A Massively Multiplayer Online Trading Card Game? Tell Me More.

For the past couple of years, the folks at Cryptozoic Entertainment have been making a lovely array of physical trading card, board and deck-building games, everything from the official World of Warcraft TCG to The Big Bang Theory: The Party Game. Now they're going digital with Hex: Shards of Fate, the first free-to-play massively multiplayer online trading card game for PC and Mac, and my wallet's already getting itchy.

Hex is an MMORPG, with all of the social interaction, player-versus-player battles, adventuring and raiding such a game entails. It's also a trading card game, where combat is waged with a deck built from starter decks and booster packs — with more than 350 cards in the starter set alone.

Cryptozoic is using the game's digital format to do things that normal paper trading card games could only dream of. Equipment that changes card appearance and stats, complete with set bonuses; socketed items, similar to Diablo III's runes; achievements that unlock extended art versions of each card — these are the sort of features I've always wanted in my online trading card games.


Plus there are rabbits...

Illustration for article titled A Massively Multiplayer Online Trading Card Game? Tell Me More.

...and the strangest Kickstarter video I've ever seen, in which president and chief creative officer of Cryptozoic Entertainment, Cory Jones, robs a bank, gets a tattoo, snipes a clown and then dresses in drag and sells his body in the street.

Yes, it's a Kickstarter, and they are looking for $300,000, but most of the reward tiers include digital card packs, which I was going to be buying anyway.


Check out the game's official website for an exhaustive overview of Hex: Shards of Fate, and then join me in the fall when I complain about how much I am spending on fake cards.

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This is just a super-ultra-mega-hyper-mondo blatent RIP-OFF of Magic: the Gathering. Summoning sickness, swift strike (first strike), tapping (they call it exhausting), Haste (they call it speed), power and toughness (attack and defense), mana (they still call it mana, brilliant!), first and second mainphases (samesies), there is an untap phase, there is a graveyard, they use the term "summon" which is a classic Magic term, combat works exactly the same as in Magic (declare attackers, dclare blockers, damage step), the board and the action arrows look virtually identical to the Duels of the Planeswalkers interface. There are cards that say "Each troop gets +1/+1" which is verbatim a Magic mechanic. They even go so far as to have "activated abilities" which is a Magic core mechanic. The activated abilities on the cards are even written exactly the same way they are on Magic cards. The cards are designed exactly the same way as Magic cards, some cards even have flavor text at the bottom. This is sad. Good job guys, you just made Magic: the Gathering, 20 years late.