Eternal is a card game that starts 2 players at 25 health and each player plays cards to reduce the opponent’s health down to 0. This happens in all the standard ways one would expect from a card game, mainly through the summoning of creatures with which to attack and by tossing out various other spells. But there is a catch in this game, creatures can only directly attack the other player, who may choose to block.
There are 5 sigils of power: Fire, Justice, Primal, Shadow, and Time. Each sigil corresponds to a particular style of play and a certain host of abilities. Finally, the creatures and spells have a variety of powers, there’s not a lot of board clear effects. Minimum deck size is also 75 cards, which is a lot higher compared to other CCGS. As a result, Eternal comes off as a more considered, more in depth game, and matches are often still quick and intense.
Eternal takes the interface one step further by adding simple animations to battlefield effects. Flying creatures would hover over the board. Creatures with infiltrate have a shadowy pattern than periodically flashes over them. Exhausted creatures have their portraits darkened out. And there are also a lot more other easy to recognize symbols that quickly allow you to observe the board at a glance.
Eternal has two currencies tracked when you play sigils: power and influence. If you play a shadow sigil, that gives you one power and one point of shadow influence. On the next turn you play a time sigil, and that gives you an additional point of power along with one time influence point. At this point, you are able to cast two, one power shadow spells. You only need to have enough influence yo have access to playing it, but the power cost comes from the total of all the sigils you’ve played to this point. The result is a much more forgiving system that gets you to the actions faster.
Too often, free-to-play games with microtransactions make you grind a lot to achieve any measure of success. In Eternal, the reward chests you get for your daily quests give you plenty of free coins, The better the grade of chest, the more coins, cards, and packs you receive. Chests can also randomly upgrade into their next tier when opened, which is always a good feeling. You can even unlock multiple chests for quests and various other rewards, further accelerating your gains. Plenty of quests aren’t tied to victories, so you can complete lots just by playing and having a good time rather than worried about losing.
I never really got a good sense of the Eternal world. According to the developers, the Eternal world is supposed to be a combination of swords and six-shooters ala the weird West. But it’s really hard to get a sense of that from the game. Without a a huge world to draw upon, that limited exposure is felt. The mechanics of this game are solid, but if you care a lot about the lore in a game then you might be a bit disappointed.
Eternal is a game you should pick up if you even moderately enjoy card based games. It’s free to play friendly, you can easily build a good deck within weeks of playing. Eternal certainly shows us that there’s room in the digital card game genre for more variety.