Welcome to part two of our introduction to Gods Unchained and play-to-earn.
You can read part one here: Gods Unchained – Bringing TCG to the Blockchain
After reading the last article you are probably itching to get started! Now that the Forge and fusion are up and running there is a very satisfying and rewarding gameplay loop.
Here are the list of topics that will be covered. Click a link to jump to that section:
- Trust wallets and account creation
- Starting the app
- Gauntlet of the Gods
- First Game – Starter Deck Breakdowns
- Playing Your First Game
- Gaining Favor & The Sanctum
- A few general tips:
- End of Game
- Moving Beyond the Starting Decks
There is a bit of a process to go through before you can play your first game. This guide will take you from a wet eared beginner to a functional player with cards of your own and some wins under your belt.
Trust wallets and account creation
Gods unchained needs a “trust wallet” to store your tokenized cards. Metamask is a very popular choice, with a chrome extension and a mobile app that can work together. Setting it us is similar to any new app (good instructions here https://medium.com/publicaio/a-complete-guide-to-using-metamask-updated-version-cd0d6f8c338f ), just please remember to write down the 12 word combination they provide you.
Once metamask is installed and running head over to Immutable’s website. Click “Sign in” in the upper right. It will give you the option of registering. It should also prompt metamask to ‘sign’ something for you. In the crypto world this signing is equivalent to setting up a new account. Because GU uses a game client outside of chrome, it also asks you to create a username and password.
Your tokenized cards will be stored in your wallet but any core cards you get that you have not fused, as well as your flux, are stored on Immutable’s servers linked to this user name and password.
As part of the registration process you will get to open one free core pack! The temple will automatically be brought up to let you open the pack. Drag the pack from the pedestal to the altar and it will open up.
After this you can go ahead and download/install the game! When it comes time to run the game you want to click on the “immutable” icon not the “gods” one. This is counterintuitive but it won’t work otherwise. I suggest a desktop shortcut as I have forgotten which app to look for before.
Starting the app
O.K, so you are finally into the game and have logged in. You’ll be looking at a dashboard screen with several categories at the top. Workshop is where you go to create and edit custom decks. Temple lets you open card packs. Market is one place where you can buy tokenized cards directly. For now though the goal is to get into a game as quickly as possible. For this we only need the Arena tab.
The arena is your launchpad to games and deck selection. The whole point of GU is to earn packs, and earn flux and get your cards on the blockchain so that they are tradeable. Even if you lose in a ranked game, you still get experience for playing and you’re that much closer to your next pack of cards. This is why I suggest only ever playing ranked matches. In order to get flux you not only have to win matches, you have to win with specific gods as you “run the gauntlet” each day.
Gauntlet of the Gods
If you click on the earn flux button on the arena page you will see the god you won with highlighted. Two other gods will be shadowed, and the rest much darker. You can choose either of the two shadowed gods for your next match if you want to keep earning flux. This system is built to prevent bots from harvesting flux.
The screenshot below, for example, shows that I beat my first match of the day with a Magic deck. This earned me 8 flux and opened up Nature and War as my next options.
I won again with Nature and got 108 flux for that win. If I had won with any deck other than War or Nature I would not have gotten flux. Winning with nature opened up Death as an option for my next match. I would continue in this way until I have won with all the Gods. At that point I would have collected all the flux possible for that day and would need to wait for the gauntlet to reset.
You could buy a bunch of genesis cards from each god to build decks with but this is an expensive and difficult proposition. Luckily, Gods Unchained provides excellent and competitive starter decks for each god.
First Game – Starter Deck Breakdowns
If you click “choose deck” on the arena screen in the ranked match section it will bring up a screen that shows all the starter decks. I find Nature, Light, and War to be most similar to how decks in Hearthstone work, While Death, Magic, and Deception, play more like Magic the Gathering.
What follows here is a quick breakdown of each starter deck along with the god power i recommend you try. You don’t have to know much about what these cards or mechanics do by the end of this article. Instead, I want you going into your first games knowing what to maybe hold on to in your starter hand, and which cards not to waste early on. I try to mention a win condition for each deck too. A full list of mechanics can be found here.
Some general information to keep in mind. All cards have a mana cost. That mana is used up when you play the card. All “unlocked” mana refreshes at the start of your turn. One mana lock is removed at the start of your turn although there are some cards that can change that.
Creature cards have an attack value and a health value. The cards can be regular, frontline, or backline. Frontline cards have to be killed before hitting other cards or the opponents god. Backline cards can’t be hit by a creature until all regular and frontline cards are gone.
- Green: Your and your opponent’s decks.
