Bloodsong’s latest addiction: Elements. This is a totally free online fantasy trading card game. Whut? You know, like “Magic.” I never got into Magic: The Gathering when it was a Big Thing. In fact, I never got into any of those card games, and I probably never will… except the online ones.
At any rate, Elements is a very simple game to pick up. (Unlike, say, Alteil — which I also like.) In fact, there’s not even really a tutorial except you go fight a level 0 tutorial opponent, and some notes pop up on the screen.
For those of you unfamiliar with how these things work, here is a clueless newbie guide to Elements. Also, I need to convince someone to play it who does not like attacking, fighting, killing, and dying. So… take it with a grain of salt.
First, you need to sign up for the game and pick an element to play. Of course, you won’t have the foggiest notion of which element you might like. There are some short descriptions of each one on the selection page, which won’t do justice to the game as a whole, so… either pick an element you feel in-tune with (darkness, chaos, fire?), pick your favorite colour (purple, magenta, light blue, dark blue, red?), or just pick Fire, which is probably the easiest and most straight-forward.
Also, don’t worry about signing up, you don’t even have to give an email address. But also, don’t use your standard user name when you first sign up. If you want to try multiple decks (without having to play a few hundred games to earn game coins), you will have to create multiple accounts. So my Bloodsong13T account has a really crappy deck, and my good builds are on other names. Which hopefully I won’t forget. :X
This is a card game. There is no fighting, blood, and dying. Noooo no no. Really! You and your opponent start out with 100 points, and the winner is the one who reduces the other’s points to 0. Here is a quick glossary!
Player HP: Hate Points. Your opponent starts with 100 Hate Points, and you reduce those down until 0, and then the other player stops hating you!
Attack: Accurate Total Tally After Counting Kisses. Every round, your creatures blow kisses at your opponent, reducing his Hate Points by that amount. Kisses are nice!
Creature HP: Hold Points. As long as your creature has at least one Hold Point, you can hold it in your array. Once it reaches zero HP, it is discarded.
Death/Dead: Discarded. This is a shorter term for discarded. Of course your card isn’t really dead! It’s only a card, after all. It’s just discarded and will be back in your deck again when you go to start a new game.
Poison: Persistant Ossom Indicator (that) Stays ON. This is a mark put on a creature card or your opponent’s HP meter, indicating how many HP they will lose per turn.
Weapons: Hate Reducers. Ummmm, yeah. You use these decorative cards to reduce your opponent’s Hate Points.
Shields: Kiss Inhibitors. So these are like fancy helmets you wear to prevent creatures from kissing you. Right.
Heal: Hate/Hold Enabled A Lot. This is an effect that increases the HP of a player or card creature.
There are three types of cards in Elements.
Permanents: These are inanimate objects, such as your weapon, your shield, objects that hold attributes or spells, and the pillars/pendulums. The latter cards generate Quantum of energy, which you need to spend to play your creatures and spells.
Creatures: These are various critters that you place in your array to attack your opponent’s HP. Each one has an attack | HP number (see above for definitions). They also have a cost in number and type of elemental. Deja Vu, for example costs 1 Quanta of Time energy.
Spells: Neither objects nor critters, these cards have various effects that are applied immediately when you play them. They can affect your HP, creatures, your opponent, etc.
First, in order to play your cards, you need to generate energy. You get one Quanta per turn from your Mark (the element you chose when you started your account). Pillars and pendulums also generate energy each turn.
You build up your energy until you have enough Quantum (or energy points) to play the card you want. If you want to play a very powerful dragon creature, you may need 10 Quantum of a particular energy type.
Your deck of cards can hold from 30 to 60 cards, but you cannot access them all at once. You are dealt several in the first hand (sorry, I’ve never counted the exact amount :X ), and then draw one new card per turn.
When you have sufficent energy to play a card, you may do so. Power-generating cards are usually free to play, so throw those out there as soon as you have them. Spells and such will trigger immediately (or after you select a target, if it is a targetted spell). Make sure your spell will have an affect before you use it! There’s no use using Thunderstorm if your opponent doesn’t have any creature cards out.
Creatures go into the center array. They will attack at the end of each turn. Some creatures have special attributes, like personal spells. Deja Vu, for example, can make one mirror copy of itself, using one Quanta of Time energy. Creature’s don’t always have attributes that use their main Element. Scarab is a Time creature, but requires Gravity to use its special Devour ability.
You continue generating energy and playing what cards you have, using strategy and chance in an effort to reduce your opponent to zero points.
If you have NO idea what you’re doing, you can generally just watch the cards on the right, that are in your hand. The ones with white bar backgrounds are ready to be played, so just click those. Things will follow, and numbers will fly confusingly around the screen. Don’t worry, you’ll pick it up soon. Remember to hover over a card to see its name, cost, and what it does.
After you win aganst the tutorial (I don’t think it’s actually possible to lose on that :X ), you can try a few hands against Level 1. If you win there, you will earn some coins that you can use to buy more cards. Go shopping… and the addiction begins!