Spawn Point: a guide to collectible card games

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Welcome to Spawn Point, where we take something wonderful from the world of gaming and explain what it is, why it’s worth your time and how to get involved. This time: collectible card games (or at least, the videogame kind).

Hello, I would like to collect some cards please. Of course, friend. We have a wide variety of fantasy themed cards, ranging from hostile dragon to raving ghoul to –

Hang on, what are these numbers? Oh, ignore those, they’re nothing to worry about. Look at this wizard!

He’s covered in flipping numbers! All right, I’ll be honest. The numbers are what make the game work. Collectible card games are often simply battles between “health points” and “attacking power”. Broadly speaking, they are games in which each player takes turns laying down cards depicting monsters, heroes, animals, demons, gods, soldiers – all sorts of colourful pictures – and those cards will attack the cards of your opponent. The numbers generally just decide who wins. Dwarf or dragon.

I’ve changed my mind. Numbers are crap. Wait, wait! Yes, CCGs are awash in arithmetic. But don’t let that put you off, many of them do the maths for you. And behind these bouts of small, flashing numbers, lies a deeper strategic level of thinking, a realm of foresight and psychology, knowledge and luck. With practice, you don’t even see the numbers. The genre is also a blossoming valley, there’s so much to choose from. You could play Faeria or Shadowverse or –

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Or Hearthstone? NO. No. You’ve come at this all wrong, friend. Yes, the free-to-play Hearthstone is the biggest flower in this meadow, and it’s the framework many of these games seek to emulate (although, if we want to get technical, it’s actually Magic: The Gathering that laid the foundations for –

Just you close those brackets RIGHT DOWN. Sorry).

So where should I start? Gwent.

I’d rather avoid Wales, thanks. No. GWENT. The Witcher Card Game.

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Oh, like Gerald plays! Uh, yes, that’s right. It’s one of the more straightforward card games in the genre. You’re not bashing cards together, like in Hearthstone. You’re just trying to get a bigger number than your opponent. Every card, whether it’s a siege engine or a swamp hag, has a number. You win the round if you’ve got a higher total than your foe.

That’s easy. Give it here. Hey, not so fast, Grabby McGee. That was just the first round. There’s two more to go. And can’t you see your opponent is bluffing?

No they aren’t. They are. Because Gwent is also a game about patience and misdirection. About making it look like you have absolutely no frost giants left, when actually you’ve got LOADS. But we’ve seen through their trick. Let’s play some soldiers, and when the frost giants come out, we can — oh no.

They’ve set everything on fire. Yes. They have.

Just throw down more cards. Higher numbers, innit. Oh, so now you’re a mathematician. The problem with Gwent is that you can over-play your hand. Sometimes, your opponent will “pass” and intentionally lose a round, just to keep more cards in their hand for later. Big, nasty cards, like high-numbered, gold-encrusted cards, or a decoy card that sneakily undoes their last turn, or weather effects like a snap frost that saps the health of your own cards. What’s more, you each have three rows to place your cards, and picking where you’ll throw your hideous Drowner can be just as important as its number.

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So it isn’t so easy after all. I said it was straightforward, not easy. Your goal is clear, and a good tutorial and single-player missions means Gwent is simple to learn. It also doesn’t have the bloat of Hearthstone. But it’s still a mind game between two cardthinkers. A psychological battlefield. But with Foglets.

Hang on, “bloat”? Hearthstone has been around for aaaages. Thanks to expansion packs, there are currently ninety-million-gazillion cards. Which can be overwhelming to a newcomer. Gwent is still young at the time of writing, so it doesn’t have such a massive library to learn.

Okay, but what if I just play Hearthstone? You know what, that’s fine. The studio that makes it, Blizzard, are good at designing a strong, capable card game. It’s fine.

You don’t sound convinced. It’s just that… well, have you heard of Duelyst?

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For the sake of this article, let’s say I haven’t. It’s gooood. It has the same “number combat” as Hearthstone and others, but it’s also played on a grid. Your minions move around the battlefield, one or two squares at a time. Little angry imps, or speedy hyena beasts, or hulking mechs. You win if you take out the enemy general – a card with high health, who’s also moving around on the field of battle. And each general has a special ability they can use every few turns, as they skitter about fighting for control of the board. A lot of strategy games try to evoke the monster chess from Star Wars. But Duelyst really does manage it.

Sounds good. But I hate to see stuff moving. What?

