Hello everyone! My name is Tim, Otherwise known as Tchamber5 and I’m a writer for Team Rankstar that usually focuses on Eternal Card Game….but, I’ve been enamored with another card game for the last few weeks.
My friend and teammate MantidMan recently told me that I should try out Mythgard. He spoke very highly of the art style and story and that the game play was strategically deep and excellent. Another CCG? It’s already hard to balance work, life and being dad with playing Eternal competitively and writing articles. Do I have space in my heart for another card game? I’ll look at it, I thought, but only because Mantid seemed really excited about it.
It didn’t disappoint.
MantidMan got me invited to the discord channel, where one of the developers personally messaged me and got me a friends and family alpha key. This obviously won’t be a part of the process when the game is in full release, but It was very pleasantly surprising how expedient, friendly, and helpful the devs were. After installing the client, I was greeted by a cute little animal that asked me several questions about my prior experience with card games, which I am sure is not only to help you ease into Mythgard more easily, but also to tune your default settings appropriately.
After creating an account (you can use your google account which is very convenient) I was directed to story mode, which doubles as a tutorial and introduces you to the various colors available. My first impression was that the art work was amazing. It’s comic-book-esque, but very dark, and gritty, which clearly sets the tone for the world of Mythgard, which takes place on a futuristic, alternate timeline of Earth.
The story starts with the main character in the Underworld, where she has been waiting for a thousand years for her significant other, The Prince of Darkness, to return. She grows tired of waiting, and grabs her trusty magical bat (yes, a baseball bat), and leaves to find her mother and figure out why she was left in the Underworld alone for a thousand years. She emerges in London, far in the future, where her adventure begins. The story introduces many other interesting characters including: Valkyries, Vampires, and Angels, which are all intriguing in their own way and have a modern spin on them. The Valkyries for example, are a close knit group of badass female bikers that are constantly skirmishing with the Strigoi Vampires. Overall, I think that the story tropes are familiar enough to understand, but have a unique modern twist on them to make them feel fresh. The game is only just now in alpha, but I am already excited for the next entry in the plot!
Though the plot of the story is quite interesting, It equally serves as an introduction to the mechanics of the game, as well as a look at the identity and abilities of each color. Even though I am quite familiar with many different card games, and am quite experienced within the field, I was grateful for the learning pace of the campaign. Players of Hearthstone will probably have the easiest time adjusting to the mechanics, though I wouldn’t go so far to say that it’s very similar.
Mythgard utilizes several unique mechanics that not only make it unique, but also add an amazing level of strategic depth to the game. The first that is introduced to you in Story Mode is “Burning.” Each card in the game has a cost to play, split into two parts, Mana and Gems. You start with zero of each, but you can burn a card (which shuffles it back into your deck) to give yourself one mana and one gem of the card’s color. When you play a card, it will cost you X mana and Y gems of that cards color. Over the years, I have played pretty much every single major CCG available, and I think that this might be the best resource mechanic I have ever seen. Not only does it encourage careful deck building (which I will get into later) but it offers more strategic depth in game as well, making each turn more complex without being hard to understand, or needlessly complicated.
Another part of the game that separates Mythgard from the pack is “Lanes.” There are seven lanes on each side of the game board that can be occupied by one minion and one enchantment. Minions are the main – though not the only – way to win the game, being able to attack your opponent and directly deal damage to them. However, if there is an opposing minion in any of the lanes opposite your minion, you must attack that minion first, though you can also forfeit your attack for the turn with that unit to move lanes, adding a level of strategy to combat enchantments are static effects in lanes that cannot move an usually buff the occupying unit. I am also a big fan of the Lane mechanic, as it often feels like an interesting game of chess, and rewards planning out your game several moves ahead. There are of course ways to “break” the rules of the game, with Keywords like, Agile, Swift, and Teleport, which all allow you to evade your opponent’s blockers or manipulate your movement in some way.
There are also five colors of cards that you are able to put into your deck: Green, Blue, Red, Yellow, and Orange. They are all fairly distinct in their style. For example, Red is primarily low-to-the-ground minions that are aggressively statted while Blue focuses on Tempo cards that return units to their owners hands, kill small blockers, and draw cards. Each color has its own play style, and there are a ton of ways that you can combine them while building your deck, which has been a lot of fun so far. There are a ton of viable strategies, and they are even planning on releasing a 6th color before beta.
