Arcmage: Seeds of Magic - a digital card game

Arcmage: Seeds of Magic - a digital card game

Postby ShaiShap » 01 Dec 2017, 02:33

I'm happy to announce the first game released using the Sunflower digital card game engine - Arcmage: Seeds of Magic.

Arcmage is a libre collectible card game (came out of the WTactics project), originally created for playing with physical cards. Arcmage: Seeds of Magic is a spinoff digital version created by myself, and meant for playing single-player against AI. It is already playable with Arcmage rules and cards, though still not all are implemented; in the future it will include a full single-player campaign as well. Code is licensed under BSD, art is from the Arcmage project, which licensed it under GPL (more details on their website).

Watch an example let's play here:


youtu.be/ILv-QIbvG2s

And download the game here. Enjoy, share, give feedback, and keep following for future updates!

(Clarification: Just to be completely clear, Arcmage and Arcmage: Seeds of Magic are two separate projects. I am not part of the Arcmage team, and they are not directly involved in this project, though of course it would have been impossible to make without their excellent work)
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Re: Arcmage: Seeds of Magic - a digital card game

Postby onpon4 » 01 Dec 2017, 03:46

I didn't watch the video, but I looked at the rules, and I gotta say I like what I've seen. This seems like a really well-rounded ruleset. I see it has some of the features I like most from other TCGs I've played.

I'll definitely have to give this a try! I'll get back to you when I do, for sure.
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Re: Arcmage: Seeds of Magic - a digital card game

Postby onpon4 » 06 Dec 2017, 17:17

Alright, I got a chance to play this today. Sort of.

Before I go on, I just want to say, thank you for posting this. I didn't know about Arcmage before you did, and I'm glad I know about it now (although I have a couple criticisms of it too; I'll have to bring those to the Arcmage developers' attention, and possibly contribute to that project myself).

That being said, your digital port has some serious problems that need to be ironed out. In particular, other than what you already note in the readme:

1. The cards are too small, and there is nothing I can find that lets you zoom in on them. This is very serious because I can't read any of the text, not even the names of the cards. It makes the game unplayable. The official Arcmage Web-based thing shows a zoomed-in image of the card your mouse is hovering over in the top-right corner; I think you should mimic this.

2. I couldn't find a close button, menu, or anything else that could get me out of the game. I actually had to use GNOME's interface for closing windows. I would suggest not erasing the window border as you currently do, and I would also suggest putting some kind of menu (perhaps brought up by the Esc key) which can return to the title screen or quit the game. A help button in that menu would be a good idea, too (it could just show an overlay explaining everything on the field, and possibly a note about what you're supposed to be doing at the moment).

So at the moment this is unplayable (at least for me) right now. But if you iron out these issues, I'd be happy to try it again. And again, thanks for giving Arcmage that bit of publicity, even if I'm disappointed by your digital version. I'm a huge fan of trading card games and it's great to see one that isn't centered around squeezing money out of people, where you can basically play at any budget you want to, and with a great ruleset. Being able to play it single-player would just be icing on the cake. ;)
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Re: Arcmage: Seeds of Magic - a digital card game

Postby ShaiShap » 06 Dec 2017, 19:13

Thank you for your feedback!

1. As the readme says, press Z while hovering over a card to zoom in. Is it possible you missed that? Or is it not working? I generally prefer the "zoom when requested" approach (like in the MtG games) over the "zoom on hover" approach (like what you describe), although hopefully the engine will support both in the future. Anyway, in the future it will hopefully be clearer (and maybe mouse based rather than keyboard based). I might also consider an "all actions begin with clicking the card and getting an enlarged version of it with action buttons" style, like Scrolls and others.

2 and others: You are right, and that is one of several things I hope to fix for the next version, which will focus on UI issues and will hopefully come out within one or two weeks. There will be a keyboard shortcut for menu, and engine support for also putting a menu button on the game table - we'll see if I can also come up with a good design for where that button goes and what it will look like, or if that will wait for future versions while I let people press Esc for now. Anyway, I hope you'll try it again when that happens - I'll update this thread when the next version comes out. Thanks again!
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Re: Arcmage: Seeds of Magic - a digital card game

Postby onpon4 » 06 Dec 2017, 21:01

As the readme says, press Z while hovering over a card to zoom in. Is it possible you missed that?

Ah, yes, I did. I did skim the readme for controls, but didn't notice any. That definitely helps, though I think it's a little clunky and yeah, a mouse-based solution would be better.

I might also consider an "all actions begin with clicking the card and getting an enlarged version of it with action buttons" style, like Scrolls and others.

That would work. :)

Something else that occurs to me, now that I can read the cards, is that it uses the faction terms exclusively,without making it obvious to someone not familiar with the game which one they are. I'd suggest putting the faction logo in the power sections so that this is easier to tell.

I tried to play cards by clicking and dragging. I'd suggest adding support for that; I was thoroughly confused when it just snapped back to my hand.

I tried to use Elvish Ambush to damage the other player, but I couldn't figure out how to do it. The readme says to click their army zone, but I tried that in every possible location and it didn't do anything.

That's all I have for now.
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