As we have already discussed in our review, Card of Darkness is a hard game. Harder than it looks at first.
One of my favorite features of the games is the randomly generated levels. This keeps the game fresh, but it can get frustrating if you don’t have a good start. So if you want to beat it, you need to expect the unexpected.
Now, I can’t tell you how to beat every single level, but I can give you some tips that helped me make progress through the game. I still got stuck a few times, but I like to think I got stuck fewer times than usual.
By now, you probably know how the game works. Still, I think it’s worth mentioning some game mechanics.
First, the game takes place in dungeons. Each dungeon can have more than one floor, and each floor has a series of enemies, weapons, potions, and spells that are piled up in stacks of cards.
You can attack enemies or get items by tapping on them. However, once you start tapping on a stack of cards, you have to clear it. You can’t go to the next floor unless you clear the stacks of cards you started tapping.
Know Your Enemy
There are over 100 cards and enemies in Card of Darkness, which means you’re going to encounter a lot of new faces in your journey. Sure, some are similar regarding their effects, but you still need to learn what they do.
Fortunately, you can read what an enemy does if you tap and hold on them. Remember to keep your finger down or else you’ll attack the enemy instead.
The worst type of enemies you can encounter, in my opinion, are those who stun you or leave you poisoned. The stun will make you lose a turn and the poison takes away your life points every turn.
There are other enemies whose life points will increase every turn you let them live. If you’re not careful, and if you don’t know what each enemy does, you’re going to make this game harder than it is. However, if you’re already losing in a level, make the most out of it, which brings us to our next tip.
Get Rich and Get Out
If you find yourself in a situation where you know you’re going to lose, you might as well make the most out of it. The gold you collect on every level, whether you win or lose, stays with you. So, if you know you’re about to lose, don’t just quit. Keep playing as long as you can and make your goal to gather as much gold as possible.
Avoid Buying One-Use Items
In a world like Card of Darkness, the shop can become your best friend. But you need to know how to use it. I found that the best way to spend my money was buying items that had permanent effects, like Weapon Beckon Upgrade or the Token of Muster Upgrade, which give you items with a higher power on each dungeon.
My advice is that you focus on upgrading these permanent-effect items first. Especially the item that lets you add an extra card of darkness when going into a dungeon.
Items that you can only use once are good, but in a game where everything is randomly generated, your item might go to waste because of a bad start.
Take Advantage of Boss Battles
I’m pretty sure boss battles are the easiest dungeons in the game. You don’t have to collect every stack of cards you start attacking, you only have to look for the boss’s heart, and that becomes easier when you follow the clue the dungeon gives you: When you’re near the boss’s heart, you’ll see on the floor a small heart with 4 arrows, this means the heart is next to this square in one of the four directions.
So, if I needed to grind for money, I took advantage of the boss battles, and to be more specific, the first boss battle. It’s incredibly easy, you can collect a lot of gold, and once you defeat the boss every tile remaining becomes more gold. It takes time to grind, but the reward is worth it.
Use Your Weapons Wisely
You need to learn to use everything you get wisely. From cards of darkness to weapons and poisons. Everything must be used at the right time.
Even number weapons break if you use them with an odd number monster and vice versa. If you absolutely have to attack a monster with a different number than your weapon, try using it with other monsters with the same number before you destroy it.
The same goes for spells and potions. Most of the time, you want to make the most out of every potion, so if you’re potion only heals 7 points but you only have 3 points of damage, you can wait to take more damage before you use it.
Spells are harder to find on each dungeon, and you can only use them in the dungeon you found them. However, some effects can be random, so try using them in a do or die situation.
Overall, using your inventory carefully and strategically is the difference between winning and losing.
Keep Your Eyes on the Prize
Finally, you need to remember to never lose focus on what’s important, which is to get out of the dungeon. You have to try to make your path as easy as possible, even if that means leaving some stacks of cards with gold or potions. They can help you, but you don’t know what’s below those cards. Sometimes you get a potion that heals 7 points, but below there’s a monster with 20 points waiting for you.
Don’t waste time and effort in collecting things you don’t need to collect. Focus on moving towards the goal. I know it’s obvious advice, but believe me, you will lose track of what you’re doing. Keep your eyes on the prize and keep moving forward. If you know you’re done, collect all the gold you can and get out. It’s as simple as it gets.
I hope these tips will help you on your Card of Darkness journey. If you have more tips that I didn’t include on this post, share them in the comments below.