Managing the Martian Menace

The Monsterpocalypse kicked off with an alien invasion of the Earth, and the month of December adds even more extraterrestrials to the mix. Unlike the in-your-face style of the Planet Eaters, however, their fellow Destroyers of the Martian Menace favor subtlety and manipulation in order to achieve victory.

When building a Destroyer Agenda force, Martian Menace models add a lot of interesting tools, improving your chances of victory.

The humble Power Pod is easy to find a place for in any Destroyer force. Placing one of these units on a Power Point ensures more Power Dice production. Including two of these valuable units in your force will ensure that you have the redundancy to retain their power ability when your opponent attempts to counter your energy production.

A natural partner for the Power Pod comes in the form of the Saucer unit. These support models deliver your slower Power Pods where they need to be and can remove some enemy units when necessary. You don’t receive Power Dice for enemy units removed by the Saucer’s Abduct ability, but you also don’t have to hit the unit that is standing in your way with an attack.

The Martian Menace Vanguard is the mainline offensive unit for the faction, but it’s also an example of their subtlety. Where other offensive units focus on taking out enemy units, the Vanguard prefers to target your opponent’s power base. Vanguards gain a Boost Die when attacking a building, meaning a couple of them should be able to deal with all but the sturdiest buildings. As a bonus, any building they hit with their disintegrating beam vanishes into nothingness, leaving no debris tile behind. This is especially frustrating for Protector players who rely on Repair Trucks to keep key buildings in play.

The Hunter is the final Martian Menace unit in the December wave, and it is pure offense. This sniper variant of the Vanguard ship specializes in removing important enemy units. It fights alone, incapable of participating in combined unit attacks, but that is because it rarely needs help. It is more than capable of rolling the one or two successes needed to destroy many units, and its large cannon has the Penetrator rule, meaning enemies suffer -1 Defense against its attacks.

The final Martian Menace model releasing this month is the Ares Mothership, a powerful support monster for the Destroyers. The subtlety and manipulation of the faction is immediately apparent when looking at this model’s rules. Ares is the first monster in the game with the Flight rule. Numerous units have this rule, but it is very rare in a monster. With Flight, the Mothership never needs to worry about taking damage from a hazard while positioning for a powerful attack. When it comes to dealing with enemy units, this monster has a few options. Ares Mothership shares the teleportation technology that allows Saucers to abduct enemy units, but the more powerful emitters of this larger craft allow it to snatch any unit off the table. That isn’t the only thing the Mothership shares with the smaller Saucers. It can also Transport Power Pods to the table, ensuring that you can keep this important unit in play. If the enemy unit you need to deal with is on an important objective like a Power Point, why Abduct it when you can change its loyalty? With a bit of quick manufacturing, any unit this monster destroys with a Brawl attack can be replaced with one of the Martian Menace units in your reserves. When Ares Mothership goes into hyper mode, it improves the abilities of units in its force. All of the Martian Menace units allied to the Mothership share the Hit & Run ability with it, allowing them to get into a new position after hitting an enemy with an attack. The Mothership also becomes a Spotter, helping friends who shoot at targets near her to succeed in their attacks. Finally, no matter which form the monster is in, it is Steady, making it more difficult for your opponent to easily body slam it into anything.

So, the Martian Menace comes streaking out of space this month, adding its power to any Destroyer force that needs to get the job done in a slightly less direct way than just punching your opponent repeatedly…not that punching them doesn’t work, of course…