Top Ten pieces most improved by 2013 rules: part 3

Posted on June 6, 2013

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Last month’s Top Ten looked at the powers and abilities themselves. But now we’re looking at former loser pieces that actually might see a little use, and a few that were okay but now are much better, and maybe one or two that go from pretty good to top tier.

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 Stranger (Galactic Guardians 043)

His only real weakness before was a low AV for his over-200 price. Now, with RCE/CCE, that’s handled. Also, he has access to the new pink powers of Sidestep, Precision Strike, Invincible, or Empower enabling him to, respectively, get a tad of free movement either before or after attack, , make his attacks stick, minimize the penetrating damage foes throw at him, or boost teammates in melee.

He’s only #4 because he was already quite good and the change still won’t propel him to top tier.

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Nomad (Captain America 016)

Before, his Energy Explosion was a total waste. Now he’s dealing the 3 damage AND the splash damage. Later, he picks up Close Combat Expert to help his punching, and Incap grants still more options. All of a sudden this former loser appears to have quite a bit more going for him than just Running Shot and Willpower — enough to make him the #3 Most Improved despite just 4 range and no keywords.

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Ken (Street Fighter 021)

Every single click has an improved power. On click #1 alone he can use the improved Force Blast to pushback with a fireball. Or SP Quake to clear crowds and move for free. Or pump his AV +1 or 2 in close against a single target. Then there’s RCE on the alternating clicks.

Ryu (020) is the same, but Ken gets the #2 slot for being 10 points cheaper and having the additional Quake power.

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Maul (Batman 024)

He made the Worst of 2012 list, deservedly so. But with the change to Close Combat Expert, his one crippling weakness, a terrible late-dial AV, is GONE. So push him with abandon, happily boosting his AV to double digits as he smashes with objects (thus keeping his damage value at 4 or higher). Sure, opponents might try to counter the SP, but they’d also be leaving his defense alone and shrinking him from giant size to boot. This piece is definitely the one that goes from zero to hero in a big way.

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I’m sure there’s some I forgot or overlooked, especially since I used my own “Worst of” lists as my starting point before expanding to pieces like Ryu and Ken who weren’t bad before but just had their whole dials upgrade. What are YOUR picks for Most Improved?

 

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