Gwent!



  • Gwent is a collectible card game CD Project Red invented for the Witcher 3, but its also being developed as a standalone game for the PC, Playstation 4 and XBone.

    Now this game isn't quite exactly like Gwent in the Witcher, as it takes advantage of being a digital game and cards can do some stuff that the in-game Gwent couldn't. (In particular, the lanes are no longer mandatory melee-here, ranged-here, artillery-here; they're marked as that but lanes matter for organizational purposes only-- some powers affect cards in the same lane, some one on each lane, etc).

    Its free to play, and you can get many basic cards for some basic decks by playing the solo campaigns which are sorta like elaborate tutorials. Beyond that, you can get cards, kegs (packs of 5 cards with one rare+ guaranteed), ore (the online currency for buying kegs), and scraps (the online currency for 'crafting' cards) by playing either casual or ranked play, both. I put a good $20 in to start with to buy a big pack of kegs to make a deck I liked, but since then haven't put any money in at all. I make my new cards for a new deck I'm working on through crafting mostly.

    In fact that crafting part is what sold me on playing: I've played some other digital CCG's which were all RNG based and uuuugh. Not being able to get the cards I want sucked. If you have any duplicate silver/gold, or more then 3 of any bronze, you can 'mill' them down into scraps. So even if you get a keg that has no new cards, its not a waste. You just go press the Mill button and it kills off any dupes you have.

    An example:

    Every deck has a faction: there's five factions (Monsters, uhh, blue, purple, black/gold, Scoia'tael -- dwarves/elves/dryads). Each deck has a 'Leader', which is a special card face-up which has an ability which is usually game-changing.

    My main deck is a monster, my leader Whispering Hillock. Its a 6 power card that looks like a horse drinking from corrupted water and being corrupted. Its power is 'Create a Bronze or Silver Organic card.' Organic is a 'tag' that is on some abilities that represent special powers that are... physical. One is Parasite, which either -12's an enemy or +12's an enemy. My favorite one is Monster Nest (which I also have in my deck), which is an Organic Special (spell) that Spawns a Bronze Insectoid or Necrophage and gives it +1.

    The 'Create' mechanic will take the categories/tags indicated, and select at random 3 cards that match and you pick one, and it makes it right then, it doesn't have to be in your deck. There's a bit of RNG into that, so very rarely I'll get 3 options and not find any particularly good, but that's rather rare. Other examples are a poison that does 6 damage to the Highest card in each enemy lane, a card that does -2 to every card in a lane and removes a Boon (a positive buff on a lane; there's only like a couple in the game, though Full Moon for a werewolf/vampire deck getting those boons gone is a godsend).

    My deck revolves around three things: Its packed full of Relicts, a monster sub-type that are like... weird witches. The Crones are a triplet of witches, Weavess, Brewess, Whispiss, power 6/8/6, which if you play any one of them, will summon all three. They work basically as a single card (unless I'm unlucky and draw more then one and don't/can't mulligan it; summon pulls from deck, not hand), so that's 20 points right there, and in a deck of 25, to have 3 in there makes it a really good chance that I'll draw one of them. Nothing else can really reliably toss out a 20 point advantage with one card.

    But there's more! I have a gold card, Weavess: Incantation, which is the cornerstone of the deck. In fact, if I play through and don't get it my chance of winning drops a lot. Incantation strengthens every Relict in hand, deck or board, by +2. So the Crones now become 8/10/8. If I don't get Incantation, I have another gold card, Ge'els, which will show me 'a gold and a silver' from my deck; I pick one to play immediately, and silver goes on top of the deck for next hand. So if I don't have Incantation, that has a solid chance of fishing it up, since worst-case that's the only gold I drew there's only three others.

    The other relicts in my deck are primarily Fiends, which start at 11 power behemoths, and become 13 power. I play my fiends early, except for one, which I save to power my Spears.... Spears are bronze cards that do damage equal to the power of a card in your hand to an enemy. 13 kills almost anything, so I save that last Fiend until I run out of spears.

    And the reason to play Fiends early is my other staple is Ghouls. These aren't relicts, but they will happily feed on the bodies of my dead fiends in my graveyard to add their power to the Ghouls (it a 4 power), thus last turn (since most second turns are passed by one party or the other), my ghouls become 17 power behemoths.

    (Worse, I have Renew which lets me resurrect a dead gold and replay it... in ideal hands, if I get Renew and Incantation in my first hand, I play Incantation, pass, let the other side win, next turn, Renew Incantation, play it again, and then fight like the devil with 10/12/10 Crones and 15 power Ghouls).

    Anyways!

    There's lots and lots of other deck options. The black/gold human faction has Spying as a mechanic, where they put a card on the enemy side-- and the enemy gets the points-- but it does things like, 'draw two cards and play one' to make speed decks which chew through their deck. It gives the enemy 2 points each time you do it, but then they have other cards which do things like do damage everytime a spy shows up or boost itself by how many spies there are. The black/gold also has a lot of 'reveal' / 'conceal' mechanics, where they can reveal cards in your hand-- and even target them, which suuucks. The conceal/reveal decks here are a problem for me.

