Category Archives: Card

After a few weeks of repeat performances and build-your-own-deck Tavern Brawls, Hearthstone [Free] developers have finally given us a Brawl with pre-made decks we haven't seen before, and I'm actually enjoying this one. As you can imagine, this one is pretty much a Mech battle, and you'll play as either Boom Bot or Annoy-o-Tron. Annoy-o-Tron's Hero Power gives the lowest attack minion Taunt and Divine Shield and Boom-Bot's deals one damage to two random enemies. As you can guess, if you happen to play on the Boom Bot side, you'll get Dr. Boom, not a bad little guy that one. Unlike the last few Brawls, BB Vs AT offers pre-constructed decks, something many were asking for because it allows people without strong collections to compete with the rest...

When it comes to people like me, there's no such thing as "too much" Lovecraftian horror. I love to rep H.P. and the Big C whenever I can. There is just something so wonderfully visceral and imaginative about eldritch horror. Clearly, I'm not the only one who has been sucked into this particular abyss. We've already had a few solid mobile outings for Cthulhu and his gang of incomprehensible amorphous ungodly powerful monstrosities, such as Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land [$4.99], and a port of the phenomenally insane board game Elder Sign: Omens [$3.99 / $6.99 (HD)]. Technically we've had this game since December of 2013, but it's recently been re-launched in its final form with a happening new icon and complete feature list. I give you The Moaning Words [Free]...




'Sage Solitaire' Review - My Sage Advice is to Play This Game

Zach Gage's Sage Solitaire [Free] is a fantastic example of how to make a mobile card game that's unique, fast, and strategic. This is a solitaire card game where you play by default with a deck of cards laid out into 9 stacks on a 3x3 grid, with more cards in the top stacks than the middle than in the lower stacks. You make matches based on some poker hands – two pair is not included – and get points for each match. The rub is that matches have to be made between cards that are on at least two different rows, so you can't play two horizontally adjacent cards. There are 51 cards in total to get through, with one card discarded at the beginning of the game and used to determine the bonus suit, which doubles the point value of any hand made with it. You can trash a card at any time, with each hand you play giving you a new trash. Because of the two-rows requirement, it's possible for any game to end with one ill-fated play, so using your big matches and trashes wisely is important...

Finally, a new Hearthstone [Free] Tavern Brawl! Ok, it hasn't really been that long, but I do enjoy my Brawls fresh out of the oven rather than reheated in the microwave. This week's Brawl is all about the underdog since each turn whichever player is losing by 3 or more health gets a random minion. RNG galore, of course, but isn't that the fun part of Tavern Brawl? After all, not much to lose and not much to gain either. Now, the interesting part of this Brawl is that in Hearthstone health doesn't always match up with who's winning. You could have less health than your opponent and still be way ahead because of board control. Also, if you are playing a Warlock deck, you'll most probably be down on health but up on board control, a situation that will become even worse for your opponent once the extra minions start rallying to your side...

So, a funny thing happened today. Remember a couple of months ago when Hearthstone's [Free] Too Many Portals Tavern Brawl was briefly the wrong Tavern Brawl? Well, this week's Tavern Brawl is Too Many Portals, and guess what?? It actually wasn't when the Brawl started. Instead, we actually got the webspinners one, to many players' dismay. I have no idea why portals are always messing up Blizzard's plans, but I'm guessing there's some kind of magical energy remnants affecting Blizzard's computers, or someone really hates portals. If it's anything like the previous mix-up, you can only earn one pack, so pick your Brawl accordingly...

Hearthstone's [Free] new Tavern Brawl has opened its gates, and it's a fun one. The Double Deathratller Battler is all about, of course, Deathrattles. Like last week's Brawl, you get to make your own deck and then head to battle. The rules are pretty simple this week as any minion with Deathrattle will trigger twice, which creates all kinds of fun if you are playing the right deck. Personally, I couldn't resist the tempation of bringing a couple of Dreadsteeds along the way just for the fun of it, and, as I expected, I quickly ran out of space on my board for my little horses. Another good deck idea is running a couple of Mad Scientists so you can create your own Christmas Tree Hero with all the secrets you can get into the battlefield once he dies...

