Top 10 Games Like Hearthstone (Games Better Than Hearthstone In Their Own Unique Way)

games like hearthstone
What are the best games like Hearthstone?

Games Like Hearthstone That Are Uniquely Better In Their Own Way

If you grew up catching opponents furry (and sometimes flaming) companions while slinging Pokémon cards, or casting ancient and grand spells while dueling it out playing Magic: The Gathering, there’s a strong possibility you grew up to become a gamer. And if you’re the gamer who enjoyed the collectable card games (CCG) of your youth, there are even stronger chance you’ve played a game or two (or four thousand) of Hearthstone.

Hearthstone showed us all that the digital platform is a blank canvas for the CCG world. It also led the way for some competitors to follow suit and make their own mark on the digital CCG world.

Below we discuss the top 10 games that are like Hearthstone. And more specifically, how they each have a leg up on this long-standing giant.

10. Gwent: The Witcher Card Game

Gwent Gameplay

Ever play a video game, that is just a game from another game? Did that sentence hurt your brain? Good, it was meant to. Gwent: The Witcher Card Game has a leg up on its competitors, and that is its unique origins. Gwent first appeared as the card game your character, Geralt, could play in the famous game franchise The Witcher.

In Gwent: The Witcher Card Game, players battle for “power”, which is how the game is won (or lost). Players battle with decks of twenty-five to forty cards and try to win two of three rounds. The player with the higher point total at the end of each round will win that round. And claim the power.

Gwent: The Witcher Card Game offers six different factions for players to choose from. Neutral, Monsters, Niflgaard, Northern Realms, Scoia’tael, and Skellige. Each faction has a “leader”, which acts as a unique gold card that can be played during each match. Also unique to Gwent: The Witcher Card Game, is the lack of a mana system. Players may play one card per turn and must use different sections of the board to build their army in the proper way. Card advantage is what will win you this game.

Players battle for the in-game points, known as “Power” in Gwent: The Witcher Card Game

Always Keep Your Gwent Deck on You!

9. Elder Scrolls: Legends

Elder Scrolls: Legends Gameplay

Set in the dark and mystical world of the Elder Scrolls, Elder Scrolls: Legends allows players to battle it out with creatures, characters, and lore from the series itself. Payers play the campaign portion as “The Forgotten Hero”, and battle a High Elf named Naarifin, and attempt to fulfill an Elder Scrolls prophecy. Known as “The Culling”. This campaign will have you sure you’re locked inside the Elder Scrolls universe and is uniquely deep for a CCG story mode.

Elder Scrolls: Legends utilizes a feature during game play knows as “Lanes”. These Lanes allow players to build up their board in two different sides and adds an extra element of strategy and board control. A perfect time to don your wizard hat and ponder your moves carefully (while stroking your mustache of course).

Unique to this game is the rune concept with health You’ll have five runs at your side, each resembling 5 health. When your runes are destroyed, you get to draw a card. Another unique element this game brings to the table that allows some new thought processes and strategy in the CCG world.

Players battle for “Lane Control” in Elder Scrolls: Legends

Clean and Sharp Interfaces and Menus are a Nice Addition to this already Polished Game

8. Pokémon TCG Online

Pokémon TCG Online Gameplay

Gotta Catch ‘Em All! At least that’s what developer Dire Wolf Digital is hoping is the case with Pokémon TCG Online. The classic childhood TCG became a worldwide recognized brand. TV shows, memorabilia, clothing. Don’t lie to yourself, you can name at least five Pokémon without even thinking about it.

Pokémon TCG Online provides you with a gateway to the past, in the form of digital Pokémon card battles. Masterfully recreated, this digital roll out of a classic has the look and feel long time fans of the franchise will prawn over. Your players mat, the training gyms, and even the coins. They all look like they popped out of your 1995 flat screen and onto your computer screen.

You’ll have your choice of play modes when you log in; tournament, theme mode, trainer challenge, and versus. Tournament is the one worth pointing out the most here, as it s the one lacking in most other competitors for this game. You’ll throw your Pokéballs out against your opponents and earn packs for victories, in a single style elimination format. Win at least one match and you’ll guarantee yourself a pack.