I just don’t like it when things move. It’s why I’m getting into cards. Uh, okay. Well, let’s look at some more alternatives that add a little flavour to Hearthstone’s vanilla battling.

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Lay it on me. Faeria (above) has the elemental mix-and-matching of Magic: The Gathering but is played on a hexagonal board that builds as you go along. It’s clever and methodical, but it does sometimes suffer pacing issues. You can get entrenched in a losing battle for far longer than you’d like.

That criticism doesn’t sound very… Faeria! Ha ha ha. Stop this.

Soz. There are others. The Elder Scrolls: Legends is a tie-in to Bethesda’s fantasy worlds that looks like an unimaginative barnacle clinging to the great Blizzard whale. However, look closer and there’s a lot to praise. You’re still trying to deplete the health of a central orb belonging to the player. But this time there are two “lanes”, which means you’re essentially playing two games of Hearthstone at the same time. This means some decks, like those made of shadowy lizard assassins, are experts at swapping positions or manipulating your opponent’s most valued swordsmen. It’s a very competent alternative.

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It sounds complicated. I haven’t told you about Artifact yet.

What’s Artifact? It’s Hearthstone, but thrice.

That’s too many Hearthstones. Maybe not – I’m being facetious. Artifact is Valve’s new collectible card game based on the heroes and creeps of Dota 2. Here, there are three lanes, and if your heroes are killed they’ll simply respawn after a few turns. Just like in Dota. Sadly, you can’t play it. It’s not out yet.

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Sounds too fighty anyway. Is there anything less… combative? Sorrrrtaaaa. Your normal CCG omelette tends to come with free-to-play multiplayer marzipan cooked in.

That is disgusting. Yes. But there are some single player alternatives that don’t fit the mould, but which you might like. Regency Solitaire is solitaire in a petticoat. The Hand of Fate games are part card game, part third-person dungeon crawler. And Slay the Spire is a masterful roguelike with surreal monstrosities and on-the-hoof deckbuilding. It’s fantastic. I like CCGs, but I think Slay the Spire is better-crafted than any I’ve mentioned so far. So take that praise with you to the Steam store.

I don’t do digital. WHAT.

I only play with real cards. Are none of these games real? You are killing me.

I want a real game. Should I play Magic: The Gath– No. Play Netrunner.

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What’s Netrunner? It’s a great cyberpunk card game that is just screaming for a digital adaptation, but I’d need a whole other Spawn Point to explain it. So just ask around. I’m sure you’ll find something on the net.

Right, here’s what worries me: I’m going to have to get deep into one of these aren’t I? I’m gonna have to get sickening deep. Not at all. You might find yourself sucked in, as I did for 122 hours of Duelyst-ing. But you might also just enjoy a handful of games each night for a few weeks, before letting it slide, like I did with Gwent. And that’s fine! These are all free-to-play, so you don’t have much to lose by trying them. Although it also means they come fully loaded with loot crates, fiddly fictional currencies, and all the other tricks to make you pour out your wallet. As ever, be aware that paying for barrels full of cards might get you a better monster to unleash, but it won’t necessarily make you a better player.

All right, I’ve decided to play after all. Which one?

All of them. Where are they? Ah. This is the annoying bit. CCGs like to run on their own clients. Gwent goes through GOG. Hearthstone needs Battle.net. The Elder Scrolls Legends uses the Bethesda launcher but you can also get it on Steam, just like Faeria, Duelyst and others.

39 Comments

  1. PancreaticDefect says:

    Thanks, but I’m going to stick with my physical starter decks of the long cancelled Clive Barker’s Imajica CCG.

  2. donblas says:

    You should consider checking out Eternal (link to direwolfdigital.com) which is half way between Magic and Hearthstone. It’s a traditional “one lane” game, but with more depth in deck building.

    • The Master Chief from Halo says:

      Eternal is my favorite digital CCG ever, by a wide margin. Works on mobile and PC, very F2P friendly, lots of viable decks, fun cards, great single player content.

      And recently they’ve ramped up the events and monthly promos which really ties things together. Super excited for the next set, which is probably due in June.

  3. Stargazer86 says:

    No mention of MTG Arena?

    • Neutrino says:

      It’s in closed Beta so most people can’t play it. And even if you buy a key and play it your progression will get wiped at some point anyway.

  4. Jestor says:

    This was a great read.

