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Magic: The Gathering Arenafor iOS

2021.3.22

4

The popular card game goes digital in Magic: The Gathering Arena

Magic: The Gathering Arena is a free-to-play digital version of the popular card game. Build a virtual deck and compete in a world of strategic fantasy battles.

The card game in digital form

Magic: The Gathering Arena strives to recreate the appeal of the original trading card game in a digital form. The basic mechanics of the card game are retained: as always, players must collect cards and build a deck that will give them a strategic advantage over their opponents. However, the digital version has beautiful graphics that make the fantasy world of Magic truly come alive.

A variety of modes

Magic: The Gathering Arena has a variety of modes to try out. One is a tutorial to benefit those who have never played the card game. Also included are Brawl and Draft modes that allow different cards, each providing a distinct spin on the basic Magic gameplay. In short, the game has something to offer both newcomers and seasoned Magic players with their own tastes.

Our take

Being based on an established collectable card game, Magic the Gathering Arena has more complex gameplay than rival card-style games like Hearthstone. That said, it never truly manages to fuse card game mechanics with other genres, the way certain rivals like Slay the Spire have done. It is, by and large, an effort to translate the card game faithfully to digital format.

Should you download it?

Fans of Magic: The Gathering will appreciate just how faithful this game is to its source, adapting not only the core gameplay but also the overall aesthetic: the fantasy world of Magic has seldom looked better. It also has enough tutorial features to ensure that newcomers to Magic will not be left out, although they may still prefer a simpler alternative like Hearthstone.

Highs

  • Beautiful graphics
  • Accurately captures the card game
  • Has multiple gameplay modes

Lows

  • Lacks a friends list for multiplayer games
  • Deck-building can be tedious

Magic: The Gathering Arenafor iOS

2021.3.22

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