Posts Tagged ‘Luke Cage’

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!


For this week’s confusing card of the week article, we’re going to take a look at Luke Cage: Harlem Raised  from the Marvel Defenders Team Pack.

22 Luke Cage, Harlem Raised

Ruling – Ability

Luke Cage’s ability triggers only when he is blocked. When he’s blocked, you may reroll him and if he rerolls into a character face, he gains Overcrush. If he rerolls into energy, you put him on his level one face and place him into the Field Zone and he will no longer be attacking.

Luke Cage’s ability says that you may reroll him if he’s blocked. This ability is optional, meaning if he’s blocked, you aren’t required to reroll him. If he’s blocked and you decide to reroll him, he will remain on the character face that you rerolled him on and gain Overcrush.

If you choose to reroll a blocked Luke Cage die and it lands on an energy face, you will have to place his die back into the Field Zone at level one. This will remove him from the Attack Zone and he will no longer be considered attacking. Characters that blocked him will not take damage from him and he will not take damage from the blocking character dice.

It’s worth noting that the normal rules for rerolling a character from the Field/Attack Zone into energy, would move that die to the Reserve Pool. Luke Cage has a special part to his ability that allows him to be placed on his level one side in the Field Zone instead.

Ruling – Overcrush

Overcrush is an ability that allows a blocked attacking character to deal damage to the defending player, so long as it’s attack value is higher than the blocking character’s defense value. If an attacking character has an attack of five and the blocking character has a defense of three, the defending player would take damage equal to the difference. In this example, the defending player would take two damage.

A character with Overcrush that’s blocked can deal damage to the defending player only if all of their blockers are KO’d or REMOVED as blockers by other means. An example of removing the blocker would be the attacking player using an Imprisoned die on blocking characters during the Actions and Globals portion of the Attack Step.

If a blocking character is removed or KO’d before the Assign and Resolve Damage portion of the Attack Step, the attacking character with Overcrush would deal their full attack value to the defending player.

Another important aspect about Overcrush that needs to be noted is how the damage is assigned and resolved. The blocking character is assigned the attacker’s full attack value. Overcrush is a special ability that allows the excess damage, the amount greater than the blockers defense, to be dealt to the opponent. For example: I’m attacking with a character that has a seven attack and Overcrush. My opponent blocks with a Sidekick that only has one defense. The Sidekick is assigned seven damage, but Overcrush will allow me to deal six of that to my opponent.

Miscellaneous Card Information

~ Luke Cage is a Fist type character card.
~ He has the Defenders affiliation.
~ He has a max dice of four.
~ This card is a Common and is #22 of 24.


These examples are for information purposes only, to show what would happen in certain scenarios. I am not suggesting that these examples are the best outcomes for each scenario and each example only features relevant parts of the turn, not the entire turn.

Example One:
Rerolling Luke Cage and he lands on a character face.

Game State
I have a level one Luke Cage die and my opponent has two Sidekick dice in the Field Zone.
– We are moving into the Attack Step.
(Attack Step – Assign Attackers)
– I assign my Luke Cage die as an attacker, moving him into the Attack Zone.
(Attack Step – Assign Blockers)
– My opponent decides to assign both of his Sidekick dice to block Luke Cage, moving them into the Attack Zone in front of my Luke Cage die.
– Luke Cage is blocked, so I can now activate his ability if I choose to do so, which I do, and reroll Luke Cage.
– He lands on his level two character face and now has Overcrush.
– He is still attacking and still blocked by the two Sidekicks because he never left the Field Zone.
(Attack Step – Actions and Globals)
– I do not use any Actions or Globals.
– My opponent does not use any Globals.
(Attack Step – Assign and Resolve Damage)
– Luke Cage must KO all of his blockers in order to deal damage to my opponent.
– Luke Cage assigns one damage to one Sidekick and two damage to the other.
– Both Sidekicks assign their one damage to Luke Cage.
– Both the Sidekicks are KO’d by Luke Cage’s combat damage and will go to the Prep Area.
– Because Luke Cage has Overcrush, the excess damage (greater than the Sidekick’s defense) will be dealt to the defending player.
– My opponent will take one damage.
– Luke Cage will take two damage total from the blockers, but it’s not enough to KO him.
– Luke Cage will return to Field Zone. He does not go Out of Play because he was blocked and not KO’d.

Example Two:
Rerolling Luke Cage and he lands on an energy face.

