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This seems unusual, but I encountered this last night. I was playing solo with Thanos as the mastermind and Steal the Weaponized Plutonium as the scheme. This scheme adds a villain group to the villain deck, bringing the deck total to 29: 16 villains, 8 scheme twists, 3 henchmen, 1 master strike, and 1 bystander.

When playing solo, the rules note that Thanos gets -2 attack for every villain in your victory pile. The way I was drawing cards off the villain deck caused me to be able to build up my victory pile very quickly, and I was at 12 villains in my victory pile about halfway through the game. This brought Thanos' attack to 0.

In order to fight Thanos in this situation, do I still need to play a hero with any attack value? The alternative seems to be me taking free shots at him for the rest of the game regardless of what I play on my turn, which seems sort of odd. Is there something else that I'm missing about this situation that would lead to a clearer ruling?

2 Answers 2

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The specific text for the Solo Mode Thanos variant reads:

When fighting Thanos in Solo Mode and using a Villain Group besides Infinity Gems, Thanos gets -2 (attack symbol) for each Villain in your Victory Pile from that Group.

Firstly, if you are using the Infinity Gems Villain Group, this rule does not take effect, and his attack is only reduced by Infinity Gems.

Secondly, note that it does not state "every Villain in your Victory Pile", it specifically says "each Villain in your Victory Pile from that Group".

This indicates that you have to pick one Villain Group in the Villain Deck to replace Infinity Gems as his weakness.

Thus only one Villain Group in the deck would count against him, and since there are only 8 cards in any given Villain Group, the most that this could reduce his attack by is 16.

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As further evidence for winterblood's answer:

In the Legendary: Villains rule book (BGG account needed for link), the following section on page 20 addresses this:

Commander Abilities Linked to Specific Adversary Groups

Some Commanders/Masterminds like Odin, Mole Man, and Apocalypse have special abilities linked to the specific Adversaries that they usually “Always Lead.” In Advanced Solo Mode, if you don’t use the Group that this Commander “Always Leads,” then apply that ability to the corresponding Adversary Group or Backup Group that you are using. Use this rule for other Legendary sets as well. For example, in Advanced Solo Mode:

• Odin’s abilities apply to whichever Backup Group you are using, as if they were Asgardian Warriors.

• Mole Man’s abilities apply to whichever Adversary Group you are using, as if they were Subterranea.

• Apocalypse gives +2 to whichever Adversary Group you are using, as if they were Four Horsemen. If one of each of the different Adversaries in the Adversary Group overruns, Apocalypse instantly wins.

These rules imply that one villain/adversary group is assigned to the Mastermind/Commander ability.

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