Long time coming, but here’s finally the main villain of my Marvel Heroic convention scenario, the nefarious Mandarin. Since I was designing the scenario around rampant Hulk, I initially thought about making the principal bad guy someone specifically associated with Hulk, such as the Leader. However, these ponderings seemed to lead the plotting of the scenario to dead ends and the options I was considering didn’t feel particularly suited for a high-action ending scene I was aiming for.
Then my thoughts turned to the Mandarin, one of my favorite Marvel villains, and everything started to click together. I came across an Avengers story in which Mandarin used a diamond-powered mind control device to get the Earth’s Mightiest Heroes to fight each other and it instantly spun in my head to a plot outline for the scenario where Mandarin had reassembled the contraption to drive Hulk to destroy the US capital. Mandarin’s powerful rings and his superior hand-to-hand combat skills also meant that he would be able to take the player characters head-on for an action-packed end fight, especially when backed with a horde of minions and possibly the mind-controlled Hulk.
While Mandarin’s multipowered rings would have probably lent themselves for a wide variety of different SFX, I decided to go for simple asset- and complication-boosting effects, feeling that the concrete properties of the rings, like freezing ice blasts and pitch-black darkness, could be portrayed just as well with in-game narration. As for the limitation on his technological powerset I felt that the most obvious choice – the Gear limit – wouldn’t have been appropriate, since we practically never see ol’ Mandy losing the use of even one of his rings in the comics. Instead I came up with a limitation inspired by Kingpin’s limit in the Civil War event book that I think reflects quite nicely how Mandarin’s utter confidence in himself and his devices tend to become his undoing in the comics.
Sadly, as the scenario had to be cut short, Mandarin’s presence didn’t get even to be hinted at during the game, and so at the moment this datafile too is untested in actual play. Should you end up using this datafile in one of your games, please drop me a line in the comment box to let me know how it worked for you.
Solo D10, Buddy D6, Team D8
- Conqueror from East
- Knows No Equals
Master of Makluan Technology
Blast D10, Flight D6, Illusions D8, Teleport D10, Transmutation D8
- SFX: Afflict. Add a D6 and step up your effect die by +1 when using Master of Makluan Technology to inflict a complication on a target.
- SFX: Constructs. Add a D6 and step up your effect die by +1 when using Master of Makluan Technology to create assets.
- Limit: Defeated by His Own Genius. Step up the lowest die in the Doom Pool or a add a D6 to the pool to change an asset created by Mandarin into a complication for him or a complication created by Mandarin into an asset for his opponents.
Master of Martial Arts
Enhanced Reflexes D8, Fists of Steel D8, Superhuman Stamina D10
- SFX: Kiai! If a pool includes a Master of Martial Arts power, replace two dice of equal size with one stepped-up die.
- SFX: Second Wind. Before making an action including a Master of Martial Arts power, spend a doom die the same size or larger than Mandarin’s current physical stress to recover it and step up the Master of Martial Arts power for this action.
- Limit: Exhausted. Add a D6 to Doom Pool and shutdown any Master of Martial Arts power. Activate an opportunity to recover.
Combat Master D10, Menace Expert D8, Science Expert D8, Tech Master D10