Game State
I have a level one Luke Cage die and my opponent has two Sidekick dice in the Field Zone.
– We are moving into the Attack Step.
(Attack Step – Assign Attackers)
– I assign my Luke Cage die as an attacker, moving him into the Attack Zone.
(Attack Step – Assign Blockers)
– My opponent decides to assign both of his Sidekick dice to block Luke Cage, moving them into the Attack Zone in front of my Luke Cage die.
– Luke Cage is blocked, so I can now activate his ability if I choose to do so, which I do, and reroll Luke Cage.
– He lands on the single energy face.
– Luke Cage’s die is now placed in the Field Zone on his level face. He is no longer attacking or blocked.
– The two Sidekick dice return the Field Zone as well, because the blocked character is no longer attacking.
(Attack Step – Actions and Globals)
– I do not use any Actions or Globals.
– My opponent does not use any Globals.
(Attack Step – Assign and Resolve Damage)
– There isn’t any damage to assign or resolve.

Official Sources

WizKids Official Rules Forum (WORF) does not have a ruling for this specific card.

Here are all the relevant Overcrush rulings:
Removed Blockers
Assigning Damage and Damage Dealt
Overcrush Clarifications

You can find a relevant rerolling ruling, here.

You can find more info about specific Keywords on the WizKids Keywords page.

Turn Order Summary Reference


Opinion and Strategy

I’m definitely not a fan of this card, but I can see why he appeals some players. There is that possibility of a rolling him onto his level three side with a six attack and Overcrush. But honestly, there are far better characters that just have Overcrush and better level one and level two attack stats. She-Hulk: Sensational is a perfect example. I think Carnage: Sinister and even Hill Giant: Apprentice Giant are better than this Luke Cage. All those example cost the same or less than this Luke Cage. Hill Giant is the only one with really low defense but for a purchase cost of three, he’s still better in my opinion. Folks have mentioned that you can pump his attack with a Global, or spin him up after the reroll with Mutation’s Global, but those are far too unreliable. I think this Luke Cage has a purchase cost that’s too high for his stats and ability, when there are characters that are better with the same purchase cost.

 The image choice for the die is a little odd. There are plenty of folks out there that had no clue it was a flexing arm – including me. I thought it was a wonky heart or a cracked stone of some kind. While a flexing arm is perfect for Luke Cage, I think it could have been executed a little better. The art choice for this card is awesome! I like when they occasionally choose art that shows the more casual side of the characters.

Opinions on this card? Leave a comment!
Is there a card your confused on?

Is there a combo that seems too good to be true?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to The Reserve Pool for the use of their site.

Roll on, Dice Masters!


Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!


WizKids has released its second Team Pack, The Defenders. I hope they plan to release some DC Team Packs at some point, but so far there have only been the two Marvel ones, and another Marvel one scheduled for release later this year.


I did an unboxing video for The Defenders Team Pack and you can find it on YouTube, here. I goofed toward the end of the video though. I meant to say, “check out my review article” – not “check out my review video” – Oops!

Team Pack

02 Team Pack

Pack Contents

~ 24 Character Cards
~ 16 Dice


There is one returning keyword in this set, and no new ones.

Returning Keywords:


There is a new affiliation and a returning affiliation.






Star Crossed has a ruling on WORF in regards to Overcrush – which is important to mention here. A character with Overcrush that is ‘blocked’ with Clea’s ability will deal it’s full damage to the defending player. Don’t use Clea’s ability to ‘block’ a character with Overcrush unless you want to take the full amount of damage. Since that character is declared blocked, it would also remain in the Field Zone. Not sure I like Star Crossed much and I don’t like Mistress of the Dark Dimension‘s ability that much either. On Stranger Tides is the only version of Clea I like, but at a cost of six, I don’t think she’ll be making any of my casual teams – especially since every version of Doctor Strange is also expensive to purchase.

Doctor Strange

I was desperately hoping for a cheaper Doctor Strange. There are now nine versions of Doctor Strange in Dice Masters. Three of them have a purchase cost of six and the the remaining six have a purchase cost of seven. Why can’t I have a five cost Doctor Strange. Hulk has a five cost version! I mean, is that too much to ask? He doesn’t need to have the incredible stats that both dice versions have. He’s a powerful character, sure, but there can be versions with less attack and defense if it means a cheaper purchase cost.

