Paradox and Prime


Nobody knows who Paradox is, or even what dimension spawned this
brutal conqueror. All that is known is that Paradox travels from world
to world and reality to reality, looking for the greatest champions
and vanquishing them to ensure that they never team up and pose a real
challenge. Besides time and space bending abilities, Paradox is also
aided by evil versions of heroes from other realities.  Will the
Freedom Five be able to stop this threat, or will our reality be
enslaved like countless others have been?

Inspirations: Stryfe, Dark Phoenix, Infinity gauntlet Thanos.


Paradox is a high health villain that depends mostly on ongoing cards
to deal damage and suppress the heroes. Paradox is able to manipulate
certain rules to make things tough for the heroes. Also Paradox is
accompanied by evil versions of all heroes… maybe the 10 originals,
maybe the first 14, maybe the “time and space” expansion heroes too.

And here is the big thing… when Paradox flips, it is revealed that
Paradox is an evil version of a hero… but the reveal will always be
different because you use one of the hero cards to determine who it
is. That way every game has that excitement of meeting the villain for
the first time and wondering who is secretly behind the mask.


Big and bulky armor, giving Paradox a completely anonymous look.
Paradox looks like The Bunker if he was the king or dictator. Cape,
crown like spikes in the helmet, lots of gold on black iron armor.
Besides being reminiscent of Bunker/Zero you should add in some other
accessories that call other heroes to mind… including a legacy ring on
every finger on one of the close ups (say holding “Absolution” with a
ring on each finger).

As for the flip I picture an image of Paradox from behind, dented
helmet in hand, and all the heroes reacting in horror.

Flip Mechanic

Paradox regains all health, shuffle villain trash into deck and draw
until you get a Servant card. That card is now in play and
indestructible, since it represents Paradoxes true unmasked face.

Types of Cards

Ongoing: Reality Alternation (examples)

Entropy: Whenever a hero shuffles his deck, he takes 2 unavoidable
damage. Whenever the villain or environment deck is shuffled all hero
targets take 1 unavoidable damage.

Animate Minions: Ignore all text on Environment cards… all environment
cards are 6 Health minions that deal 2 melee damage to the hero with
the highest health at the end of the environment turn. When this card
is destroyed, destroy all Environment Cards.
(Illustration could include a golem made of rocks, roots and a raptor
head for a claw.)

Stop Time: basically skip the hero turn and environment turn, and then
destroy this card.

Matter Control: When environment cards are destroyed, play an environment card.

Backfire: All hero equipment gains at the start of the hero turn
destroy this card or take 2 electrical damage.

Equipment (Mostly confiscated weapons)

Staff of Ra: big flame blasts.

Absolution:  radiant end of turn attacks.

Exile Cube: 10 hp, place next to the hero with the highest hp, he
cannot be the target of any cards or abilities. This hero cannot
target any cards other than Exile Cube.

One Shot (mostly attacks and surprises)

Omni Cannon: A big blast based on trash.

Repair Armor: Destroy all Equipment and Environment cards, Paradox
regains one hp per card destroyed.

Foil Plans: All players shuffle their hand and graveyard into their deck.

Reality Shift: All players and the villain exchange their deck with
their trash and then shuffle their library. Reveal villain cards until
you reveal a Reality Alteration, put it into play.

Servants (Evil versions of heroes)

Evil Heroes: Each Dark Version of hero has a decent amount of health
(8 – 10?), has an attack and also a very negative effect if their
counterpart is in play. They specialize against “themselves” because
each Servant has probably killed several versions of themselves from
other worlds. For example Tempest really knows how to defeat Tempest.
Here are some possible side effects.

Absolute Zero:  Cold damage to all, if Absolute Zero is in play all
Heat damage counts as Cold damage.

Bunker: Projectile damage to all. Bunker sacrifices an ongoing or
equipment card or takes H damage.

Fanatic: Deals Infernal Damage, If Fanatic is in Play all non hero
cards regain 1 hp.

Hakka: Damage vs. Lowest Health, If Hakka is in play, Hakka discards a
card at the start of the villain turn.

Ra: 3 fire damage vs. Highest HP, if Ra is in play, that player must
discard a card in order to use a power.

Tachyon: 1 melee vs. all, if a card would be put in Tachyons trash,
put it at the bottom of her library instead.


