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Monday, September 12, 2011

Defining the New Defenders

In launching the Marvel Super Heroes role-playing game during the mid 1980s, TSR published a line of adventure modules and sourcebooks showcasing characters from the comic books.

Although the Defenders never had their own game supplement, "The MARVEL-Phile" article in Dragon #100 included Marvel Super Heroes game stats for three members of the New Defenders.

With her matter-of-fact fighting abilities, Valkyrie made for a straightforward transition into game terms. Stats for her horse Aragorn appeared as well.

Game mechanics for Gargoyle were more complicated than most, as writer Jeff Grubb captured the nuances of the hero's energy-drain powers.

Notes for Cloud, the newest of the New Defenders, were necessarily enigmatic—describing the character's alternate forms while adding that the truth about Cloud's identity remained unknown.

As for the other New Defenders, game stats for Beast and Moondragon previously appeared in the sourcebook Avengers Assembled! The X-Men sourcebook titled Project: Wideawake had included stats for Iceman, Angel, and Candy Southern.

The above image of Cloud, from The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe, was one of the illustrations included in Dragon #100 (August 1985).
Dragon #100 also featured the article "Creative Conjuring," in which Eric Walker proposed variant rules for the magic of Dr. Strange and other spell-casters in the Marvel Super Heroes game.

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