Touchstone Tavern #15 - Your Weekly 'Hearthstone' News Roundup

This is a fun time to be playing Hearthstone [Free], isn't it? With all the new cards that appear to be shaking things up and all the players trying to figure out what should go where and why, the game is all alive again (in my best Dr. Frankenstein voice). I've been playing the game quite a lot this last week, and I've been enjoying both the ladder and the casual games. I still haven't figured out how much and in what way the meta has changed, but I do know that it feels different enough to be more enjoyable than it was before The Grand Tournament came out. I've also had a fun time going back to Blackrock Mountain Adventure and Curse of Naxxramas and playing those challenges with my new TGT-infused decks; they really break the challenges. Okay, let's see what news this week brought us, shall we?..

Many of you probably remember the conversation over whether video games are art that the Smithsonian American Art Museum Exhibition The Art of Video Games initiated a few years ago. While that conversation was...interesting and heated, what everyone agreed on was that Smithsonian's exhibition was another proof of how video games are becoming an increasingly-accepted form of entertainment (and, perhaps, of art), a wonderful moment in time if you belong to the generation whose parents saw video games as an addiction (to be remedied through an abundance of homework) and a waste of time...

Touchstone Tavern #14 - Your Weekly 'Hearthstone' News Roundup

And it's out, finally! As of last Monday, we've all started playing with Hearthstone's [Free] new toys, the 132-card The Grand Tournament expansion which has been welcomed by most players as it has given us new ways to play the game, new deck ideas to think about, and in general, made the game more fun. Now, I don't know whether TGT will radically change the meta or whether we'll just see a few cards fitting into existing decks; it's really too early to tell that because we'll need to wait until the dust settles and new decks are designed, put to the test, and seen how they fare. I'm hopeful that we won't go back to the Face Hunter domination of old, but I'm slightly worried that Patron Warrior decks will still dominate, especially if that Mr. Frothing Berserker doesn't get a nerf soon...

TEKKEN Card Tournament [Free] was Bandai Namco's attempt to rethink the TEKKEN fighting games by turning the action fighting games into a card fighting game. Although not too many people talk about the game currently, it actually has great reviews on the App Store, so Bandai Namco's attempt was apparently well-executed. By making the game F2P with IAPs, Bandai Namco was probably hoping that TEKKEN Card Tournament would benefit from the popularity of its sister fighting game and become a strong source of revenue. Alas, as a VentureBeat article points out, that was not to be. TEKKEN Card Tournament, which went live in 2013, has broken into the 1000 highest-grossing iPhone apps only in eight countries, none of them countries with big spenders. Therefore, Bandai Namco decided to reach over into the physical world to summon some help for its card battler...

Betway, one of the leading global online gaming companies, has decided to dip its toes into eSports by launching a dedicated betting portal for games such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, League of Legends, DOTA 2, Starcraft 2, and more. You can bet on events such as League of Legends' World Regional Qualifiers, CS:GO's 99 Damage Tournament, Heroes of the Storm's Enter the Storm Tournament, and so on. What is even more interesting than just betting on specific eSports events is that Betway offers bets on whether various video games will be part of the Winter Olympics 2030. Currently, Hearthstone [Free]is 99/1, DOTA 2 is 79/1, and CS:GO is 49/1. As the Eurogamer.net article explains, Betway's Alan Alger explained that Hearthstone has well over 30 million players and is a growing eSports force. Many Winter Olympic sports don't have a tenth of Hearthstone's participation figures, Alger noted...

Do you hate "pay-to-win" free-to-play games? Is the idea of ever spending any chunk of money in a game offensive to the very fiber of your being? Well, you might not like Monsters Ate My Metropolis. [Free] But if you've got a nuanced opinion about free-to-play games, then you might just enjoy Monsters Ate My Metropolis...

'The Grand Tournament', The New Expansion For 'Hearthstone', is Out!

Well, there we go everyone, no more waiting, no more anticipating, no more counting the days, the nights, the minutes, the hours, and everything else countable, no more playing with those old Hearthstone [Free] cards, the dusty, dirty ones. Now, we officially have new, shiny, fancy-looking cards to play with as the new expansion, The Grand Tournament, has just officially released in North America. If you have bought the pre-order packs, you have 50 new surprises to unveil, and if you didn't go for that, I'm sure you've stored enough gold to buy at least a few packs. Either way, those new cards have cried for freedom for too long; it's time to release them...

Well, it's almost time to welcome Hearthstone's [Free] new expansion, The Grand Tournament. Excited yet? Well, I am, but it's my duty to remind you of a couple of things before the expansion hits. First, Amazon is offering 20% Coins Back on all TGT pack purchases. This offer is only valid for customers in the US, UK, and Germany, and there's a bit of a process to buying those packs as JR Cook explains in a post on Blizzpro. So, if you don't mind the hassle, there are some savings there for you. Also, Blizzard's TGT pre-order, where you get 50 packs and a card-back for $49.99, should still be available, although I'm sure not for long, so this is your last chance to get in on that. As for a release time, all we know officially so far is the tweet below...

