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Check Out PoxNora 88

There's been some good previews of Pox Nora, as well as an interview with the development team. I've been playing PoxNora a bit recently, and have greatly enjoyed. The description most people have given is part collectable card game, part RPG, and part strategy game -- and roll them all together. The game itself is available for both PC and Mac with the main focus being the collection of runes to summon your champions on the battlefield. I also like that the entry level is free, whereas adding more runes in, trading with others and such is basically a la carte service. At launch, the online store will have nearly 200 Runes. Starter packs ($8.49) include 30 random Runes and boosters ($2.99) contain 10 random Runes. Players can play PoxNora with pre-constructed starter decks for free. There some more information that I've pasted below, but I'd be interested to hear about other folks playing -- or you haven't, try out and lemme know what you think. Plus, the notion of crushing my friends via online cards a la MTG is one that brings a smile to my face.

A better break down of the basic information:

In PoxNora, players collect Runes that allow them to summon champions, equipment, relics and spells to the battlefield. The game is played out across a variety of maps where champions do battle to collect Nora, a vital resource used to summon additional Runes into play. The construction of your battlegroup and careful use of powers and attacks are vital to success. Runes also gain experience during play that can be used to upgrade or learn new attributes and abilities, meaning that as your play style evolves, so do your Runes.

Runes gain experience during play that can be used to upgrade or learn new attributes and abilities, meaning that as your play style evolves, so do your Runes. PoxNora also allows players to compete against bots if they want to play alone so they can experiment tactically in a more controlled environment.

At launch, the online store will have nearly 200 Runes. Starter packs ($8.49) include 30 random Runes and boosters ($2.99) contain 10 random Runes. Players can play PoxNora with pre-constructed starter decks for free.

An expansion will be released in late October with an additional 70 Runes and many other abilities.

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Check Out PoxNora

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  • by eldavojohn ( 898314 ) * <eldavojohn&gmail,com> on Friday October 13, 2006 @10:07AM (#16423559) Journal
    Starter packs ($8.49) include 30 random Runes and boosters ($2.99) contain 10 random Runes.
    There's also the option of buying 100 runes for $25 which breaks the price down to a quarter per rune.

    Something that I wish they would have done is send me the cards. Yeah, I know it sounds nerdy but I still enjoy the physical ownership that comes with card games. I like putting cards in binders and looking at them--and I really don't know why. I like to appreciate the art of Magic The Gathering and used to enjoy reading the lore of the now discontinued Star Wars Collectable Card Game (Decipher).

    It is neat that this is kind of treating an online game as having 'starter decks' and 'booster packs' but where's the physical cards? I think it would be neat if they sold physical packs of cards in stores with UIDs on them that you could register and play with. They could cost 10 cents more per rune and I'd still be more likely to buy them. I could have a sentimental attachment to these while the graphics & gameplay might change online with the evolution of the game. It would also be nice if there was also a non-digital game to play with the same cards--call me old fashion.

    This game looks very neat and I plan on giving it a try. I like the history view of users on the forums so you can see the stats on the recent games they've played. Their forums look active [poxnora.com] which is always a good sign.
    • by Rycross ( 836649 )
      Reminds me of an arcade game I saw in Japan. You could buy physical cards from vending machines and place them in a loader on the arcade machine. It would scan them in and let you play using your own deck.

      The actual game played sorta like a board game and collectable card game hybrid. The rules were pretty hard to figure out thanks to all the kanji.
      • They have these at GameWorks here in Michigan, my kids got hooked on them for a few hours. It basically boiled down to Rock Paper Scissors, with the cards allowing some kind of modifier to the "move" you did.

        Jonah HEX
  • Bribing the judge (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 13, 2006 @10:10AM (#16423593)
    What I've always hated about these types of games, is that the central idea is that you win by paying more money to the 'judge' in the game. Sure, there's skill and tactics involved, but these games are designed to get people to plunk out ever more money for better cards/runes than the people who have spent less money have. I can only think this is a fairly uniquely American idea of what makes a good game. Life isn't fair, but I expect games to be, more or less.

