1,144 of 1,247 people (92%) found this review helpful
6.4 hrs on record
Posted: July 18, 2014
DO NOT BUY THE COMPLETE VERSION!!!
If you pay the $35 for this game, you will be paying to skip content. Winning games to unlock boosters is the whole point of DotP, so buying the complete version basically means you've wasted not only the extra money over the basic version, but also the money for the basic version. All. Your. Money. Wasted.
The "pick a deck, but you're stuck with it" gimmick is bad design and the devs are bad for doing it. No preview of the decks, just a vague description that in my case was totally misleading. I chose Red->Black which was described as "focusing on stealing your opponent's creatures and sacrificing them for fun and profit". Yeah it was just a plain RB aggro deck with 2 Act of Treason and 2 vampires that could sacrifice creatures for a +1/+1 counter...in a 60-card deck. 4 cards does not a focus make. But that bad design was merely irritating, not game-breaking. I could live with it.
The deck-building feature is good, it's about time that they added it. However, they didn't actually add it. They replaced all other features with it, for a net loss of game. Let's see what the trade off was for something that should have been a standard feature years ago:
No more Two-Headed Giant, either co-op vs AI or multiplayer. No more Planechase multiplayer. No Challenge puzzles. No Sealed campaigns.
Is all that worth it? Hell no.
This is a blatant money-grab by Wizards, who clearly fear losing players from MTGO if they add too much actual gameplay here, which is completely stupid as the two games serve two different fanbases.
I have nothing but disgust for the design decisions of this game. Definitely do not recommend.
(TLDR? This review is also available in video format for your convenience below.)
Magic the Gathering; Duels of the Planewalkers has become a yearly franchise, and with the recent success of Blizzard's Hearthstone, they've attempted to step up their game with Magic 2015 by allowing players the much-desired ability to finally create their own decks.
After a brief tutorial, you're able to pick a starting deck and begin the campaign. From there, you're able to unlock booster packs as you defeat opponents, allowing further customization of your decks. If you don't feel like endlessly-grinding the single player, you're also able to purchase additional cards via micro-transactions and collecting every card will run you about $50. If you factor in the initial cost of the game, Magic 2015 will run you about the same price as a full-price triple AAA title.
There are nearly 300 unique cards to choose from or close to 1000 if you include duplicates, allowing for a multitude of options when it comes to crafting your deck. You're also able to adjust the amount of land in your deck for the first time, which is recommended as leaving it up to the game to do this automatically isn't ideal. Often assigning lands with no rhyme or reasoning behind it, such as giving you mountains in a blue deck. Infact the AI in general is greatly diminished in this installment as it will often tap the wrong lands by default if you're not careful enough to use the toggle key. Such as tapping all of your swamps for colorless mana instead of any other lands you may have available.
The campaign features a bit of a narrative where one of the Planeswalkers; Garruk Wildspeaker has gone rogue and has been hunting down other Planeswalkers. It's your job to track him down and stop him. The campaign's story is nothing extraordinary and chances are you've purchased the game to play with friends.
The Multiplayer allows for you to use your crafted deck against your friends as well as other players online. Unfortunately, it's been stripped down from previous games of the series, featuring a lot less gametypes. Two-Headed Giant, Archenemy and Sealed Deck have all been removed, with the only option being a 1 on 1 duel or free for all. The user interface is also completely unintuitive as there's no lobby for multiplayer matches. Once a game is concluded, you're forced to exit to the main menu where you'll have to jump through a few separate menus in order to change your currently equipped deck or to host another game. Also a search function would be a welcomed addition for the deck builder, as it can sometimes be a little tedious searching for the cards you want.
This isn't the only area of the game that is lacking content as the single player challenge mode has been removed as well. There are also a lot of cards that are only available in the single player campaign and inaccessible when it comes to crafting your deck. One could say this is a result of balancing issues, but the game has definitely been designed from the ground up to cater towards micro-transactions. I wouldn't mind spending money for constant DLC card packs and additions if the game was self-contained like Hearthstone but the fact that it's simply a yearly release that will only be supported for a limited time, makes it feel somewhat pointless.
Magic 2015 also has quite a few bugs and glitches. I found that I was unable to change my resolution to 1920 x 1080 without going in and manually editing the config file in wordpad. I've also experienced quite a few freezes in the multiplayer where the timer will disappear, forcing us to leave the game. Not only that, but it does randomly crash to the desktop as well.
