If a digital card game launches and there aren’t banner ads slathered all over websites, does its arrival make a sound? This may indeed be the case for Magic Spellslingers, a character-focused, more simplified version of the popular Magic: The Gathering card game that recently soft-launched to Steam and mobile devices with hardly any fanfare.
Just what is Spellslingers about? Here’s the official blurb to summarize it all:
“Decks are built around one of sixteen playable Spellslinger characters (with more to come in future updates), each with their own personality, playstyle, and unique abilities. When you unlock a new Spellslinger, you’ll immediately gain access to their 30-card starter deck and can jump into matches right away. When you’re ready, customize your deck or build a new one from the ground up using cards from your collection. Once you’ve got your deck tuned up, form or join a team to share your list with friends, or trade for materials to craft new cards.”
A rundown from fansite MTG Rocks shares a bit more context on this one. The title was first announced as Kylem’s Arena in 2019 and was touted by Wizards’ CEO Chris Cocks as a way to “reinvent the genre for the mobile-first generation.” The development trajectory of the Steam version sees the game first entering early access in May 2021 and its 1.0 update happening at the beginning of this month, while only this week saw the title’s official Twitter touting the so-called soft launch along with the announcement linked above on Magic’s website.
If you’re the kind of person who’s a part of this “mobile-first generation” and you find MTG Arena a bit too complex, perhaps this one is worth your attention, though we do point to a number of negative Steam user reviews that call out its overly simplistic gameplay and overabundance of microtransactions.