What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Card Hunter is a free-to-play turn-based strategy game. It's presented as a hybrid board game/card game, with players taking on the roles of heroes in various adventure modules, akin to the classic Dungeons & Dragons pen-and-paper role-playing game. Combat takes place through the use of cards, without the violence portrayed on-screen, except for some audible grunts and visuals of paper slashes that represent damages. Due to the game's free-to-play model, players are encouraged to spend real money in-game for additional cards, expansions, and other content.
What kids can learn
- board games
Thinking & Reasoning
- identifying strengths and weaknesses
Engagement, Approach, Support
The combination of two classic game genres works well, but extended play can turn into a grind for better equipment.
Players can exercise math skills as they figure out which cards to play in which order. Players also pick the most efficient order in which to play characters' actions, helping them learn logic and systems thinking.
The first few missions provide players with a well-scripted introduction to the game, and the online forums are supportive and active.
What's it about?
CARD HUNTER takes all the best parts of trading-card games, board games, and pen-and-paper role-playing games and blends it into a new type of role-playing experience. Players create a party of three from a selection of classes, with each class determining which special abilities and cards they take into the coming battle. By defeating their foes, players gain loot in the form of new equipment and cards. Players also can duke it out with each other in player-vs.-player (PvP) matches, pitting their best adventurers and cards against other players across the globe.
Is it any good?
On the surface, Card Hunter is easy to overlook. Its presentation seems pretty basic but fits the overall theme. It feels like it could just as easily be played on a dining room table as on a computer. Every match feels like a brand-new experience, whether you're playing one of the game's ever-expanding roster of modules or simply sticking with a personal favorite.
Card Hunter also is a surprisingly deep strategic experience. Players have to consider which heroes to take with them from match to match and what equipment is best suited to each adventure. Although there's a lot of focus on spending real money on items from the in-game store for boosts, expansions, loot, and the like, there's still plenty of freely available content to enjoy, and it never quite stumbles into the "pay to win" category. Gary the Gamemaster (the AI behind your enemies) makes for a strong opponent, but nothing beats the unexpected nature of live opponents online. Unfortunately, online play opens up the possibility of potentially objectionable material via unmoderated chats. Still, Card Hunter is a great blend of different gaming experiences with a lot to offer and is well worth checking out for any old-school RPG fan.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about playing games together. How does a virtual board game compare to playing an actual board or card game? Could it inspire a regular family game night?
Talk about teamwork. How do characters with different skills work together toward a common goal?