  5. Jokerme says:

    Can’t wait for Artifact. Sounds like something Valve would pull through splendidly. After playing it since beta, Hearthstone became too stale to keep going. Yes they are adding stuff, but the meta is never exciting enough to play constructed. It’s always about three strongest decks dominating each season. And creating fun decks is expensive as hell.

  6. arienette says:

    Back in meatspace, netrunner rules over all

    • Vandelay says:

      I would still go with Doomtown Reloaded. It isn’t as well known as Netrunner and I believe quite a few people bounce off it pretty hard if they only play a couple of games, but once you get to understand the intricacies and possible strategies it becomes such a joy to play. The game is not quite as streamlined as the stuff Fantasy Flight produces and the wording on many of the cards could do with improving, but I love the theme and the style of it all. Playing out shootouts by constructing a poker hand from deck provides perfect flavour.

      Also, I’ve only managed to play a couple of games of my copy, but Legend of the Five Rings seems to be a really good game. The back and forth while you are fighting over holdings, deciding whether it is worth boosting your characters or holding back for a bigger push, is really tense. Much like the shootouts of Doomtown, it really does a good job of capturing the feel of a samurai duel. There seems to be a lot of depth going on with it too.

      Netrunner is really great though. One of my favourite moments playing a card game was when I was forced into hiding an agenda in my lightly defended archives and started bluffing that I had one in another server. I went about 4 or 5 turns before eventually getting another agenda out and scoring it to win the game, all the while having to hide my desperation that my friend didn’t decide to have a peak in my archives (obviously, we weren’t very good at the time, because everyone that plays much Netrunner knows that it is always worth taking a peak in those central servers).

      All of these are far superior to anything that has been released as a computer card game. Partly, that is due to the fact you play them looking at a computer screen and not your opponents face, but Brendan also sums it up pretty well when he says “The numbers are what make the game work. Collectible card games are often simply battles between “health points” and “attacking power”.” No matter whether you add in a grid to move the characters around on or extra lanes to deal with, none of them have moved away from the basic Magic goal of hit your opponent until its health number reaches zero. The physical space has become so much more interesting than that and digital games just haven’t seemed interested in catching up with that.

      (Having said that, I do really like the look of Artifact. I’m pretty confident that Valve will bring out a really strong version of this kind of card game.)

      • malkav11 says:

        All of the games you mentioned have been around for roughly 2 decades or more (Netrunner, for example, was the third CCG Richard Garfield put out, back in 1996) and are just recently being resurrected due to the LCG model making it much more practical to operate alongside the titanic juggernaut that is Magic instead of having to try to compete with it and being summarily crushed.

        So the digital games are -well- behind the times, really.

    • hardflipman says:

      Netrunner is great and jinteki.net is a fantastice resource for it too.

      however i’ve personally found that the game of thrones card game is better than netrunner. less popular unfortunately but has a great community. theironthrone.net also allows online play in much the same way as jinteki.net so worth checking out

  7. Evan_ says:

    That got me to reinstall Duelyst. Wonder what I can do with my outdated decks and rusty habits.

  8. Someoldguy says:

    I’ll take my CCG’s in paper form, please. That way when I realise I’ve spent my time on something that I don’t want to participate in any longer, at least it will have been as part of a social occasion. Plus I can sell off the cards to recoup some of the spent money that would otherwise be a sunk cost.

  9. Imbecile says:

    I do like a good card game. Probably Shadowfist and netrunner are my preferred options. Shadowfist for multiplayer, netrunner for dueling.

  10. andregurov says:

    No love for Fable Fortune? Great art, interesting choice mechanic, loads of community events, AND a co-op mode … show it some love people. Show it some love.

  11. notthesun says:

    you can play TESL on steam…

  12. malkav11 says:

    Once again the best digital TCG, Hex: Shards of Fate, is not even mentioned. -sigh-

    Certainly the best singleplayer content out of the lot, at the very least – I’ve spent literally hundreds of hours with it just playing solo and rare-drafting to fill out my collection. And there’s more to come…sooner or later.

    There are a few reasons for this. 1) In the campaign mode, you create an RPG character with race-based deck restrictions and abilities, and a whole tree of class based skills and passive buffs, enabling all sorts of neat strategies. 2) You can also bring along collectible mercenaries, who have powerful unique abilities and thematic deck restrictions, as well as contributing a minor buff to play when they’re in your party but not your active champion for the battle. 3) Both your main character and your mercenaries can equip six slots worth of equipment, which modify your cards to sometimes extremely potent degrees. (The Cloudfeather Fan, for example, takes the Cloudwalk spell, which grants a troop flight on a permanent basis, and assigns it a second block of text: that troop also gains an effect that reads, “When this troop deals combat damage to an opposing champion, target troop with Flight in your hand gains “You may play this for free.” this turn.” So all you gotta do is connect and you can drop that Dragon or Angel from your hand for free.). 4) PvE rewards PvE-only cards that aren’t restricted by having to be fun for both sides of the match since the other side isn’t sapient.

