Sep 24, 2017 Last Updated 10:18 PM, Sep 22, 2017
Published in Strategy
Read 786 times
Rate this item
(0 votes)

The uniqueness of Faeria is immediately apparent.

Faeria, Abrakam Entertainment's recent contribution to the world of digital collector card games (CCG), features impressive, Go-like territory themes, and a robust single-player mode. The title is a compelling choice for experienced CCG players and beginners alike, although casual players or Twitch viewers may find themselves bored or overwhelmed by the demands of the game. Players of other CCGs, like Hearthstone and Duelyst, however, will still find many elements of Faeria familiar, such as deck-centric gameplay, genre-typical card abilities (direct damage, card draw, etc.), and the standard free-to-play elements like daily quests and a drafting format (called “Pandora” in Faeria).

In Faeria, you have the predictable goal of reducing your opponent's life to zero.

You do so by placing hexagonal lands on the game board, summoning creatures and casting “events” using the game's mana-like resource, called "Faeria," and attacking your opponent.  Unlike most other CCG resources, though, players carry their unused Faeria over into subsequent turns. The ability to save Faeria alters the tempo of the game drastically, slowing down the action in the game’s beginning and focusing the gameplay on board development. Additionally, since players are now free to play cards as they like (that is, when it will directly impact the board), deck-building feel less restrictive and more creative,ameliorating some of the need for players to obsessively build decks to play “on curve.”

However, the most distinct and strategically fascinating aspect of Faeria’s gameplay is that, by placing land tiles throughout the course of the game, you build the game boards themselves. Land placement in Faeria is permanent once a card has been positioned by a player (excepting a few cards that have the ability to alter the position or presence of land). As a result, a player who gains a positional advantage over their opponent through land placement will often reap the benefits of this land multiple times per game, and placement mistakes are often so nuanced that they may go completely unnoticed to casual players. Due to these land placement considerations, the early game in Faeria tends to be dominated by players establishing board position rather than engaging in explosive encounters with each other. As addictively complex all of this makes the strategy of Faeria, casual players or viewers may find Faeria slow to start, or matches that seem one-sided once the action begins.

The game's visual design is chock-full of the whimsy one might expect from a game named Faeria, but as striking as the atmosphere and game art are, it is notably lacking in narrative depth.

An opening cut scene vaguely suggests an epic backdrop for why you’re engaging in Faeria’s battles, and occasional references throughout the game hint at characters and plot events not otherwise found in the gameplay. The only discussion of history, or lore that is present, is hidden away on the game's official Wiki page. There, only an intrepid investigator will find a short, metafictional description of the world of Faeria, which is the only explanation to the game’s errant references. Faeria does not have the luxury of having a previously existing universe like Hearthstone, TES: Legends, or Gwent, and, as a result, it needs to incorporate its lore into the actual game in order to fully immerse its players within its universe.


The Verdict

Faeria's gameplay shines, and what it lacks in narrative it more than makes up for in strategy. While Faeria won’t appeal to some casual players and viewers, players that enjoy delving into sophisticated and nuanced gameplay will be amply rewarded.

Image Gallery

View the embedded image gallery online at:
John Fentiman

John 'LegatoSmash' Fentiman is a recent graduate of Case Western Reserve University School of Law, but don't let that fool you. He has been playing video games for longer than he can remember, so he can pew pew and QQ with the best of them. His current favorite game developers are Amanita Design, Double Fine Productions, CCP Games, and Riot Games. In addition to his deep affection for gaming, John is an avid philosopher and theater attendee.

Latest from John Fentiman

Related items

  • Project CARS 2 Review

    Project CARS 2 sets the benchmark for what a true racing sim release should be. With exquisite graphics, exceptional realism, and palpable thrill, the gauntlets have been thrown down, and it’s up to every other dev to try and get close to this masterpiece of its genre. Now for a fresh dose of caffeine… it’s time to shave some time off my split!

  • Mantis Burn Racing: 'Battle Cars' DLC Interview

    The OPN interview showcasing the release of VooFoo Studios' 'Battle cars' DLC for the fast-paced, competitive, top-down racer, 'Mantis Burn Racing.' A conversation with Creative Director Shaun Read and Marketing and PR Manager Sean Walsh. Interviewed by our Editor-in-Chief, Rey Urias, and our Director of Business Development, Enzo Scavone.

  • Divinity: Original Sin 2 Review

    With Divinity: Original Sin 2, Larian Studios creates a title that brings together the best aspects of table-top and classic roleplaying games. The graphics, along with the score and voice acting, are painstakingly detailed and are truly awe-inspiring. Every decision you make, from character creation to dialogue, will affect your experience, giving you a slightly different playthrough every time. This is not a game for the casual player, however. The sheer size of the game and the difficulty of some battles will require dozens of hours and have you loading quicksaves time and again. Divinity: Original Sin 2 is primed to be on many all-time favorites lists; few, if any, have succeeded to this degree.

More in this category: The Long Journey Home Review »

Latest Shows

Crumple Intervie…

The OPN Dev Talk with Gabriel Gutierrez from Nascent Games, on their title newly release title "Crumple." A great conversation about what it takes to get a studio on the run, and o...

Mantis Burn Raci…

The OPN interview showcasing the release of VooFoo Studios' 'Battle cars' DLC for the fast-paced, competitive, top-down racer, 'Mantis Burn Racing.' A conversation with Creative Di...

Out Soon

PC Gaming Incoming


Score incredible goals in FIFA 18 as new movement and finishing animations unlock more fluid strikin...

Total War: WARHA…

Sequel to the award-winning Total War: WARHAMMER, Total War: WARHAMMER II introduces a breathtaking ...

Ys SEVEN Review

Ys SEVEN is packed with content -- over 30 hours of gameplay, a deep storyline, and a catchy soundtrack.  Though the plot retreads the ‘hero tasked with saving humanity’ story arc...

Life is Strange:…

Life is Strange: Before the Storm plays like a cutscene with a point-and-click element that is a joy; no button combinations or consulting a grainy minimap: Daedalus himself design...

Sine Mora EX Rev…

As you familiarize yourself with Sine Mora  EX, difficulty declines: bosses and normal enemies have predetermined flight and attack patterns, the structure of the map doesn’t chang...

Another Lost Pho…

Another Lost Phone is truly a masterpiece in its kind, setting a bar in both creativity and meaning that will be hard for future installments in the genre to match. In addition to ...