iPad, PC/Mac •
After my torrid love affair with Hearthstone cooled, I kind of figured I was done with the whole CCG thing. After all, a big part of Hearthstone’s appeal was the setting, which I’d spent time in since the 90’s, and the polish that only a billion dollar developer can provide. 2016 surprised me, however, with not one, but two, new CCGs due for mobile that piqued my interest. The first is Duelyst, created by board game designer Eric Lang, and the second is Faeria. Both offer a CCG experience that incorporates a board and tiny little critters you can move around, but Faeria has one advantage over Duelyst, it’s been released for iPad.
Faeria released today for both PC/Mac and iOS. There’s also an Android version in the works, but we’ll have to wait a bit for it to arrive. The game offers the standard CCG setup of head-to-head battles using cards, but there’s also a board involved on which you’ll summon your minions. The difference between Faeria and other board-utilizing CCGs, is that you build the board as the game proceeds. Each turn you’ll add hexes, either to pick up more energy or head directly to your enemy and bonk them on the head. The choice is yours, but of course you also might want to block that path that your opponent is building right to your front door.
Apart from the online play, there is also a single-player campaign with over 20 hours of gameplay as well as practice matches vs. the AI. There are over 300 cards to unlock and different modes of play such as PvP and Draft mode. You can also log in and be a spectator, watching others play, and the tools for tournament creation are built right into the app.
Being a CCG, it should come as no surprise that the app is free to download with IAP for picking up new cards. How easy it is to obtain them in-game remains to be seen, but you should probably expect to drop a little coin if you want to experience everything it has to offer. Considering that the developers need to eat, that’s not the most unreasonable expectation.