Prime was born as an abnormally large and intelligent member of a
fairly primitive genus that predated homo sapiens. Prime never quite
fit in though, while the tribe appreciated his ability to provide food
and fight off predators with his advanced tools and weapons, they saw
him as a foreigner in their midst and he never was able to get them to
understand his gifts. Lonely even when surrounded by his tribe, Prime
started to take long expeditions to explore the surrounding area. He
eventually met a large band of humans, and while they where not as
bright as he was, they seemed like geniuses compared to the rest of
his tribe. After quickly mastering their language he taught them a few
survival tricks and showed them some of his mechanical inventions. He
also brought them to meet his tribe, in hopes that they could live
side by side. When he returned from another journey the humans had
wiped out most of his tribe and he had to flee for his life in his
greatest invention, a hot air balloon. This vehicle ran out of fuel
above the icy ocean and he plummeted to his fate. Thousands of years
later a group of scientists found him and brought him back to the
headquarters of their corporation. The seemingly immortal Prime
quickly mastered all modern technologies and was running the company
within a couple of years. He is now a scientist and shadowy CEO who
looks to either save mankind if they are willing to accept his gift,
or destroy mankind if they reject it.

Inspirations: Gorilla Grodd, Lex Luthor, Magneto


Prime is an attempt at a pacifist villain, who wants to make the rest
of the world just like him. This is ultimately a selfish goal, and the
heroes will try to stop him. To keep the heroes busy he has devised a
series of schemes and he also has some help from mutated bodyguards
and other associates. Every once in a while his temper gets the best
of him and he lashes out with powerful melee attacks. When defeated he
becomes enraged and starts to seriously hurt the heroes… while he
assembles a giant satellite mounted death ray.


Prime’s face is that of a highly intelligent precursor to man, so it
is covered in hair and has a big bony brow and fangs but it also
shines with a spark of intelligence and mischief. He is nearly 8 feet
tall, but not in a stocky primate way, but rather with the slender
grace and wiry muscle of an athlete. The idea is that he is both the
perfect human, but clearly not human.

Prime is usually shown wearing stylish suits and ties, or a lab coat,
and high tech armor in his few “angry” cards. Once he switches over he
is pictured as shirtless and primal, armed with high tech weaponry.

Victory Condition

At the start put H – 2 villain cards into play.

If the Global Satellite, Fission Core and Genetic Re-Sequencer are in
play at the start of Primes turn, the heroes lose the game and all of
mankind is transformed.

At the end of the villain turn Prime deals 1 melee damage to all schemes.

Flip Mechanic:

If flipped then he regains 40 hp. Search the library and trash for the
Bio Disruptor Ray and Violent Temper and put them into play. Shuffle
the trash into the library and play H-2 villain cards.

At the end of the villain turn Prime deals 2 melee damage to all
schemes and all non villain targets.


Ponzi Scheme: 5 hp. When destroyed the hero with the most cards
discards all of them. Heroes can discard a card at any time to have
Ponzi Scheme regain 2 hp.

Bomb Scare:  5 hp. When destroyed, all non villain targets take H fire
damage. Heroes can use a power to have Bomb Scare regain 2 hp.

Hostile Takeover: 5 hp. When destroyed the hero with the most
equipment cards sacrifices all of them. Heroes can sacrifice an
equipment card at any time to have Hostile Takeover regain 2 hp. 2x

Patent Trolling: 5 hp. When an equipment card comes into play; all
Schemes take 1 damage and Patent Trolling gains 2 hp.

Real Estate Scheme: 5 hp. When Industrial Sabotage is destroyed all
players destroy their ongoing cards. When an environment card is
destroyed Real Estate Scheme gains 2 hp.


Global Satellite: 15 hp, immune to melee. Devices affect all non
villain targets.

Fission Core: 15 hp, double all damage dealt by devices. If destroyed,
Fission Core deals 10 energy damage to all targets (this damage is not
multiplied by Fission Core).

Genetic Re-sequencer: 15 hp At the start of the villain turn reveal
cards until you find a Associate. Put him into play an the rest at the
bottom of the deck.

Bio Disruptor Ray: 15 hp.  It deals H + 1damage to the non villain
target with the most hp.

Sonic Disruptor: At the end of the villain turn it deals H-1 sonic
damage to the hero with the highest hp. That hero discards a card. “I
swear this is a non lethal self defense weapon”.

Defense Field: 10 hp. Prevent all damage against Prime and Devices
other than Security Field. When damaged Security field deals that
source H-1 electric damage.

Associates: Various employees who have been mutated to be tough like Prime.

