Yomi is a tabletop card-battling game that takes place in David Sirlin's Fantasy Strike universe. At some point, Sirlin made a Unity-driven version and threw it up on the Fantasy Strike website, but according to a new post on his forums, it's also coming to iPad next week.
David Sirlin made his bones in the games industry by spearheading development on Capcom's Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix and Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix and publishing detailed notes about the process on his blog. He even wrote a book on competitive gaming called Playing to Win. In fighting game circles, Yomi has tons of street cred.
Here are the basics: each character has a deck full of attacks, throws, and blocks that operate kind of like rock-paper-scissors. You'll set up a string of commands and hope that they effectively counter or beat your opponent's. That seems pretty straightforward, but a few minutes of poking around in the playable web version reveal a deep, complex game that balances randomness with strategy and intuition.
One thing to note about Yomi: it's a card game, but it's not a collectible card game. Yomi ships with 10 characters, each of which have a full deck of attacks. This means no grinding through random card packs to get enough resources for a workable, high-level deck. Another 10 "expansion" characters will be available through an in-app purchase.
Here's where things get weird: Yomi will launch at $9.99, and the IAP will set you back another $9.99. On the one hand, the complete physical collection costs $100, so the iOS version is a pretty good deal; on the other, Yomi seems stuck between the tabletop world that supports expensive hobbies and the App Store which usually doesn't. How Sirlin navigates that tension will be interesting.
Either way, the iPad version of Yomi will sport online multiplayer and be cross-platform compatible with the web version. If you already have a FantasyStrike account, your username and leaderboard stats will be waiting when you boot up the iPad version. Offline, singleplayer modes will also be available if you need to dust-up on your gambling panda strategies.
Yomi will hit the App Store on April 17th, but until then you can play for free on the Fantasy Strike website.
[via Fantasy Strike forums]
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