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Author Topic: Battleforge  (Read 7534 times)
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Arkon
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« on: December 30, 2008, 03:50:37 AM »

Just got an email that the Battleforge beta is up on Fileplanet for subscribers.

http://www.fileplanet.com/promotions/battleforge/

In addition pre-ordering the game gets you in to the beta plus some exclusive cards.

Hoping to get it downloaded tomorrow and give it a whirl.  I love card based games so I am very likely getting this when it launches.
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« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2008, 12:29:45 PM »

Cool, Arkon.

Please give some impressions if you have a chance.  I want to hear what you think, as I'm cautiously optimistic about it.
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« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2008, 05:09:46 PM »

If you remember that Activision Magic: The Gathering RTS they released for PS One, thats this game.

Except it works. The cards seem pretty standard CCG flair, the units the summon are solid, and gameplay is tight. Other than the beta servers dropping every 20 minutes for the test, its a pretty solid game.
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« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2008, 09:46:14 PM »

Anyone have any other impressions on the beta?  It looks pretty cool from the videos I have seen, but I am not sure just as of yet if I want to waste bandwith on this Tongue

Werewolf
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« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2008, 11:34:11 PM »

Well I have it downloaded and installed, but I can't seem to ever get it to connect to allow me to play... not sure if I am doing something wrong or not.
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Cragmyre
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« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2009, 04:55:40 PM »

I apologize for reviving this thread, but I figured others would like to know that this has gone into open beta.  The announcement can be found here: http://www.battleforge.com/cms/front_content.php?idcat=10&idart=466
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« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2009, 05:23:02 PM »

Are all the cards available from the start in this game?  Or do you have to purchase expansion packs?
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Cragmyre
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« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2009, 05:35:55 PM »

You get small theme decks and enough points to buy boosters, but they are treating this like a traditional TCG where you need to buy more boosters to get more cards.  You buy BF Points to buy in game booster packs.  In a forum post http://www.battleforge.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2812 : this was what said about pricing:

Quote
Hi Everybody

The following is for you to get an overview of the BattleForge pricing model.

BattleForge is coming out as a “Boxed Product“, at a suggested retail price of €/USD 49.99.

The retail package will contain, in addition to the game, themed decks for each of the game’s four powers. The “standard-decks”, which are in every retail package, consist of 16 cards. On top of that, your retail package contains 3000 BattleForge points. Each Booster Pack costs 250 BattleForge points. With your initial allotment of BattleForge points, you can buy a total of twelve Booster Packs – or 96 cards, as each Booster Pack contains eight cards.

After your purchase, you will have 160 cards: 64 from the standard decks and 96 from the Booster Packs.

You can gain more BattleForge points either through bargaining at the in-game Market Place, or purchasing the BattleForge Point Box. The BattleForge Point Box can be bought from retail outlets or online. The box costs €/USD 19.99 and contains 2000 BattleForge points. As a BoosterPack costs 250 points, the breakdown cost is that each Booster Pack costs €/USD 2.50. The eight card Booster Pack is made up of five “common” cards, two “uncommon” cards and one “rare” or “ultra rare” card.
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« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2009, 07:24:57 PM »

I think I posted my initial impressions in the RTS thread, but here they are again:

After a few more hours of play time, I'm finding myself totally enamored with Battleforge.  It definitely plays like a conventional RTS to a large extent, but there's definitely enough strategic twists to keep me intrigued.  You have to capture points to both produce more units and special points ("Orbs" - these are like "Land" in Magic: The Gathering) to access your better units.

What makes it fun/cool is that there are so many units/cards to play around with, and some of them are damn cool to "bring to life." I seriously could not get enough of my big ol Fire Dragon, damn that thing is fun. The problem I see (and this could be because of my newbishness) was that the lower end units seemed really weak in comparison to some of the later ones. I guess this isn't too different from other RTS games but it seemed really pronounced in this one.  The unit designs, and just having so many of them to experiment with (and without a traditional build order), give the game a unique feel/pace on top of the traditional RTS dynamic.