- Blue: Time remaining on turn.
- Purple: Opponent’s health and God power.
- Orange: your and your opponent’s voids. Click on them to see their contents.
- Yellow: Your health and God power.
- White: Click this arrow to end your turn.
- Grey: Your and your opponent’s mana. Outer circle shows mana locks, which will lighten when unlocked. Pie wedges represent mana slots. They will be blue when filled with mana. Note the multiple mana locks per mana required after turn 5.
Nature Starter Deck
For the Nature starter I find most powers will work as long as you use the power wisely. The Nature starter is all about dropping low cost creatures and keeping them alive long enough to buff. A number of cards sport the confused and regen mechanics, attacking random targets and healing a bit at the end of your turn. Firewine is one of your big finisher cards, boosting all your creatures’ strength and giving them overkill, which lets extra damage spill over to your opponent’s god.
Magic Starter Deck
This deck uses destruction spells to keep the enemy from gaining a foothold. It drops small creatures early on with powers like foresee (Look at top card of your deck and choose to put it at the bottom) and spell boost (Spells do +1 damage). Eventually the goal should be to stick one or both of your Oni Spellswords, 3 cost cards that get stronger with each new card played.
There are a couple 4 cost cards with frontline to look for, and a number of cards that let you draw more cards, so play fast and hard, just don’t waste those spellswords.I like the blastwave god power for this deck. You really want at least one mana toad in your starting hand as it allows for mana ramping
Deception Starter Deck
I find this one of the more fun decks to play. I love Flip s a god power, it lets you get a card from your opponents god for 3 mana. It might not be the best power but it makes it very hard for the opponent to figure out what cards you might have. Field assassin, which is a 3/1 with hidden and flank for 1, is a must have in your starting hand. Switch dualist and trapdoor are also worth mulliganing for. If you get a Vault Vagabond early you are well det up. Try not to use trapdoor too early, as it can return any creature to your opponent’s hand, not just early game creatures.
The deception starter deck is packed full of removal options. I like to aim for an early rapture dance in my hand. It costs 6 mana but can clear the board of enemies if your opponent has gotten ahead of you (it does damage to all enemy creatures equal to the number of enemy creatures in play). Mostly this deck slowly wears away your opponent’s HP, rather than having a specific win condition.
War Starter Deck
War uses more relics than the other decks, and you should always have a weapon in your hand. This is why I usually choose slayer as my god power. Look for Bladecaster which gains health after attacking and Trojan Battlemage with twin strike and protect in your opening hand. Aging veteran can also be good early as it grants +2 health to another creature.
It is worth remembering that twin strike can attack twice but can only hit the opponent’s god for one of those attacks! Redfume serum is one of your main finishers, beefing up a creature enough to swing for victory while burning itself out.
Light Starter of Deck
Light is sort of a combo of war and nature. It is creature heavy but also uses weapons. It has a lot of ways to heal your god and creatures. Heal and Summon Acolyte are my goto god powers when playing Light, but I’ll admit I don’t like the deck as much as the others.Ritual rod isn’t bad but Bright Mage and Light’s Levy are really worth looking for in your starter hand. Light’s levy can transform a lot of your opponent’s early game creatures into 2/2 acolytes on your side, which is very swingy.
Patience priestess is a 4 cost card that adds frontline to creatures when summoned. Don’t waste her unless you can pop down a creature or two in the same turn to protect her. Don’t drop a second priestess thinking you are being clever, she will get frontline and be killed very quickly.
Death Starter Deck
This deck works around both your and your opponent’s voids. Cards sport mechanics like afterlife (do something when card is sent to the void), soulless (banish from game entirely, do not go to the void). It is one of the more complicated decks to play as it requires good knowledge of your and your opponents possible cards, as well as paying attention to what is in the void. This deck also has a lot of ways to regain HP so don’t worry if you get knocked down to 15 or even 10 HP early on.
Playing Your First Game
Once you have picked a deck you can back out of the creation screen and back to the arena. Click on Queue in the ranked match section and wait for the game to start! The game itself launches in a new window. I’ve learned it occasionally launches behind the client app so keep an eye out for that.
After this you see your starting draw of three cards. You get to mulligan one card at a time with no penalties up to 4 times total, so don’t hesitate to ditch high cost cards for now. A smooth early game is better than holding on to a bruiser that you might not get to play.
If you go first you get a small bag of tricks. This is like “the coin” in hearthstone, “unlocking” and granting you one extra mana when used. It is important to note that if you use the bag of tricks when there is more than one lock remaining till the next mana then the big of tricks will not be able to actually increase your max mana. I have made this mistake often, getting too excited about dropping a 7 cost card that I don’t notice there are 2 mana locks left.
