I was done. I was finished with head-to-head card battling. So little has changed since Richard Garfield invented it with Magic: The Gathering back in 1973 or thereabouts. Build up mana, spend it to bring out cards with an attack and defense value, tap the cards to attack, win when you’ve done 20 points of damage to the other guy. All these decades later, so little has changed. Consider Hearthstone, a gleaming nugget of integrated game design and business model, polished nearly to the point of featurelessness.
Sure, there have been variations and even innovation. I’ve recently enjoyed Faeria for how it situates the action on a board built by the players as the match unfolds. Pretty clever. But even that only goes so far. If I’m going to match attack and block values, I need something more. And no game has enough something more to keep me interested.
Until now.Continue reading →