It’s been a few months since the last CCG-related thread, so rather than necro an old one, here’s a fresh new thread for digital and traditional CCGs/TCGs/etc.
In 2018 the wave of digital card games shows no sign of stopping. There’s still a lot of new Hearthstone and MTG inspired games, and also lots of games that are playing with the genre in new ways. Hearthstone and Shadowverse are both still very popular and getting frequent updates. Most of the other digital CCGs are still updating or at least keeping the serverse running (although SolForge and Scrolls have shut down). Valve’s Artifact is supposedly coming out this year. And the industry hasn’t yet been killed by “loot box” controversies and regulations!
What I’m playing:
I just picked up Eternal, a F2P game that’s mostly a Magic clone. The interface is nice, some Magic stuff has been pleasantly streamlined, and the mechanics are interesting without being totally overwhelming. There’s a cool campaign with voiceacting and comic-style cutscenes, a constructed PvE mode, constructed ranked/casual PvP, draft PvP, and even a draft PvE.
Perhaps more importantly, the F2P mechanics seem relatively generous, at least compared to Hearthstone. Your starting card pool is fairly large with a good mix of powerful cards. Packs have more cards than Hearthstone (12), deckbuilding is very flexible so you’re more likely to be able to use any given card, legendaries are more common (1-in-10 per pack vs 1-in-20), and you get a free pack for your first PvP win every day. On top of that, the drafting mode lets you keep all the cards you draft, and the PvE drafting is much less punishing to low-skill players (I could never get more than 1 or 2 wins in Hearthstone draft ). Even if you’re a mediocre player, the drafting modes still seem to be the optimal way to get new cards, which is really cool because those modes are fun and they give you a certain amount of choice over what type of new cards you want to add to your collection.
The one thing that really bothers me is that it doesn’t have any solution to Magic’s “mana flood/mana screw”. Even with a conservative deck, a good 1/3rd of your matches are gonna be free losses or free wins because you or your opponent didn’t draw any good options.
I played Gwent for a week or so and loved the gameplay. But I just couldn’t stand the extremely stingy F2P mechanics, especially when combined with the strict deckbuilding limitations and small pool of starting cards. Every deck has to have 4 gold cards, but you only start with 4 of them, so you literally can’t even modify any of the starter decks. I quit after I had played for a week and opened 40 packs without getting a single gold card. And there’s like 50 different gold cards in the game! I keep wanting to come back, but I know I’d just have to keep playing 100s of matches with the crappy starter cards just to have the chance of getting a new legendary that might be be viable to use.
So, what are ya’ll playing? What games are tempting you to return, and what games have driven you away?