Hi all, a few things in real life have kept me busy, but finally this review is complete. It’s a bit long though😅.The review will cover the current state of the game and will encompass my thoughts on why the game concept should revert to that of version 1.6. At the same time I will highlight areas of version 1.7 that are good and should be incorporated into the version 1.6 game design, which will hopefully lead to an amazing version 1.8.
Flaws of Version 1.7
In my opinion the flaws of version 1.7 are mainly:
- Graphics -> Not as good as the previous version
- Lack of PvP -> The game has now become an AI grind where players no longer compare skill but how much time spent in game beating bots.
- Mana Structure and Strategy -> The limit on mana flow makes the sole source of strategy in this game deckbuilding and because it isn’t hard at all to build a deck that can win 80-90% of the time against the computer, you can basically say strategy it non-existent. Furthermore, the ever-rising rate of mana production as the game progresses removes any last semblances of high-level strategy and turns the game into a brainless minion spawner; whoever spawns more minions as well as stronger minions wins. The previous version allowed for far more strategy.
- Near impossible to make a reversal-> In the current game format it is very difficult to reverse an opponent’s winning situation. This is because very strong minions just keep being spammed without break. In the previous version due to the focus being on spells not minions, if you were able to hold on and defend well, minions would start to build up on your side and you could turn the match around through great defence.
- Match countdown -> The match time limit is exceptionally annoying as it ends matches prematurely and kills off any of the slight chances of a reversal occurring as the player pulling of the reversal would lose from health loss before overthrowing the computer.
- Lack of tower defence plus lack of spell caster influence and defence/boost methods -> This one’s a no-brainer, the presence of these elements added great depth and strategy to the previous version and what made it so enjoyable.
- Too simple a game -> it lacks depth to keep it engaging and while it may be addicting for a while it becomes boring and tiring very quickly. The previous version was far more engaging and had a lot more depth as well as strategy with the way various spells could interact as well as the importance of timing; from the placing of summoner runes, to spell timing, to caster ability timing and build up, as well as keeping track of mana expenditure.
Amazing ideas of Version 1.7 and where they can be taken further:
The ideas that should be incorporated into the version 1.6 game design are mainly:
- Lower amount of gold and card rarity as well as difficulty of levelling cards -> I believe the current setup for gold, card drop rate and levelling is quite good
- Arenas -> Having different tier arenas that break up the player base by their skill is a great idea as it raises competitiveness. Furthermore by giving out weekly rewards based upon rank players will feel a greater desire to increase or maintain a certain rank. The rewards will also help mitigate the slight negatives from the lower gold and gem earn rate. Another interesting idea would be that certain spells can only be discovered (for the first time) from chests from a certain arena. For example Punish arrogance; a great spell from the previous version that was well used even by the high rank players. You could make it that a player must first ‘discover’ the card from the lowest tier arena chest before then being able to get it from any tier arena chest. There if you didn’t ‘discover’ it and moved up an arena, you would have to drop back down to collect chests from that arena to do so. NOTE: This would also create a new market opportunity where you can sell chests from different arenas so players who can’t be bothered dropping back down for a certain card can just buy those chests in the market instead.
- Portraits: The new portraits are awesome, add them to the old ones and there’ll be a whole bunch of options which can be continuously added to.
- Market - > Cards now being able to be bought with gold is a very player friendly idea, now if only the costs could be slightly lowered?
- Individual victory chest plus shortened time on mystery chest, as well as how the mystery chests stack with a limit of 2.
- Deck limit -> In the past it was 9, currently it is 14. In my opinion it should become 12, with 6 cards in hand that cycle when used. Up to 2 copies of rares and commons should also be allowed within the deck.
And saving the BEST IDEA till last; the new minions. Instead of becoming spell cards, most of the minions should become summoner rune options. Naturally the stats would have to be slightly refitted, furthermore their spawn rate would have to be modified so as to not make the 3 original runes of archer, swordsman and brawler, obsolete. For example the siege goblin would have a range spanning tower to tower and will spawn every 2 waves (36 seconds, as if I recall correctly it took 18 seconds for the original three to spawn a new wave last version), and have an attack of 50 plus attack speed/rate of 1 shot per 3 seconds and a health of 60. By having these new minions as runes it would add a whole other level to the strategic formations that could be created, which in turn would be specialised for a certain deck build, eliminating the previous problem of lack of variety. Players will be able to pick 5 runes that they wish to use in battle. That being said, in the deck building space players should have the option to decide which of the 5 runes they will use for a certain caster’s deck as well as which 2 of the 5 runes should be present at the start. As stated earlier by doing so this will give the game the opportunity for more depth and variety. An interesting idea here would be that each of the new minion runes must be attained by playing the minions in a certain way; however players don’t know the way in which to play the minions to unlock new runes. For example to unlock the brute as a rune a player must play a game using only brawlers. After that they would unlock the rune for the brute. For the siege goblin it might be setting up archers behind one brawler and using such a formation for the entire game. Naturally as this might be hard, hints can be sold in the market, the price varying depending on the minion rune to be unlocked; for example the hint for the brute might cost 15 gems and the siege goblin 10. An extra idea here would minion skins. For example while all casters have access to the same minion runes, mordrake players could buy a necromancer look for their minions in the market for example for the cost of $0.99 and then by selecting it there minions would have a more necromancer like look. P.S: the skins shouldn’t be limited to a caster, e.g a necromancer look/effect can also be applied when using Valen if the player wishes to do so.
On the other hand, certain minions should become spells as they reflect the characteristics of the caster. In my opinion from the current options, these minions should be; Svetlana, Undead Warlord, Hellfiend, Nature Guardian, Treant.
- Svetlana for Ameryl: 6 mana cost, 200 health, 65 atk power, Same atk rate as old swordsman, Effect: When summoned, all friendly troops on the battlefield are teleported to her location. Increases atk rate, power and movement speed of nearby friendly units by 20%. (She can be played anywhere in your half of the field).
- Undead Warlord for Mordrake: 9 mana cost, 500 health, 180 atk, Slightly faster atk rate and movement speed than old abomination. Needs three graves in within vicinity of summon to be summoned, Effect: 5 skeletons appear upon summon, furthermore all units (friendly or enemy), except for skeletons that die in its presence are resurrected as a skeleton. Skeletons have a health of 60 and attack of 25.
- Hellfiend for Ruul: 5 mana cost, 250 health, 75 atk power, Same atk rate as old brawler. Effect: when summoned the 2 enemy units, 1 with the lowest health and 1 with the most health in the same lane take 450 damage.
- Nature guardian and Treant for the tree caster: Treant could have a cost of 4, with 250 health, 35 atk, half the attack rate of the brawler and the knockback effect. Nature guardian could have a cost of 6, 350 health, 70 atk, half the attack speed of the swordsman, Effect: Every 2 seconds heals himself for 30hp and every 4 seconds heals nearby friendly units for 15hp.
- For the ice caster a Frost guardian could be created; Same cost and stats as the nature guardian, but its effect is that every time it takes damage it releases an ice fog that slows and lowers all stats of nearby enemy units.
Naturally each of these cards should have epic rarity in my opinion. Also lyra, Egyptian looking caster, and Valen would need such epic rarity minion type spell cards developed for them.
And that concludes my review. Let me know what you all think!