What is Caster Chronicles?

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You have probably heard of Force of Will Co’s new game, “The Caster Chronicles”. Like you, I was very curious to investigate and gave the demo decks a try when they came to my local store. Now that I have finally got my hands on some booster boxes and played against a few decks, I thought I would take the time to give a breakdown on the basics of the game.

To start, there are seven different factions in the game, each representing a different concept:

  • Solis (Orange), representing gluttony. Solis allows you to force the opponent to consume their own resources or consume your own for a burst of power.
  • Luna (Yellow), representing greed. Luna is focused on gaining resources, primarily through card draw.
  • Ignus (Red), representing wrath. Ignus is focused around combat strength and eliminating opposing servants.
  • Aqua (Blue), representing envy. Aqua revolves around strategy and control.
  • Silva (Green), representing sloth. Silva focuses on slowing down the game and playing strong creatures to overpower the opponent.
  • Aes (Pink), representing lust. Aes allows you to take control of enemy servants and switch their positions.
  • Terra (Purple), representing pride. Tera cards are physically weaker and often take unique routes to battling the enemy rather than fighting them head-on.

The Caster Chronicles is a very different game then Force of Will. Although it still involves playing creatures (called Servants) and spells (Conjures) by using mana (which is referred to as Aether in this game), the core gameplay mechanics are very different. Your Aether is generated by cards known as Casters (equivalent to magic stones or lands). Following the trend of Magic: The Gathering these are shuffled into your 50 card deck and must be drawn and played from your hand.  Also like Magic, they can only be placed once per turn. This is where the similarities between Magic and Caster Chronicles end as you are able to play cards from your hand facedown to produce colorless Aether should you not draw enough casters.

Most Casters have a unique ability that can be applied instead of producing Aether, but this is balanced by the fact that you can only control 1 caster of each name, all others have to be placed face down in order to use them as a caster. An exception is Lvl2 casters, which require you to play them on top of an existing caster and usually allow you to banish the Lvl1 version to gain an extra ability.

In order to play a card, you need to be able to produce at least 1 Aether of its color, but the rest of the cost can be paid with Aether of any color. This means it is much harder to play low-cost cards of a different color, while high-cost cards are very simple to play.

Another big difference that sets the game apart is the life mechanic. Each player places 7 cards from the top of their deck into the field face-down as an Orb and when another player attacks them directly they choose an orb to corrupt. When an Orb is corrupted you add it to your hand, but if it has the {Break} keyword you can play it immediately at instant speed. I like this a lot, as it is very similar to the rune mechanic from my favorite digital card game Elder Scrolls Legends (Kaijudo fans will also recognize this).

Having the Orb mechanic allows a player who is getting hit very early to have a way to fight back, as not only do you draw the card they corrupt, you have a chance of getting a very powerful ability or servant that your opponent will have trouble dealing with.

The Orb mechanic is a very important gameplay component and fits very well with the system of combat. Like most games, Attack and Defense are both extremely important. Unlike most other games, when a servant is put into play it can attack immediately, with the exception of the first turn. A servant can either attack another servant or make an attack on an Orb, corrupting it. If a Servant is reversed (upside down), the attacking player is not able to corrupt an Orb unless it is removed from the field or its position is changed. The only time the servant defending an attack is destroyed is when the attacker has more attack then they do. If you attack a reversed creature, you compare the defender’s defense to your attack instead. Finally, if you attack a player and there is no Orb to corrupt, you win the game.

Caster Chronicles is a very interesting game that combines powerful mechanics from other games with a unique and polished twist. I look forward to seeing the game grow and expand and will continue to experiment with deck ideas and card interactions to see what these cards can do.

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Dylan is an avid fan of Force of Will. Since the game’s debut in North America where he and his friends ordered a case of product from the US, he has been attending as many events as possible.

When not playing Force of Will (or several other card games), he enjoys playing video games and working on web content. He also co-owns a local game store.

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