I had never heard about Elements before today — it’s a free Flash game you can play online, which I understand plays like most customizable card games, notably Magic: the Gathering. I saw the game mentioned over at Kill Ten Rats and I had to investigate until I eventually dug up this article. (I wanted to link to their article rather than write my own because I haven’t actually played the game.)

Poking around the wiki for Elements, I was drawn to Entropy, Aether, and not surprisingly, Death, because the latter normally falls under my interests, and the former two make similar appearances in Norvendae. Well, that’s what I thought, anyway. Without really delving into the game, I can’t say I’m impressed.

The card lists are short, the art isn’t really anything to write home about, and if the numerous articles on Kill Ten Rats about how it sucks to be a slave to the Random Number God say anything about the game … it can’t be much better than Magic. I mean, if it isn’t simply worse for lacking art and gameplay. *shrug*

If quanta really do work like Basic Lands and mana, then Elements will have the exact same problems that Magic does — only there are far more elements and “quanta” than there are colors of mana in Magic: the Gathering. Actually, thinking about how the game might copy an existing mechanic without changing it brought me to an article on the Elder Game blog: “Being Aware of Genre Conventions.”

Still, I’ll leave room to be surprised. It might be fast and simple enough to be fun even with lackluster art and tired luck mechanics. Based solely on what I’ve read about the game, it doesn’t sound terribly complicated, just a free alternative to Magic Online with some reskinning. I haven’t played Magic Online either, but I can accept a comparison.

We’ll see. *shrug* We’ll see.