The other thing I love is the ability to mix/match the cards and build your "deck" as it were. While this is M:TG like in principle, in reality all it means is that you choose 20 units or spells/abilities a priori (from a ginormous list, and 4 different "colors") and that's all you get access to in a particular mission/fight. Unlike Magic, you get access to ALL of the 20 cards immediately, although they can only be "played" if you have enough power AND enough orbs (i.e. "Lands") of the right color. So strategically, like Magic, you can try for all low power cards for quicker access, or presume you can capture enough orb spots to access your better units. Lots of strategy involved, clearly. I still don't understand how they determine how many of each unit you get at the start, or exactly the rules of when you can re-access them. For instance, some prelim archer units usually start with 5, whereas the dragon is always 1. The dragon took a long time to get access to again (like a minute or 2).

The Meta-Game is kind of interesting as well, taking a page or 2 from Guild Wars, I guess. You have one Profile/Name and that records all your PvE and PvP progress separately. I *believe* (not sure) any card you "win" in either case (PvE or PvP) becomes accessible to your main deck. There's a main map where you can select single player campaign missions and a variety of multiplayer missions.

Can't wait for release on this one, I hope it does well.
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« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2009, 06:04:40 PM »

After realizing that the "Invalid Login" error is due to the server(s) being full, I was persistant enough to get some time in.

Simply put, this may be one of the coolest games I've ever played.  The concept is right up my alley.  I look forward to spending more time with Battleforge in order to give some in depth thoughts. 

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« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2009, 03:20:15 PM »

Here are some of my thoughts on the open beta of Battleforge, based on 1 multiplayer game, 3 single-player scenarios from the campaign, and a bunch of goofing off in the ‘forge’.

General Thoughts & Basic Mechanics

First, I want to say that I believe this is a game that was made for people like me.  I have always been drawn to both RTS and TBS games that let the user configure their units.  It’s why I loved Alpha Centauri, Missionforce Cyberstorm, Starfleet Command 3, M.A.X., Kohan, Civ IV, and a few less-known games of like mind.  While Battleforge (BF) does not let you configure your units per se, it does let you fully configure your deck, which in turn decides which units you bring into battles.  That’s close enough for me, as I think the thing I really like about those games is the options they give the user.

From what I can tell, BF is basically a game divided into two main parts.  The first part is the creation of your army, or side, or faction, or whatever you want to call it.  The user has 20 slots in which to do this.  Similar to Guild Wars, it does not matter how many cards you have in your library, you can bring 20 of them to the battlefield, and that’s it.  This “creation” phase of the game is where you pick and choose which cards to bring.  The beta gives access to about 16 different cards for each discipline, not including booster pack cards.  There are four main disciplines of cards to choose from: (fire, frost, nature, shadow).  Within the pool of 64 (4X16) cards, you pick your 20, and you go fight.

Included in this part of the game are also things like the booster pack “purchases” and the auction/trading house, where people can further expand their overall library, and consequently, their choices in creating their different decks.  In total, the retail game will ship with 200 cards.  Assuming they are divided equally, that is 50 different cards per discipline.  From what I’m reading, the user will be given access to approximately 140 cards immediately, with the other 60 coming though booster packs, and consequently trading, auctioning, and the like.  From a trading card game perspective, this may seem a bit limited.  From an RTS perspective, this is a staggering, borderline ridiculous amount of choices for the user.  Cards are divided into 3 main categories: (units, spells, structures).  This opens up so many army configurations, I can’t even explain it.  One could, theoretically, make an army (deck) with only 4 different units (say… 2 land and 2 air), and use the other 16 cards for spells and structures.  Effective?  Most likely not, but the option is there to do it if you so choose.

Another interesting concept BF touts is the ability to upgrade cards.  In simplest terms, if you get a card of “swordsman” in you booster pack, and you already have “swordsmen”, instead of putting your duplicate card up for trade, you could upgrade your current “swordsman” card by combining it with the one you received in the booster pack.  I believe the result is that you loose both “swordsman” cards, and are given an “upgraded” swordsman card in return.  From what I gather, cards can be upgraded anywhere from 3 to 6 times.  I’m not entirely sure just how many times, as I haven’t messed with this feature that much.  What do upgrades do?  It would appear they do things like add hit points, damage, special abilities, and the biggie:  the number of times you can use that particular card in a single match.  It’s a neat mechanic to say the least. 

