SMITE’s upcoming card game spin-off looks awfully familiar

Matt Sayer 11 August 2017

hand-of-the-gods

Stone the crows, I’ve seen these cards somewhere before…

Any collectible card game that gets announced these days is bound to draw comparisons to Hearthstone just by virtue of how outrageously-popular Blizzard’s game is. Most of the time the similarities are just part and parcel with the CCG genre, but sometimes you come across a game that veers just a little too far into homage territory.

Such is the case with the card designs of Hi-Rez Studios’ upcoming title Hand of the Gods: SMITE Tactics, a spin-off of the studio’s free-to-play MOBA SMITE. First, take a look at a typical Hearthstone card:

hearthstone-card

And now compare it to Hand of the Gods:

hand-of-the-gods-blademaster

Blue crystal in the top left corner denoting mana cost? Check. Yellow gem skewered by a sword to represent damage and a red jewel for life? Check. A scroll for the card’s name with a tiny gem beneath it? Check, check and check.

To be fair, Hand of the Gods isn’t the first CCG to mirror this card design. The Elder Scrolls Legends follows a similar template, although not quite to the same extent:

elder-scrolls-legends-card

Hand of the Gods and Hearthstone’s deck-builder screens are strikingly similar, too. Here’s Hearthstone’s:

hearthstone-deck-builder

And here’s the deck builder for Hand of the Gods:

hand-of-the-gods

Again, some pretty clear commonalities between the two.

Admittedly, from a gameplay perspective Hand of the Gods looks to be doing a far better job of distinguishing itself from other CCGs. It’s going for a mix of turn-based strategy ala XCOM and standard deck-building mechanics, and it doesn’t look half bad. The latest trailer certainly makes a solid first impression:

If you’re interested in checking out Hand of the Gods: SMITE Tactics for yourself, Hi-Rez is currently running a closed alpha on PS4 and Xbox One. Or, if you’re after something a little more visually-distinct, >The Elder Scrolls Legends recently released for free on iOS and Android.


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