'''''Sentinels of the Multiverse''''', according to its rulebook, is the [[OverlyNarrowSuperlative World's Greatest Cooperative, Comic-Book Based, Fixed-Deck Card Game]]. Created in 2011 by Christopher Badell, Paul Bender, and Adam Rebottaro, under the moniker of Greater Than Games, ''Sentinels'' pits three to five heroes--each represented by a unique deck of cards--against one of several varied and interesting villains, each represented by their own unique deck. One of several environments (also represented by a deck of cards) plays cards throughout the fight, hindering or helping both sides of the battle and creating a dynamic flow to the game.

The variety of the villains and environments are not simply alternate skins; each villain and environment deck has its own unique mechanics, and the villains' character and rules cards are double-sided, representing multiple phases of the fight. Each of them has a unique "flipping" mechanic (a trigger that makes them flip to the opposite side of their card) and drastically different effects based off of which side they are on. They also have an optional, advanced rule on each side that further empowers them and complicates victory for the heroes.

The game also employs LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters: Visit the (currently in progress) [[Characters/SentinelsOfTheMultiverse Character sheet]] for more information on the cast.

A [[http://sentinelsdigital.com/ digital version of the base card game]] was released in December 2014, with each expansion being released as DLC afterwards.

----
!!Tropes represented in ''Sentinels'':

* ActuallyFourMooks: Some of the minion and environment cards represent groups -- the Blade Battalion and Raptor Pack, for instance, represent groups as their names imply. Implied in the case of Grand Warlord Voss's minions -- while there's only one shown on each card, the fact that only ten are needed to overrun the world indicates they represent larger groups of his army.
* AllThereInTheManual: There's a rather extensive lore to the game for those who are interested, but it has little effect on the game itself.
* AlwaysABiggerFish: Environments often don't discriminate between hero and non-hero targets, and thus can take out villainous cards. The Raging T. Rex attacks the target with the second highest HP, which is usually a Hero target, but later in the game, or against villains like the Ennead, it will do the heroes a favor. Cards like the Kraken's Tentacle or the Raptor Pack will instead target the lowest-HP target, which is usually a minion.
* AnAdventurerIsYou: Since the game is built around team gameplay, these archetypes come up frequently, though most characters fit into two or even three:
** Tank: Legacy, Haka, Bunker, The Scholar, and Rhino Naturalist, though anyone with an Armor ability will do in a pinch, and Visionary and Nightmist can take up the role when playing the cards that grant them invulnerability.
** Healer: Tempest, Legacy (1940's), Argent Adept, The Scholar.
** DPS: Ra, Haka, Fanatic, Chrono Ranger.
** Nuker: Tachyon, Bunker, Absolute Zero, Expatriette, Mr. Fixer, Nightmist, and Unity (all of whom require some time to get out combinations of cards which then trigger ForMassiveDamage.)
** Buffer: Legacy, Argent Adept, Captain Cosmic.
** Debuffer: Nightmist, Visionary.
** Pet Master: Unity, Captain Cosmic.
** Crowd Control: Tempest, Visionary.
** Jack of All Trades: Wraith, Mr. Fixer, Omnitron-X, The Sentinels, Guise, Sky-Scraper.
* AlienInvasion: Grand Warlord Voss is leading one. Should he have 10 minions out when he starts his turn, [[NonStandardGameOver it's successful]].
* ArchEnemy: Each hero has a specific villain that is marked as their archnemesis. This means that all damage inflicted by these two on each other is increased by one. In some cases this is detrimental to the hero (i.e. Argent Adept and Akash'Bhuta) and in others it results in a mutual barrage of destruction (i.e. Ra and the Ennead).
** In Vengeance, some of the nemeses have extra effects should their hero be active.(Such as The Hippo redirecting all damage Friction would take to himself, but only if his nemesis Haka is active.)
* ArtShift:
** The Enclave of the Endless takes its style from old sci-fi comics and the stylings of JackKirby, to whom the expansion the cards come in is dedicated.
** Guise has this on a few of his cards, portraying him as a RobLiefeld style musclebound hero, and as a super-deformed anime character.
** The Rook City art is deliberately darker and more "realistic," even including a lot of blood on many of the characters.
* AttackDeflector: Iron Legacy's Superhuman Reflection, Wraiths' Smoke Bombs, Tachyon's Synaptic Interruption, Mr. Fixer's Driving Mantis Style, and Kismet's Inexplicable Obstruction.
* BadassCrew:
** La Capitan has taken advantage of her ability to travel through time to amass the most bad-ass crewmen she can find from across time, resulting in a team consisting of World War One flying aces, superpowered samurai, power-armored demolitions specialists, and more.
** The Crackjaw crew is another example.
* BadFuture: The Shattered Timelines expansion details a couple, such as one where Young Legacy dies, turning Legacy into a KnightTemplar who takes over the world and rules it with an iron fist. Also referenced in one of Visionary's cards, in which she has a vision of the heroes defeated and shackled by Voss's forces.
