https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TEvBIn5SCAU I have to admit to raising a skeptical eyebrow when I read yesterday that Ben Brode thinks Marvel Snap is going to become the biggest card game of all time. I mean, he would say that, given that Marvel Snap is the first release by Second Dinner, the studio he co-founded with a bunch of other Hearthstone alumni after leaving Blizzard in 2018.
Marvel Snap left early access and went into full release today. The PC client still very much shows its mobile roots, most noticeably in its phone-shaped orientation, but if you're looking for a sense of how seriously Marvel's paymasters are taking the game, a launch video starring none other than Samuel L Jackson gives a pretty good idea.
For those not inclined to click, the riff here is that Nick Fury has been replaced with a Snap player by the SHIELD human resources department on the basis that the phone jockey is doing a better job of managing a stable of superheroes. Jackson sells the bit with admirable gusto. I imagine he has long learned that being part of a ''cinematic universe' means having infinite things to sell.
Speaking of selling, Second Dinner has also clarified how monetization will work in the full game, clearly keen to draw a line under the unpleasantness that led to strong player pushback against 'Nexus Events' this August, ultimately leading to the scrapping of that entire system.
"We’d like to thank all the players that have shared their feedback and are sticking with us. We’ve got big dreams for Marvel Snap, and we want to build a game that will stand the test of time - we have no plans at this time to add an additional major monetization system. Marvel Snap needs to be fair and fun, and provide a valuable, player-friendly experience."
Note that in Snap additional cards are unlocked to your collection by playing the game. You can, however, pay to get earlier access to cosmetic upgrades. According to the Second Dinner rep, the monetisation options at launch look like this:
- Season Pass (Standard and Premium options)
- Card Variants (cosmetic skins for cards that players have acquired)
- Gold (in-game currency used to purchase Card Variants or additional Credits that are normally earned by playing and used to upgrade cards and increase collection levels)
We found Snap's matches to be fast and fun when playing the beta back in July. Our one criticism of the gameplay was that, despite the gorgeous poppy card art, the actual battles lacked a little pizazz. Yes, slamming Iron Man feels good, but in terms of game-winning flourishes, in Snap there's nothing quite as spectacular as clearing a board with Deathwing in Hearthstone. It's more a case of using combat maths cleverly, something which didn't work out great for Artifact, though Snap certainly doesn't need a PhD to play.
Anyway, I like the idea of super-speedy matches and will definitely be indulging on the sofa while watching b-tier TV shows. Marvel Snap is out now on Steam.