    Count me out.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      I can only think this is a fairly uniquely American idea of what makes a good game.
      Yeah, because Pokemon, YuGiOh, Hanafuda, Shichi Narabe, and the 978 others with asian sounding names were started here in the US.
    • I find this is a major problem too. My brother would try to get me interested in Magic, but I never liked it because he gave me the cards that were left over after he created his deck. Needless to say, he always won. I also find these games hard to start out with because you have to spend so much time trying to remember what all the cards do. If they guy you're playing agains has 10 cards layed out, you can't just take a quick glance and figure out your current situation. With a game like chess, you ca
      • I also find these games hard to start out with because you have to spend so much time trying to remember what all the cards do. If they guy you're playing agains has 10 cards layed out, you can't just take a quick glance and figure out your current situation. With a game like chess, you can at least tell if you're in big trouble by taking a quick look at the board.

        I'll admit that it might take a bit longer to pick up on the basic rules compared to chess, but both MtG and chess are still games that are c

        • In fact, I'd say that MtG is a bit easier than chess. You get to read the card if you don't know what it does!

          Sticking a note on the bottom of the bishop that says "moves on open diagonals" wouldn't help my chess game much.

          • TAP: Pawn moves one square forward. (Forward is the direction away from you, toward your opponent.)
            • Shouldn't that be:

              -----
              Put one Counter onto Pawn when it comes into play. Pawn may only have a maximum of one Counter at any time.
              TAP: Pawn moves one square forward. Remove Counter from Pawn if one is present. If Counter has been removed while tapping this way, Pawn may move an additional square forward.

              TAP: Pawn moves one square forward and one square to either the right or left, if enemy is present there. Enemy is automatically removed. Remove Counter from Pawn if one is present.
              (Forward is the d

              • by Alsee ( 515537 )
                Shouldn't that be:

                Chuckle, nope. I have a few minor quibbles with the languange, but more importantly you completely missed two critical pawn rules.

                -----
                This creature comes into play with one surge counter.

                If at the end of any turn there is no square in front of Pawn, Pawn's owner must select a non-King creature peice from outside of the game and exchange it with Pawn.

                TAP: Pawn moves to target square. This ability may only target an unoccupied square located one square forwards of Pawn. Remove all surge cou
                • Does that handle en passant?
                  • by Alsee ( 515537 )
                    Yep, that is exactly what prompted my reply. At the last minute I also realized to add the pawn promotion rule for hitting the back rank :)

                    I had a bitch of a time coming up with any workable way to handle en passant. Any attempt to do it in a 'direct' manner similar to the other move types was completely unworkable because En passant deals with two different peices at two different points in time. I had just about given up on finding any usable solution at all, until I finally struck upon the MtG game mecha
                    • I figured it must, but honestly, having never seen a MtG card, and not knowing the terminology, I got lost in the details. And having held in my younger days a master's rating, it was rather annoying to not be sure :-)
                    • En passant deals with two different peices at two different points in time. I had just about given up on finding any usable solution at all, until I finally struck upon the MtG game mechanic where one card temporarily adds text to another card.

                      I see it now. Very clever. Part of what threw me is that part of it renders as grayed out text with a vertical bar, and I guess my brain gave less importance to.

      • then a representation of ANY card in existence would be acceptable. Instead you have to be lucky enough and rich enough to 'get' the good cards to make a competitive deck. I have the same objection to 40K, why must I pay for the miniature, a representation cut from cardboard could easily make a suitable army based on points and strategy, not $'s
    • Magic the Gathering never intended to have such a problem, but people realized they could take cards and sell them to other people at game shops and conventions. Then Ebay exasperated the problem...

      I'm more of a Yugi-Oh fan myself *coughs* and I suppose the same thing applies but I play mostly online.

      However, that said... Even with the "Uber" cards, you can't simply win with them...

      With Yugi-Oh, I tend to win with just using one draw monsters with about 1000-1900 HP attack (you can't draw any higher than th
      • First, the word you're looking for is not "exasperated," it's exacerbate. Second, eBay had nothing what-so-ever to do with the "problem." The price of the "Power Nine" has betty pretty constant since ~'97. Third, yeah, your opponents are bastards for coming up with legitimate strategies that force you to adapt instead of just handing the victory over to you. Quit being a baby.

