Monster Slayers is a complete reimagining of my web-based hit game of the same name, which has been played over 4 million times online.
A single-player rogue-like deck-building RPG adventure, Monster Slayers uses an innovative card-based battle system and lets you customise a deck to suit your play style.
Create a new hero to join the Monster Slayers Guild and choose your path through the perilous Northern Valley as you follow your quest to defeat the two deadly bosses and the legendary Harbinger, in order to become a true Monster Slayer!
I’ve always been a big fan of deck-building card games, spending hundreds of hours offline playing games like Dominion, Thunderstone and Aeon’s End.
The big draw, for me, has always been the sense of satisfaction from building up from a subpar starter deck at the beginning of the game, into a powerful and efficient engine of destruction by the end. Each session feels like a self-contained journey from nobody to nightmare, which is something I really wanted to capture with Monster Slayers.
Like other deck-building games, you begin each dungeon run with a basic starting virtual deck, unique to your chosen hero class. As you defeat AI-controlled monsters (each with their own unique mini deck!) and opening treasure chests, you can add more powerful cards, upgrade existing cards, or even delete weaker cards, making your deck progressively stronger.
Cards are played in battle to deal damage or trigger other effects like additional card draws or forcing the enemy to discard their cards. Beware: the AI-controlled monsters have their own tricks too!
Your deck only lasts until your hero is defeated, but each defeat grants you Fame points that can be used to purchase upgrades to give future heroes a small advantage. As you unlock new cards and combos, you’ll also learn the nuances of each enemy and how best to build each deck for a chosen class.
Before I decided to make Monster Slayers, I came across Dream Quest, a digital card game that smartly marries deck-building with dungeon-crawling.
I built upon that idea into a brand-new game, adding an inventory and loot system, a collection of customisable companions, interesting choices to make in each dungeon, enemies with interesting twists of their own, and much improved graphics and animations. Loot in the game is generated with random attributes that shape how you play.
I wanted each class to have its own distinctive feel, which translates into a focus on a different card-game mechanic for each one. Rogues are the easiest class to start with, because many of their cards are able to draw additional cards.
It makes them feel fast and deadly, being able to unload many cards at once using multiple card draws, then finishing off with cards that increase in damage with each card played. Wizards play differently, with decks that focus on building Mana first before unleashing single spell cards to deal devastating damage to the enemy. And that’s just two different classes out of many!
I hope players will enjoy exploring the nuances of each class and building different decks that play off their different strengths and weaknesses, with each battle feeling both like a satisfying puzzle to solve and an epic, action-packed struggle against different enemies. Monster Slayers will be available on PlayStation 4 on 16th May.
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