    Oh, and it’s all free. Except for the PvP cards that can be played against other humans, granted. Those can be bought as singles from other players, so assembling a deck is less chancy than in a lot of other digital games, but it will cost money or a lot of time. Fair warning.

    • Neutrino says:

      It’s the tightest, stingiest most nickle-and-diming card game out there.

      It looks good, it plays good. It has nice atmosphere and as you a good single player campaign. But it’s so tight-fisted that for an F2P player it’s utterly pointless because you’d need to factor it into your life as a second job in order to grind out enough PvP cards to ever be able to compete against other players, and if you can’t compete what’s the point.

      Rarely have I seen a game shoot itself in the foot as badly as Hex does with it’s ridiculous economy.

      • malkav11 says:

        The point is the awesome singleplayer.

        Also, I mean, if your metric for these games is “how easy is it to be competitive in PvP without ever spending any money at all?” then I’ll grant that Hex doesn’t do very well on that particular metric, but I’m not convinced that’s a particularly useful or interesting metric, for a few reasons. Firstly, it has nothing to do with whether the game design is good or entertaining. Secondly, the game has to make money somehow for continued development to be viable, and unless you literally don’t have any spending money, it’s not unreasonable to drop some on a game that you enjoy. I think it’s more important that you receive good value for your money, and I think Hex does reasonably well (compared to other TCG/CCGs, at least) on that front. And finally, from what I can tell it’s a pretty miserable and prolonged slog to get competitive for free in the other digital card games I’ve tried too – maybe not as bad as in Hex, but you’d still be far better off spending some cash. And that assumes one values being competitive in PvP in these games, which I don’t. (Usually the most boring deck archetypes are the ones that win consistently anyway.)

  13. zer0sum says:

    You can also check out Longsword. CCG with tabletop tactical elements.

    link to store.steampowered.com

  14. goodpoints says:

    Boo for not including Eternal.

    Newcomers don’t have to learn “ninety-million-gazillion cards” in HS unless they were to come in wanting to play Wild, which who does? Let Whispers of the RNG Gods stay in the dustbin.

    The two lanes thing always seems to get mentioned prominently in writeups on TESL, but it’s really not what makes the game most unique. It’s actually the Rune and Prophecy systems, which, unlike HS, actually makes “trying to deplete the health of a central orb belonging to the player” something you don’t automatically want to do if you’re able to. For the unfamiliar, like HS, you start with 30 health but every 5 health lost breaks a Rune, which let’s the defending player draw a card. If that card (creature or spell) has the Prophecy keyword, it interrupts the attacker’s turn and can be played for free. Prophecies tend to be the sorts of things that MTG Instants or Flash creatures would be, like a Guard (taunt) minion, a burn spell, a removal spell, etc. This makes card advantage way more crucial than other games, and means that if you’re going to hunt face and give your opponent card advantage, you better have answers ready. So many games are lost when the attacker overcommits to face, giving the opponent card advantage, without having sufficient board presence or prophecy answers, and the opponent swings the board or gets lethal next turn. Prophecies are also a fantastic way of incorporating a limited number of interrupts into a HS-like Attacker’s Choice card game style while still keeping the pace smooth.

    • DeepSleeper says:

      Can you write this comment again but in English? What’s a face? What’s a burn spell? What is lethal? What is presence? Why do you play a card game where beating the opponent isn’t a priority? Do you just sit there with cards in your hands and stare at each other like it’s a live-action cold war re-enactment?

      • kalzekdor says:

        I’ll try to translate, but to be honest that was a lot of jargon, and I haven’t played Legends.

        The primary goal in a lot of these games is to do enough damage to your opponent in order to defeat them. Unlike in MTG, in Hearthstone and its ilk for the most part the attacker decides the target for their cards. In MTG you would declare which creatures are attacking, and the other player would assign their creatures to block as desired, and then combat would resolve, some creatures dying, effects occurring, etc.

        Hearthstone simplifies the whole thing to a degree, where the current player simply says “Ok, this creature is going to attack that target.”

