Card Hunter Attack of the Artifacts Review
There's nothing like delving into dangerous dungeons to kill lots of monsters and getting your hands on lots of loot. You can scratch that itch in one of the most interesting free browser games to come along in recent years: Card Hunter, the game that mixes old school D&D adventures with the deck building of Magic: The Gathering. Now it's time to belly up to the table and sling some virtual dice with Gary and Melvin as a new expansion, Attack of the Artifacts, has been released. Is the new expansion up to snuff, full of daring adventure and hideous monsters? Find out in our Card Hunter Attack of the Artifacts review.
The main thrust of the Attack of the Artifacts expansion is a set of six brand new adventures for players to embark upon. The adventures are broken into two sets of three, with three adventures being lower level (seven through nine) and the other three being level eighteen. The new adventures for this browser mmo are Valley of Tezkal, Beneath Tcotzac, Crystals of Chronak, White Feather Hill, Grey Quill Peak, and Black Plume Mountain. The setting for these quests is quasi-Aztec, and each adventure has multiple battles.
If you're concerned about the quality of the adventures, don't be as they're up to the normal Card Hunter standards. They're challenging, but have that dose of humor and nostalgia that us old-time players just love. Some of our favorite creatures from the early editions of pen-and-paper rpgs make an appearance but modified to fit in the crazy Card Hunter universe. There's plenty of new monsters to fight against, with some of my particular favorites being the walking idols, the beholder-type that's literally all tongues, the fearsome chupacabra, and the crazy sharkbear!
There are a lot of new items and cards in Attack of the Artifacts and it'll take you some time to get used to them. You'll definitely be checking the combat log to read up on them. The developers have worked to beef up some areas that they felt were lacking. One such area of concern are elves, as they're the least used characters in multiplayer. Card Hunter adds some new cards for them that still reflect their elven nature of movement and deception, but add some extra punch. One example is the Elven Trickery card that forces an opponent to discard all their melee attack cards if you end your movement next to them. This expansion adds some more burning cards for wizards that add armor penetration to make them more effective for DoT. Another interesting addition are punishing cards. These cards have a smaller amount of initial damage but add damage for every card your opponent has in their hand when you attack.
Probably the most interesting new items in Attack of the Artifacts are the artifacts. These are intelligent weapons, and as such, can force your hand from time to time. Artifacts have some cards that are labeled "impetuous" that you are forced to play when you draw them. I love this as it takes me back to my early days of rpg gaming where an intelligent weapon could be awesome, or it could be a death sentence for the entire party if the group was unable to control it. All the items are available as drops when you play the adventures, or you can purchase chests in a new shop as well.
There are some other additions as well in the new expansion. Your inventory is more easily sorted as they've added a rarity filter. There are new figures with an Aztec theme to them for purchase if you're looking for a new look. For players into PvP, they've added multiplayer leagues to Card Hunter. These leagues are of two types. The first is a fixed deck league where the game builds the deck for you and gives you the characters you'll be playing, which could even include monsters. The other type of league is a constructed league where you build your deck itself. Leagues will have a set time period, and the overall winners can receive gold, special figures, chests, or pizza.
Overall, my impressions of the Attack of the Artifacts expansion for Card Hunter are very positive. I love the new monsters and the new cards. The adventures were challenging and I'm not ashamed I got wiped a number of times and had to go back after swapping some items. The tongue-in-cheek humor is still highly prevalent, especially when the tongue beholder creature is using many different tongue and licking attacks against you. The only negative for some players is that not all the adventures are free. Personally, I don't have an issue with this as browser games need to make money. If you loved playing those bare-bones modules back in the day, then you'll love Attack of the Artifacts. Now get a party together and start wiping out those hideous plant pygmies.