Marvel Plot Points

A fan site for the Marvel Heroic Roleplaying Game by Margaret Weis Productions

Building Your Campaign the Marvel Cinematic Way


I just recently watched The Avengers again, and really enjoyed it. I noticed, however, there are a lot of references to the previous films. It’s fine for me, as I’ve seen them all, but I realized that some of the references may not make sense for first-timers.

Having these references adds depth to the world. It makes it feel living and breathing. That’s why I propose starting a new campaign the Marvel Cinematic way.

Each player will meet with the Watcher sometime before the first session. The Watcher will run them through a scenario that sets their character up for the coming team-up. The mini-event should be two action scenes and two transition scenes, in any order appropriate. If you look at Iron Man, the first Action Scene would be him breaking out of the fortress, the second being his fight with Iron Monger. The Watcher could squeeze in his whole plane-battle if you had time, as well. However, I think you could get it all done in only a single session.

Drop hints throughout each person’s story of the upcoming conflict that will draw them together. Is it the Breakout? Talk about the Raft, or have the hero put a villain there who will be breaking out in Breakout. If it’s the Civil War, have mentions of distrust of superheroes emerge. If it’s Annihilation, mention some rumblings about certain warlike empires going on the alert.

Once each hero has had their own mini-event, bring them together.

I think this can add a lot of depth to your game.

Give it a try, and let us know how it went.

About Mark

Mark is a military veteran, game designer, a believer in the oxford comma, and an all-around nerd.

4 comments on “Building Your Campaign the Marvel Cinematic Way

  1. I wrote a full MHR event adaptation of The Avengers movie, with a couple of alternate endings. It worked great!

  2. Grady Bailey (@GB330033)
    March 18, 2013

    I actually did something like this with my current campaign.

    Each character got an origins “issue” (What we call our sessions) comprised of a few scenes. Each one tied into parts of the story that will be relevant later on. (IE: Black Cat stole her catsuit from the Tinkerer’s workshop while Nick Fury was gathering some of his evidence for what will eventually become Secret War)

    The heroes were then brought together as a new team of Avengers in the first group “issue” and we’re continuing the story from there. As we go, each hero will begin to realize that their origins “issue” ties into some of the main storyline, and they’ll get their time to shine as the character with the most knowledge of the scenario. (IE: Deadpool and another character will have a better idea of what has sent the Hulk into a particularly dark and destructive rage.)

    It also served as a great way to introduce each player to the basic game mechanics without the messiness of group play. I have toyed with the idea of doing some more solo “issues” for the heroes on the side, but I haven’t decided on that yet. All in all it better reflects the Marvel way of doing things, since most teams don’t spend every waking hour with each other and have their own solo storylines to deal with

  3. Ken Hart
    March 23, 2013

    Terrific ideas here. Thanks. I’ll likely be running new players through Breakout soon, and – while they know the Marvel heroes well – they’re not up to speed on the past 10 years of events, so a solo “Issue #0” for each should work out well.

  4. Pingback: Structuring Events the Marvel Movie Way | Marvel Plot Points

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This entry was posted on March 18, 2013 by in Action Scene, Resources, Transition Scene.

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