Aug 15, 2016
A bugbear of mine is game reviews that rely heavily on simply comparing the game they’re talking about to another, more popular game. Sadly, there’s no way I can talk about Shadowverse without mentioning how much like Hearthstone it is.
Seriously. It’s really like Hearthstone. Really.
You have 3 cards to start with and you’re in a 1 on 1 fight. The fight progresses in rounds and in each round you’re given points to spend. The first round you can spend 1 point, the 2nd round you can spend 2… you get the idea.
These points are spent on playing cards. Cards that have been played are placed face-up in front of you. More powerful cards cost more points, so you’ll only be able to play them in the later rounds.
Cards have 2 values that are important when they’re in-play. A defense and an offense value, these two numbers represent how much damage the cards do and how much damage the card can take before they ‘die’ and are taken off the table. The aim for you is to attack your opponent, which is made harder by the fact that your opponents cards are trying to attack you too. Do you hit your target this turn, or should you remove some of their cards from the table, lest they hit you back?
Honestly, it’d be so much easier if you just went and played Hearthstone.
One thing that Shadowverse does that’s totally unique is an ‘evolution’ feature. In each battle you have 3 evolution points to spend. These allow you to evolve your cards which can result in better stats or entirely new abilities becoming active.
Much like Blizzard’s competitive card game, Shadowverse has a wide range of cards, all featuring exquisite art. There’s hundreds of the things for you to collect and building your own deck is a chance for you to create something that’s unique to the way you play. A lot of cards have abilities that suite one style of play over the other, though sometimes they’re written poorly and take a bit of trial and error before you fully understand how they work.
Another criticism would be that card’s stats aren’t clearly identifiable when you’re in the middle of a game. To be able to see what affects the cards have, what their attack and defence values are, you have to click on them. This might not seem like much, but when you’ve got 4 cards on the table and six in your hand, it can become confusing as you try and figure out what each card does and how they’ll affect each other.
One aspect that Shadowverse has over Hearthstone is the single-player offering. There’s a large number of characters to play as (each offering their own unique decks) and there’s fully voiced dialogue between each battle. The story is your normal fantasy nonsense of magic and evil, but it’s useful for players that want to learn how to play offline, rather than getting their decks kicked in.
Shadowverse is blatant in what it’s trying to do – copy Hearthstone. In fairness, it does this well. Whilst not offering too many of its own unique ideas, aside from the evolution feature, it’s well made and just as fun as Blizzard’s own.