As for the abilities, Book of the Vishanti – thank you WizKids for the wording clarification! I would like the ability if we didn’t already have Lady Deadpool that’s cheaper (by two!) and does almost the same thing for a Bolt. The Doctor is In feels like an ability that belongs in AvX or Uncanny X-Men. But not every card should have a super awesome ability. Shields of the Seraphim would have been cool, if we didn’t already have a three cost Scarlet Witch (purchase cost of FOUR) that puts a die in the Prep Area at the cost of one energy. I do love the art choice for this card though – that’s something at least.


Thank goodness – a character cheaper than five! It’s Patsy! is a lesser version of Lyssa Drak from War of Light. For anyone tinkering with Lyssa Drak, this would be her replacement when WoL eventually rotates to Golden Age. Hell’s Belle – I love this card. I didn’t care for her ability at first, until I realized that I have various ways to get her into my Prep Area. She’s only a purchase cost of three as well, so you could buy multiples of her and keep them cycling – preventing your opponent from potentially purchasing their win condition. Demon Sight for Sore Eyes has a cool ability, but it’s way too conditional for a competitive format, and even more so for casual. I’m not sure she would be worth teching into a team build with the current metas. I like this artwork as well, and I know very little about Hellcat. This card kinda makes me want to check her out books.


I just don’t like any of these Hulk cards. If I had to choose one, I’d probably choose All the Rage, but his purchase cost and fielding cost is way too expensive for that. You also want to keep him active, meaning you’re not getting the full benefit of his beefy attack stat. I guess the others have their place on various team builds, but not for me.

Iron Fist

I read Healing Hands first and thought, “Cool. I like this ability, but may be difficult to manage each time I’m ready to attack with him.” I was a little disappointed to see his purchase cost was five, but at least he’s under six! Then I read Pulling Punches and thought, “Now this is unique and interesting. I like this one better.” There are ways to force Sidekicks into your opponent’s Field Zone so you could always get at least one damage on your opponent with this ability. Not too bad for a five cost, but still, he could have had a purchase cost of four and been fine. Then I read Holding Back the Storm. My eyes lit up. It felt like this card was made for me – a DDK kind of card. It’s really easy to not field any characters. His attack stats then become 6, 7, 9. Holy stat increase Batman! Give him Overcrush or make him unblockable and he’s a beast! Sounds like the perfect gimmick combo team for me to build! His purchase cost of five is totally justifiable for his ability and stats – which also makes it a DDK card. I don’t usually build teams with win conditions that have a purchase cost less than five.

Jessica Jones

Mother of the Year Award – not the worst, but no. Not worth it for a character with a purchase cost of five and low defense. She can be blasted out of the Field with an uncommon Cold Gun on any level. No thanks – next. Ladies’ Night – this could be somewhat usable. It doesn’t specify opposing Globals or opposing character abilities and it doesn’t say ‘other’ character dice. You could target her with a stat increasing Global and get double what you pay for. I think I like this one a little. This sounds like another DDK gimmick combo card! Redeemed is okay too. She’s not the best, but not awful. You can give her Overcrush and your opponent can’t Blink her back. They can still Cold Gun her though! That’s why I don’t like her near as much. Ladies’ Night can stand up to a Cold Gun blast on your turn, after you get the use of her ability. She may get blanked, but she keeps those applied bonuses!


And here we have… a VillainWhat? Why on Earth 616 is there a Villain in the DEFENDERS Team Pack? I’m all for diversifying affiliations in certain releases, but with such a limited number of cards in the Team Pack, don’t do that. I’d rather have had a half-way decent Daredevil or a better Moon Knight! *Sigh*

The only Loki that I feel has a remotely decent ability is Master of Delusion. But because of his purchase cost, and because he needs to be fielded to use his ability, he’s not that great. I’m not impressed at all with any of the Loki cards. I definitely would have rather had a four cost Daredevil or Moon Knight in this spot.

Luke Cage

Harlem Raised – the only card with a bolded Keyword on it. And the funny thing is, he doesn’t just have it. You have to reroll him – if he’s blocked – to give him Overcrush. And if he lands on level one or two, congratulations, he now has a two or three attack and Overcrush! I wish you could see my face right now… I’m very confused and trying to understand WizKids’ choices for many things in this Team Pack.