After learning about all of the keywords, mechanics, and color combos of Mythgard, and finishing up the story, I kicked myself out of the PvE nest and started taking a look at deck building. As I mentioned, there are a ton of ways to build decks in this game, I didn’t have a very expansive collection yet, but I did own a good amount of small aggressive units in the Red and Blue colors, so I started there. It was a little hard to feel good about my deck at first, because I didn’t have enough Essence – the material used to craft cards – to make many cards at first, but after completing a few quests and busting a few packs, I was able to make something decent. Most of the quests aren’t too difficult to complete, and they will often net you about 2 packs a day for completing them. I did feel like the Essence costs were a little high, being 50 for a common, 100 for an uncommon, 500 for a rare, and 2500 for a mythic rare. I did do some strategic dusting of cards that I evaluated to be weak in order to craft the cards I wanted, which is a nice feature. I will also say that even though rare and mythic rare cards are pretty expensive to craft, the maximum you can put in your deck for each rarity is four common, three uncommon, two rare, and one mythic, so you will never have to spend more than 2500 on a mythic card.
Eventually, I completed enough quests and opened enough packs that I was able to branch out and try a new deck. It wasn’t anything crazy, but I was very proud. It was a Blue deck that dipped into green for Spellflux Cauldron and Gallows Boy that went and then pumped up the whole board with spells. It’s a lot of fun, and something that I really enjoy, but I am still looking forward to trying out new decks!
The rest of the time I have spent in the game so far has been in the PvE Brawl and PvP Queues. Draft doesn’t really interest me, but I really like gauntlet, since its a way to earn tokens which add up to give you rewards. It’s tough to say how good the meta game is, or how balanced the cards are, because, there are currently only about 500 players in alpha right now, if I have my numbers right, which, for a card game, is a very small sample size. That being said, the developers appear to be trying very hard to make sure everything is balanced, and are consistently tweaking and tuning cards, and will add a whole swath of cards once the new color, Purple, is released.
The Economy of a CCG has become an integral part of the genre, and can make or break a game. Obviously, Digital CCGs aren’t meant to be free-to-play for every single player, or the parent company would make no money and the game would die. This makes a developer walk a fine line between making the game accessible to budget minded newcomers and pay-to-play consumers alike. So how accessible is the game in a free-to-play environment? My answer is….ok? It’s hard to say, but, I think it’s doable, with a little dedication. With every win in PvE Brawl, you get 50 coins and a common card. A single pack costs 1200 coins, and a common can be dusted for 10 Essence. This means, that solely based on free to play PvE games, you will essentially play 24 games for one pack, and 240 Essence. Add in quests and you can probably make that into two or three packs a day, if you aren’t grinding super hardcore, more so if you are. The first few quest you do are also a little bit easier and meant to be completed as you are learning all the game modes. These will net around 5-6 packs as well. This isn’t an unreasonable pace to procure new cards relative to other Digital CCGs like Hearthstone or Eternal. But what if you are paying to play?
For five dollars, you can get a starter pack, which gives you some Mythril (premium version of coins that can buy you packs and other premium things) and five packs, which is a great deal. For twenty dollars, you get 2500 Mythril, which, at 150 Mythril per pack will get you seventeen pack, meaning that packs end up being 1.20 a piece. Again, this is a reasonable rate, considering that hearthstone packs are at a similar base rate, if not slightly more expensive than Mythgard.
At the end of the day, The Economy is fair and it’s completely plausible to grind out a good collection without spending much (if any) money, though if you want to have multiple competitive decks quickly, you might have to spend a little money. The good news is that you can probably get away with spending forty dollars or less.
Mythgard is awesome. I really enjoy all of the elements of the game, though there is definitely some progress to be made. The story can be more fleshed out, which I suspect they will do when the game actually launches. The mobile client isn’t perfect either, and I suspect that they should change the sizing and visibility of some visual aspects of the game. I am, however, confident that these minor changes will be made well before the game goes into full release. I am very excited to see where the game goes from here, and look forward to how the growth of the player base will affect the game.
Thanks for reading! See you next time, and be sure to check out the other content on Team Rankstar!
Have any questions, comments, or suggestions? Hit me up on twitter @Tchamber5!
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