The Grand Tournament is almost upon us (hopefully, next Monday), but the TGT patch has already dropped in preparation for the upcoming expansion release. As always, the good people over at Hearthpwn.com have brought in their datamining pickaxes and uncovered some interesting new information and the fascinating possibility that a Co-Op mode of some sort might be coming our way. But let's start with the sounds and sights of TGT. The datamining uncovered all the lovely gold Legendaries as well as all the sound files of the new expansion, 20 minutes of new sounds and voiceovers. We can also now see the new Daily Quests added, one that has you winning 5 Tavern Brawls (a clever way from Blizzard to make its new mode more valued), as well as dailies for winning 3 games with each class...

If you weren't playing Hearthstone [Free] when the Goblins Vs Gnomes expansion came out, then know that the expansion cards first came out in Arena mode before they were released. It looks like Blizzard is doing something similar but instead of going the Arena way, it decided to highlight the game's new mode, Tavern Brawl. Therefore, this week's most Glorious (Blizzard's words) Tavern Brawl will be called The Grand Tournament Match and will be all about the new cards. The Brawl will feature a thrilling match between two potent forces; one will be led by Medivh and will feature a deck built around the Inspire mechanic. On the other side of the Brawl will be Alleria's forces that will be all about the Joust mechanic. The Brawl will run as usual from Wednesday to late Sunday...

Deck Builders have really been on the rise in recent years. From the humble beginnings of games like Dominion, now we’ve even got Marvel and Alien deck builders. I’m really partial to this genre myself. Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer [Free] is a game I still log into from time to time and it has never left my phone or iPad. I think the appeal of deck builders comes from having every card you’ll need right in the box. You don’t collect or trade cards and meticulously build your own deck before even playing. You and your friends can play right out of the box with a much smaller financial investment. They’re massively approachable. Anyway, the point is, Deck Builders are my jam, and Splendor [$6.99] is a super tasty mixed berry jam that’s won several awards for being so darn tasty...

'Skylanders Battlecast', A Mobile F2P Card Battler, Joins The 'Skylanders' Franchise in 2016

If you have young children (or are one), you probably already know all about the Skylanders games, Activision's franchise that's managed to merge physical toys with video gaming and has made a fortune from it. After announcing Skylanders Superchargers, the Skylanders game that will bring all kinds of vehicles to the base game, Activision announced a new game today, Skylanders Battlecast, a F2P Card Battler for mobile devices. According to the announcement, this new game will allow players to fight each other using their favorite heroes from the Skylanders universe. I've seen quite a few young ones talk about their Skylanders heroes quite a bit, so I think the idea of letting them bring those heroes to battle is a smart one and, probably, a great, new source of revenue for Activision...

'Loot & Legends' for iPad Review - Plenty of Loot Awaits In This Funny and Entertaining Game

A few days ago, I wrote a story about how Collectible Card Games are flourishing on mobile devices, with Hearthstone, of course, leading the way. If you haven't read the article, a new report from SuperData Research stated that the portability and popularity of mobile devices have created an excellent environment for digital CCGs. Why have I started a review of Dropforge Games' Loot & Legends [Free (HD)], which from its screenshots looks like a table-top board game, with a discussion about CCGs? Well, maybe the name of Loot & Legends' PC predecessor might give you a clue: Card Hunter, Blue Manchu's 2013 hit that cleverly put a table-top board game of old and a CCG into a blender and out came a game that cleverly injected a deck-building component into your RPG. Loot & Legends continues that tradition, producing a fun digital table-top experience that has CCG mechanics at its core...

Touchstone Tavern #12 - Your Weekly 'Hearthstone' News Roundup

Still waiting, Blizzard...We have officially entered the third week of August and still haven't been invited to The Grand Tournament, Hearthstone's [Free] upcoming expansion. There's plenty of chatter that the expansion will be released on the 24th of this month, so that might actually be the date I get to open all my TGT packs. Nevertheless, only a couple more weeks to go until the meta goes into a limbo state again with everyone trying to figure out how, and if, the new cards will fit into pre-existing decks or whether we are going to start seeing new, powerful archetypes that will compete with the previously-dominant decks...

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