As a fan of the Pokemon Trading Card Game when I was a kid, and putting way too many hours into the excellent Game Boy Color version I have been checking up on this online version for some time. It’s now in open beta allowing anyone to join in on the Pokemon fun.
You get to pick a starter deck, the usual water, fire or grass type choice. There’s Trainer Challenge, a league type mode against AI opponents with various decks. You work your way up the ranks, getting achievements and new cards along the way. Once you’ve done the Trainer Challenge, or even right away, you can move onto playing online opponents. I’ve yet to give that a spin so unsure how well that works.
The game looks pretty swish, and if you find the animations annoying they can be disabled. The difficulty can also be scaled to suit as well, in case you’re having trouble. Which would be part of my main issue with the game in its current state. With no Deck Builder in place yet you have to use one of the default decks, which may not be to your liking and can make battles difficult. And as with most betas it does have its regular buggy issues, sometimes failing to load the whole game, or freezing up on the start screen. As the open beta storms on towards a proper release I expect the site to become more stable, and features like the deck builder to unlock. I imagine that the full site will use some kind of micro-transaction model to purchase additional cards.
If you’ve not played the Pokemon TCG in years, like me, and want to scratch that itch then this is just what the doctor ordered.