Astral Wars - Pre Alpha - First Impressions and Playthrough

in Hive Gaming8 months ago (edited)

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Astral Wars is a new Trading Card Game (TCG) from Surgent Gaming Studio. This is their second game after the Turn-based RPG Astral Revelations (also in Pre Alpha). The Project was announced in May and the Pre Alpha testing is already available within a month. In Discord, everyone had an opportunity to put their names for testing and the testers to be announced in their AMA held on 24th May. All the people who applied were given the chance to test the game in Pre ALpha including me. This post provides my first impression of the Play through.


Astral Wars can be comparable to many of the Traditional TCG but the major advantage is the the fast pacing, it takes roughly 5-10 minutes per game.

The game is currently downloaded to Windows and it will app based. You can open the app to play the game. What i understand is the team wants to get the app through Steam/Epic games similar to how a web2 game works. This will help to attract more web2 users to the game. The Mac version is being worked on is what I understand.

HomePage

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Once you open the app, you can register with your Hive name and you will be taken to the Main page.
There are 4 tabs in this page.

Play - This is the main page where you play the game after creating your deck. There are 3 starter decks already available for you to play, if you want to mix and match cards, you can open crates and get the cards and create a deck. There are currently 3 modes of play.

  • Solo - This is where you battle against the AI. AI has a good level of difficulty which is not too hard to deter new players but also not too easy to make you bored once you get used to the game. You can actually pick up a lot of strategies while playing with the AI. Below is my match against the AI.

  • Adventure - Adventure has 5 matches with predetermined scenarios, I feel this mode is more like a puzzle where you have to follow a certain path to clear it.

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  • MultiPlayer - This is basically PVP where you can compete with other people to test your skill and climb the leaderboard. There is also a chat facility in the battle where you can talk to the opponent while playing. The below is the video where I play with another Pre Alpha Player carrotthecaptain and lost to his brilliant play.

I have been playing for over a week now, I have completed more than 100 Multiplayer battles now and with a win rate of 39%.

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Collection - This provides an overview of all the Cards and on the side you can create decks. a deck needs to have a minimum of 20 cards now.

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Each card has a Battery cost (Mana) required to play the cards in a match. There are currently 3 factions in Astral Wars and below are the categories of cards in each faction.

  • Mechs - Mechs are the core cards that have attack, health, and Battery. They are animal-themed mechanical monsters and each card has atleast one ability associated with it.

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  • Programs - These are cards which provides buff/specific abilities to your monsters or even provide you with an edge to control the match. Armageddon card you see below is only of my favorites, it destroys all the Mechs cards in the board (including yours)

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  • Artifacts - Artifacts provides Buffs to Mechs based on each factions.

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  • Frameworks - Frameworks are Trap cards. Currently we have 3 cards. one provides +2 damage, one traps the next draw of opponents Mechs to Fish, and one paralyze opponents monster after it attacks for 3 turns.

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Crates - Pre Alpha even comes with purchasing and opening crates of Astral Wars.

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Crate consists of 3 or 5 cards. Cards are divided into Common, Uncommon, Rare and Mythic. There is also a gold foil version of the cards, the use of gold foils is yet to be announced by the team. We have total of 5 types of crates - Standard (5 Cards), 3 crates each for the factions (3 cards) and when opening those crates will provide cards from that specific faction and also the Elite crate (5 cards) which provides a higher chance to get rares and Mythic cards.

Crates are currently purchased using Coins, you get 5000 coins at the start which you can use to buy crates. For each win in a Multiplayer match, you will win coins.

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Cards can also be bought individually by using coins. Extra cards can be sold back at 80% of the coin value. This is just a current system and the team is working on the tokenomics. One thing we know is it will have both Astra and Stellarum tokens in both games.

Leaderboard - Leaderboards are based on the ELO rating system and you start at 1000. Each win you have in Multiplayer will increase your rank. If you play against a player with a higher ELO rating and win you will get more points added where as if you lose, only few points will be removed from you. Leaderboard also contains the winrate. I have played close to 108 match till now and have a win rate of 39%

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Mechanics

In a Battle, players have a health of 20 and whoever loses the health first to Zero will lose the battle. At the start of turn 1, the starting player will have 3 Batteries (Cost of using a card / Mana) and the person going secong will recieve an energy card which will provide an extra battery which can be used at any turn. Each turn will increase the Battery by 1 and at anytime the Battery will not exceed 10. Lot of strategy required in optimizing the deck with Mechs, Programs, Artifacts and Frameworks.


First Impressions & Conclusion

I am very much impressed with the prealpha which has been put forward by the Astral Wars Team. We were expecting a lot of Bugs and issues since the game was made within a short period. Until today 312 Multiplayer matches have been played without any issues. There are some Visual bugs and QOL suggestions put forward by the testers. The Art is really good and so is the music. Astral Wars team has mentioned their priority now is to work on the Marketplace which will cater to both their games

I don't have extensive experience in playing trading card games, my experience is limited to playing Splinterlands and Skyweaver (a few times). This is a very fun game and you can pick up the basics by playing a few matches. I have very high hopes for the game and I am looking forward to the Tokenomics and how the economy will work for Astral Wars.


If you are hearing about Astral wars for the first time, you can check the below post.

https://peakd.com/surgentgaming/@astralwars/astral-wars-pre-alpha-launch-and-dollarastra-staking-event

Discord : https://discord.gg/6tFz9saGU2

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I am really looking forward to the launch of the game and getting started with the economics of it. !1UP

Each Crate consists of 5 cards. Cards are divided into Common, Uncommon, Rare and Mythic. There is also a gold foil version of the cards, the use of gold foils is yet to be announced by the team. We have total of 5 types of crates

Great Overview but actually the faction crates only has 3 cards inside, other than that other crates has 5.

Thanks, i have edited to correct it

Well written!! 380 Matches now. All completed.

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