In today’s fast paced and hectic world, gamers are often forced into choosing between something that they can play on their phone or going days at a time without playing anything.
As more and more gamers turned to mobile devices to get their fix, developers began to cash in on the trend, resulting in a boom of portable games, among which lives the digital collectible card game.
Developed by Denver-based Direwolf Digital, Eternal is a collectible card game available through Steam’s Early Access program, the Google Play Store, and App Store. The game is free to play, which means that players aren’t required to spend any money to download or play the game. However, packs of cards, draft runs, and the game’s expansion campaign, Jek’s Bounty, can all be purchased for real money, as well as in-game currency.
Eternal’s gameplay is largely reminiscent of Wizards of the Coast’s long-running trading card game Magic: The Gathering. Likely due to the fact that Direwolf Digital employs many high profile players from the professional Magic scene, such as Luis Scott-Vargas, Patrick Chapin, and Josh Utter-Leyton.
In its current state, due to being an Early Access game on Steam, the game currently only has five game modes: Campaign, Gauntlet, Forge, Ranked, and Draft. The campaign acts as a tutorial, to acclimate players to the rules, and rewards those that finish each chapter with a pre-built starter deck to play with.
The Gauntlet is a seven match long tournament against computer controlled opponents that can always be played for free, however, one loss will result in the termination of the run.
Forge is a miniature draft mode, that costs half as much gold as a normal draft, where players draft a smaller than normal deck and play against the computer.
Ranked is where players can pit decks they’ve built against other Eternal players. The Draft mode functions similarly to the draft system in games such as Hearthstone or Magic: The Gathering.
Players open a series of booster packs and build a deck out of the cards they have picked. However, unlike Hearthstone, players keep all of the cards they draft as well as earning shiftstone, the in-game crafting resource, for every pack opened, which seems to justify the somewhat steep gold cost for each draft.
Players that win their full Draft run can “go infinite.” The reward for finishing with seven wins all but guarantees that the player will be able to pay for another draft.
If you’re looking for a game that feels like Magic: The Gathering, looks like Hearthstone, and has a dedicated development team constantly putting in work to make it better, give Eternal a try.