The second phase to the game is the actual RTS portion, which itself seems to be divided into two main parts: The Campaign and the Multiplayer (skirmish) PvP.  Let me say right off the bat, that there does not appear to be skirmish map setups against the A.I. like most other RTS games have.  This could potentially be a very important point for those of you that love playing 1vs1 against the computer A.I.  But that in no way means there is nothing for the single-player to do.  For there is (from what I can ascertain), a 16-20 mission campaign, along with 2-player co-op scenarios, where you and a friend (or stranger) play against a set map of computer A.I.  There is also a 1vs1, 2vs2, etc… mode where you play against other live players, either in ranked or unranked (practice type) matches.  There are different setups and types of decks allowed by the creator of the match, and other typical post-game stats and such.  Regardless of how you decide to play, (single player/co-op campaigns and scenarios) or (pvp multiplayer skirmishes) – the user is given rewards for winning their match in the form of gold, BF points, and/or random cards.  I’m not crystal clear on the mechanics, but I believe the gold and points are used to “buy” cards off the auction house from other players, and to “purchase” booster packs from the game itself.  I believe there is also a way to literally buy cards (using real cash), but I’m fuzzy on that as well.

So, how does the game actually ‘play’?

Well, the long and short of it is that you start out at your “base”, which is really just a power and orb site that you own on one side of the map.  In multiplayer, your opponent starts on the other side of the map, with his “base”.  Your next step is usually to use a card to summon a squad of units.  These units then proceed to uncover the map, looking for the two ‘resources’ of the game.  They are Power, and Orb Sites.  In simplest terms, each card you use (be it a spell, unit, or building) requires X amount of power and Y amount of Orbs.  Much like Dawn of War, your goal should be to acquire and hold these sites, as they afford you the ability to use better cards.  The Orb sites function much like Tiers in most RTS games.  Control 1 orb site, and you have access to tier 1 units.  Two orb sites gives you access to tier 2 units, etc… etc…  The twist is in what color of orb you place on the Orb Site you capture.  Different cards of different disciplines (colors) will often require X amount of orbs of their color.  If you have a Nature and Fire deck, your first Orb is determined by the color of the first unit you deploy.  So if you summon fire archers, your first Orb will be Fire (red).  As you capture your next Orb site, you have the option of choosing to make it Nature (green), which will unlock all the lower tier Nature cards in your deck, or choose another red orb, which will unlock the “tier 2” fire cards in your deck.  It’s really quite simple, but as you capture more sites, you will have to choose accordingly, based on a number of factors, including things like, ‘What is my deck composition, and which units do I want to bring out’ ; ‘What type of units is my opponent (or AI opponent) using, and what color units in my deck are the best counters’ ; Is my opponent relying on walls, and do I need siege cards’ ; ‘Is the point highly contested, and if I lose it, what cards do I lose access to,’ and other things like that.

Single player campaign maps are typical of RTS games.  You wind your way around the map until you run into the AI – and you are given objectives as you proceed to conquer different parts of the map.  What may be very difficult to do with your current deck might be much easier to do with a different one.  Each campaign map also has multiple difficulty levels.  The higher level difficulty translates into better rewards when you defeat it.  Be it more gold, better random card rewards, etc… 

Regarding multiplayer, I have played a grand total of one game, and got a desync error before it was over.  I can see this being a total blast, especially when/if the playtesters do a good job of tweaking any abusable cards that may be out there.  One rather interesting aspect of the multiplayer maps is the ability to construct walls in pre-determined choke points on the maps.  It cost energy to do so, but the benefits are that the walls must be torn down before the enemy can progress into your territory.  Walls can also be manned by archer-type units, which is always fun, and towers (assuming you put them in your deck) can be erected just behind or in front of the walls for a pretty neat little defensive position.  On the flip side, there are plenty of potential cards that can be used to break through these defenses, assuming you put them in your deck.  Much like Dawn of War, certain sites (Orb sites in this case) can be quite important, especially if you have a Top-Unit heavy deck, and need the orb sites to bring out your big cards.  The carnage and energy that go into these battles for control of these points can be intense.  The post game stats are very, very, detailed as well, for those people into that stuff.

How is the presentation?

In a nutshell, it’s not bad.  The units themselves are a bit cartoony, but are very well animated, are easily recognizable, have above-average pathfinding skills, and have some great special ability graphics.  I would argue the interface (HUD) is a bit too cluttered for my liking, with very little way to manipulate it (like most RTS games actually), but on the flipside, the information is well laid out and everything is very easy to find and control.  Sounds are good, music is good, voice-overs are fine.  Camera control is adequate, with the ability to rotate and zoom a bit.  I would always like more zoom-out than most RTS games give, but this isn’t awful.