If you go second you get a large bag of tricks. This is like the small bag but can be used 3 times. It can’t be used more than once on the same turn though, as it is lost when used and replaced at the end of the turn with a smaller bag.
Gaining Favor & The Sanctum
As you progress through the game each player will gain favor. Favor can be used from a shared pool of 12 cards available to each player. Favor and Sanctum as a bit of an equalizer for each player to add to their deck, our counteract their opponent
Players can adapt on the fly to changes throughout the game. As an example, players can pull cards from Sanctum that are from a different deck type – a Nature player can grab a Light card.
Here is how Favor works:
- Players begin the game with 0 Favor.
- During your turn, whenever you attack the opposing god or destroy an opposing creature, you gain Favor.
- You gain 1 Favor during your first turn,
- You gain 2 Favor during your second turn, and
- You gain 3 Favor during subsequent turns.
- Favor carries over between turns.
- In the future, there will be other ways to gain, lose, and spend Favor.
Guidelines of the Sanctum:
- There are five decks of cards in the Sanctum, each containing some number of cards. (For now, there are 12 cards in each deck.)
- Three of the decks are randomly chosen to begin available to both players. The other two are on standby. The top cards of those three decks are revealed.
- During their turn, a player may spend Favor to pull a revealed card into their hand. If they do, that deck is replaced with a standby deck at the end of the turn.
- A player may pull up to three cards per turn (one from each of the available decks).
- Players do not own these cards. (Just like when cards are created from other cards during play, cards from the Sanctum are not permanently owned by either player.)
- The card list for the five Sanctum decks will change over time.
- The mana cost for cards in the Sanctum may be different than their cost in player’s decks. Currently, we aren’t using this feature, but we will in the future.
A few general tips:
- If you are used to mobile games you might be inclined to click and drag for moves like attacks. The GU interface is not designed for you to ever hold down a mouse click. It supports this behaviour but barely. Instead you should click on the card you want to use. A chain will appear connecting the card to your cursor. After that just click again on the target. Cards without targets are played immediately upon clicking. Right click to cancel an action.
- If your hand is full you simply don’t draw a card so don’t worry about keeping your hand big. Drawing your last card does not kill you either, so there are no mill strategies.
- Bags of tricks are most useful when they let you reach a higher mana card than the round would normally allow. If possible, save them to help drop a 6 or 7 mana card early and take the advantage.
- Check your opponent’s god power at the start of the game. It is easy to assume they are using the same power as the last person you played, which can be pretty bad for your early game.
- Like most card game battles it is only really the last hit point that matters. Don’t burn your opponent down to 10hp in the first few turns unless you are sure you have a way to push through for the rest of that damage. Many cards and powers can heal.
- Know the difference between protect and ward. Protect blocks a single damage source one time, no matter where it comes from. Ward blocks one opposing spell or god power specifically. It doesn’t matter if it is damage or something like transformation.If a creature has both you would need one spell to get rid of ward and one damage source to get rid of protect before you can use a damaging spell.You can still target your own characters with ward.
- More tips and rules can be found on the GU website here: https://godsunchained.com/info/tutorial/basics
End of Game
If you won your match you will get flux for your efforts. Hang on to this for awhile, it is required for fusing cards into tradable tokens. Win or lose you will get some experience points (more for a win). If you are lucky you might even level up this time! Level ups come with a pack of core cards that you can open in the temple (more later).
If you lost your match it makes sense to try again with the same deck once or twice. If you won though then you won’t get flux for more wins with that god until the gauntlet resets every ~24h. So switch decks to one of the next gods opened on that gauntlet page and win another match!
Moving Beyond the Starting Decks
Once you have had some success with the starter decks you are ready to move on to building your own! Hopefully your victories have earned you a number of core cards to use, but it is unlikely you have enough to build a useful deck by themselves. This is where the expansion sets come in.
Currently there is only one, called the Genesis block. Boosters for it are now sold out but you can buy genesis cards on secondary markets like TokenTrove and OpenSea.
Genesis boosters are sold out but individual cards, as well as chests containing 6 boosters, can be found on secondary markets
Hopefully you have now won a couple matches, earned some flux, and maybe a couple core packs. Once you have earned enough flux and core packs to have duplicate cards you could take a look at the Forge tab. The interface there is straightforward, but choosing what to forge into a tradable token is more difficult. The next article will cover deckbuilding and will go into more depth on how to value cards when forging, buying, or selling.