* BossGame: The game is always a battle between a team of heroes and a powerful villain. With few exceptions, the heroes' sole win condition is to incapacitate that one being. Many of the bosses have a substantial number of minions that they can deploy, Baron Blade, The Organization, Grand Warlord Voss, and the Matriarch being the biggest offenders.
* BossRush: One challenge on the game's wiki for Spite, Agent of Gloom doesn't make him any harder -- instead, it makes it so that when he's defeated, the players immediately set up a game against Skinwalker Gloomweaver without a chance to change heroes, reset or heal.
* TheBrute: Fright Train. He is a walking mountain of muscles and is just as subtle as his name implies.
* CastFromHitPoints: Several cards like Solar Flare, Pushing the Limits, and Golem Unity's base power deal the user damage as a way of paying for the cost of the ongoing effect they grant and they must deal at least ''some'' of that damage to themselves, otherwise the card is destroyed. Others, like many of Nightmist's spells, have an activation cost of hit points instead of a maintenance cost. Most of these are for the heroes, but Citizen Dawn has one for her self (Channel the Eclipse).
* CatastrophicCountdown: A couple villains (and two of the environments) feature this as their main threat to the heroes. Of course, each of them is a completely different mechanic to fit the theme of the fight.
* CardboardPrison: Implied. You can beat the supervillains again and again, but they just keep on menacing the world. And all but outright stated with Omnitron, who, according to Omnitron-X's bio, has been destroyed and rebuilt ten separate times before X came along.
** VillainExitStageLeft: At least a few of them just plain escape. Each variant of Baron Blade has managed to escape the heroes after he was defeated. Some, on the other hand, ''don't'' escape. For example, Spite is eventually killed, but resurrected by Gloomweaver into his Agent of Gloom variant.
* CentralTheme: Each expansion has one:
** Base Game: Comic Book super hero team
** Rook City: DarkerAndEdgier
** Infernal Relics: Supernatural
** Shattered Timelines: Time Travel
** Vengeance: Revenge
** Wrath of the Cosmos: Space.
* ComboPlatterPowers: Legacy, with [[SpiderSense danger sense]], {{flight}}, {{super strength}}, [[NighInvulnerability invulnerability]], and three other unknown powers. His daughter adds an "[[EyeBeams atomic glare]]" to the mix.
* ConservationOfNinjutsu:
** Inverted, in that it's applied to the heroes by way of LevelScaling mentioned below. Grand Warlord Voss, for instance, starts with a number of minions equal to the number of heroes, and when he goes into combat himself, his damage output is H-1 and H-2. So a full party of heroes is facing five mooks just to start with, and taking 4 and 3 damage against the boss himself -- and god help the players who go in with six or seven heroes. But the minimum party would only start off against three mooks, and only take 2 and 1 damage from Voss himself when those mooks go down.
** Also played straight when the heroes are incapacitated -- each incapacitated hero has a power that in some way helps or supports whomever's left standing, sometimes letting them play cards or powers. This means the last hero standing can effectively have multiple turns, making him a OneManArmy, able to take down mooks by the truckload.
* CoolShip:
** La Capitans' ship, ''La Paradoja Magnifica'', which can sail through time.
** The [=TCF=] Conqueror and [=TCF=] Stalwart, both which belong to Grand Warlord Voss.
* CounterAttack: Several cards enable this.
** Wraith's Combat Stance automatically attacks the first card to damage her a turn...Which can lead to the hilarious situation in which Wraith would hurt herself, and if she was hurt for the first time that turn, that would result in triggering Combat Stance and causing Wraith to hit herself.
** One of Absolute Zero's modules makes him do cold damage whenever he takes fire damage; another lets him do a single attack whose power is based on how much fire damage he's taken since his last turn.
** One of Baron Blade's cards damages the first hero to attack him in a given turn.
** One of the things that make The Chairman and The Matriarch such high level foes is their ability to pull this consistently. Defeating any of The Chairman's mooks results in The Operative attacking the hero with the highest HP. The Matriarch either does damage to or destroys an Ongoing or Equipment card of the hero with the highest HP whenever one of her numerous-but-fragile birds is taken down. Attacking either group without some kind of damage reduction is a quick way to take a pounding and can make automatic-damage ongoing cards (such as Visionary's Demoralization, which automatically damages every enemy at the start of her turn) into more of a liability than an asset.
* ContinuitySnarl: Unavoidable by the modular means the game is established. It is far from uncommon to see players choose the BadFuture versions of characters fighting alongside past incarnations to fight opponents in environments they really have no business in (just try and rationalize how in the hell Spite's victim cards make sense when playing in the barren, deserted Final Wasteland, what the Chairman's thugs are doing in the Ruins of Atlantis, or how The Matriarch got all those birds to the Wagner Base on Mars, for instance). Of course, the players will also only have a very vague sense of what happened where, as the events referenced in the cards' quotes were never published, so the players are free to HandWave it however they like.