        Same goes for grandparent. Quit being a baby. The people that can't win unless they pay out a lot of dough have no understandin
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      > What I've always hated about these types of games, is that the central idea is that you win by paying more money to the 'judge' in the game.

      If you work it right, you can end up making money. I don't mean endless bot farming. Buy your stuff, play your game, have fun. When you get bored, sell it all off on eBay, and move on with your life. So the real question is, do they allow buying and selling of goods for real money, or is there a clause in the agreement saying they will delete you if you try to
  • by Weaselmancer ( 533834 ) on Friday October 13, 2006 @10:13AM (#16423635)

    Virtual cardboard crack.

  • I'm glad that the US is getting more games like this. In Korea, nearly all multiplayer games are free, and the way the gaming companies (Nexon, NCSoft, NetMarble) get revenue is through selling enhancements for the game. The game itself is free, so anyone can download the client and play.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by NineNine ( 235196 )
      I play ogame.org. Another great (and very big) free multiplayer game whose only upgrade is a $3/month upgrade. This game being reviewed sounds like it'll nickel and dime you to death. Blech.
  • oh well, I guess I could still try it and if I don't get it, then at least I know the inoculation worked.

  • by El Gigante de Justic ( 994299 ) on Friday October 13, 2006 @10:15AM (#16423669)
    I've been playing it off and on for the last couple of weeks, and I agree it's pretty good. Like most collectable card games, there are certain runes which can become a bit unbalancing or just seem a little too powerful, but overall its fairly well balanced. There's a decent mix of strategy and luck invovled. And unlike most collectable games, investing more time into the game probably reaps better results than spending more money.
            The biggest difficulty is getting your Champion runes built up. You typically only get a decent amount of rune points if you win the match, and if you end up in a game with someone who already has theirs built up (especially players that were in the beta), you will have a tough time getting anywhere. There is a bit of a trade off to built up units, as they cost more to bring into play, but you can barely even get an attack in with your low cost/low level units, it's not going to matter much.

          I think what will help the game most is if they get enough players in the game, and then they can split up game lobbies in a way that maybe you can't use a battlegroup with any Champions over level X in for games in a given room. This will make it easier for new players, or players with new units, to get them built up. The new practice feature they're putting in will be nice too, especially if they let you gain any experience that way (at least to level 2, I hope).

  • Um... (Score:2, Funny)

    by reed ( 19777 )
    So it's a collectible card game but they don't have to print and ship any actual cards, just reap in the profits. Brilliant!
  • by krell ( 896769 ) on Friday October 13, 2006 @10:18AM (#16423729) Journal
    Sounds great, aside from the name that would make it sound like a version of Noxzema but for smallpox scars.
  • So, basically you can start with a crappy version for free, but if you get hooked you end up spending up the wazoo for "collectibles?" Someone must be giddy right now that they pulled off the free slashvertisement.

    There are only two groups who fall for this sort of scam: kids (think Pokemon) and geeks.
    • Re:Nice (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Red Flayer ( 890720 ) on Friday October 13, 2006 @10:40AM (#16424033) Journal
      I know, I know, don't feed the troll. But:
      There are only two groups who fall for this sort of scam: kids (think Pokemon) and geeks.
      This is slashdot. I don't understand your objection to geek-centered material, and I don't understand why you think it is a scam. People are willing to pay for things that have value to them; so what if that value is constructed by the company selling the product? By your reasoning, any game at all is a scam.

      Also, you don't think loss-leading teaser + profitable extras happens outside of geekdom? Maybe you need to rethink the business models of Gevalia Coffee, for example, or Columbia House & BMG prior to the mp3 revolution. How about collectible series, like the figurines you see in Hallmark stores, or the Christmas Village models that pop up every fall?

      Someone must be giddy right now that they pulled off the free slashvertisement.
      Sometimes I get annoyed by what seem to be slashvertisements. But then I think to myself, "Self, is it possible that this article is something that might be of interest to some subset of the slashdot community, people who might be happy it was brought to their attention?" And you know what? Most of the time, the answer is yes, so I quit my grumbling and move on to another article that I'm more interested in.
      • I wasn't trolling, believe it or not. This game strikes me as basically a money factory. Rather than offering a game to buy, they try to create a culture in which people will keep buying add-ons over and over again. The focus seems to be on creating hype and desire, rather than crafting a quality game.