Primal Bodyguard: 8 hp, reduce all damage to prime by one. Whenever
damage is dealt to prime, Bodyguard deals 2 melee damage to that
source. x 3

Engineer:  5 hp, At the end of the villain turn all devices regain 2
hp. At the start of the villain turn if a device is in the trash,
sacrifice Engineer to bring it back into play. x 2

Marketing Consultant: 4 hp. At the end of the villain turn remove 1 hp
from all schemes. When marketing consultant is destroyed put a scheme
from the trash into play.

PR Consultant: 4 hp. If at least one scheme is in play, re-direct all
damage from Prime to a scheme.

One Shots:

Plan B: Shuffle the villain trash into the library and play H – 2
villain cards.

Flash of genius: Search the villain trash and deck for a device and
put it into play. Then shuffle the villain trash into the villain deck
and play a card.

Primal Beat down: Prime deals each hero H-1 melee damage and Prime
takes H damage.
“Hopefully this will teach you to leave me alone”


Violent Temper: whenever a scheme is destroyed, Prime deals the hero
with the most hp H-1 melee damage.

Bribe: Any hero can choose to skip both their play and power phase. If
they do so, they draw two cards instead of one and regain two hp.
“This lab is empty… except for a pile of money!”

So I just posted these from my girlfriends computer... I appreciate any coments or criticism and I cant wait to be back in Boston to read and comment on all your awesome entries! 

p.s. I'm ashamed that both have zero hp flip mechanics, but as crazy as they where I did not want to make them more convoluted. 

I thought about making my villain change depending in who was in play but thought that would get hairy as more heroes showed up. I do like the idea that one of the heroes is the villain, it reminded me of a Ben10 episode. This villain would evoke that OH MY moment.


Prime's great. The scheme interactions with his ongoings is awesome and terrifying to think about.

Paradox's "which hero is it" mechanic is really awesome. I love that you don't know until the flip who you are actually fighting. It also is really cool to see the heroes' own gimmicks and signature attacks thrown back at them. Very cool!

I LOVE Prime's schemes! This is a really inspired design in that it both mimics the number of balls that the average corporate master-mind would have in the air at one time AND creates multiple countdown timers that the heroes are forced to deal with before actually getting to him. This is a very Lex Luthor feel as the heroes spend so much time dealing with schemes that they never get to challenge him to a face to face fight. I can see him being very frustrating and rewarding to fight. Great ideas!

Thanks... paradox started as a cosmic entity, then became an evil version of Tachyon (time and space felt like maxed out version of speed) and eventually I thought "there are precious few heroes who could not be a ruthless conqueror if he was corrupted by the right artifact or had the right tragedy hit his life". There is something very Marvel about the heroes, they all have dark sides that deserve exploring (and where much more carefully unpacked in other submissions I've read).  The other important part was an infinity gauntlet "this is big" feel... like "he killed us in other realities, he has a dozen legacy rings, this fight is for keeps".


As for Prime I almost did not submit him since Paradox felt like a strong enough character but he was a labor of love... I already played a character like that in an MMO and I love the idea of an evil Steve Jobs... somebody who wants to solve the worlds problems but just really cannot quite tell right from wrong. Even without a tragic past, he would be a bad day away from building a death ray.

I like both of these heroes a lot. Paradox is interesting, and the idea of him having multiple different flip sides is a good one. The trick in his design would be to make all of those interesting enough to justify them.


Prime is really, really interesting as a villain, and all the schemes are a great idea. Would no doubt need balancing, but seems like a lot of fun


Good luck!

The "who are is he really" angle of Paradox is inspired. Great idea. 

Prime sounds exactly like D.C. Comics' Vandal Savage though, no?

Paradox is really neat. I'm concerned that the Tachyon one is just... too unfair to Tachyon? It literally breaks her one major contribution to the game beyond Hypersonic Assault, Fleet of Foot, and Ongoing/Environment Destruction. The rest all seem pretty minor (except Absolute Zero, who I'm not entirely sure what you mean by that, and Bunker, who is certainly on the ouch side of things), compared to something that really hurts Tachyon.

@ Spiff: what is funny is that I was trying to wear my inspirations on my sleeve (see the inspirations section) but the immortal caveman villain never came to mind. I think it is because I'm a marvel zombie and only know Vandal Savage from the animated cartoon, a time traveling guy bad enough to side with the nazis.


@ robalan: yeah, I hacked those out quickly at work but the one against Tachyon is a bit mean. I'm sure playtest would come up with something better.