* CreepyChild: The Dreamer, who is an alternate timeline version of the Visionary. Unlike other villains, the goal with the Dreamer is to ''not'' hurt her, as she is an innocent child. Instead the goal is to defeat the psychic apparitions she unintentionally brings into the world.
* DamageReduction: Both hero and villain decks feature damage reduction of one kind or another. Hero damage reduction usually applies to damage to the hero whose card it was, though some support heroes, like the Argent Adept, can spread that protection around. On the villains' side, their cards much more often provide some kind of damage reduction to either the whole villain team, or a group within the villain team. The biggest is Grand Warlord Voss's innate effect, where for each of his minions in play, he reduces all damage to himself by two, making him effectively invincible if more than two or three are out.
* DarkerAndEdgier: The Rook City expansion. Based on the more gritty, realistic side of comic books, it features an industrial complex and crime-riddled city as environments, a gun-toting [[OneManArmy one-woman-army]] and a TechnicalPacifist OldMaster [[NinjaPirateZombieRobot Auto Mechanic]] for heroes, against such villains as a VampiricDraining, drug-dependent serial killer, a CorruptCorporateExecutive crime boss, his [[TheDragon Dragon]], a mutated, man-eating rat-man that lives in the sewers, and [[TheLastOfTheseIsNotLikeTheOthers an emo poet girl who can control birds]].
* DeathOrGloryAttack: Several characters have ways to deal huge amounts of damage at the expense of their equipment. Omnitron-X and The Wraith, for instance, have one-shot cards that let them destroy all their equipment cards to do massive damage, leaving them extremely vulnerable and limited in their actions afterward. Haka has a card that lets him discard as many cards as he wants in one turn to boost his next attack -- which can make for a hell of a punch, but could also leave him with nothing in his hand. Interestingly, he has another card that applies the same kind of boost to defense, and another that lets him heal one HP for every card he discards.
* DifficultyLevels: Comes in three varieties:
** Each hero is rated 1-3 in terms of complexity or difficulty to use them effectively. A 1-complexity hero (like Haka or Legacy) tends to have very straightforward powers and cards which each have a direct use, meaning you can do something constructive each turn. A 2-complexity (Bunker, Visionary) hero tends to require a little more set-up with powers that are more supplemental than direct action, but the set-ups are relatively simple, meaning you might need to play a card to do something constructive, but that card is still pretty straightfoward. Heroes rated at 3-complexity (like Absolute Zero or the Argent Adept) have more complicated set-ups and powers that do nothing on their own or even harm the hero themselves, meaning they need two or more different cards out before they can really contribute to the team -- but once they are set up, they can [[DifficultButAwesome do some serious damage]].
** Villains are rated in difficulty on a 4-point scale. Low-level villains tend to have single-effect cards, or cards that the players can neutralize before they come into full effect; mid-level villains have more minions who do stronger attacks, and can play havoc with the players out of turn; the highest-level villains tend to have a lot of minions, and can attack or disrupt the players when they try to take out those minions, forcing them to strategize and pick when they want to attack.
** A sort of 'hidden' difficulty modifier is in the environments. Some environments are fairly neutral and hit both heroes and villains in equal measure (Damage in the Tomb of Anubis tends to hit everyone, regardless of affiliation); others tilt in favor of the heroes (Insular Primalis, for instance, whose raptors attack the lowest-HP target, which tend to be minions, and whose damage boosts tend to help the players more than the villains). Still other environments, like Rook City and Megalopolis, seriously hinder the heroes, preventing them from playing cards or using powers, and buffing villains while exacting stiff penalties to remove the effects.
* DiscardAndDraw: Several of the decks are built with different styles, modes, or equipment that can't be played with others, evoking this trope -- each of Bunker's different modes destroys the others when it enters play, Mr. Fixer can only use one style and weapon at a time, and the Naturalist switches animal forms.
* DragonTheirFeet: Possible with The Chairman and The Operative, since it's possible to take the Chairman down to 0 HP before The Operative, but the heroes can't win until they're both down for the count.
* EarlyBirdCameo: Artwork on different cards will frequently feature characters from currently-unrelated expansions. Also, it's not uncommon for a hero or villain to share a nemesis icon with an unreleased deck.
* EliteMooks: The Vengeful Five's decks feature nemeses of some heroes in the role of mooks. Most are much stronger than the minions in the other decks.
* EvilCounterpart: The villainous team in the Vengeance expansion includes four new villains, all of whom are direct counterparts of their rivals on the Freedom Five to different extents.
* ExactWords: In a meta sense. Many of the common strategies rely on the exact wordings of the cards allowing for the targets of effects to be different than the creators might have originally intended.
** For instance, any card that allows a player to choose "a target" without specifying, including Absolute Zero's Isothermic Transducer, can be interpreted as including that character -- meaning in AZ's case, he can target himself with the cold damage generated when he takes fire damage, and with the right equipment, heal himself to nullify the attack.
