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Duel Masters: Kaijudo Showdown Package Art
†GENRE
††Collectable Card Combat
†DEVELOPER
††Mistic
†PUBLISHER
††Atari
†NUMBER OF PLAYERS
††1-2
†CONNECTIVITY
††No
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Duel Masters: Kaijudo Showdown

For me, Duel Masters seemed to come out of nowhere. I was watching TV one day and came across the show, watched it for a bit, and turned it off. It didnít appeal to me at all, but the cards did grab my attention. I picked up Kaijudo Showdown to get myself a little more aquatinted with the new card fad, but it didnít drag me into a whole new world like Pokemon or Yu-Gi-Oh! had. Instead it seemed to mesh some new monsters with an old game, something I wasnít too fond of. Read on if youíd like to know more.

visuals

Letís take a stab at the bad news first. The effects and the monsters arenít as brilliant as I had expected to see coming from a game with so many different possibilities of each. When a monster attacks another, their movements are quick and pretty stiff so there isnít much to see. The effects are also pretty quick and are there and gone to fast to enjoy. Both are pretty boring and made up of just a few simple sprites.

The environments are fairly large and colorful, but lack any motion at all. The absence of any bit of movement takes away from the liveliness of your surroundings and leaves them dismal and unappealing. On a good note, it is nice to see some battlefields rather than the traditional lay out of cards you see in most GBA card games, but itís not too impressive and again, leaves much to be desired.

Alas, there is some good news. Though a few things were lacking and desired, there were some perks I did enjoy. The details on many of the three hundred cards are crafted nicely and itís fun to go through your deck and check out the monsters you have at your disposal. Some arenít to great, but for the most part theyíre pretty enjoyable to cycle through.

audio

There isnít much to brag about in the audio department either. The sound effects are few and far in between, not to mention pretty dull. But they go along with the visuals nicely. When a character attacks with its quick, stiff sweep of an arm, you hear a quick ping or the sound of glass breaking, among a few other bland sound effects.

The music on the other hand is pretty good. As you walk around youíre treated to some nice friendly beats that make you feel as if youíre in a friendly environment. The battle music is a little slow, but so is the action so it all works out. Other than that there isnít too much to hear, but whatís there is nice.

gameplay

If youíve played Magic the Gathering for just about any length of time youíll have this game down. It seems as though Duel Masters is just more low key and a bit easier to pick up. But for those of you who havenít played Magic, Iíll explain in short, stripped down detail how the game works.

In the beginning of the duel you are required to place a card from your hand into your Mana Pool. After you do so you are given the option of summoning a monster or using a spell. Each monster or spell requires you to Tap a certain amount of cards from your Mana Pool in order to activate. Once activated the spell effect goes into effect or your creature appears on the battlefield. Unfortunately you will have to wait until your next turn in order to attack with a creature because they will suffer from something called ďSummoning SicknessĒ. This condition makes it so the monsters cannot attack during the first turn they are put into play, but they cannot be destroyed either. Spells on the other hand are activated right away and their effect occurs right after activation. At the beginning of your next turn you draw a card and repeat all the above steps until you destroy all of your opponentís shields and attack the character directly, the duel then comes to a close. The game sounds simple enough but if you want to win youíll need to strategize quite a bit, itís not all cards and commanding, planning plays a big role. But youíll be happy to know there is a quick, very clear tutorial in the beginning of the game so youíll be well on your way from the get-go.

multiplayer

There is a multiplayer option for those of you who have some Duel Master buddies to battle with. If youíve got two cartridges and a link cable, you and one of your friends can battle it out using your best decks to find out who the better duel master is. It would be quite fun to test out your most powerful cards and honed dueling skills against a friend.

overall

Overall, Duel Masters: Kaijudo Showdown doesnít improve much on its predecessor but itís still a solid fanboy title. If youíd like to learn more about the game (and Duel Masters in general) before making a thirty buck purchase, Iíd go out and pick up a twelve dollar deck just to make sure youíre really interested. Other than that, the graphics arenít the best and the audio does leave a lot to be desired. For the Duel Master fans, Iíd say itís a well done game, theyíd find the most joy out of it. If youíre just getting into Duel Masters and remain undecided, or youíve never played any of the games before, I wouldnít recommend it, do a bit more research first.

final score 7.2/10





WRITER INFORMATION
Staff Avatar Geofferey Winter
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"So THAT'S what it's for!"


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