The Science of Search, Part 4

A Knight to Remember

When the Marvel Knights expansion strode into the scene, players identified Wild Ride as the money card of the set, being the team-stamped search card for the set’s premier team:

As far as team-stamped search cards go, Wild Ride is one of the easiest to use, not requiring the discard of a card or even a Marvel Knights character in play, able to be played on the first turn, and costing the player a relatively manageable amount of endurance which, given the MK theme of endurance-for-benefit, would be something the MK player would take into account anyway.  It would not be the most exciting search card to emerge from MMK, however, which distinction would arguably belong to this contender:

Until MMK, team-up decks were generally much less consistent than mono-team decks, since at least one character of each of the two (or more) different teams in the deck had to be in play, and one usually had to rely on the straight draw of the team-up card to acquire it.  This was no longer the case once Dagger and Midnight Sons became available for play, with 4 Daggers effectively acting as copies 5-8 of Midnight Sons, and Midnight Sons facilitating team-ups with any team in the game for only the requirement of having a MK character in play.  More importantly, a deck running Dagger and Midnight Sons didn’t even need any character cards in it other than those from the MK team to play team-stamped cards for other teams (such as with, say, Teen Titans Go! for the Titans or Spider Senses for the Spider-Friends).  Dagger + Midnight Sons + Wild Ride gave MK the limited ability to toolbox, bringing the game one step closer to the hodgepodge VS archetypes that we see today, for better or worse (though mostly worse, in my opinion).

Quite a number of search cards actually emerged from MMK following the trend of Dagger by searching for specific cards, or card names, rather than a range of card types:

Not exactly groundbreaking as far as search tech went at the time, as cards from previous sets had also referenced particular cards or card names.  The search card that caused something of a stir when it was first previewed, though later on turned out to be a dud, was the uneconomic Weapon of Choice:

The first generic character search card in the game was quite mediocre for the fact that it cost you two additional cards discarded, and that it left the choice of what you got ultimately to your opponent, which is never a good thing.  Moreover, it forced the player to play at least one copy of a character that he may not play in 90% of situations.  Of course this was preferable to a missed drop, but compared to generic search cards that would be introduced in later sets, Weapon of Choice would nonetheless fade into obscurity.

Next:  Chosen by the Ring


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