** Haka's Savage Mana uses its wording to become incredibly potent against minion-heavy decks. Savage Mana puts any card that Haka destroys underneath it (to charge him up for a massive attack later on), instead of the villain trash, which lets him "trap" villain cards and prevent them from being played from the trash. This makes him incredibly useful against decks where the villain can play destroyed minions from the trash, like Warlord Voss' dreaded Forced Deployment, Citizen Dawn's Return With The Dawn, or the Chairman's Prison Break. Its especially useful against Baron Blade before he flips, as it prevents Blade from dumping extra cards into his trash, which speeds up his NonstandardGameOver.
** Also important are the game's distinctions between "turn" and "round." A round is everyone getting a turn, starting with the villain, and ending with the environment, while a turn is any individual's turn. This distinction means that an ability that can kick in "every turn" can happen up to seven times in one round. Nightmist's Amulet of the Elder Gods, which lets her redirect the first damage she takes any turn at the cost of two cards, can be used to make her nigh untouchable. Fanatic's Divine Focus, similarly, lets her sacrifice a card every turn to do damage.
** There's a handful of deck interactions that have very interesting implications with these kinds of rules.
*** All three Omnitron decks -- the villain Omnitron, the hero Omnitron-X, and the environment Omnitron-IV -- have cards with the keyword "Component," and cards that affect other cards with that keyword. Omnitron-X, for instance, has one attack card that does damage based on how many Component cards he destroys, but doesn't specify they have to be ''his''.
*** Because it specifies Relics are immune, Nightmist, Ra, and Apostate won't have all their cards wiped by Fanatic's End of Days. Argent Adept's instruments, however, will be destroyed because while they may be relics in the sense that they're old, they're not Relics with the keyword.
*** Visionary's Decoy Projection has the keyword "Distortion," meaning it won't stay around long in the Realm of Discord, whose own Distortion cards all have text saying to destroy all other Distortions when they enter play.
*** Grand Warlord Voss wins if there are 10 or more Minion cards in play at the start of his turn. Because the Mobile Defense Platform includes six Minion cards of its own, he is especially dangerous to fight there.
* {{Expy}}: Every character and environment is an Expy to one or more existing Marvel or DC characters. [[TropesAreNotBad Not that this is a bad thing.]]
%%* FiveManBand: Due to the nature of the game, each game will have a different set of 3-5 heroes, so multiple different versions of this can and will exist, but the Freedom Five (the universe's [[ComicBook/TheAvengers Avengers]] or JusticeLeague) fits this to a T.
%%** TheHero: Legacy.
%%** TheLancer: The Wraith.
%%** TheBigGuy: Bunker.
%%** TheSmartGuy: Absolute Zero.
%%** TheChick: Tachyon.
%%** SixthRanger: Unity
%%*** Tempest takes over this role in the Iron Legacy dark future
%%** Also, there are the Prime Wardens, assembled by Argent Adapt and comprised of himself, Tempest, Haka, Fanatic, and Captain Cosmic. However, it's a little harder to say for certain who fits each role given that all we know about the team is their alternate cards and a single other image.
* FrickinLaserBeams: Omnitron and Omnitron-X have [[BeamSpam quite a few]] of these.
* FriendlyFireproof: Averted for the heroes themselves, several of whom have one-shots that must hit heroes, like Haka's Rampage or Nightmist's Oblivion. Played straight with some environment cards that are friendly to the heroes -- Rook City, in particular, has two helpful civilian cards that cannot be harmed by hero targets.
* GameplayAndStorySegregation: The powers and abilities of each character in their backstories vary from the way the characters work in the game.
** The most obvious is Legacy, who despite being a FlyingBrick, has a deck mostly focused on healing and protecting his allies. Interestingly, in the Freedom Four comic, Legacy behaves much like he does in-game, distracting Blade and taking hits while the Wraith, Bunker, and Tachyon do the actual damage to the platform and drill.
** His alternate form, Greatest Legacy, gets this from the other direction. Since only the character card is different, he retains the effects and powers that depend on or otherwise reference Legacy's impenetrable skin -- a power that only the current Legacy developed, and which Greatest Legacy wouldn't have.
** Tachyon has her flavor text describe Lightspeed Barrage as [[RapidFireFisticuffs dozens of punches]], but the in-game effect is one chunk of damage.
* GoodScarsEvilScars: Vengeant Baron Blade most definitely has an evil scar.
* HealthDamageAsymmetry: To an extent. Heroes mostly have HP in the 25-30 range, while a typical boss villain will have more like 90, with the highest hitting 200. Villains very rarely do more than 5 damage in a hit, and even that once per round. Sufficiently prepared heroes, on the other hand, will be doing that kind of damage each turn, and can occasionally throw out attacks that do 10 or 20.
* HeelFaceTurn:
** The villain Omnitron upgrades itself repeatedly, finally adding an empathy component. When it does this, it [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone realizes the death and destruction it caused]] as a villain and travels back in time to join the heroes.
** In the Iron Legacy dark future, Fright Train has taken over the role of Bunker.
** Sometime between her introduction in Rook City and Sentinels: Tactics, The Matriarch switches her codename to Pinion and joins the heroic Dark Watch.