Gotta Catch ‘EM All! Including your opponent’s Pokémon in this digital throwback to a classic

Card Design is Out of This World

7. Eternal

Eternal Gameplay

Puzzles, guns, and a weird western fantasy setting? I’ll wait while you go download Eternal, I get it. Ok, now that we’re done with that we can talk about this unique and astounding game.

King Caiphus has disappeared and the battle for the Eternal Throne (Eternal…now you see where the name comes from), is on. You’ll choose to play as one of five “Scions”, powerful beings who have the power to take the throne and pursue their own power driven political aspirations and agendas. Beyond these Scions, there are also five factions you’ll encounter as well as you wade your way through this dark western fantasy world.

Puzzles give this game its over the top push, as they are incorporated incredibly into the story mode. You’ll battle through these puzzles, which are presented to you as in game challenges. Complete these puzzles to earn gold which can be used for in game microtransactions.

Most importantly, Eternal is ranked amongst the top free to play CCG’s out there. There is a low barrier to entry, and it’s been shown there is no need to make in game purchases, evenif you’re looking to play the top decks

.

Powerful abilities will help you lead your Scion to ascension upon the Eternal Throne in Eternal

Not a Bad Looking Group of NPC’s

6. Humankind: The Awakening

Humankind: The Awakening Gameplay

Too many dragons, wizards, and vicious Japanese creatures that fly out of red and white balls in the previous games? Well then, how about an epic battle between multiple factions for the future of humanity? Humankind: The Awakening is a reboot of a classic Chilean TCG, and it’s one that should grab your attention if you’re tired of elves and fireballs.

Humankind: The Awakening has impressive gameplay, both visually and mechanically. There are six phases in a turn, and they are as unique as the setting of the game. In order, they are Communion, Meditation, Volition Harvest, Duel, Combat, and Contemplation. There are also passive actions the players can take when they are not the active player (think of an “Instant” in Magic: The Gathering)

This game brings a unique force to the digital CCG world. Unique gameplay and mechanics, deep and original story, and game elements that make the game fun to play and easy to learn. Aside from this, the developers appreciate the player base and there is a strong tournament scene as well. For a lot of hardened CCG players, that’s the only bit of news they need to hear.

Prepare to fight not just your opponent, but for all of humanity. And no elves!

Clean and Futuristic Themes Here

5. Shadowverse

Shadowverse Gameplay

When a game goes big in Japan, it really goes big. Initially released in June of 2016, Shadowverse became the number one mobile collectible card game in Japan by July. Set in an anime style with unique and beautiful artwork, Shadowverse bears the most resemblance to Hearthstone than any game in our list today.

Gameplay follows a standard two player turn based format. Utilizing a mana base knows as “play-points”, players build up their board much in the same way they would for another creature and board-based CCG’s. There is also the “Evolve” mechanic, which allows players to spend these Evolve points and grant bonuses in stats to previously played cards.

Players use one of eight “Crafts”, which are essentially player classes. Three types of cards, Followers, Spells, and Amulets create your deck. You can Evolve after turn 5. This will open you up to expanded abilities, cards, and when played properly is often the deciding factor in swinging a match in your favor. And slicing our opponent to (digital) ribbons.

Preparing to Evolve against an opponent, supporting a rival “Craft”

Vying For Board Control Here

4. Magic Duels

Magic Duels Gameplay

The King Kong of the CCG. Magic: The Gathering has a tremendous player base and fan support. Taking place in a fictional magical world where planes travel is the norm, Magic: The Gathering is the quintessential CCG. Spells, minions, and enchantments. It’s a fairy and elves story, in card format.

Gameplay follows a simple on the surface yet complex the deeper in you get flow. You’ll exchange turns with your opponent, sling some spells, summon some dudes. Pretty basic. There is an added layer however once you start messing with Instants and Combo decks. Magic: The Gathering is like an onion with many layers.

