goblin, “Gobby”. If your opponent is fielding tons of Gobby dice and sucking your life right out of you, Human Paladin is the card you need. This type of Global triggers when something happens and allows you to use it outside the normal Global windows. When your opponent has five Sidekicks in the Field Zone and then fields a Gobby die, you pay the Shield Energy and only lose one life instead of five. Each time your opponent fields a Gobby die, you have to pay the Shield Energy or lose more than just the one life.

Final Thoughts

I could go on and on about different Global Abilities. I hope that this article is helpful to folks out there. Always check your Global Abilities for a potential backfire, like having a Taunt with a Distraction. There are cards that can protect your characters from Global Abilities and even Action Dice. If you can’t find a card, there are two great databases that you can use to find cards: The Reserve Pool Card Database and Dice Masters Database. You can always ask for advice on The Reserve Pool Forums and Facebook groups like Dice Masters Unlimited or Dice Masters Discussions.

And for all the Star Wars folks out there – May the 4th be with you!

Is there a card that you think should be added?
Need help understanding a game mechanic or strategy?
Leave us a comment here or message us on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Roll on, Dice Masters!

  1. jgaines77 says:

    Excellent write up on the use of globals. Thank you.I’m fairly new to Dice Masters, and have zero experience with CCG’s, so I find your blog to be a great resource.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Another cracking article.

    I’ve recently got in the habit of avoiding Globals on my teams in recent months – I’ve struggled to find that right balance at times where the Global enhances my personal strategy but isn’t too enhancing for my opponent too. Just the other night, while having a kitchen table game with my Bolt Ring team my own PXG became the route to my own downfall as my opponent ramped up to some big nasties before I got my ducks in a row for my own big swing.

    Love to get your view on it – perhaps the subject of a future post for you?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks!
      I thought about breaking down PXG in an article because of how much it helps ramp the Blitz, but I went with the general coverage first. Definitely a consideration for a future article!


  3. […] Source: What […]


  4. Jamie Alison says:

    When it comes to Displacer Beast: Lesser Monstrosity, do you have any ideas how to determine if it’s an opponents global ability? Does that mean global abilities on their cards, or simply global abilities that they used? I’m not sure who “owns” global abilities. Again, thanks for bringing together so much information.

    Liked by 1 person

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