        A lot of the time you’ll want to attack the opposing player directly, as reducing their health to zero is your primary win condition. This is called hitting face or going face.

        Sometimes you can’t do this, for example when the other player has a card with Taunt on the board. Other times you might not want to do that, because it is more advantageous to remove a threat from the board. For example if you had a card with 4 attack, and your opponent had a card with 6 attack and 4 health, it’s more advantageous for you to attack their card rather than going face, at least in the long run. This is called trading.

        If you don’t trade, your opponent will probably win in that situation, as they can do more damage to you per turn than you could do to them, in other words they have better board presence.

        In some situations, though, you don’t have to worry about the opponent’s board presence, if going face would allow you to reduce their health to zero, thus winning the game. This is called having lethal.

        Of course, just because your opponent has limited board presence doesn’t mean they’re not a threat. They might have a single use card in their hand that does direct damage, or a burn spell.

        A number of burn spells can target face, not just the board, so the other player might just have lethal sitting in their hand. Since players aren’t limited to playing one card per turn, drawing more cards potentially lets you do more per turn, which is called having a card advantage.

        Bringing it altogether, from what goodpoints was saying about Legends, is going face can give the other player a card advantage, which if you’re not prepared to deal with can cause upsets. Which would mean that the strategy revolves more around jockeying for position, trying to achieve a distinct advantage before moving in for the kill. Your cold war analogy isn’t bad, actually.

      • goodpoints says:

        Sorry, I guess that was written with the assumption that the reader knew the jargon from Hearthstone or MTG experience. Kalzekdor did a great job or explaining most of it, just some additional clarifications:

        As they explained, the defender chooses what blocks what in MTG. So this style can be called Defender’s Choice in contrast to the Attacker’s Choice style of games like Hearthstone and TESL.

        “going face” is attacking your opponent’s life vs. “trading” minions for minions (“face” because you’re hitting either their avatar portrait or their actual face if you’re playing irl)

        “burn spells” are spell cards that do a numerical value of damage to a target. This usually refers to single target spells, as multi-target damage spells are usually called “AoE”.

        In contrast to burn spells, “removal spells” explicitly destroy the target rather than dealing a certain amount of damage. These are typically single target removal, but there are also spells which destroy all of a certain type of card (typically creatures) on board, referred to as “sweepers” or “board wipes”. (the prototypical example being MTG’s Wrath of God)

        Kalzekdor’s summary of TESL’s gameplay is pretty much spot-on. (they really should give it a try though) It’s a slower paced game than Hearthstone and turns require much more thought, most of the difficult decisions ultimately relating in some way to the Rune & Prophecy systems. It’s an entirely unique system, and the only game I know of where there’s always an inherent risk in going face. As far as the Cold War analogy, it does feel a bit similar to playing Twilight Struggle.

        All that said, Eternal is still the clearly superior game (and by far the most F2P-friendly CCG out there), surpassed only by Netrunner out of all card games. Non-coincidentally, both Eternal and TESL are developed by Dire Wolf Digital, but Eternal had more design freedom due to being self-published.

      • napoleonic says:

        The comment just meant that in TESL you have to be cleverer about when you hit face, because sometimes doing so will give your opponent a free interrupt card.

  15. RuySan says:

    Everytime an article like this comes up, RPS never ever mentions Eternal, which is the most interesting and most F2P friendly of the lot.

    Not to mention the new Monthly sealed deck leagues are so much fun.

    Seriously, who isn’t good at their job at RPS???

  16. unraveler says:

    Is it just me? Or it’s really that many people who played more than one CCG, seems to think that Hearthstone is one of the weakest?

    • goodpoints says:

      Absolutely true, but mostly because veteran CCG players are often obnoxious elitists. Setting aside the economy and focusing on gameplay, Hearthstone is obviously one of the simplest and least challenging games. But those same reasons (plus Blizzy’s marketing horde) make it most accessible to people who haven’t played another CCG, but I think it’s still nice as a “beer ‘n pretzels” game for CCG vets. Same sort of reasons why Street Fighter is more popular than Guilty Gear. Hence, Hearthstone’s enormous popularity in markets like China where CCGs largely had not caught on. Whereas in markets like the US, Europe, and Japan which have been inundated for 20+ years with CCGs, Hearthstone isn’t as proportionally dominant. (I believe Shadowverse has more players in Japan than HS)

  17. Zaxwerks says:

    I’m two years late to the party, and have only just started playing it but Chronicles: Runescape Legends is a great deal of fun and quite unique in its mechanics. It needs an injection of new players, but I’m enjoying the single player at the moment.