Ultimately, Magic 2015 is one step forward and two steps back, it's enjoyable if you're a fan of Magic the Gathering. The deck creation tool is a much welcomed addition, however micro-transactions, an unintuitive interface, bugs, and a lack of features in general holds it back. While the initial game provides a great base to build on, chances are the DLC will be aimed at making as much money as possible from the consumer before repeating the same formula with Magic 2016.
541 of 605 people (89%) found this review helpful 1 person found this review funny
5.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 30, 2014
Dear Wizards of the Coast. You seriously need to step your game up and create a DTCG (Digital Trading Card Game) that actually competes with other DTCG's currently and upcoming out there. You have failed to create a singular platform (Magic Online is a piece of garbage) where all MGTO fans can gather and play each other for fun and competitivly. Look at Infinity Wars, HEX, hell even Hearthstone.... How dense can ya'll be?
I have been wanting to play a singular online platform of MGTO on my desktop since I was in middleschool, I am now 26... I am still waiting for ya'll to get your act together and create an actually stable, graphicle, and appealing online game. You have failed to do so and have given us this. Sure it's good looking and stable. But there is still tons to be desired to even be as competent as the other DTCG who have far less funding yet FAR surpass you. This shouldn't HAPPEN! I have always loved and dedicated a lot of time on MGTO but for some odd reason even though you're the big one in the room you FAIL at giving what your fans and dedicated players want.
If you guys stopped with this whole "Release" a new title every year which are limited in their cards that fractures your player base and created a single downloadable client that we all can download and all be able to play with a cash shop and all then I'd be happy. I want to spend my money on your DTCG game but at your current state and your competition my money goes to them instead of you.
Don't get me wrong I enjoyed playing this game but coming from playing other competing DTCG's you have left massive holes to be desired and to improve upon. Stop releasing new 'games' every year. Focus on the engine and release card collections like the rest of the herd. No microtransactions on a game that will be dead next year. I dont want to start my collection from scratch every year!
Hopefully you get it right the next time but my expectations will always be low.
1,052 of 1,278 people (82%) found this review helpful
12.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 16, 2014
A lot more bad points than good points on this one. Edit : BUT, you might wanna have a look at my (edited now that I got more hours behind me) closing words to know if this game is for you or not.
Pros & Cons
Pros : - Finally being able to build a somehow more "customized deck" !
- The new battle UI is neat (is that even a good point anyway)
- If you're really patient, you can get a lot of cards and shape your deck however you want, tho be prepared for some nuts grinding.
Cons : - Menus are goddam slow to navigate in. Looks fancy the first few minutes, but afterwards each menu transition will feel like an eternity. You also sometimes have to click several times on a button due to the slow responsiveness of the UI (probably cos it didn't finish its transition)
- You start with only one deck (yes, only one). You cannot swap decks once you have chosen, and you have no idea what the contents of your pick will be (all you know is the colors inside your starter deck).
- The starting deck is WEAK, and I mean it. Compared to the previous Magic DoTP, the deck feels weak, no fun cards in it that makes you grin, no solutions against many types of deck you might encounter. The result is, AI will ♥♥♥♥ you in Planeswalker diff unless you get not only a perfect starting hand but also very good draws. In fact, turn down the difficulty to "Mage" and do some games against a random AI deck, you're not even guaranteed to win, even as a veteran player. The problem would not be with your skills, but because of how weak the deck is. It does look like you can change your starting deck at the very start (tho it doesn't seem clearly visible), but afterwards you're stuck with it until you get enough cards to build a new deck, or to alter your starting one to something decent.
- Grindfest party to build a proper deck. We are very close to a Pay2Win iteration with this 2015 edition. The game now has an online shop in which you can buy boosters (1.79€ for 10 cards) for real money, or an entire card collection for (4.99€). We all get where this is going. And given the facts that even Mage level AI will pown you depending on your starter deck (which doesn't make speed games for farm very efficient at start), you will either have to be very patient or break your piggy bank, the latter being obviously what the game wants you to do. For reference, Only two rares in your starting deck (one at first, and the second when you finish or skip tutorial).
- The land system is broken. Example : Let's suppose you have two plains and two swamps in play, and in your hand you got two cards that each cost one swamp and one colorless mana to play. If you wanted to play both, you obviously would want to pay one plain and one swamp for each. Well guess what? No. Click the first card in your hand, and the system will often tap both swamps for its mana cost. What the [insert kind words and sing a Bieber song here] hell? You can still tap your lands manually with CTRL, but the system used to be smart enough to leave you with the right mana combinations, which ain't the case anymore. Let's hope this gets fixed.