What else?  Probably a lot, but this post is already way too long, so I’ll stop for now.  I think it’s quite obvious I am loving the concept of the game, and can not wait for the release.  Maybe ritt can correct any glaring errors I made while writing this up, or hopefully will comment more on the multiplayer portion of the game, since my experience in that areas is quite limited at this point.


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MythicalMino
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« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2009, 04:33:59 PM »

I am in the process of downloading now...looking forward to checking it out.

Chris
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« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2009, 05:15:41 PM »

all downloaded and patched, but I cannot log in. I read on their forums that they were going to reboot the servers today without the cap, but I guess there is still a cap...or something.

Oh well...

Chris
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« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2009, 05:53:28 PM »

Thanks for the mass of details, Lockdown. I've been watching this one for a bit (having similar interests as you do) but haven't been brave enough to try it myself. Your write up is encouraging and has elevated the titles farther up my wish list.
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« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2009, 08:22:25 PM »

Excellent write up Lockdown.  I'm enjoying the game too, though I haven't tried multiplayer.  Plus there are two types of multiplayer, pvp and coop.  Which is part of the reason I'm here, looking for others that like the same type of games I do so I will have people to play with.

From what I've read, the game comes with 4 starter decks ( one of each color ) with 16 cards, and enough points to get another 96 cards from boosters.  Then you can buy more boosters too slywink   During the beta you could also create tome decks.  A tome deck is made up of 6 unopened boosters, and includes a few extra commons.  These tome decks are used to play sealed deck matches.  If you create a tome match, you and your opponents are confined to the cards that you opened.  A tome deck expires after 30 days ( or can be dismantled earlier ).

During the beta I was able to upgrade a few of my cards to be a bit more powerful.  The upgrades come in the form of rewards from doing the scenarios.  You can also combine cards.  Since you can only have 1 card of each type in your deck, and you will possibly open duplicates.  You are able to combine those to allow you to summon more units before the card needs to cool down.

During playing the game, each card has a number of uses before you have to wait for a cooldown to use it again.  So, for example, the archers can be cast 5 times before you have to wait for the cool down to expire so you can get another set of archers.

Anyway, I'm glad others seem to be interested and I hope to have friends to play with come release smile
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Arkon
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« Reply #15 on: March 03, 2009, 09:03:24 PM »

I had downloaded this a while ago, and was never able to get connected... I am still really looking forward to picking this up at release.
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« Reply #16 on: March 04, 2009, 01:05:05 PM »

Here's some pictures of the stuff I've been talking about to give some of you a better idea what things look like.

First, this a picture of the Forge.  The Forge is an area in the game where you can summon any available card in your library and mess around with it.  You can even summon some generic enemies to fight against, in order to get a feeling for how tough your units/structures/spells are.  The top of the screen is showing the menu bar.  You can access everything from here.  To the far right are a list of all the players in the current lobby (I think).  You can right click on any name and it gives a bunch of options to talk to them, initiate trades, etc.. etc.. :



- - -

Below is a picture of the ingame map, showing just the beginning area of the campaign, because it's all I've unlocked when I captured this pic.  Up top shows that I'm playing on Standard difficulty level.  You can see that I've currently got the option of playing three single-player scenarios, one 2-player scenario, one 4-player scenario, and of course the multiplayer pvp game types on the right (Sparring & Dueling Grounds): 



- - -

This picture shows what a typical scenario map looks like before you start.  This is one from the single-player path of the Campaign, showing the map, objectives, me and my current rank (guardian), and my current deck selection (Tester):



