Tuesday, November 06, 2007

I purchased Eye of Judgment, I have to say I love and dislike this game. Rather then write a review (as I tend to not write reviews) I figured I would list points and say why I feel the way I do about the game.

Why I like the game:
-Gameplay is innovative compared to other CCG's, normally you are trying to defeat the player by draining points, or defeat creatures, in this game you simply (hah simply) need to control 5 of the 9 squares. This defense is as important as offense.
-Multi Element playing field encourages diverse decks. You can easily buy boosters and look for a mix of elements in your deck as playing a wood creature on wood incurs bonuses. Also some creatures impart bonuses if they are played on non-aligned elements, some creatures cause discards, add mana, give draws, it very much adds to the strategic element.
-The geek factor is HUGE!! This is a geekfest of greatness, watching creatures come to life beautifully on your screen is something that has to be played to be believed. I know when I was playing magic I often wondered what a computer model of the creature would look like, what the attack would appear as...it is truly cool.
-The Online option while flawed due to matchmaking problems is amazing fun. I have participated in many matches and have to say being able to find a challenger any time I want is appreciated, my Magic deck used to collect dust for months at a time when I was playing.
-The ranking system is cool, it encourages you to play and try and climb the ladder by obtaining honor with wins, like most games you get titles as you advance, which increases your prestige.
-Fast recognition and a neat peripheral with the Playstation Eye. The camera is great, I have played with it in EyeCreate and while not studio quality (obviously) it takes decent video and pictures. When playing the game, cards read in less then a second (most times) with generally few issues (see dislikes).

Why I dislike it
-Blech, set up time sucks, here is a rundown:
1. pull out folding TV Tray
2. lay board on top of tray to give proper size to play on
3. place mat on table
4. Put camera on mat, make sure it is steady and in the right spot
5. Turn on PS3 and quickly start the game before the obnoxiously loud hair rock starts as the XMB is displayed (you have to own the game to understand what I am talking about)
6. If playing online, need to lay the deck out card by card beside me as the PS3 handles card draws and you have a short time to find the drawn card
7. go to online -> go to ranked games -> look for table a few times -> give up and host a table and wait for a player.
No word of a lie it is generally 5-10 minutes before I am ready to play a game, and I can say my wife came home and called me a dork to my face when she saw the setup...
-No campaign mode is an insult. There is a great cinematic to intro the elements, but no campaign, you can play pointless matches against the PC or online, the other modes are useless. A story based campaign a la the old magic the gathering game or Puzzle Quest should have been included in the game
-Online is frustrating at times. You can invite people (to play friends you have met) but can't lock the room, many times I have invited someone and someone else was auto assigned to my room...very stupid. Also if someone is having lag or connectivity issues it doesn't disconnect them, it actually allows their clock to run out...I have sat through some 20 round games where the opponents full 3 minutes clock times out almost every round...if I quit I lose honor and don't advance in rank...so I have to sit there and take it...very bad design
-Sony dropped the ball HUGE on cards and security, you can print out cards and use them in game (no security to verify legit cards) and you can't find cards...anywhere...period. Nobody in Canada has cards, because they were not shipped any, even PlayAsia has them on backorder. This means that people who want new cards cannot BUY them, instead they can steal them and use them easily.
-Flaky PSEye at times, water based cards have huge issues being read at times, causing crucial matches to be lost (in my own experience)when a card cannot be played.

All in All I like the game, I like a point when I am playing so I don't play it every day, plus I need to wait in my backordered earth deck to arrive so I can build a proper deck...no bitterness here at all....Oh yeah and the eye is creepy:

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