Sparta: War of Empires

management historical war

Sparta: War of Empires brings you to an ancient greek world, where city-states endlessly fight or unite for domination, glory and cash. Apparently, the reference historical setting is the one of the Second Persian War (made famous by the movies), at the time when the greek cities (or poleis) united to face the persian ... read >>


Supremacy 1914

war 1 strategy 1 historical 1

In Supremacy 1914 each player is the leader of one historical nation, and can use diplomacy or force to subjugate enemy territories, build powerful economies, and rule entire continents. Although many other browser-based games promised us the same exciting experience, this game by Bitro Labs is by far above them all. ... read >>

bubba on

Card Hunter

strategy cards 1 RPG

Card Hunter  in short
pros cons
faithful to setting lacks storyline
visually captivating tedious interaction
evolving gameplay
originality 9 details 8
care 7 diversity 8
experience 6 longevity 7
graphics 7 multiplayer 5
would you recommend it?

Card Hunter is a remarkable game, which merges the best tradition of adventure board games with CCGs and, to some extent, old school RPG games. Game designers at Blue Manchu manage to bring you back to those lost days as tabletop RPG monkey, GM-puppet, dice roller, dungeon meat.

In case you feel a bit lost, please give a rest to your WoW character and try to imagine how this was back in the 90s.

Games like HeroQuest (but more were out there) consisted of a board and a number of miniatures, a few dices, some items and board terrains. The players moved four heroes, that later standardised the most common character archetypes of any fantasy game. They were the Barbarian, the Dwarf, the Elf and the Wizard. These little cardboard fellas's most preferred hobby was to wander in dark dungeons, explore rooms, slash some weird creature, grab the loot. Their preferred enemies were Orcs, Goblins, Gargoyles, Warlocks, Skeletons, and the sort. Some games had cards, some didn't, but the core was the same: rolling dices, crossing fingers, getting smashed. It was all fun.

Apparently, the idea that it's enough to say Dwarf for hard-core warrior and Elf for a slender mage-fighter didn't work out, and any D&D geek knows how this all ended. But it worked pretty well at the time.Now, instead of these four, you need to assemble a group of 3 characters: the Wizard, the Warrior, the Priest. Each of them can be a human, a dwarf or an elf. Déjà vu? These characters may be more politically-correct, but the rest is still there: rolling dices, moving in a square grid, picking cards... and getting smashed. Each character is depicted as a real-life miniature, and this is just awesome. It really gives the right mood.

Card Hunter seems easy. At first. It's life, you know? You start with some powerful characters just to let you taste the carrot, only to discover that those characters belong to some 'real-life' friendo, so you have to start from scratch. Yes, because Card Hunter nicely captures the main point: a tabletop game like those was not about the dungeons, the loot, the levels. Actually, it wasn't so clear who these characters were, and why they didn't pursue a more rewarding career as brewers rather than dungeon pillagers. This is because the game was not about them, but about a bunch of friends working together, merging the skills of their characters in the most effective way thy could find. You had to know who was good at what, and how.

This is the same in Card Hunter. It is easy only at the beginning, then you need to know how to coordinate your group, how to equip each of them, and work out your own set of strategies. The multiplayer is fun, and worth a shot. As you progress through the levels, you find more and more equipment and objects. Each piece of equipment, either magical or plain, will expand your deck of cards. During an adventure, cards are drawn and used in turns, so that your chances of defeating the monsters depend on which card you have in your hand, divided per characters.The cards are various, intriguing and very appealing. There are plenty, and anybody can find his own game style. There are not so many animations, but this is coherent with the tabletop setting. And all this is wrapped by nice mechanics and gorgeous artworks.

On the down side, the adventures are not that meaningful or detailed here, just a set of squared dungeons and some villains to kill. This was enough back in the 90s, but not anymore. However, I really appreciated how each quest's cover resembles the old adventure modules, or expansions. There is also some sort of off-game storyline, but honestly that one could have been a bit better. As it is right now, it seems to rely a bit to much on the usual stereotypes about RPG gamers. As I said, the game mechanics are good, but there are a lot of card-related animations involved (rolls, saves, hits and misses...) and that gets annoying after you got how they work. It would have been great to have the option to disable all that.

There is some form of currency (pizza slices) to receive items and stuff, but it is not so bad as in many other games, so you can live without.

In conclusion, this is a little gem that will bring you back to your teen years (or more?), but make no mistake: even if you are a first-timer in tabletop adventure RPGs, you may love it as well.

Card Hunter ()
VideoGame > Browser Game (web browser)
Card Hunter, strategy, cards, RPG browser game
Score: 70 out of 100

comments powered by Disqus