- - -

And last is a picture of an Orb and Energy Site.  There is a lot on this picture to show you guys.  On the left I marked the Control Groups.  These are a snap to set up.  Just click the plus/minus sign to manipulate control groups.  Drag pictures from one group to another in order to manipulate them once they are created.  It's very intuitive once you mess with it a bit.  Bottom left is the chat window.  I really wish this was configurable and movable, but I don't believe it is.  Below that are the cards in my current army (my deck for this scenario).  Of the 20, only 4 are available (raised up above the rest).  That is because in this game, I currently have only 1 red Orb site under my control.  Those are the "tier 1" Fire (red) cards I put in my deck.  Once I capture that site I marked "Orb Site", I will be able to place another orb there.  If I choose Frost (blue), I will be able to unlock the four "tier 1" blue cards in my deck.  If I put a Fire Orb there instead, the 3 red cards in the middle of my deck will become available instead.  The two (slightly smaller) capture points above the Orb Site are the Energy Sites.  Capturing them works much like Dawn of War.  The more of those I capture, the faster I bring in the energy I need to summon my cards into battle.  Above those in the little text box are my current scenario objectives.  Above that and to the right is my current energy (377) and the rate at which I'm bringing it in (+2) and what's left in the current energy sites I own (1032).  The little red orb with the number 1 in it shows that I currently control 1 red orb site on this map.  Next to that is the minimap and underneath that are pictures of the units I have selected.  Below that shows the current players on my team (just me, as this is a single-player scenario).




- - -

That should do it for now.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 04:52:28 PM by Lockdown » Logged

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rittchard
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« Reply #17 on: March 24, 2009, 06:15:13 PM »

Game is out today!!!  Anyone picking it up?

I have it pre-ordered from EA store and game downloaded (trapped in demo mode), but no key has been sent.

Edit: key was sent, now I just need to get home to start playin!
« Last Edit: March 24, 2009, 08:42:50 PM by rittchard » Logged
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« Reply #18 on: March 24, 2009, 10:26:04 PM »

I downloaded the demo while at work.  On my way home I stopped at a Target to pick up The Venture Bros. dvd.  I noticed that they had Battleforge out on the racks and I picked it up on a whim.  Before opening it I played through the demo's tutorial.  While I like it, I don't if I 39.99 like it.  In other words, I'm not sure if I'm going to open my box or take it back yet.  Decisions, decisions... icon_confused
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« Reply #19 on: March 24, 2009, 10:57:45 PM »

WTF?!!?  It was only $40 at Target?  Paid $50 for the stupid download version!  Boooooo!
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« Reply #20 on: March 24, 2009, 11:48:20 PM »

just double checked my receipt.  it was 39.99.  sorry.   icon_frown

i'm still on the fence on this damn thing, though.  i usually don't really like RTS games unless they do something radically different then "build, amass, attack" and this seems to have that something different.  however, the demo left me a bit cold. 
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« Reply #21 on: March 25, 2009, 03:14:15 AM »

I picked up a copy.  Didn't get a chance to install it tonight though.  icon_evil
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« Reply #22 on: March 25, 2009, 09:07:49 PM »

Some of this is repeated from other posts, but I thought I'd put together a more detailed impressions post. Short version: I'm lovin' it!!

Now I should start this off by saying that although I've tried/bought a ton of RTS games over the years, I wouldn't call myself a true fan of the genre, nor would I ever consider myself good at them in general. I just find it hard to resist when a new one comes out with some new twist or a fun license like Warhammer or LoTR. Battleforge adds the Magic: The Gathering (M: TG) twist in that your units/spells are based on "cards" which you can collect and trade a la M:TG. There are four different colors to choose from, and you can create a deck from them any way you choose, from a single color to all 4. Most decks I guess will be 1 or 2 colors for maximum effectiveness.

For any given fight, regardless of how many cards you have access to, you can only bring 20 to a battle. The cards can be anything from standard soldier units to a massive flying dragon that spits fire all over the place, to buff or heal spells, to large defensive towers that themselves cast buff spells. The variation and creativity of all the different units, as well as how they are brilliantly brought to life, are a large part of the game's appeal.

The traditional "resources" in the game are kept relatively simple: one is a tower that generates power/mana and the other is a "monument" of a given color (corresponding to the colors of your card deck). Each card has a casting cost (in power) and a requirement of color orbs (from 1 to 4). So a typical mid-range card might require you "own" 1 red orb and 1 of any other color, and 50 units of power to cast. A high end focused unit might need 4 red orbs and 300 power. There's a clear tradeoff in how you build your deck, and in cases where you don't know what you are going to face tactically, it can be a tough trade between using, say, extra defensive towers vs. extra mobile offensive units vs. offensive or defensive spell casts. There is a ton to choose from even at the outset.