* HostageSituation:
** The Dreamer's battle plays out like one. If the heroes kill the Dreamer, they lose. In order to win, they must defeat her "captors": the projections from her nightmare.
** There's a card in the Megopolis Environment deck where one of these plays out. It prevents the heroes playing cards.
* HotScientist: Tachyon, who's a very attractive woman, and an OmnidisciplinaryScientist.
%%* KidHero: The Idealist.
* LaserBlade:
** Gene-Bound Ion-Lancer and L'Epeiste each wield one.
** K.N.Y.F.E also has these, mixing them with KnifeNut.
** One of Captain Cosmic's cards is a sword made out of solid light.
* LegacyCharacter:
** Ignoring the pun, this is Legacy's schtick. Every Legacy gains all the powers of the previous Legacy, and adds a new one, as detailed under ComboPlatterPowers.
** One of Bunker's promo cards is the Bunker who served in World War II, while the Shattered Timelines version is Fright Train, who took up the hero's mantle to fight Iron Legacy.
* LegionOfDoom: The Vengeance expansion has Baron Blade forming one, creating a team of five villains named the Vengeful Five to take on the Freedom Five. While the other four are all new playable villains, some of them had shown up earlier in the art of the heroes, implying they'd been part of the various {{rogues galler|y}}ies in the past.
* {{Leitmotif}}: Each villain gets one in the digital version as of the Rook City expansion when looking at their entries in the Multiverse. The environments also have their own particular music that plays in the Multiverse menu and during combat.
* LevelScaling: The game is designed for 3-5 heroes. This does not mean, however, that playing with more than that gives the players an advantage. The villains often have attacks or other effects that are dictated by the number of players (usually somewhere between -2 and +2 the number of heroes), so if you take six or more heroes into the fight, it's that much more difficult. Suddenly you're being even more swarmed by minions, and when the villains themselves attack, they're doing extra damage. On the other side of it, an undersized party finds itself facing far fewer minions, and taking almost negligible damage from those same attacks.
* LightEmUp: A lot of Fanatic's attacks deal radiant damage. Hers are some of the only attacks that feature the damage type, meaning that few, if any enemy targets are immune to it.
* LivingShadow: Writhe is stuck in this form, due to a botched experiment.
* LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters: Currently, there are 26 playable heroes (not counting the additional 26 promo cards, which are alternate forms for existing heroes) and 25 villain character decks (not counting things like minions in the villain decks, villain promo cards, or the 10 new villain decks in the upcoming "Villains of the Multiverse" expansion).
* LuckBasedMission: To a certain extent, since decks are supposed to be randomly shuffled both before the game, and during because of certain cards. All the AnAdventurerIsYou designations work fine...provided the key cards for those aspects aren't randomly shuffled to the bottom of your deck. The same applies the other way -- the difficulty of a villain can spike way up or down depending on whether their most powerful cards are on the top or bottom of the deck.
** Unlocking variant cards in the digital version of the game can be this as well, especially villain cards. For example, unlocking Mad Bomber Baron Blade requires that you first defeat Baron Blade once, and then take on Citizen Dawn and defeat three specific minions in the same turn. Since those minions support one another, it gets ''really'' hard to bring them down all at once and is very dependent on your heroes, their powers, their cards, and praying that Citizen Dawn doesn't draw an extremely powerful card that interferes with the entire game.
* LuckManipulationMechanic: While dice aren't involved, the cards are shuffled often to randomize the game. Several heroes have abilities that let them either look at their next card and optionally discard it, pick what card the villain will draw next, or allow another player to draw two cards and discard one outside of their normal turn order. Other decks have cards that let a player go through their deck or trash and just pick a card with a given key word on it rather than wait for it to come up on the draw.
* MadScientist: Baron Blade. He becomes even madder in his promo card form "Mad Bomber," which takes place after he's had a VillainousBreakdown. He's no longer the collected aristocrat with minions and a grand plan, he's a lunatic with a gear loose, blowing things up and blasting people with a death ray.
* TheMafia: The Organization, under the control of the Chairman. They combine a mixture of street thugs, hitmen, {{Dirty Cop}}s, informants, thieves, and other lowlifes to make your life hell.
* MakeMeWannaShout: Gene-Bound Banshee, which does, and is immune to, sonic damage.
* MesACrowd: Proletariat can create clones of himself.
* MilitariesAreUseless:
** Played straight in that the regular military is unable to do anything to stop the more powerful, overt villains like Baron Blade, Citizen Dawn, or Grand Warlord Voss, so it falls to the heroes to defeat them. In the case of Warlord Voss, if he has more than ten minions on the field by the start of his turn, he wins automatically as his armies overrun Earth.
** Subverted in that Bunker is a MilitarySuperhero, so the military does lend a hand when they can.
** Amusingly, it is entirely possible for a game set in Megalopolis to end with some horrifying cosmic supervillain being finished off by the local police (possibly by being ''punched out'' by the cops if Cramped Quarters Combat is active).
