The scenario system in MCP is simply marvelous. Just random enough to make every game different, while giving player agency to the kinds of scenarios they’ll encounter and still providing an interesting puzzle on the field that encourages players to interact. If they would release five more extract scenarios, it would be perfect. An interesting side effect of the limited number of scenario configurations is that one can pre-calculate the distances between the elements and know that, for example, a large based long-mover can reach the center of an F extract in a single movement action. These breakpoints can have a massive influence on which characters you should take on a certain scenario, so in this article I will do the math in order to prevent you from being surprised during a game.
First, some terminology. I will be referring to scenarios by their shape (B-F), note that the only A scenario is banned in standard so I will be ignoring it. My shorthand for base size is 35 for 35mm, 50 for 50mm and 65 for 65mm bases. Remember that “Short” (S), “Medium” (M) and “Long” (L) refer to the movement templates, while range templates use the numbers 1-5. I’m also going to be ignoring range 2 interactions and placement effects such as the space gem – I will leave those as an exercise for the reader.
Let’s start with extracts, since generally the main thing distance to remember is how many movement actions it takes to reach them from the deployment line.
The following table shows the number of movement actions required to move between secure elements. Rows indicate which scenario element the measurement is for and columns are base size + movement combinations. I’ve highlighted 1 movement action to middle and 2 movement to far. Note that I’ve included B shapes even though there are no B extracts since B flip secures have similar dynamics.
|B (Flip Secure)||Near||1||1||1||1||1||1||1||1|
|B (Flip Secure)||Far||4||3||2||3||2||2||3||2|
|D (Same as C)||Middle||2||2||2||2||2||1||2||2|
|E (Same as D Near)||Near||1||1||1||1||1||1||0||0|
|E (Same as C)||Middle||2||2||2||2||2||1||2||2|
|E (Same as D Far)||Far||4||3||2||4||3||2||3||3|
|F (Same as C)||Middle||2||2||2||2||2||1||2||2|
Long movers can reach the element on the far side of the table on B, D, E and F extracts in a single activation – though that can be a dangerous proposition. Large-Based and Huge-based Medium movers can do something similar on B and F extracts – so watch out for your trap on Mutant Madmen! If you have a huge base like Hulk, they can pick up a D or E secure without having to spend any actions to get away from the deployment line (which can really mess with the Sinister Traps tactics card). Finally, be aware that for the central extracts (C, D and F), only Large Based Long Movers like Angela can reach them in one movement action – everyone else needs an extra place or Tactics Card.
When thinking about secures, I find the most relevant information to be the range required to attack from the near side of one element to the far side of another, as well as the movement required to contest from the near side of one element to the near side of another.
The following table shows the range required to attack between secure scenario elements with the attacker as close as possible to the other element while still contesting and target as far as possible while still contesting. Rows indicate which scenario elements are being measured between and columns indicate the base size of the target. I’ve highlighted the lone situation where a range 3 attack can completely cover another element.
|Scenario \ Attacker||35mm-based||50mm-based||65mm-based|
|C (Side to Middle)||–||>5||5|
|E (Near to Middle)||4||4||3|
|F (Corner to Middle)||5||4||4|
|F (Corner to Near Corner)||5||4||4|
Based on this table, you can see why range 5 small-based attackers are so valuable – on every scenario except C and D – they can contest an element while attacking someone on another element without having to move. It’s also interesting that Huge-based models can attack at range 3 from one E secure element to another – I guess I need to play Hulkbuster on Gamma Wave more often. This is also why scenario-based teams like D secures so much – there are no attacks that can reach from one scenario element to another without using a movement ability first.
The following Table indicates the number of movement actions required to move between elements , assuming the character starts as close to the destination element as possible while still contesting the origin element. Rows indicate the scenario elements being measured between, Columns indicate the Base Size + Movement Speed for the character, and I’ve highlighted unusually small numbers of movement actions between elements.
|C (Side to Center)||2||2||1||2||2||1||2||1|
|C (Side to Side)||5||4||3||4||3||3||4||3|
|D (Center to Side)||3||2||2||2||2||2||2||2|
|D (Center to Center)||3||2||2||3||2||2||2||2|
|D (Side to Side, Same as C)||5||4||3||4||3||3||4||3|
|E (Near to Middle)||1||1||1||1||1||1||1||1|
|E (Near to Far, Same as D Center to Center)||5||4||3||4||3||3||4||3|
|F (Corner to Middle)||2||1||1||1||1||1||1||1|
|F (Corner to Near Corner)||2||1||1||2||1||1||1||1|
|F (Corner to Far Corner)||4||3||2||3||2||2||3||2|
This table indicates the shortcomings of Small-based Short-movers pretty well, since the only elements that they can move between in a single action are Es, and most of the time they require even more than that. Long Movers, and Huge-Based Medium Movers are incredibly valuable on B and F secures since they can move between the furthest scenario elements in 2 actions – and can even move between the near elements on a C secure in a single movement.
That’s a brief overview of some of the “standard” measurements in MCP which I often use to evaluate which characters to take on which scenarios, as well as what makes an affiliation good on one type of scenario versus another. Obviously, I don’t recommend memorizing every single element in all three tables, but knowing some of the general rules like “Black Panther can reach my scenario element in a single activation” or “Winter Soldier can attack from most scenario elements to another” can be extremely useful.