  18. Neutrino says:

    Spellweaver is imo the best F2P card game at the moment. Basically a Magic clone but made for digital and with a few interesting mechanics of its own. Direct attack creatures. Support line. All creatures have a speed attribute that governs what they can block and be blocked by. Each deck has a hero unit (think Planeswalker).

    It looks good, plays smoothly, has good campaign, generous F2P and is out on PC, Android and iOS with cross platform multiplayer.

    Heathstone is too full of flashy animations, particle effects and juvenile comedic voice acting for any grown up.

    Eternal is too much of a Hearthstone clone. To flashy and in your face with horrible voice acting.

    Hex economy is pure P2W.

    The Elder Scrolls Legends is pretty good apart from the fact that the deck builder is horrible. There is no way to tell how many creatures, spells or actions you have in your deck other then to mouse over everything in turn and add them up manually. To add any card to your deck you have to physically find it in your collection which you can’t even filter by card type.

    • goodpoints says:

      How is Eternal a Hearthstone clone at all? It’s very openly inspired primarily by MTG (specifically MTG’s heyday during OG Ravnica before Mythics took the game over): 5 color pie, mana cards, dual color factions, dual color cards, Defender’s Choice combat, interrupt spells, etc. Most of the battle skills are MTG keywords renamed, e.g. Quickdraw = First Strike, Overwhelm = Trample, Ambush = Flash, Endurance = Vigilance, etc.

      As far as sound effects and animations, unfortunately it’s part-and-parcel of digital card games. Unfortunately you can’t control the animations (as there would be a clear gameplay advantage to turning them off), but who plays digital card games without muting it and listening to music?

      As far as TESL, most of the issues you describe were fixed in the Morrowind update. You can now import/export decklists, and see more detailed stats like number of cards by type and color.

      • malkav11 says:

        Eternal is extremely similar to Hearthstone in visual style, to the point where it’s clearly deliberate, possibly to lure in HS players. I’m sure it doesn’t play very similarly, but I’d be hard pressed to distinguish the two if you gave me unlabelled side by side screenshots.

  19. Moraven says:

    And for those looking for PvE, soon you will have access to Lord of the Rings LCG. Deck constructor like Magic and the like but you play against an enemy deck with your 3 heroes.

  20. icarussc says:

    … why no love for Magic?? I have played and enjoyed every edition of Duels of the Planeswalkers, and am currently having fun with the Arena beta. I have tried Gwent, Hearthstone, Duelyst, Hex, and a few more, and I just keep coming back to the depths, art, and lore of Magic. It’s good. It deserves a mention.

    • Imbecile says:

      Magic is a decent game, but the fun and skill is more about deck building than actually playing.

      This is one of the reasons I love shadowfist. It has many similarities to magic, but offers far more options for skilled play.

      Part of this is to do with drawing up to a full hand each turn, rather than just a card, but you can also make multiple attacks in a turn, against different sites/land, and characters/creatures rather than one attack against your only opponent. If you like magic I really recommend it.

      The funky Hong Kong action move vibe does it no harm either

    • malkav11 says:

      Can’t speak for Brendan, but the mana system absolutely kills Magic for me. I’d estimate 60% of my games of it are ruined by having too many or too few lands (or, in a multi-color deck, the wrong combination of lands).

      And of course, most of the other digital card games on the market take full advantage of the possibilities afforded by shedding the limits of physical reality, while Magic’s digital versions stubbornly cling to replicating the tabletop cards and only the tabletop cards.

  21. Captain Narol says:

    I’ve tried most of those games, and in my book ETERNAL CARD GAME is superior to all.

    It’s basically Magic 2.0 with rules adapted to digital format, and without all the boring Planeswalkers and Vehicules they added in Magic over the years and that are ruining that game for me.

  22. Soif says:

    I love CCGs but hate building decks. Even back when I played Magic in meat space I would usually gravitate toward drafts or other formats than constructed. That said, I really enjoyed the single-player aspects of Magic the Gathering 2013, 2014, and 2015. They would give you a thematic deck and you would face others often under special conditions. Hex also has a decent single-player campaign. Lately I have stuck with “deckbuilding” games like Slay the Spire and Monster Slayers (both on Steam). I should mention that in the physical world Star Realms and Dominion are two of the strongest deckbuilding games and they both have digital versions (of varying quality).

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