Well, we wanted a better way to customize our deck, so now we have it. While I believe there is a way to build the "deck of your dreams" (will never beat Shandalar anyway), the game obviously wants you to pay extra money to get what you want. I'm saying this because if this wasn't the case, they could've made starter decks more fun and powerful (like the starter decks in the previous series), and still make other good cards unlockable afterwards, which would've been fair trade. Instead, they made your deck as weak as it can be to either push your patience to the limit or make you break your piggybank. This is not a business tactic I am especially fond of, thus I cannot put a thumbs up for this game.
Edit : To clear any misuderstanding, I'm not saying the game is bad per-se. The game itself is solid, and if you're willing to make repeated fights to farm your cards, you'll definitely have fun later on (I can tell without being there yet). I mean, how can it not be fun to make the deck the way you want ? HOWEVER, and unlike the previous Magic DotP games, you WILL NOT have fun right off the bat. You will first have to farm cards for hours before you have something you can really call a "Deck". In the end, if you know you are willing to spend a decent amount of time to get your cards, I believe you won't regret it and you'll definitely have fun. If not, well...
Have a great day,
Zanameth, a very old Magic player
My favorite deck? A "Wildfire" variant from the Urza block! Veterans will know what I refer to.
Edit 19th July : Clarified the mana tapping problem and the starting deck problem.
593 of 715 people (83%) found this review helpful 1 person found this review funny
4.6 hrs on record
Posted: July 21, 2014
Wizards of the Coast and Stainless Games have listened to hardcore fans and finally given them what they want: a sales funnel.
I'm having a hard time grasping how Magic 2015 became such a mess. Previous games in the series have been wonderful, offering the components and mechanics of the Magic: The Gathering card game without the overly involved meta-game. Choose one of the pre-configured decks, play a quick game online, then step away from the computer and enjoy the other passions in your life. I contend that it is one of the most enjoyable ways to play Magic: The Gathering, if only because you don't have to interact with the sort of people who play Magic: The Gathering on a regular basis.
A common criticism of Magic 2015's predecessors was "Why can't I build my own deck from scratch using all of the Magic cards ever made?" This is similar to walking into a coffee shop and asking for a porterhouse steak. No one will argue that it's what you'd most desire at that given moment, but the resources exist for you to have that experience without making the world collapse and conform to your immediate needs. There is a game called Magic: The Gathering Online that allows players to have the "complete" Magic: The Gathering experience, such as spending hundreds of dollars to build the same deck that everyone else is using because of a mechanical exploit. That is it's own thing. You can go out onto the internet and type "Magic: The Gathering Online" in a search engine, with or without quotes, and spend lots of money on digital trading cards. The Duels of the Planeswalkers series has offered a different experience, more akin to a fighting game. It was a well balanced game that afforded many different play styles and allowed players to have fun regardless of their skill level.
Magic 2015 does away with pre-configured decks almost completely. You play a tutorial and then choose from a list of different decks. None of them are very good. You can not change your deck after choosing without deleting your save file and starting over. You must use that deck for the first section of the campaign. If you are patient you will eventually unlock the ability to build your own decks, but only after slogging through numerous battles with the starter deck.
When you win a battle, you are rewarded with a booster. This booster contains a few cards that are almost certainly worthless to you. Maybe you are playing with a black zombie deck. Your booster might contain three green cards that are not zombies. And you'll say, "Wow, I wish I could get lucky and open a booster with some good zombie cards in it!" The solution to this is to purchase a premium booster. These premium boosters contains the Good Cards. They cost $1.99 each. You can buy as many as you want. The only way to get the Good Cards is by buying premium boosters. If you buy enough of them, you might get a Great Card that wins the game when you play it. If you don't buy enough of them, you will be at a disadvantage when playing online against the people who did buy enough of them. These people will play a Great Card and you will lose the game.
It is important to remember that you have paid at least $9.99 for this experience.
Design decisions like these have turned a reasonably solid series into something foul. You should not buy this game. You should not play this game. If you want a casual game of Magic: The Gathering, buy Duels of the Planeswalkers 2014. It is well balanced and fun to play. If you want to spend exorbitant amounts of money building whatever deck is dominating the Magic: The Gathering meta-game, play Magic: The Gathering Online. If you want a real challenge, open a coffee shop that sells porterhouse steaks. Let me know how it does.