But there is a glimmer of hope. Always Forward can buff your other Defenders, which is awesome. But he has to be active, and he has a purchase cost of five. The upside to his purchase cost being five is that you probably only need one of him because with a defense line of 5, 6, 6, he’s probably not getting blasted out the Field anytime soon. I look at Street Sweeper and I’m a little happier, but then I see his purchase cost and I’m not happy anymore. If I’m going to buy a cost reducer of any kind, it’s not going to be one that costs the same or one less than a die it’s reducing the cost of. He’s got that additional ability that lets you prep a die when you field a Defender character die, but I’d rather have had a three or four cost Street Sweeper with just the cost reducer on it.

Positive note – I absolutely love the art on this card. At least Daredevil was in this Team Pack somewhere!

Character Thoughts

Oh boy…These characters are all so expensive, except for Hellcat, and most of the abilities on the all the cards are underwhelming. It’s a rare occasion when I can’t find something in a starter or team pack that I really like. I just don’t know what to say about this Team Pack. I don’t think this is the best Team Pack for a beginner and I don’t think many advanced level players are going to find these cards useful or even fun to play with. The overly expensive characters are not fun – they’re frustrating. You typically just waste a spot on your team for them because most games are done, or close to being done, long before you get to purchase those characters.

I’ve heard TRP say this and I agree with them – if a character costs six or seven energy to purchase, it better be winning you the game. None – zero – zip – of these expensive characters do that.

Character Dice

You only get two of each character die in the Team Pack. If you’re wanting to put three or four dice on a particular character, you will need to buy a second Team Pack (or trade, exchange, etc.). It’s never a bad thing to have duplicates of the character cards, but I’d rather just have max dice in one purchase.

03 Dice

I like the image and color choices for the Iron Fist die and the color of the Doctor Strange die. Clea’s die has the ‘shimmer swirl’ look to it, so it’s pretty as well and I love Hellcat’s kitty image. But of all the dice, Loki’s is definitely my favorite. But I want to talk about Luke Cage’s die for a moment.

04 Luke Cage With Markers

After filming the unboxing video, I asked the owner of my FLGS (Jeff), if he knew what the image on Luke Cage’s die might be. He studied it for a minute or two and concluded that he wasn’t sure what it was. We continued looking at this image for the better part of ten minutes, trying to figure out what it was. We didn’t think it was a flexing arm at first because we were both looking at the shoulder as the fist. I’m sure it was a sight to see us both flexing and trying to recreate the backward view we were seeing. We decided it couldn’t be an arm – it had to be a cracked stone or a wonky heart of some kind. We were searching any mental knowledge that we had of Luke Cage for a heart or stone reference and came up empty handed. I was about to leave when it suddenly hit me. We were looking at the arm backward. *Sigh*

WizKids, you have successfully trolled me, and Jeff, whether you meant to or not. Nice one. You’ve apparently claimed a few other victims too as most of the folks that have commented on my social media pictures also thought it was a weird heart of some kind.

It did give me a giggle on my way home from my FLGS last night. When I got home, I showed the die to Mr. DDK and asked what he thought it was. He quickly – without any hesitation – responded, “It’s an arm. It’s flexing, like this. See, here’s the fist.”

I felt even more silly than before. But I see it now!

Final Thoughts

I’m so disappointed in this Team Pack. I know this article probably sounds like one long rant, but I’m not going to sugarcoat how I feel or curb my opinions to appeal to the masses – or WizKids. I love WizKids and Dice Masters, but I want to give an honest opinion on their products. We’re all entitled to our own opinions and if you disagree with me, that’s totally fine. Maybe you see something that I don’t, or maybe most of these cards fit your style of play, but for me, this was a wash. Hellcat is the best character in the Team Pack. Is it worth buying the Team Pack just for her? In my opinion – No. Sorry, WizKids, but I’m not a fan of this Team Pack.

I know this is a broken record type statement, but less than max dice in the Team Pack is still an issue. That’s all I’ll say about it because I’ve complained about this particular topic on more than just a few occasions.

Just because I personally don’t like the Team Pack overall, doesn’t mean I won’t be tinkering with some of the cards. I like Iron Fist: Holding Back the Storm. That’s totally a DDK type of card. I don’t mind that he costs five to purchase because he has great stats and his ability is really nice too. I will most definitely be tinkering and brewing with Holding Back the Storm. I think he’ll be fun to play around with. I need to buy another Team Pack though, just in case I want to use four dice for Iron Fist or Hellcat.

What are your favorite cards?
What cards do you think will make it into Modern Age or Prime metas?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to WizKids and The Reserve Pool for the use of their sites.

Roll on, Dice Masters!