        I didn't say I object to geek-centered material here. I was just pointing out that geeks are very susceptible to seeing something as being collectible, and then spending irrational quantities of money to have
        • To modify the GPs coffee analogy so it fits better, substitute Senseo or Flavia coffee "systems" for the Gevalia coffee of the month club. There is no reason other than "creating hype and desire" for someone to do that to coffee. Fleecing the trendy, or just those who think they are, is a time honored tradition in marketing and retail.

          p.s. Since I was mentioning coffee, here's a gratuitous link to my second favorite UF... http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20060925 [userfriendly.org]
        • they try to create a culture in which people will keep buying add-ons over and over again. The focus seems to be on creating hype and desire, rather than crafting a quality game.

          It's just a different business model, independent of quality. Poor quality will kill them in the long run whether they have a "buy extras" model or a "buy it once" model. I personally won't play subscription-based games for the same reason (WoW, I'm looking at you!) you object to this model; but at the same time, I understand the

        • Ah, don't forget all of those MMORPGs. You don't even get those for free. You pay an up-front cost for the software, and then a maintenance fee every month, plus, as new features are added to the game, you get to buy upgrades.

          You can't play WoW or EQ or most other MMORPGs off-line, so refusing to pay the monthly fee nets you... a useless piece of software, good only as a coaster. Sounds like somebody is raking in the money...

  • by IsoRashi ( 556454 ) on Friday October 13, 2006 @10:21AM (#16423781)
    Runes also gain experience during play that can be used to upgrade or learn new attributes and abilities, meaning that as your play style evolves, so do your Runes.

    Runes gain experience during play that can be used to upgrade or learn new attributes and abilities, meaning that as your play style evolves, so do your Runes.


    Now we can get dupes in the summaries!
  • without the printing costs.
  • by MMC Monster ( 602931 ) on Friday October 13, 2006 @10:30AM (#16423905)
    Okay. WHY should I "check out" this game verses any other game? Is there something in it that attracts the geek crowd? Is there anything that differentiates it from the many other games that come out ever week?

    Is it open source, or use an interesting development platform or the first game actually release for a PS3 or Wii?

    Should the /. crowd just be checking out every game that comes out?
    • by @madeus ( 24818 )
      Is there something in it that attracts the geek crowd?

      I'd say yeah - being interested in Magic The Gathering style card games is usually regarded as pretty geeky.

      This appears to be the same thing but with virtual cards, which means it's not even necessary to leave the house to go the store to buy actual cards and - as a bonus - removes the need to invite other people over (thus keeping your Doritos and M&M's from being snaffled).
      • I guess the GP's point was that this game isn't a particularly amazing type of new video game. MtG can be played online, using cards purchased in "booster packs" and "starter packs", at (I believe) similar prices. Astral Tournament was around long enough to have a sequel published, Astral Masters. Etherlords has also had a sequel published, Etherlords II. So, why this particular game, aside from the possibility that it was just released?

        What's special and different from the other similar online trading
        • I had a quick look at the Astral [astralmasters.com] and Etherlords [etherlords.com] site's - not having heard of them before, though I had also heard of other multiplayer card games - it just seems with them you purchase the game out right as with every other card based video game I've ever seen, and not the individual cards, which seems to be the USP here.

          That's a very different game mechanic.
          • My mistake, I meant Worlds Apart's [worlds-apart.com] stable of online trading card games. Lots of them, though I've not gotten into any of them at all.

            Magic Online is probably the closest to the "free to dl game client, charges to get new cards" model though.

            Astral and Etherlords claim to use the "trading card game" play model somehow, but as you noted, not actually sell extra cards.
  • Seems to much like my marriage to me
  • Meta ironies (Score:1, Offtopic)

    by nenya ( 557317 )
    I just noticed this, but does anyone else think it's a little ironic for a site like Slashdot to use what appears to be a Microsoft controller [amazon.com] as the icon for the Games section?
    • That's the icon for the PC Games section. The main Games section comes under an Atari stick.
  • "The notion of crushing my friends via online cards a la MTG is one that brings a smile to my face."

