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Legends of Runeterra

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18 May 2020 19:06 - 18 May 2020 19:08 #310434 by jeb
Legends of Runeterra was created by jeb
I'm trying this one out. Seems OK so far. You all know me, I am a HEARTHSTONE diehard. I would play MAGIC if WotC would let me.* I tried ELDER SCROLLS: LEGENDS and a couple others here and there, but nothing had the spit and polish of HEARTHSTONE. This one is making an attempt, and smartly, they are making free-to-play easy and good. Blizzard sorted this out: If the game is good, folks will give you money. I've spent more on HEARTHSTONE over the years than I have MARIO KART over the years and that thing is like $60 every time I buy it.

LEGENDS OF RUNETERRA is set up like all the others. Pick your regions (read: colors, up to two), make a deck (40 cards, not more than three of anything) of Spells and Followers, and duke it out. Here are the nuances:
Mana grows turn by turn, a la HEARTHSTONE, but it refreshes every turn, not just yours. Unspent mana (up to three) goes into an extra Spell Mana pool you can use the following turns, but only on spells.

You and the opponent take turns swapping Actions. Make a follower. Cast a spell. React to a spell (there's a "stack," a la MtG, that resolves Last-In-First-Out). One everyone has had a chance to do stuff, you Pass and things move along.

Instead of "I get mana and can do stuff," what's swapping back and forth is an "Able to attack" icon. You can move up to six followers forward (can't have more than six, but can play new ones, replacing at your choice). There's no summoning sickness (aka, everything has "charge"). Your opponent can move their dudes into the fray to block at their discretion akin to MtG, but only 1:1. Followers deal damage to each other, unblocked ones deal damage to the Nexus (ie, You) and if you get below 1 (from 20) you lose.

Heroes are big juicy followers that have cool effects. Like Legendaries, except you can pack multiples. They "level up" into a better form based on their individual needs. One levels up when it has attacked twice. One when it's survived 10 damage. One levels up while in your hand or deck, tracking how many times your Followers have taken damage and lived. If you have a Hero in play and draw a duplicate, the copy becomes a cool thematic spell that will do something and put a copy of the Hero back in your deck.

Spells come in three speeds, familiar to MtG players. Slow spells need to start a stack (read: Sorcery) and outside of combat. Fast spells can join a stack in reaction to something happening, even in combat (read: Instant); and Burst spells are like Fast except they can't be reacted to (like Split Second). I am glossing over some nuances (e.g., combat resolves atomically) but you get the gist. More nuanced than HEARTHSTONE, less nuanced than MAGIC: THE GATHERING.

Plenty of keywords to go around, having effects like you would expect.
  • Overwhelm = Trample from MtG
  • Barrier = Divine Shield from HS
  • Quick Strike = First Strike from MtG
  • Challenger = Banding(!) from MtG
  • Last Breath = Deathrattle from HS
...and piles more. There's a lot to like here.

The game is pretty--not as much as HEARTHSTONE, but not much can hold a candle there. There are nice effects for attacking and animations for leveling up and casting big spells. Customization of emotes, backgrounds, cardbacks, little pet that watches you play, &c. A lot to like here, and they give you lots and lots of cards just for showing up. There's the normal confusing mix of currencies and prizes, but you can piece it together. There's a Ladder for Ranked play, as well as the equivalent of Casual and Innkeeper AI play.
There's an Arena mode as well, but I haven't tried it yet; and Challenges that act like a tutorial on how the game works while giving you some Experience.

It's worth checking out. playruneterra.com/en-us/



*Mac OS and iOS only here, alas.
Last edit: 18 May 2020 19:08 by jeb.
The following user(s) said Thank You: ubarose

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