Campaign missions play out as fairly standard RTS fare, with decently aggressive AI even in the early missions. You are generally faced with a mix of offense/defense decisions and splitting your forces effectively. What sets the game apart is that playing the exact same mission/map with a new/different deck can feel entirely different. While you might argue this is just the same as playing with a different race in a different game, I'd say strategically it's quite different because you are the one making all the choices in what units to bring to the table. It definitely feels more personal/special in that regard. Graphics and spell effects are all top notch throughout.

The game itself is pure GAME in terms of providing options. What do I mean? There is a "Forge" area which allows you to experiment with your cards in a completely benign environment. Just drop your card in and face it off against an opponent of your choice to see how it fares. I believe you can cast spells/buffs, etc to see their effects as well. It's an awesome little tool to let you play around and bring your cards to life. From there, you have a very extensive tutorial, and then a series of campaign missions. Campaign missions are either single player, 2 or 4 player cooperative, which you unlock as you move along the world map. I believe the main single player campaign has 18 missions. There's also a 12-player mission which I've heard is really 3 4-player missions running in conjunction somehow (basically it appears the devs have pinned the game's max number of players at 4, presumably due to balancing of the number of units, etc for performance). You can jump into a stranger's open game, or "group" up with friends to tackle a mission together. Each mission can be played in 3 difficulty levels as well. On top of that there is a Sparring area where you can essentially duel with someone with no consequences good or bad. And finally a true PvP arena (1v1 or 2v2) where you can fight it out and win rewards. All of this content can be played either with decks formed from your core collection of all cards, or from "Tome Decks" which are limited to a single Tome purchase of cards, thus dramatically lowering the pool you can choose from and offering a different type of challenge where randomization and luck come into play as much as skill and strategy.

All your game results are captured in the meta-game in a simple but effective journal. This keeps track of xp and gold which you earn during PvE missions as well as points and rewards and win/loss records, etc in PvP battles. All of this is tied to your user avatar. I don't know all the details of the rewards yet. What I have played with is "upgrading" cards. Cards that you've been rewarded after a completed scenario are placed in a separate pool. If you already own the same card, you can choose to upgrade it for a cost of in-game gold. In addition, if you happen to own multiples of the same card, you can simultaneously enhance the card's "volume" (# of usages). So I was able to upgrade my Skeleton Warriors to have higher damage AND 10 uses instead of 5 for the cost of 50gold. Apparently you can use PvP rewards as well to make these types of upgrades.

All in all, I'd say this game's replayability is off the charts. Just fiddling with cards and combos in the forge could suck up inordinate amounts of time. Not to mention all the different modes of play. The online setup is streamlined in a very clean interface which allows the player to easily pick and choose the type of gameplay, be it a single player mission or a 2 on 2 PvP match. The degree of professionalism in the release is very reminiscent to me of Guild Wars, and it seems like this really has the feel of being the GW of RTS games.

That said, I'm still scratching the surface of the game, so feel free to ask questions or comment. Based on what I've seen so far, this game is very likely to go into my top all-time games, and is certainly already one of my favorite RTS games.
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MonkeyFinger
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« Reply #23 on: March 25, 2009, 09:19:55 PM »

So... for an old curmudgeon like me who pretty much sticks to single player, is there enough here to make a worthwhile purchase? Or does it really come down to the multi?
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« Reply #24 on: March 25, 2009, 11:10:50 PM »

Quote from: MonkeyFinger on March 25, 2009, 09:19:55 PM

So... for an old curmudgeon like me who pretty much sticks to single player, is there enough here to make a worthwhile purchase? Or does it really come down to the multi?

When I played in beta, I played exclusively the single player campaign, and it wasn't until late last night that I played my first co-op mission with a friend.  I ended up doing the first mission about 5 different times on the same difficulty level with different deck builds, and each time was fun in different ways.  I've only made it to the 4th (I think) mission and have already got at least 20 hours of game time in (including deck building, upgrades, and losses).  Also for additional challenge you can play the same map on 2 more difficulty levels (advanced and expert).  As I mentioned above, I believe the main single player campaign has 18 missions (not 100% sure on this). 

I'd say there is a ton of playability for a single player presuming you do indeed like the core game - BUT with the caveat that like Guild Wars, you still have to login online to get to the main map interface (which may be a turn off for some players).  The counter point about this though is that, like Guild Wars again, your progress is all tied to your account, so you can bring it with you on different computers or on the road.

