Welcome back for another entry of “My Experience” where I talk about my experience being hands on with some great, or not so great games. Today we will be talking about My Experience with Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links! It is a FREE game in the Apple Store!
The other night I was just curious to see what was in the Apple store when I was on my iPad and to my surprise I saw a game called “Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links”. Now to preface a bit, my first LOVE for card games was because of Yu-Gi-Oh. I first got into card games because of Pokemon but it wasn’t until I fully immersed myself into Duel Monsters that I became such a nerd lol. I had played Yu-Gi-Oh! for many years but the additions of the XYZ and Synchro elements drove me away into the arms of Magic the Gathering (which may be one of my favorite games of all time).
What I loved about Duel Monsters was the simplicity of drawing a few cards and trying to outsmart your opponent. The goal was to use your support cards (trap, spells and effect monsters) to aid your weaker monsters until you were able to bring out one of your few big monsters and hope you could get your opponents life points to 0 before you fell into one of their traps. With the Syncho, XYZ bullshit it took that element away. You could draw and play Monster A, who’s effect was to summon Monster B from your hand or Deck, who’s effect was to summon Monster C from your hand or deck, who’s effect was to tribute Monsters A, B & C for Monster D from your extra deck, who’s effect was to destroy all cards on your opponents side of the field and then you would attack for 3500 of your opponents life points and in one turn it was pretty much over. It sucked.
Now back to present day. I was a little skeptical to even waste any time on this game for the reasons I stated above, but I saw a lot of images of Yugi and Kaiba and thought “why not”. I think I downloaded the game about 8PM, or somewhere around there and I was up playing this game past midnight! The way this game plays is so much of what I LOVED about it when I first played it way back when.
There are tweaks to how the game is played that differ from the regular card game. I read some of the reviews that dealt directly with these tweaks and most weren’t happy, but I have to be honest here… I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THEM! For one, at the begging of the game in the regular card game (back when I played) you had to draw 6 cards, in DL (Duel Links) you draw 4. In the regular card game you have 8000 LP (life points), in DL you have 4000. In the regular card game you have 5 Monster Zone spots and 5 Spell and Trap Zone spots, in DL you have 3 each! Finally, in the regular card game you have to have a minimum of 40 cards in your deck, in DL you have to have a minimum of 20!
So less cards in your deck, less life points, less spots on the field, less cards in your hand and any player can win in 6-15 moves within the old system. You must be thinking “if you have less of everything, how can this game be fun”? Simply put, Less is MORE! There is no Synchro or XYZ crap in this game (or non that I have seen so far, please let me be right) and they focus on the beginnings of the game! Remember Celtic Warrior? With 1400 Attack & 1200 Defense he is VALUABLE again due to the balance of the cards in this game! The core monsters are the 1000-1600 attack monsters! The Fusion Monsters, the ritual monsters! The monsters that I use to have 1000 cards of because they were basically nothing, like Hane-Hane! A 450 ATK / 500 DEF monster with this effect: “Flip: Return 1 Monster on the field to its owners hand”. Sure Hane-Hane was useful sometimes, but in DL, this card is a Ultra Rare (or Super Rare, but its one of the rare cards)! In the early goings, my Hitotsu-Me Giant 1200 ATK / 1000 DEF has been key and that is so awesome to me! But that don’t mean the cards we all know and love don’t have a part in this game! The Blue-Eyes White Dragon, Dark Magician and all of those cards we sought after as kids are all there and some of them have awesome cinematic entrances when they get played! Really makes you feel the power of playing that kind of Monster!
While the Duel Monsters are the main part of this game, the game itself from the graphics to the layout to the objectives you have to complete and the rewards you get are simply well put together. When you play a card the art of the Monster comes from the card and hovers over it! When you start the game you can choose to be Seto or Yugi, I chose Seto, and during Duels the characters talk to one another and it makes sense with what is going on in that current duel. Now I can say some of the dialog the characters say before and after a duel is repetitive (especially when you have played as much as I have) but the move to move dialog really brings the game to the next level.
You defeat and earn new characters to play as (and get access to their decks) as you go along, but you also find random computer characters (voices included) that you have to beat around the “Duelist World” (I believe that is what it is called). Beating these randoms give you different keys you have to collect in order to duel the big characters like Joey Wheeler (where you have to beat them to be able to play as them and get their decks) where you not only earn gems and trinkets but you level up the character you are playing! The higher level you get the more stuff you have to do! They have a card shop where you can spend your gems (you get from completing daily and weekly tasks) to get packs of cards, they have a place to trade coins and trinkets for cards and other trinkets you collect. There is a duelist arena where you can play in ranked or unranked duels against other real life players and they have a Duel School for those who want to learn more about the game or to hone their skills.
ALL of this, in the palm of your hand, and for FREE! Obviously with any Free game in the Apple store, they offer you the option of using real money to get gems and all that but you can most certainly play to get them instead. In the couple days I have played, I had earned enough gems to get about 50 packs of cards (3 cards per pack = 150 cards) and I almost have enough to get another 10 packs.
There are so many other things this game has to offer, like other cool special computer characters that do special things and challenges that give you a random deck to play with and so many other things BUT I want you to EXPERIENCE that for yourself! Now as of right now I have to give Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links and “Cowabunga” in the Game Ratings as it has rekindled my love for the game BUT I may revisit this game at a later date and give it a “Golden Pizza” if it continues to impress or a lesser grade than I gave it today if somehow this game turns on me. Have you played Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links? Let me know what you think!