The digital version of this main stay holds true and has a strong hold in the CCG world. Purists and newbies alike will be drawn in by the smooth graphics, deep and fleshed out story mode, and fantastic game play and mechanics. Magic: The Gathering has held strong as a staple for decades now, and Magic Duels does a splendid job of bringing it into the digital world.

The Classic. The Steak and Potatoes of CCG’s. Spell slinging at its finest

Card Info At a Glance – Super Handy

3. Duelyst

Duelyst Gameplay

We’ve hit our first hybrid on the list folks. Duelyst combines elements of turn based strategy games with traditional collectible card games. Duelyst has a great style and will make you think back to your original Mario days with its pixel themed artwork and design.

Easily the most unique feature you’ll come across is the hex board and the animations your monsters and heroes perform while living out the cards you cast. Your goal is a simple one: kill the enemy general. This is done using position minions and casting spells. All of this will be visually represented by the characters on screen.

There are six factions to choose from in Duelyst, and each holds its own characteristic that effect deck building and game play. You’ll also get to gnash your teeth against the AI in a complex and well developed ‘puzzle mode’, as well as satisfy the competitive gamer within (we all know he’s there) by competing in a ranked season style play mode.

If you’re craving visuals with your card games, this is the one for you.

Aiming at the enemy general for the kill. Get him dead, win the game

Characters Playing out Card Commands

2. SolForge

SolForge Gameplay

Magic: The Gathering pro tour hall of famer Brian Kibler and Magic: The Gathering’s designer Richard Garfield were brought in to consult on the creation of SolForge. It pulls strongly from the CCG giant, but still manages to add its own fair and element into the collectible card game world. SolForge collected almost $.5M during Kickstarter funding.

In SolForge you’ll plan a one on one match against your opponent, with the aim to deplete his health from 120 points to 0. The PC client for the game is fan-run right now, but this community remains active. There are Android and iOS versions of the game that run through the original client and still see a strong player base.

There are five lanes players can summon their cards into. We’ve seen some games with multiple lanes, but never one with five. Additionally, remaining copies of cards are upgraded as you play other copies from your deck. Beyond that it is a typical board control and card advantage race, with a few distinct elements added in.

The 'Forge' in SolForge

Unique Art and Clear to Read Cards

1. Ascension

Ascension Gameplay

The most unique of the games on our list today. Ascension is a deck building card game, not a collectible card game. You’re not amassing a collection and crafting together the best card concoction to obliterate your enemies. You will be obliterating said enemies while making a deck right along side them.

In Ascension, players begin with the same 10 basic cards in their deck. Then a master deck is placed in the center of the board. Cards will then be flipped into the center row from this master deck, and either defeated or purchased by either player. Defeated monsters go into the banished pile, and purchased cards are used in your deck.

This game has a leg up over its competitors for one major reason; no card collection and no deck building. You simply download the game and begin playing. Don’t assume this means there is minimal skill involved. Because the case is quite the opposite. The challenge of building your deck as the game progresses, all while keeping an eye on what your opponent is doing, is a unique challenge that no other card game on the market will give you.

Battling the opponent, build a deck? It all happens at once in Ascension

Defeat This Guy, and the Game is Pretty Much Yours

The Final Thought

Play card games. Play any of these games. Play all these games. Just go play card games folks.

It is a genre of game that is flying under the radar yet has so much to gain from the digital innovations our day and age provide us.

I remember as a kid, the first time I got into a collectible card game. It was Magic: The Gathering. I went and bought a starter pack, and five booster packs. I had the cards spread on my table, I had my deck built and tweaked….and no one to play with. I had to wait until my parents were able to bring me to a local game store, and hope someone else was there who played.

Nowadays? Well, I’m going to finish writing up this article, then log into one of the games I have listed above. Which one I choose, is my secret.

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With his Norse decedents to guide his hands, Brian writes with the wrath of Odin, the wit of Loki, and the care free spirit that having way too many lives in Mario gives you. Oh, and his beard is red
Gamer Since: 1990
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Skyrim (Again!)
Top 3 Favorite Games:Mass Effect, Civilization IV, Sid Meier's Civilization V
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