Fang Talks

much posts, wow, such persistence

Collectible card games, trading card games, whatever you want to call them.

I’ve been playing some Hearthstone recently (played it when it was still in beta, then dropped it around the time of release for some reason), and the whole concept of an all-digital card game is rather fascinating. With physical cards there’s a rather high barrier of entry for new players, because they need to spend money (or get gifted) a bunch of cards before they can even start playing and deck building for themselves. Digital cards can easily be given away for free, so everyone can start with a start-pack to kick off their experience.

What’s more, you don’t need to be physically with some people to play! Online versus is a great thing. It can match you against players of similar skill to play against, and if the player base is somewhat sizable, that’s an effectively infinite amount of matches for you to play.

While there’s more benefits to the digital factor than I described above, there’s also the downside of losing that tabletop feel. Playing against some random person on the internet will never beat the feeling of hanging with friends and pitting your equally crazy decks against each other. And yes, digital cards will never feel as precious as real physical ones.

Luckily Hearthstone tackled some of these things nicely by working with what they had available: visuals and sounds. And it’s worked out pretty nicely.
~ Fang

Comments

  • 15/06/2015 (2:33 PM)

    I’d never played one of these digital card games until I started playing Witcher 3. They have an in-game digital card game called Gwent and it’s grown on me just as much as the game itself.

    So I may yet try Hearthstone. It brings me back to the days of playing Magic: the Gathering on a plastic foldup table in the back room of a comic book shop with my friends. Good times.

  • 15/06/2015 (1:08 PM)

    I play some Magic The Gathering on my Xbox. I have a friend who loves that game but it brings to light the downsides. It’s good for people who want to get on, but it’s bad for people who have been collecting the cards for a long time. These people have to restart and collect all their cards again. It also sucks if you buy cards and then lose all your data for whatever reason. I can see the up (and down) sides of both physical and digital card games. Of course the major downside for me is that I suck as soon as I attempt to build a deck of my own.

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