You can download the game demo and see how you like it - it's set up in a shareware format, but it gives you a pretty good idea of what to expect.
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« Reply #25 on: March 25, 2009, 11:17:51 PM »

I played the demo this morning.. and I'm with Ritt: This game is tons of fun! I'm practically salivating to pick it up, but I already have Guild Wars and Warhammer Online in my rotation. As hepcat posted: decisions, decisions...
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« Reply #26 on: March 26, 2009, 01:48:13 AM »

Quote from: rittchard on March 25, 2009, 11:10:50 PM

Quote from: MonkeyFinger on March 25, 2009, 09:19:55 PM

So... for an old curmudgeon like me who pretty much sticks to single player, is there enough here to make a worthwhile purchase? Or does it really come down to the multi?

When I played in beta, I played exclusively the single player campaign, and it wasn't until late last night that I played my first co-op mission with a friend.  I ended up doing the first mission about 5 different times on the same difficulty level with different deck builds, and each time was fun in different ways.  I've only made it to the 4th (I think) mission and have already got at least 20 hours of game time in (including deck building, upgrades, and losses).  Also for additional challenge you can play the same map on 2 more difficulty levels (advanced and expert).  As I mentioned above, I believe the main single player campaign has 18 missions (not 100% sure on this). 

I'd say there is a ton of playability for a single player presuming you do indeed like the core game - BUT with the caveat that like Guild Wars, you still have to login online to get to the main map interface (which may be a turn off for some players).  The counter point about this though is that, like Guild Wars again, your progress is all tied to your account, so you can bring it with you on different computers or on the road.

You can download the game demo and see how you like it - it's set up in a shareware format, but it gives you a pretty good idea of what to expect.

Excellent, thanks for that... off to check out the demo.
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« Reply #27 on: March 26, 2009, 05:43:49 PM »

If you can get a buddy to partner up with, I think the game can be even more fun.  I've played 2 of the 2-player co-op missions so far with a guildmate.  It's kind of cool how they blend the mission to be both solo and interactive.  The first mission you both kind of move independently and then eventually meet up to kill the big bad.  No surprises but well done map-wise.  The second is much more interesting, there is a gate control that essentially forces you and your teammate to switch off on offense and defense for set amounts of time.  It's an interesting dynamic.  In addition, I like that as long as either of you have a ground unit nearby, both you and your teammate can cast spells to aid the other.  So my partner was able to cast some fireballs to help me offensively, and I was able to help him with some healing spells.  Very cool in an RTS.

While I haven't tried it yet, my friend also said the 2v2 mode was a lot of fun...

- - -

In the mean time, I started the next single player mission and got pwned twice in a row.  Even in Standard difficulty this game can be challenging!
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« Reply #28 on: March 26, 2009, 08:23:28 PM »

Everyone already knows I'm a huge fan of the game from my beta experience, but I won't be able to dig in until Sunday at the earliest due to my work schedule.  I'm really looking forward to it though.  My 1vs1 pvp matches have been a lot of fun.  (except the time I tried a really bizarre deck configuration and got completely and totally destroyed...  icon_neutral)

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« Reply #29 on: March 26, 2009, 10:24:48 PM »

Quote from: Lockdown on March 26, 2009, 08:23:28 PM

Everyone already knows I'm a huge fan of the game from my beta experience, but I won't be able to dig in until Sunday at the earliest due to my work schedule.  I'm really looking forward to it though.  My 1vs1 pvp matches have been a lot of fun.  (except the time I tried a really bizarre deck configuration and got completely and totally destroyed...  icon_neutral)



Will your acct/avatar name be Lockdown?

Mine is, no surprise, Rittchard, so please add me to your friends list! 
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« Reply #30 on: March 26, 2009, 11:43:57 PM »

So... I'm caving. Are we gonna get a GT guild going or something? nod
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« Reply #31 on: March 27, 2009, 03:48:25 AM »

I'd be interested.
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« Reply #32 on: March 27, 2009, 11:12:14 AM »

Once freakin' Direct2Drive.uk sends me the full version code and not the beta code, then I would love to be part of a Wanderers guild (we should get the OO people in on this too).