    The purple humans have a lot of interesting reincarnation mechanics. The scoia'tael (elves and dwarves mostly) tend to be about buffing, though it varies a bit in how they do it. Elf cards tend to buff cards unplayed.

    Purple faction tends to have some masochists. One card does one damage to the card to the right, and buffs self by two. Meanwhile, the card you wanna play to the right, every two turns if its damaged, heal itself (completely), then strengthen its base strength by 2. That combo is a priority to remove. (this is what spears are for).

    Blue have a lot of machines, but they also tend to come in two flavors: either they're going the Armor route, where they have lots of synergies to boost armor for cards around, or they're zerging. The zerg ends up with a LOT of relatively low powered cards but with half/most of them summoning up and growing to medium-power cards quick. I can beat it with a good draw, but there's just soo many.

    So. I thought I'd ramble to see if anyone was interested. :)



  • At least one person was confused-- I'm not speaking of Gwent the game in the Witcher 3, but instead this:

    https://www.playgwent.com/en

    Its an entirely standalone free to play CCG. (And it not on Steam)



  • I'll add that this is a fun CCG game as a standalone. They regularly do events and while they are part of the card game market that games like Hearthstone live in, it really does have its own flavor and fun to it.

    And its free to play - but it does have microtransactions. But still a lot of fun.



  • @jaded said in Gwent!:

    microtransactions

    Pay-to-be-better style? Or can one git gud without paying actual money?



  • @tinuviel said in Gwent!:

    @jaded said in Gwent!:

    microtransactions

    Pay-to-be-better style? Or can one git gud without paying actual money?

    You can get anything without paying actual money. You play the solo "adventures" to learn the game and get enough cards/leaders to play an 'okay' deck (personally, I'd put at least $10 in at this point to get some 'kegs' -- packs of 5 cards -- to fill out before you start playing competitively, but you don't have to. It'll just slow down your start if you don't).

    Then you play casual or ranked matches, and as you win rounds-- and even if you have a bad deck you'll win some-- you'll get rewards. Ore, scraps, and at certain milestones, kegs. Ore is the in-game currency to buy kegs (for 100 ore), or to buy into the Arena mode (for 150 kegs) which guarantees at least, even if you lose all matches, 1 keg as a reward.

    You can also get ore for doing your daily quests (win X matches with Y faction is common). Right now there's an event going on, Monsters vs Idont'rememberwho, so every win I get as my monster deck for this month is added up and I'll get rewards from that too. Every 'season' (month) there's such an event.

    I'm rank 17 now in ranked play, where I'm winning about 1/3 to 1/2my matches, but more then enough to get at least 2 kegs a day without any money. I alternate based on mood putting my ore into kegs or into arena tickets-- arena mode* can be fun but frustratingly random.

    Scraps are rewards for winning rounds and milestones, but also there's a mill button which will reduce 'extra' cards to scraps. You can craft any card in the game from scraps. Most gold/silver cost 800, whereas most bronzes are 80. You get 20 scraps for milling a bronze card, 50 for milling silver, 200 for milling gold.

    Why mill? Because the rules of gwent say you can only, in any given deck, have one copy of a gold or silver card, and no more then 3 bronze copies. And you can use your cards in as many decks as you want, so as you get cards via RNG on the kegs, eventually you will get some that are just to waste. Or you may hate one faction (I'll never play a blue deck so I don't mind milling my blue golds to get my new consume deck going).

    And even if you're really bad at it, from second-round-passing you'll likely win enough to get your daily first tier rewards until you get a better deck.

    The other currency is meteorite dust, which is scarcer, which is used to upgrade standard cards to premium cards. The only difference between standard and premium is premium are animated. I find dust rewards are much more rare then ore/scrap rewards, which I expect is them monetizing the look-and-feel over gameplay, which I like.

    EDIT TO ADD: *I forgot to add my footnote

    Arena mode is where you buy in for $1.99 or 150 ore, and you build a deck. You're presented with 4 cards at a time, drawn from the entire collection (not the cards you own), and you pick a card at a time. You can't really make a planned deck this way because there's no telling what the cards are, but you can sorta adapt if you pay attention. There's no timelimit here. Once you have your full deck-- which does not follow the normal rules of max 4 golds/max 6 silvers and no duplicates of golds or silvers-- you get to play it against other people. You play max 9 matches, or until 3 losses. No matter what you will earn at least a keg, but if you win even one you'll get a keg plus some of the other currency.

    I'll go play ranked until I get 150 ore, then go play arena until I get what I get, open a keg, go play ranked again, in an endless cycle of kegs-and-ore-and-cards with no real money.



  • @ixokai said in Gwent!:

    kegs

    Lootboxes, or pre-determined packs?



  • @tinuviel Loot boxes. When building specific decks, kegs are largely just scrap factories and you craft the cards you want. There's no cards in the game you can't make through crafting via scraps. You don't have to wait for a random drop to get a card.


Log in to reply