KennedyHawk: Howdy heroes! Another Saturday – time for another seriously essential topic. Basic allies! Some of the best allies in the game fall into the basic category – but let’s discuss the thing that truly makes them shine. Their art. Instead of power rankings like last week we’ll be putting each ally into a tier based on it’s artwork. From S-tier (always include this ally – the art is so amazeballs) to F-tier (who drew this?). We might even have some insights about the cards along they way – who knows? Not me – that’s for sure.
Amerikano: I like looking at art, but I’m no good at making it. And I’m much more upfront about that than KennedyHawk.
KennedyHawk: I’m a skilled artist – so I’m totally qualified for judging this – just look at my stick figure drawings in this article (they aren’t real). Onto the first card: Mockingbird!
Mockingbird from The Amazing Spiderman #4 (2015)
KennedyHawk: For me Mockingbird falls into the B-tier. Nothing stellar – yet nothing holding it back. The art doesn’t scream stun effect to me – but she is probably my most played card of all time so I have to give her credit. No layering shenanigans to point out – just an efficient card – with efficient – er reasonable art. Really the most thematic art would be Mockingbird stunning Rhino in one panel – cut to Mockingbird taking a Stampede to the face.
Amerikano: C tier. I’m with you on this one. I’m not sure why this piece was chosen. It doesn’t scream stun. In fact, there’s nothing really stunning about it at all.
Nick Fury also from The Amazing Spiderman #4 (2015)
Amerikano: F. The art is so confusing. I dislike that Fury is not the main focus of the card art. Zoom in on that patch!
KennedyHawk: D-tier – possibly F. This art befuddled me for a long time. What a strange shot of Nick Fury to use. For a while I was trying to figure out why he was floating in clouds. Then I realized it’s like a 3D map as the details-out the mission. Nick Fury sees a lot of action and deserves a more action-filled pose.I’m so glad we agree here – now if only you understood the evils of vegetables.
Lockjaw original art by Bryndon Everett
KennedyHawk: S-Tier. Unless there is something higher. This good dogo has amazing and terrifying art. I can literally wipe the dog slobber off my face when I look at this card. Some nice use of layers with Lockjaw’s forehead cutlery and the butterfly he is chasing is just totes adorb. I also like that he’s hopping out of a portal- they nailed the theme on Lockjaw both mechanically and in his art. Good puppers!
Amerikano: A tier. It looks like he’s been competing in an otherworldly dog show and one of the loops that he needed to jump through was a portal. Oh, and his cheeks are turning into parachutes. Amazing.
Heimdall also original art by Bryndon Everett
Amerikano: S tier. The glow in his eye and the pose really portray the theme of the card and Heimdall’s role as gatekeeper. Simply amazing.
KennedyHawk: I give Heimdall an A-tier rating. Above Mockingbird but below Lockjaw. These two allies have some of the coolest art. I really like the flashing glow in Heimdall’s eye as he’s peering into the encounter deck. Flavor text to match – rarely do I get to appreciate flavor text here…
War Machine from Invincible Iron Man #32(2008)
KennedyHawk: Back to art straight from the comics – thanks to the #card-art channel on the discord for finding this one. I’m saying C-tier this time. Slightly lower than Mockingbird. Doesn’t match his card theme much at all – unless toughness is going to fend off all that ping damage I see behind him.
Amerikano: A tier. I don’t care if the card theme doesn’t shine through with the art. I really like it. The only thing that would have been better is the panel of War Machine just below this one on the same page of the comic. But don’t you just feel like you could take on a team of Hammer drones after playing War Machine? Go find that issue. It has some amazing art.
Iron Heart from Iron Heart vol 1 #1 2019
Amerikano: C tier. Amazing card. Meh art. Nothing special at all. Why not heart shape with her hands? Saving that for the art on Ironheart’s hero card? We can only hope.
KennedyHawk: Let’s be real. This card is an S-tier powerwise. Dump her on the board, draw and chump – is much better than just Dump and Chump. Her art isn’t horrible either. I’m going with the Mockingbird B-tier – no really logical sense with the cards theme – but cool layering and a nice action pose with nothing bothersome in the background unlike Nick.
Spider-Man from Miles Morales – Spider-Man #1
KennedyHawk: Spider-man – Spider-man – does whatever hero Spider-man can’t! Miles Morales is one of my favorite basic allies and his art does not disappoint. His ability to burst thwart is awesome and lowkey he can be a slow extended swinging webkick just like his art highlights!
Amerikano: A tier. The only thing I don’t like about this art is how shiny his suit seems to be. Why? I love it when the art comes in front of the card name banner. It really makes Miles’s foot pop!
KennedyHawk: There you have it. We have a tier list of basic allies by art. If that’s not something you were looking forward too – well then I’m not sure why you are still reading this. I love the basic allies in this game – they make it into so many decks and I’m glad most of them have good art (not you Nick – not you!)