* MilitarySuperhero: Bunker, whose suit was made as part of the Ironclad project of the US Military.
* TheMole: Freedom Five secretary Amina Twain is secretly the villain Miss Information.
* {{Mooks}}: Many of the villains can summon characters from their villain decks. Baron Blade's Blade Battalion, Voss's alien army, Matriach's birds, Omnitron's drones, the Chairman's Thugs, and La Captians' crew all come to mind.
* MoreDakka:
** Bunker and Expatriette use guns. Lots and lots of guns. Bunker also has his [[WaveMotionGun OmniCannon]], and Expatriette can fire two pistols, a shotgun, an assault rifle and an SMG on the same turn, with the right setup.
** One of Bunker's cards makes all but explicit reference to it -- it's called "Turret Mode," its effect is that you can use two powers in a turn (read: fire more guns) and boost their damage. The FlavorText? [[AC:BUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDABUDDA]].
* NonIndicativeDifficulty:
** Played with, via the LevelScaling above. Many of the harder villains don't have fixed values for their attacks, or for their minions' attacks, instead doing damage that's the number of heroes minus 1 or 2. This means that using the minimum party -- which logically should make things tougher -- nerfs a solid chunk, if not most, of the villains' attacks. Gloomweaver in particular is hit hard by this, as most of his minions that do damage do it on this scale, making his zombie horde and cultists a formidable obstacle for a full team of five heroes, but sitting ducks for three heroes.
** The listed difficulties of the villains doesn't always pan out as accurate, either. While The Matriarch, listed as one of the game's toughest villains, will often have over a dozen birds out at once, and hits the players whenever they're taken out, each bird does such little damage that even basic armor will keep the heroes from being hurt at all so they can focus on just whacking Matriarch. On the other side, the lowest-rated villains, Omnitron and Baron Blade, each have cards that ''severely'' punish equipment-heavy heroes and can turn a game from a solid victory to a TotalPartyKill if the heroes are caught off guard.
* NonStandardGameOver: A good handful of villains have different ways to cause the heroes to lose besides just wiping them out.
** Baron Blade will cause a ColonyDrop should he have 15 cards in his trash at the start of his turn.
** Grand Warlord Voss overruns the planet with minions if he has 10 of them in play at the start of his turn.
** The Dreamer turns the standard win condition of reducing the Villain to 0 HP into the lose condition. The Dreamer is a little girl who's as much a victim of the dreams she conjures as anyone, and only has six hit points. For the heroes to win the Dreamer must flip and then a certain number of her Projections must be killed.
** An environment even has one. Silver Gulch 1883's Lost in the Past card causes the heroes to be lost in time (''i.e.'', Game Over) should the environment end its turn with no cards in the trash. And can put a card back into the environment deck at the ''start'' of the turn.
** The Wagner Mars Base unsurprisingly has a self-destruct device, and the heroes have to forgo fighting the villain to deactivate it.
** Inverted with Gloomweaver; if the heroes can trash three Relics, ''they'' win instantly.
** If the Propulsion Systems in the Mobile Defense Platform get reduced to 0 HP, the platform blows up and [[RocksFallEveryoneDies everyone dies.]]
** The promo villain Wagermaster's whole shtick is alternate win and lose conditions.
** Kagaara Warfang has Colosseum Favor. If the heroes get 20, they win instantly (And in fact cannot win any other way), while if the villains get 20, the heroes lose (and can most certainly still lose the normal way).
** Deadline creates massive environmental catastrophes in order to destroy humanity. Should enough of these occur, cards from the environment deck are removed from play. If, at this point, the environment deck is gone, Deadline has destroyed the planet and the heroes lose.
* NoSell: Several decks have ways to make their character or others immune to damage, usually for a turn at a time. Also invoked in individual cards -- Legacy considers being shot with gunfire as an ideal time to think about dinner plans, one of Haka's cards has him barely noticing a bomb exploding on his back, and Iron Legacy has several cards depicting the heroes attacking him to no effect, and their resultant OhCrap expressions.
* ObviousRulePatch: Second editions of cards and errata serve this purpose.
** The Raging T. Rex in Insular Primalis originally targeted the target with the second highest HP, before a reprint amended it to the target ''besides itself'' with the second highest HP.
** Visionary's Wrest the Mind card lets her redirect a target's damage however she chooses, at the cost of some HP. The first print had no restrictions, and took 2 HP from her and the target, while the reprint {{nerf}}ed it to exclude character cards and raise it to 3 HP. This eliminated the ability to affect the villain cards -- which had been a GameBreaker for several villains -- and shortened how long it could be used on minion cards.
* OneLiner: The flavor text on a lot of the cards. Several of these are a ShoutOut of some sort.
* PsychicPowers: Visionary, The Dreamer, and The Idealist use them.
* PoisonousPerson: Gene-Bound Bionaut. Naturally comes with a toxic immunity.
* RedshirtArmy: A few environments include cards representing hero-friendly characters, such as Police Backup in Megalopolis. These are usually very fragile allies who die when they catch any real villain attention.
