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This is one game I never really thought I’d get into, but turned out to be very addictive. And in case anyone is thinking this, yes, I know that it seems odd reviewing a game labelled 2013 at the start of the new year. Deal with it.
The game is exactly as you would imagine, the card game Magic: The Gathering but computerised. In terms of controls, its very easy to get to grips with. The rules of MtG can seem intimidating and a bit confusing to beginners such as myself, but I think playing it on the computer was a blessing in that respect, as you won’t be allowed to play “badly” (i.e. break the rules by accident), so it’s easy enough to learn as you go.
Briefly; the goal of the game is reduce your opponent’s health to 0 from 20, using creatures and spells. However to directly attack the other planeswalker (opponent), you’ll need to get past their creatures, which can block damage and protect yourself and your foe. There are various and interesting cards you can play to improve your odds, such as creatures (to attack and block damage), sorceries (basic spells), auras (to buff up your creatures, or to debilitate your foe’s) and enchantments (to provide passive bonuses to you).
One of the main features of the game is the deck manager, whereby one can customise which deck of cards they play with (between 60 and 100 cards are allowed, although fewer is generally better). By playing and defeating opponents, or by simply paying for “deck packs”, new and more powerful cards are unlocked, allowing you to further customise and improve your deck. The one downside I have with this aspect of the game is that you cannot construct your own deck from all the cards you have access to; i.e. one cannot mix and match cards from two decks that you like into a deck that suits your style of play, you can only customise the presets, using the cards that come with it and which unlock for it. However, this is a fairly minor gripe, as there is still plenty of scope for tweaking your deck to your preferences.
There are numerous modes to play; a pretty normal campaign mode, playing AI opponents one-on-one. “Planechase”, seen above, where four players battle each other at the same time, with different “planes” active at different times which provide varying and deadly effects to the battlefield. “Two-Headed Giant” mode is a form of co-op, whereby two pairs fight each other, each player playing individually, but each pair shares a single life total, starting at 30 instead of the usual 20.
So, that’s it! What are your thoughts on Duels of the Planeswalkers, or just MtG in general for that matter? Favourite deck, favourite colours of mana? Let me know in the comments below, thanks for reading!
First released: June 2012; Published by Wizards of the Coast; Developed by Stainless Games
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Remember that promo trailer for Skywind I posted a while back? A 10min development documentary has just been made, detailing how the production process is going, take a look!
When it is finally finished, the mod will be free to download, though will require a copy of Morrowind to play.
Here is a trailer for Skywind, a crossover mod that recreates Morrowind by modding Skyrim. Take a look see at it here, Call of the East:
It’s currently in alpha, but looks promising!