is a video rendition of a collectible card game based in a fantasy world. It offers only two modes of play: Skirmish and League. Pretty self explanatory, the Skirmish mode enables you to play quick games against a random computer opponent and the League pits you against the entire wizarding community within the game.
Before entering either of these modes, though, you must first pick a pre-made deck or customize your own deck. As an amateur of card games like Astral Masters, I began my wizarding romp with the two pre-made decks the game offers. Each has a uniquely different style of play, but both give you a good shot against the computer, which is helpful for noobies like myself.
Astral Masters is similar to games like Magic: The Gathering in that you have spells and creatures, an opponent with a certain amount of health, and your goal is to reduce that health to zero. Unlike Magic: The Gathering, each creature you cast is placed in one of six slots on the board, and your opponent has identical slots across from yours, meaning creatures fight with whoever is in the opposite slot, and if nobody is there, the damage goes to your opponent.
Once familiar with how the game worked, I tried my hand at creating my own deck, which resulted in some of the most one-sided games ever and left me with the worst record in collectible card game history. Creating a well balanced deck that doesn?t rely on luck is best left to those who know the fine art of deck customization. The process is deceptively simple at first, as there are only two kinds of cards to choose from: spells and creatures. There are also different castes that these cards can be taken out of: Earth, Fire, Water and Air. Yet the skill for combining these cards to form a winning deck is much more complicated than it sounds.
When creating your deck, you are dealing with a point cap. Each card is worth a certain amount of points and this is how you are limited, not on the number of cards in your deck but on the number of points. As you progress through League mode, your point cap increases and you also unlock new cards based on how well you do. Obviously, better cards will run you more points than weaker cards.
As there is no Multiplayer mode, you?re stuck with testing out your new decks in Skirmish or just running headlong into a League. Multiplayer support is promised in the 1.2 update, but when this is due out the developers have not said.
Editor's Note: v1.2 of Astral Masters is now available through TotalGaming.net. The v1.2 demo can be downloaded now from the game's homepage by clicking HERE or directly by clicking HERE. Existing and new customers will be able to update or purchase the new version through TGN.