* ReedRichardsIsUseless: Inverted. Tachyon's bio shows that she is directly responsible for countless technological innovations, including developing cars that can reach sixty miles to the gallon, a cure for cancer, and establishing a fully-functional base on Mars.
* RobotMaster:
** Omnitron's deck is capable or siccing Drones on the heroes, and can rebuild them from the trash should the heroes destroy them.
** Unity's deck is focused on this on the heroes' side.
* RougeAnglesOfSatin: Being the first edition of the game, there are naturally a fairly large amount of typos. Only one actually fits this, though; In the Rook City environment, the card Scum and Villany. It should, of course, be Villainy, but as it turns out, Villany is a place.
* SelfImposedChallenge: Each Villain card has an "Advanced" setting that tweaks their rules to make things harder on the heroes. Among the effects are increasing the amount of damage villain cards do, reducing how much damage they take, and speeding up the villain's NonStandardGameOver. The game's wiki also includes other challenges, such as immediately setting up Skinwalker Gloomweaver after beating Spite, Agent of Gloom, starting Akash'bhuta with more of her targets out or increasing all the damage The Dreamer takes to the point of being a OneHitKill.
* SetRightWhatOnceWentWrong: Iron Legacy ends up doing this unintentionally. In the original timeline, Baron Blade succeeds in killing Legacy, and Young Legacy steps up in his place. In Iron Legacy's timeline, Baron Blade ends up killing Young Legacy, and Legacy snaps as a result. During the Shattered Timelines expansion, Iron Legacy ends up fighting heroes from the past, including both Legacies -- and as a result, they're both recuperating when Baron Blade makes his move, and neither of them fall into his trap.
* ShockAndAwe: Tempest's entire race is capable of using lightning among their weather powers. The SlaveMook versions of them in Grand Warlord Voss's deck do this damage type.
* ShootingSuperman: Lampshaded in one of Legacy's damage reduction cards. Getting shot at by {{Mooks}} is apparently a perfect moment for Legacy to think about what's for dinner.
* SlaveMook: Voss's army has quite a few of these. He follows the typical format of enslaving beings that are useful to him, and killing off everyone else.
* SovietSuperscience: How Proletariat got his powers.
* StatusQuoIsGod: A solid effort at aversion, rare among board games. The expansions flow in chronological order, and new promo cards show character growth for heroes like Ra and Fanatic, Haka being the last surviving human, and a VillainousBreakdown for Baron Blade. Teasers for upcoming sets hint at greater changes to come, including the death of Legacy. This last is subverted, per ''Sentinels Tactics'' -- because both Legacy and Young Legacy were fighting Iron Legacy, neither of them was killed by Baron Blade. Young Legacy instead takes up the name Beacon, presumably to avoid confusing names.
* StraightGay:
** Tachyon. The only references to her sexuality are in one of her giant dumps of random bits of info, where she mentions spending weekends "with the wife", and in the Freedom Four #1 comic.
** Dr. Medico, who only gets an offhand mention of his husband in his text-dump backstory.
* {{Stripperiffic}}: Downplayed, but still present because this is a comic book game and that sort of thing's a requirement. Almost none of the women are indecently dressed, but among the heroes, The Wraith's outfit has a cleavage window, the Visionary's has a belly-button window, Tachyon's costume only covers one shoulder, Expatriette [[BareYourMidriff bares her middriff]], and Unity's wearing a very short tank top. Of the men, Haka and Ra are bare-chested. For the most part, the villains avert this.
* SuperheroSpeciation: Each hero has unique powers, and even among the heroes who fit a similar archetype as outlined in AnAdventurerIsYou work differently in ''how'' they fill those roles. Even if you play all three versions of Legacy at once, while they all use the same deck, their base power makes them subtly different -- Greatest Legacy's is to heal, Legacy's is to buff, and Young Legacy's is a straight attack.
* TakingTheBullet: Several heroes have cards that do this either by mechanics or in flavor.
** Legacy's Heroic Interception depicts him catching a missile, and renders all heroes except himself immune to damage. His Lead from the Front card also lets him redirect damage meant for other heroes to himself.
** Haka's Enduring Intercession redirects all damage from environment cards to Haka.
** Fanatic's Divine Sacrifice forces enemies she attacks with it to focus on her exclusively until her next turn.
** Unity's Stealth Bot has this as its only function, able to redirect any damage to itself, and reduce it by 1.
** Two friendly civilian cards in the Rook City deck have provisions that at the end of their turn, the villain card damages either them or one of the heroes.
** The heroes have the option to take on any environment-generated damage that would otherwise hit The Dreamer, since the heroes lose if she drops to 0 HP.
* TallDarkAndSnarky: Tachyon. Okay, she's blonde. But, with a great sense of humor (she memorably described her lab team as "only the top scientific badasses") and standing at a full six feet tall, she fulfills most of the name, and certainly fits the archetype.
