Another non-Hearthstone news, but I thought that some of you might find it interesting. If you’ve been playing the game for a long time, Ben Brode is certainly a familiar name. You might know him for being a Hearthstone game director, memes relating to him, or maybe for his contagious laugh – either way, you also probably know that he left the company back in 2018 to form his own studio called “Second Dinner”. Over the years, a lot of talent working on Hearthstone also moved to his company, because they wanted to create something of their own instead of continuing the work on Hearthstone.
A while back, we’ve learned that the company has partnered with Marvel to work on a project and today they finally unveiled it. The new game is called “Marvel SNAP” and it’s a fast-paced, F2P card game designed with mobile in mind. However, it doesn’t mean that it won’t be accessible on PC – they plan for PC early access to launch together with mobile. It’s a bit like Hearthstone in reverse, which was built on PC but quickly ported to mobile and then developed on both platforms.
As for the game itself, let’s do some comparisons to Hearthstone. SNAP is meant to be faster, games are supposed to last for around 3 minutes each. There are no turns in the traditional sense, both players play simultaneously and then when both are finished their decisions are revealed. The game will have over 150 cards at launch (and feature multiple versions of the same superheroes called, “variants”), with more added every month. Decks will consist of 12 unique cards.
Each match features three locations (picked randomly out of 50), and the goal is to win control over 2 of them. You do that by playing cards on one of the three, and then your superheroes fight those that your opponent put in the same location. Each location has a unique effect that can turn the tides and promote different strategies – for example, in some locations you can’t play 1-3 cost cards, other locations will clone everything you play there and add an extra copy of it to your hand (that you still have to pay for) and another one will limit the space to 1 card per player (normally you can play up to 4 cards in each location).
One of the interesting mechanics is cosmic cubes and snapping. Cubes determine your ranking in the game. The game starts with cubes set at 1, so if you win – you get 1, if you lose, you lose 1. The cubes automatically double if the game gets to the finish and no player concedes, so if you sit until the very end, you will win or lose 2 cubes for the match. However, there’s a SNAP mechanic – if you snap, you signal that you want to double the stake next turn. So if you were playing for 2 cubes and you snap, starting from next turn you will now fight for 4 cubes instead. If you’re confident in your victory, you can do that – but remember that if you end up losing, your decision to snap can turn against you. In the same vein, if you don’t feel like your chances are very high, you can retreat at any time before the stakes get higher and you end up losing more. It can lead to some interesting mind games – if your opponent snaps it means that he’s confident in their victory and you might want to retreat… or maybe they’re bluffing and their hand is actually weak?
You can watch the whole cinematic trailer and gameplay reveal here:
Or a deeper dive with Ben Brode who takes us through some matches:
Personally, I’m looking forward to trying it out. I don’t think it’s going to replace Hearthstone for me, but it has some really unique mechanics and if done right, it might be a nice spin on your usual card game formula.
If you’re interested in the game and want to see more gameplay, Ben Brode will be casting some matches tomorrow at 5 PM PT (2 AM CEST).
The best way to learn about MARVEL SNAP is to see it in action—with @bbrode shoutcasting every moment!
Tune in tomorrow at 5PM PT for our first Let’s Play Live. pic.twitter.com/VWntZsd57s
— MARVEL SNAP (@MarvelSnap) May 20, 2022