How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Yu-Gi-Oh
by, 02-01-2015 at 04:09 PM (305 Views)
There's a pretty big CCG on the market that has fantastical characters, creatures, spells, and abilities, sometimes derivative, but all unique to that setting. Wildly popular, sometimes imbalanced, it's had a huge following for years now.
I'm talking, of course, about Magic: The Gathering. But Dave! This is about Yu-Gi-Oh, isn't it? Yes, it is. But right now I'm talking about Magic.
I've played Magic, and it's likely that a large percentage of our readers have as well. Every new block introduces a completely different setting: Sarpadia, in Antiquities and Fallen Empires. Ravnica, the city of guilds. Onslaught, where the game moved decidedly towards creatures. Mirrodin, where artifacts became the forefront. The Ice Age, one of the earliest expansions. From it's inception, Magic has taken us to new places with unfamiliar characters and creatures.
Dice Masters is also taking many of us to new places with unfamiliar characters with Yu-Gi-Oh and Dungeons & Dragons. And why not? Some will be familiar with the settings, but many aren't, especially with the former. I'm starting to see that this isn't a problem. Realistically, a Spiritmonger (MTG) doesn't really mean much more to me than a Black Rose Dragon (YGO). And if I didn't know either game, I'd have a hard time assigning a given character to the correct setting.
I tested this out on my wife, who does not know anything about M:TG beyond how to play or Yu-Gi-Oh at all. I asked her to tell me which game this character was from: Sarkhan, the Dragonspeaker.
Her guess was Yu-Gi-Oh. In actuality, that's a Planeswalker from Magic. I repeated this test with several other names she had many right, but many were wrong, too. In the end, six were correctly identified; five were not. Not too different from a coin flip, which she admits most came down to. I probably wouldn't have done much better. It was about as difficult as another favorite game, "IKEA furniture or Girl with the Dragon Tattoo character?" It's fun, and harder than it looks. Try it sometime.
We also looked at some of the artwork. In many cases, we wouldn't have thought "Yu-Gi-Oh" about any of the art we saw, although it does come straight from the anime. Some of it was obvious and a bit cartoonish, and the quality wasn't always what we were used to from comic art, but much was able to stand on its own.
Why should I feel differently about this set than I would a new block of Magic? I shouldn't. Or Uncanny X-Men? I didn't really know who Ant-Man was, nor Falcon, nor Emma Frost, nor Scarlet Witch. Yet I have the set and I love it.
I like the Dice Masters system, and if it looks like there is a quality implementation of it, with cool dice and abilities, then I'm going to chase it down.
I'm not buying into the YGO CCG, not by any means. But Dice Masters? Put me down for a starter and some boosters. I think I'll get some play out of it.