Shadowverse: AweApps Review

A digital collectible card game akin to the likes of Heartstone, Shadowverse differs itself with anime and different mechanics, but is it enough? (Yes it is.)


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Shadowverse: AweApps Review

Welcome to a review of Shadowverse. Let’s get started.


Shadowverse is a digital collectible card game created by Cygames, whom has also made Rage of Bahamut and Grandblue Fantasy. It boasts real time PVP, amazing art, 800+ cards, 7 classes and unique strategies. From my experience, the game fulfills its promise.

I believe this game will appeal to fans of collectible card games (ccgs), and of anime. The game does a LOT right, and we’ll go through them in detail below.

For newbies

This game has a lot of appeal when you go into it. The tutorial, while basic, is well done, with pictures showing the purpose and how to navigate through the game menus.

The first thing players will do is play through the story mode. The game is fully voiced in English and Japanese. The voice acting is professionally done, with little to no cringe from the community. From the very get go, the anime style artwork is professionally done and beautiful. The main characters in the game have animated emoticons. The game map, UI, background, and character portraits are all handled with care and nothing distracts you away from the fantasy experience. Artwork wise, the game is highly polished and is a point of pride for the developers.

There’s no stamina system, and players are free to learn as they go. Shadowverse is very user friendly. The description of each card is displayed on the left of the screen, and if tapped, the terms of the cards are listed.

To keep new players engaged, the story mode gives away a lot of freebies to the players. It’s very common for a player to have 5 legendaries and 10 arena runs before they fight a real opponent. Obtaining at least one competitive meta deck is easily done, and events happen every two weeks that gives all players more packs or arena runs. The amount of free stuff that is given to loyal players is astounding, and I will note it down as a high positive for the game.

System requirements

I use a Redmi note 2 (a rather old phone running android 5.1), and the game runs perfectly fine on my phone. I did not encounter any crashes in my 30 hours of play.

Animations are fluid, and disconnects rarely happen. The game also has a PC version cross play, and the PC client is even better, boasting 60 FPS.


Every turn, players gain one “Play point”. Play point refill at the start of each turn, and is spent to play cards. Each card has a cost, which represents how many Play points will be spent to play the card.

Each player has 20 hp and start with 3 cards that they can redraw. Then, the first player gains 2 evolution points and is able to use them on turn 5. The second player gains an extra card, 3 evolution points and is able to use them on turn 4.

This “evolution point” is a very unique mechanic. Every card in Shadowverse has an evolve point and this point can be used to give your follower +2/+2 and allow them to attack enemy followers on the turn they were played. This mechanic allows the second player to not be beaten easily by ‘rush’ tactics, and some cards have evolution effects that does an additional effect to shift the battlefield. Aside from “evolution”. We have the other standard mechanics. A full list is below, and feel free to skip them.

  • Ward = Enemy followers must attack this follower before any other follower or the hero.
  • Fanfare = Effect that happens when card is played
  • Last Words = Effect that happens when card is killed when in play.
  • Bane = This card kills any follower it damages.
  • Banish = Send a card out of the game without killing or destroying it.
  • Rush = This follower can attack enemy followers on the turn it is played.
  • Storm =  This follower can attack enemy leader on the turn it is played.
  • Evolve = Secondary effect when this card evolves
  • Enhance (X) = This card can be played at a higher cost of (X) to enable the secondary effect.
  • Shadows = Every follower that dies or every spell that is used adds one to the shadow counter
  • Necromancy(X) = Use (X) shadow to enable this effect.
  • Countdown(X) = This card will only exist for (X) turns.

The Classes

In Shadowverse, there are 7 different class, each with their own unique playstyle and special mechanic for them.

  • Forestcraft cards gain secondary effects if two cards were played before the card is played.
  • Swordcraft cards feature theming between officers and commanders, with one card interacting with the other for benefits.
  • Runecraft cards has Spellboost: A effect that reduces the cost of spells when other spells are played.
  • Dragoncraft is the only class that can gain additional “Play point” on their turns. They then prefer to play high cost minions.
  • Shadowcraft uses the shadows and necromancy mechanic the most, using secondary effect effectively to win.
  • Bloodcraft cards are more powerful when your hero is at half health or less. Cards in blood often damage yourself but are stronger than other cards.
  • Heavencraft cards mostly rely on ‘artifacts’. Cards that have countdowns to them before summoning a follower.
  • Neutral cards can be used by any class, but are often weaker than their class specific counterparts. Their main purpose is to pad out the weakness or strengths of your deck.

The 7 classes in the game offers widely different playstyles, and each has a fair chance of winning against the other. The game is diverse enough that even the Meta consists of at least 5 different decks at a time.

While there are some cards with RNG, compared to Heartstone, the RNG is much, much less. Very, very rarely are games decided with the effects of cards with RNG. (Top drawing on the other hand…)

Shop/Cash system

Surprisingly, Shadowverse doesn’t bother you at all about paying to buy anything. A free user can freely grind to get to Masters. There aren’t even any adds that ask players to pay.

However, alternate art cosmetics, and alternate Hero skins are only purchasable by “Crystals”, which is Shadowverse’s real life currency.

The currency system in Shadowverse is very fair, and you will never have any “leftover” crystals after buying anything. There’s even a daily purchase discount bonus for packs.

Apart from cosmetics and packs, players may also buy prebuilt decks, which helps newbies jump into the game easier.

This game also features the common dissemble/assemble craft system that allows players to craft any card in the game. Unlike Heartstone, Shadowverse has less meaningless cards, and it is easy to construct a meta deck with the system.

The daily system rewards gold, and it takes approximately 1 week to earn enough gold to buy 10 packs, an easily achievable feat.

Opening packs in Shadowverse is a joy, and it is hard to describe in words. Check out the video below instead.



Solid 9/10

With excellent story, freebies, voice acting, graphics, bugless, dailies and backgrounds, there is very little wrong with Shadowverse to nickpick about.

While Cygames has released some broken cards, they take an active approach to community, and their promise of monthly nerf/patches has been upheld to this day. The upcoming expansion, “Starforged Legends” has already revealed a counter to one of the meta decks being played.

If you have an interest in ccgs, now is a great time to hop into Shadowversee and share in the freebies that will be given before Starforged Legends arrives.

Disclaimer: This reviewer is Master ranked in Shadowverse

Cover image via


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