    Then, er, play Magic Online [wizards.com]!
  • so the more you pay, the more powerful you are.

    it's like magic: the gathering, without the real cards.
    it's like World of Warcraft where buying gold is *part of the game*
    it's like second life, err, with runes instead of Sim-style crack.

    Who gets off on these sorts of games where you can buy your success? Where how good you are is measured in how much cash you're will to spend proving it. And all it proves you have income to burn on it.

    I could see something like this being fun if you could only gain cards by
    • Who gets off on these sorts of games where you can buy your success?
      Maybe the people who measure their success against their goals, not against others?

      Maybe the people who aren't obsessed with winning all the time?

      I play games for lots of reasons, and of course I like winning -- but I enjoy a challenge even more.
    • by Sodade ( 650466 )
      Have you actually played the game? (I haven't either - yet) I would highly doubt that their business model is simply focused on having players buy +5 swords of vorpal disembowelment so that they can esily triumph against the poor newb with a +1 dagger of dweebishness. I would guess (100% speculation here) that having a competitive "character" requires you to spend some cash and that having a versatile "character" requires spending more and having a "win 1000 ways character" requires even more cash outlay.
  • by rk ( 6314 ) * on Friday October 13, 2006 @10:49AM (#16424179) Journal

    for those who find the level of social interaction in cardboard trading games too taxing.

  • I wonder how much PxN stock Hemos is holding?
  • I've been playing and enjoying PoxNora for a while now. I recommend it, especially to people who don't have the time or will to invest hours for a gaming session. It's easy to sit down, find an opponent, and play a game lasting 15 to 30 minutes and be done with it.

    I've also set up a site with a database of all of the current runes:

    http://pox.lot42.com/ [lot42.com]

    All of the information is available on the main game site, but here it's organized a bit better (though a bit uglier, too.) :)
    • by UnknownQ ( 84898 )
      And then there's the people who don't have more then 15 minutes at a time to play, but all the time in the world to set up databases and such.
  • If anyone has ever played a game called Guild Wars [guildwars.com], it's like the MMORPG equivelant of this. There are soon to be over 1000 skills that can be used (after the October 28th release of the latest update), and the game has so many similarities to Magic the Gathering that they can't be ignored.

    Basically, each player can have up to 8 skills in use at a time. You have to pick the skills carefully before battle, and it's important to pick skills that synergize with each other. You form a group of up to 8 player
  • Anyone who participated in the beta test got a special unit, the Pox Harbinger, this unit just totally dominates and imbalances the game. There are enough of them out there, and levelled up enough, to dominate anyone who doesnt have them.

    Wish I could get my money back.
  • Apple has announced iPogs, virtual trading collectables available in a new section of iTunes store.
  • Pros:
    - It's pretty quick, about 20-30min per game
    - Gameplay is fun
    - Art is great
    - $25 buys all the cards you need to be competitive and have fun
    - Good community, helpful mods
    - Try before you buy with 8 free decks (with good cards, tho not upgraded)
    - Nice trading system

    Cons:
    - Game is server-hosted, so server bugs cause outages.
    - In general, while the game is now very stable, it has occasional bugs
    - Balance issues are still being sorted out (Octopi is doing a good job of this, IMHO, but it's never-ending)
    - Fi
  • This game sounds pretty neat, but one thing I don't like is that your only source for new "cards" are by buying them or trading.

    This basically means you can buy your way to the top if you wanted to.

    It would be great if they had play modes where you won new cards (of all rarities) from winning a match, or were able to win cards from another person if you win the match.

    That would make it a lot more fun and rewarding for the player. But I guess that doesn't make a lot of money for the company :/
  • Sounds a little like pokemon to me.
  • Here is a link to some video of the game in action...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0tTf6xMV2ds [youtube.com]

  • Star Chamber [starchamber.net] is a good alternative for those who are interested in such games. It's a board game with collectible cards to affect units in play and add new ones. Has the feel of what would happen if Magic and Master of Orion had a child.

    You can buy "starters" and "boosters" to build decks and collections, and "event passes" that you use to play in tournaments, for those inclined to do so. The cards seem pretty well balanced, and the community is willing to help newbies. You can buy cards as one-offs, or
  • How is this different from Culdcept [wikipedia.org], the PS2/Saturn game?

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