Creatures of Aether is a two-player card game that’s easy to learn and fun to play, but struggles with its bugs.
It’s A Flipping Card Game
The goal of Creatures of Aether is to own the most cards on the board. You capture cards based on the directional numbers. Each side has a number. When your number is higher than the opposing card’s connecting side, you capture that card and flip it, making it yours. The concept is pretty simple, but it gets more complex with card abilities.
It’s not just about creating a deck that synergizes together, but also knowing when to play each card. One of my strongest cards, Maypul, lets me chain together captures so I can take three or four cards with one move. Since I usually play it later, my opponents can’t take their cards back from me. They’re already surrounded! It’s fun to see what my opponents come up with too. I’ve seen some pretty dangerous Zetterburn decks that wipe out all elements and add fire to the tiles so they’re stronger, while I’m weaker.
Once you reach a high enough arena rank you can take on single player dungeons to gather new cards. One of my favorite things about this is the game lets you choose which cards you gain from your dungeon dives. You get random cards at the start, but whenever you beat an enemy you can either add new cards to your deck or level up the cards you already have. Any leveled up cards you have at the end of a dungeon run, you get to keep! It’s very convenient compared to other free to play games. There’s less grinding for random card packs in hopes of the one card you need.
It costs aether to enter dungeons, but you get some whenever you win a match. It’s not hard to come by. This means the game is relatively easy to play without having to spend too much money on it. You can even use the free cards you get from dungeons and rewards to make pretty decent decks.
Matchmaking and Fairness
When I first started playing Creatures of Aether I was worried I’d get constantly paired against enemies that would instantly stomp me because they had bought all the rare cards, but that’s not what happened. The game limits the amount of power you can place in your deck, so you can’t just pack it full of super rare cards.
The game is also pretty nice about its matchmaking system. I matched against players with higher scores than me, but the game recognizes this and doesn’t take away points when I lose. You can also battle AI opponents in the arena if you get frustrated with your human opponents. This way you can still get the rewards and improve your cards without having to suffer a bunch of losses you can’t control.
There are bugs
I encountered a prominent problem shortly after I started playing. Around my second or third match against a computer opponent, the game broke. The computer played its last card and lost. I should have won, but the game locked with a full board and no cards to play. The forfeit button was also broken, so I couldn’t leave. It was incredibly frustrating. I even tried playing on another phone, but to no avail. Luckily, I managed to contact the developer and they released a patch to fix that specific bug.
It doesn’t look like I’m the only one who has had problems. Plenty of other players report having trouble loading into the game or getting stuck on certain screens. While this is disappointing, this is probably my only complaint about the game. The actual game itself is really fun.
Is it Hardcore?
When the game isn’t suffering from technical issues and bugs, the gameplay and the graphics really shine through! 3/5