If you’re going to throw me a multiverse game in 2022 where heroes from different worlds are played together on some kind of battlefield, then one of those heroes better be a sentient car. This is my new line in the sand: I’ve had enough of mages and commands. Give me Benny Roger Rabbit’s foul-mouthed cab if you want me to pay attention.
This new philosophy worked for me with Spellcraft, a new strategy game from a small studio founded by longtime Blizzard programmer (and ArenaNet co-founder) Patrick Wyatt: 30 seconds into the trailer I saw a car with giant keys in its hands and immediately wanted to know more.
Despite today’s announcement, the developers of Spellcraft are keeping the details of their new game under wraps for now. What I do know is that it’s an amalgamation of trendy strategy games in recent years. It’s not entirely Hearthstone or Teamfight Tactics, but expect card game and autobattler elements to be there. It’s a 1v1 PvP game for now, and it will be free to play (but not pay-to-win or involved in any NFT nonsense, the developers emphasized). The small bases under each character suggest a hero aesthetic like tabletop figurines.
I hope the presence of a sentient car indicates that there is more creativity here than the name “Spellcraft” suggests, because sound as one in a long line of Hearthstone knockoffs. Wyatt and studio co-founder Jamie Winsor have worked on a number of RPGs and strategy games between them, including Warcraft and StarCraft (hence the name), Diablo, League of Legends, and Guild Wars 2. A small team began work on Spellcraft in 2020, and has been in regular small-scale player testing since the beginning. With today’s announcement, the developers of One More Game are gearing up to let more people play Spellcraft.
Enrollment starts today for an alpha “preview event” starting May 3, which will still be under wraps: don’t expect streamers to show you how Spellcraft works just yet. Expect that to happen sometime this year alongside the full release.