Bael
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« Reply #33 on: March 27, 2009, 01:48:36 PM »

With this game, the more friendly and fun players we can get in a network together, the better. biggrin
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« Reply #34 on: March 27, 2009, 02:21:17 PM »

My copy is sitting here unopened because I'm afraid I'll have no opponents. So if we can get a group going, I'll open it  icon_smile
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« Reply #35 on: March 27, 2009, 03:04:10 PM »

I'm still on the fence about picking it up... but if we could get a good group going, that would sure kick me off the fence. Again, the game is 40 bucks at Target right now.

This one has been released completely under the radar. I'm afraid that if you don't play it now, there might not be anyone to play it with in two months.  icon_frown
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« Reply #36 on: March 27, 2009, 03:23:18 PM »

I'm tempted, but the collectible aspect of it makes me nervous.  I know you get a certain amount of credit to buy cards in the box, but I'm less crazy about the idea of having my choices restricted unless I spend real-life buckz.  Keeping my eye on it though.
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« Reply #37 on: March 27, 2009, 05:02:46 PM »

Quote from: Lorini on March 27, 2009, 02:21:17 PM

My copy is sitting here unopened because I'm afraid I'll have no opponents. So if we can get a group going, I'll open it  icon_smile

Big benefits of getting an in-game community going:

1) people to play with or against (I'm more interested in the co-op scenarios than straight up versus, but I'll give it all a whirl anyway. smile)

2) people to trade with so you don't have to buy as many boosters to get a selection of cards that interest you. For example, I'm most interested in the nature faction, and also dig the fire and frost factions, but the shadow faction doesn't do much for me. Naturally, that means I mostly got shadow cards in my boosters so far. I'd be happy to trade those over for some cards that interest me more. slywink
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« Reply #38 on: March 27, 2009, 05:36:33 PM »

I don't know if they do "guilds" or not so I'm just collecting names on my friends list at the moment.  Unfortunately it appears you need to be online to add. 

As with other games, you guys are free to hook up with the Wanderers and use our Vent, etc. for playing this game.  It definitely helps in coordination. 

www.the-wanderers-guild.com

Here's my list of peeps so far (on Overlord server):

Rittchard
Kublai
Ayngel
GrimmReaper
FalconBF
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« Reply #39 on: March 27, 2009, 05:49:41 PM »

Quote from: Chaz on March 27, 2009, 03:23:18 PM

I'm tempted, but the collectible aspect of it makes me nervous.  I know you get a certain amount of credit to buy cards in the box, but I'm less crazy about the idea of having my choices restricted unless I spend real-life buckz.  Keeping my eye on it though.

Seems like a lot of people are worried about this aspect.  All I can say is with the base number of points you get (3000), you can buy 2 full "Tomes" for 1250 each and 2 more "booster packs".  Each pack I think has 8 cards, I forget how many packs were in the Tome.  Either way you start off with a ton of cards in your collection (definitely well over 100), considering you are only going to use 20 at a time.  For 2-color decks, it's highly unlikely you won't have enough cards to pick and choose from.  I have about 30-40 hours invested already and have only touched 2 of my 4 colors, and have no idea really what cards I might be "missing" or "needing".  Of course most of my play has been PvE missions.  I haven't felt myself "needing" more cards in the pool to make my playing experience better or more effective (even upon failing missions, see below), but I do feel myself wanting more out of obsessiveness slywink

- - -

Back to the PvE.  The 5th (I think?) solo mission is/was kicking my ass hard.  I failed twice in a row really quickly on first trials.  The early part of the mission requires you keep a certain number of NPC units alive (2 of 6) and I kept losing them all.  Last night I got more serious, and still failed another 3 more times.  Each time I seemed to make a little more progress and learn a little more about the mission, and in between each set I tweaked my deck with 1 or 2 cards, and altered my strategy just a tad.  Normally such failings would drive me away from a game, but in this one it just kept me more motivated.  I love the fact that unlike other RTS games, I can not only change my strategic moves, I can alter what units I bring to the table.  Just one switch in your deck can be a game-changer.  For that matter, I could also have just started from scratch with a completely different deck and color scheme.  Very cool.  By the final time I tried it, I had tweaked and strategized just enough to soundly complete the mission (with all 6 human units surviving!), and it felt gooooooood  smile
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