* TheTeam: Being a cooperative game, any battle comes down to a team effort among the players, who are each filling different rolls. Any game needs, at minimum, three heroes. InUniverse, so far there are three organized superhero teams: The Freedom Five (Legacy, Bunker, Wraith, Tachyon and Absolute Zero with Unity as their intern); the Darkwatch (Nightmist, Expatriette, Setback, Mr. Fixer, and -- at the time of ''Sentinels Tactics'' -- Pinion, a reformed Matriarch); and The Prime Wardens (The Argent Adept, Haka, Tempest, Fanatic, and Captain Cosmic).
* ThrowingYourSwordAlwaysWorks: Ra can use the Staff of Ra's power to deal projectile damage. The staff is destroyed upon doing this, however.
* ThemeNaming: Present everywhere, but Citizen Dawn's deck takes the cake:
** Citizen Winter, Citizen Spring, Citizen Summer, and Citizen Autumn.
** Citizen Anvil and Citizen Hammer.
** Citizen Blood, Citizen Sweat, and Citizen Tears.
** Citizen Truth and Citizen Dare.
** Citizen Assault and Citizen Battery.
* ThatOneBoss: [[invoked]]Referenced in game with a difficulty rating system. The hardest villains under this system (rated 4 out of 4) are The Chairman, Iron Legacy, The Matriarch, and Progeny.
* TurnsRed: Some of the villain cards flip into a stronger, or at least more destructive, form when they're either low on health, out of health, or out of minions -- i.e., when they're starting to lose the fight. For some villains, like Voss or Citizen Dawn, the players will want to keep them out of this stage. Baron Blade is the straightest example. When he is brought down to zero HP, he flips into a robotic PoweredArmor, goes back to full health, trashes his shield cards -- He's entering the fray, rather than sitting in his defense platform -- and begins attacking the heroes directly every turn.
* UnexplainedRecovery: Per the creators, Mr. Fixer was killed fighting The Operative, but came back. They haven't said how, but they have said that it ''wasn't'' the Lazarus Vats that the Chairman and the Operative have themselves used, because while it rejuvenates, it can't actually bring back someone already dead.
* {{Unwinnable}}: Certain combinations of heroes and villains can result in unwinnable games, usually because one or more of the key targets is immune to particular damage types.
** Shu of the Ennead, for instance, is immune to Melee and Projectile damage types. A team like Legacy, Parse, and Wraith -- who only have access to those types of damage -- can't hurt her at all. In an Environment like Megalopolis, whose damage-dealing cards only do melee or projectile to villains and whose only damage-type-changing card changes the damage to melee, Shu is outright invulnerable and the heroes can't win.
** Advanced Gloomweaver is similar, being immune on his front side to Melee and Projectile damage. He, at least, the heroes can beat either by destroying his Relics or letting him flip -- unless you're playing in the Final Wasteland while Unforgiving Wasteland is out and environment damage destroys one, taking it entirely out of play. If this happens, Gloomweaver can't flip, and the instant win condition, which specifies that the three relics [[ExactWords be in the trash]], can't trigger.
* VillainsActHeroesReact: The villain always gets the first turn. Their set up usually involves deploying a number of minions or devices, and the heroes have usually taken some damage by the time the villain's turn is over. This mirrors the typical comic book plot, where some villain attacks the city or is after something, and the heroes have to react to stop their plot.
* VoluntaryShapeshifting: The Naturalist, though at first it [[InvoluntaryShapeshifting wasn't voluntary.]]
* WeaponOfChoice: Quite a few in various forms.
** Ra's Staff of Ra.
** Expatriette's twin pistols Pride and Prejudice.
** Fanatic's Absolution.
** Apostate's Condemnation.
* WeHaveReserves: The minion-heavy decks, such as Voss, The Chairman or the Matriarchs, use this as a strategy, with numerous ways to bring mooks to the forefront, and even revive them from the trash. Outright stated in the flavor text of one of Expatriette's cards, which allows her to automatically damage any villain target the moment it enters play: A Blade Battalion Commander, apparently admonishing his troops with, "Get out there! She can't shoot ''all'' of you!"
* TheWildWest: The 'Silver Gulch, 1883' environment deck. It even has a wagon full of dynamite, which always blows up at the least opportune time.
* WithGreatPowerComesGreatInsanity: Infinator, who, in addition to the powers his brother Captain Cosmic got, [[HearingVoices was also driven insane by the screams of voices from across the cosmos now in his head]].
* WorldOfSnark and WorldOfHam: Somehow manages to have the characters be both incredibly over the top and hammy, and incredibly snarky, occasionally at the same time.
* WretchedHive: Rook City in general. ''Especially'' so if you're fighting The Organization there.
* YouDirtyRat: Plague Rat, whose mutations have turned him into a giant, toxic rat creature.
* ZergRush:
** The Matriarch's entire style. Her individual birds do not hit very hard, but when there's ''15'' of them on the field at once, on her second turn, it doesn't matter. Made even worse when you remember that taking out any of them causes damage to your own team anyway.
** The Organization does something similar. Give them a moment's rest and they can put out a small legion of minions, all of whom are buffed by bosses.
----