On June 6th, 2014, Playdom released Marvel: Avengers Alliance Tactics, a spin-off to the popular Facebook game Marvel: Avengers Alliance. Despite the fact that both games have similar plot elements and feature a lot of the same characters, battles are very different in the two games. In fact, the difference in battles is the main game play difference between the two games. Whether or not you are familiar with the original game, the following guide to battles in Marvel: Avengers Alliance Tactics will introduce you to the combat system and help you navigate it successfully.
Battle Overview – Battles in Marvel: Avengers Alliance Tactics are turn-based and take place on a tactical map. You have an overhead view of the map and can see all of the heroes and enemies in the battle, their hit points, basic stats, and current status effects. You may bring up to four heroes of your choice to each battle, though the enemy units can include more than four units. Each battle has an objective and the battle ends when either you have completed the objective or all of your heroes have been eliminated.
Map – The map for every battle is unique. The map is divided into a grid made up of squares, though the grid lines for the squares are invisible, except when you are targeting attack powers. At the start of each battle, the game places your heroes and the enemy units in set locations on the map, depending on the specific battle. In addition to units, each map has various obstacles that block movement and attacks. Terrain can not be affected or modified in any way by character actions.
Turn Order – Turn order is determined randomly at the start of every battle and you can see the order at the top of the screen. When a characters turn begins, the character can move up to its movement speed and then must take a single action. After the action is taken, the character is then assigned a new turn order for the next action. All actions have a speed value of Fast, Normal, or Slow. The faster the action, the earlier the character will be assigned for the next turn order.
Movement – Movement is optional in this game. Every character can move on his or her turn. A character can never move through a terrain feature like a wall or a tree, or through a square that an enemy is standing in. A character can move through a square that an allied character is standing in. Movement is not finalized until your character takes an action. You can move a character freely within the range of the character as many times as you want.
Actions – Every character is required to take an action during the character’s turn. Your heroes will always have at least two options: an attack or a guard action. Every hero has a guard action and guard actions never have cooldown, so you always have at least one legitimate action to take with a hero. Attacks can only be used if the attack is not currently in the middle of cooldown and there is an enemy within range of the attack. Similar to movement, you can back out of using an attack. To attack, you click on the action and then confirm the target. You can cancel the attack by clicking the action again if you think a different action would be better.
Range and Area – The main tactical feature of this game involves the range and area of attacks. Every single attack has a specific range. Range indicates how far away the target of the attack can be, or in the case of area attacks, how far away the targeting square of the attack can be. Not all attacks have an area. Some attacks just target a single enemy. Attacks that do have an area are displayed with a grid that shows the specific squares the attack will target. For example, an attack might hit a 3×3 grid of squares. Some attacks only hit enemies while other attacks can hit both enemies and allies. Make sure you know exactly what targets can be hit by an attack before confirming the attack.
Objective – Every battle has an objective. For most battles, the objective is simply to defeat all the enemies, but this is not always the case. For boss battles, especially, the objective is commonly just to defeat a single enemy, in this case, the boss. Completing the objective ends the battle even if other enemies are still alive on the battlefield. Always keep the objective in mind when engaging in a battle.
Surrender – If you don’t have time to complete a battle or if you are sure you are going to lose a battle and don’t want to actually take the time to finish it, you can surrender. The Surrender button is in the upper left corner of the battle screen and looks like a man running with speed lines behind him.