Faeria Review, A F2P Card Game With Undeniable Potential
So here is a new outsider in the ultra-competitive niche of the video card game. It is a real race behind the monstrous Hearthstone that has been going on for three years now; each studio trying to find an original mechanism capable of justifying the existence of an alternative to Blizzard’s titan. Even Hi-Rez is getting into it, with Smite Tactics currently in Alpha.
>> CLICK HERE FOR Smite Tactics Alpha Impressions
Well thought out, Faeria seems to be a tone above all his competitors, not only because of its depth, but also because it excels at the level of realization (graphics, ergonomics). If these aspects might seem minor in a card game, we have seen with Hearthstone that they can play a leading role. Conversely, the very austere realization of the Magic series of games (Duels of the Planeswalkers) undoubtedly slowed down its success despite a system that proved its quality for more than 20 years. The creators of Faeria thus cared for the container as much as the content. The game takes of well from the the prologue (s), explaining patiently, and mission after mission, the great rules that govern the victory, all with a very nice rendering on the screen.
Faeria is a mixture of traditional card game and strategy game on an interactive game board. Each game board is cut in tiles - empty at the start - which must be filled with lands during the game. It is up to you to lay land on these tiles to allow your creatures to be invoked and then to advance on the ground. There are also several types of terrain (mounting, forest, lake, etc.); putting it simply, each type of terrain represents a category of monsters. Blue monsters can only be summoned on a lake terrain that you own, while green monsters require a forest terrain. To add more depth to the gameplay, spells, as well as monsters, of a certain element, require you to have a set number of the specific terrain before being used. Tiki, for example, is a green monster with 1/1 (attack / health) that gives +2/+2 to any monster you own, requires you to have two forest tiles on the map before being useable. Some might even require you to have tiles of different elements, which allows for a huge number of strategies and deck builds.
And while we are at it, let us stay on the notions of mana. In addition to the mana sources just discussed, each player gains three mana per turn, which they are free to spend or not on cards that cost 0 mana to 24 mana (or more, this is the highest cost I’ve seen so far). Should you choose not to use any mana, they will add up to the amount you receive on the next turn (if you did not use your 3 mana during a turn, you will have a total of 6 the next one, not counting the mana gathered from wells). While I do not know if there is a limit yet, I’ve held as many as 27 mana at some point. Tactically, it means you can play very aggressively by casting low-cost creatures and spells every turn, or decide to wait one, two, or sometimes three turns, before you can summon a real beast.
Finally, there are currently 3 (technically 5) game modes. Solo mode, basically a player vs AI mode meant for players to practice, Battle mode, which comprises Casual and Ranked PvP, and Pandora. If in the Solo and Battle you will be using the cards you own, in Pandora you will be creating decks with cards supplied by the game to take part in a mode much like Hearthstone's Arena. Players will keep battling in Pandora until they've either reached 9 wins, or 3 losses. At this point, they will reveive rewards according to how many wins they got. This mode comprises the Practice Run and the Pandora Run.
From this first grip came a convincing impression that Faeria is a game with certain potential, easy to take in hand but difficult to control. The features and game modes will gradually unfold as you level up. The factor of luck is also quite small here. The better player will almost certainly always win. Knowing when to attack, when to defend, or even where to create your tiles are but a few of the player’s decisions that will influence the result of a match.