One additional item that I absolutely must mention as part of my "See Something, Say Something" campaign against offensive user experiences: the menus in this game are presented in a slideshow fashion, where you can only see one menu option at a time and have to cycle through each screen. This results in the inability to view menu options that are currently disabled. So it's impossible to judge your progress in the campaign, which is unfortunate because most of the game's content is hidden away behind various milestones. FAQs online told me that deck building was unlocked after beating Avanyc, but due to the poor menu system I was unable to determine how many more events I needed to clear before I reached that point. The "unnumbered list" menu system used in the previous games, as well as almost every single piece of interactive media produced since the beginning of time, would have been a much better solution for content navigation.
179 of 204 people (88%) found this review helpful 1 person found this review funny
23.7 hrs on record
Posted: December 29, 2014
Short Version: Do not buy this game. If you want to play Magic at your computer without investing in MTGO, buy DOTP 2014 instead.
Quite frankly WOTC isnt known for quality control of digital products, but this might actually be the worst designed product with their name on it that I've seen (and I played MTG Tactics and MTG Battlegrounds). I finally decided to try this version out, despite all of the negative things I've heard about it. Surprisingly though, its somehow worse than I expected.
The microtransactions arent the real problem here. Certainly they are there, and that is slightly annoying given that the point of the DOTP franchise is to play MTG without that aspect of the card game. However as a paper MTG player I'm certainly used to that.
No, the real problem here is that the game that you are paying for is garbage. First of all, its one of the most abysmal PC ports I've seen in awhile. Instead of a menu screen, you get a series of icons that you scroll through one at a time until you find the one you were trying to get to. Even in game, the mouse controls are strangely less smooth and not as responsive as in 2014. It feels like the function of every aspect of the game has been sacrificed to try to make things look "cool".
And since I'm talking about the appearance of the game. It looks horrible. Why is everything on the screen black and grey? Did someone at the studio decide that the colorful blues, golds, and reds of DOTP 2014 were too pleasant to look at? The whole design of the in-game interface is not only far less convenient and poorly laid out, but also just plain irritating to look at. Are me and my opponent playing MTG in some dystopian sci-fi future where joy is illegal?
But so far I've been talking about the interface, gameplay functionality, and apperance of the game; "what about the actual card game?", you excitedly ask.
Unfortunately its just not worth it. I continuously feel as though Im playing the sealed gameplay mode of DOTP 2014... except with less interesting cards. And this is the 2015 campaign gameplay. Sure being able to make my own deck with random cards is nice, but if I wanted to make a crappy deck with crappy cards I would play sealed mode. Which I can already do in DOTP 2014. And if I want to play multiplayer or the campaign, 2014 lets me play with some fun Magic cards from throughout MTG history instead of the boring trash you get to work with in 2015.
In conclusion, if at any given time I was unable to go out and play paper Magic with people in person, I would play DOTP 2014. If I was unable to play DOTP 2014, I would play Hearthstone. And if I was forced to play DOTP 2015... I would go read a book.
Learn from my mistake, dont buy this version of DOTP. Dont support their horrible decisions. Hopefully WOTC will seriously rethink their poorly implemented digital business model.
If you don't already love the MTG games on PC, I would think carefully before buying this. If you do love MtG on PC or consoles and played the crap out of them, this is a nice change to see and lets you see some new cards. If you liked it previous years, get it.
- It's MtG - Can now build decks. - Easiest way to play MtG without investing a fortune - Can be fun to play with friends
-Campaign starts you with awful decks -Still has hilariously clunky menus after 4 years of the game (How did they not listen to the players on that one?) -No rewards/progress for losing games that last 10-25 minutes = wasted efforts and unfortunate for people without a lot of time or people who are new to the game. -It feels mandatory to restart the duel vs. the computer if you don't draw a perfect hand - No 2 Headed Giant (2v2) This was one of my favorite coop experiences with a friend of mine.
If you can get past the those and you like Magic, then it's still fun. It's good for those who might have stopped playing MtG and just want a taste of it again. Plus, it's pretty cheap for the main game. Although if it's your first experience with MtG or the PC versions I'd recommend MtG 2014 instead.
I'm dissapointed that online play vs other players now puts you at a big disadvantage if you don't to buy boosters to get good cards.
- the payment model (I mean a Complete Edition that doesn't include all cards... really?)
- reasonable cardpool BUT there are cards in the game, that are only usable by the AI like the Slivers
- no Challenge puzzles.
Overall : I like the gameplay, but it's frustating to play against others who have more cards and yes there are some that are especially powerfull or AI that has Cards that you can't unlock at all like the Slivers. As someone who has bought the complete edition i can only turn away in shame.