#413 SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters Clash

Posted: 30th August 2020 by Jeroen in Games
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894th played so far

Genre: Strategy
Platform: Neo Geo Pocket Color
Year of Release: 1999
Developer: SNK
Publisher: SNK

Although Pokemon: The Trading Card Game dates back a good two decades by now, it feels like the genre hasn’t taken off until the release of Hearthstone about six years ago, with plenty of other games following – including one I had a hand in, the ill fated Fable Fortune. Since that’s after the last revision of the book, it’s no wonder that none of these are mentioned, so what we get instead is this odd series, using SNK and Capcom characters to create a card game instead.

If we look at the Marvel vs Capcom series, we know that Capcom has plenty of characters ready, and this particular clash has also appeared in Capcom vs. SNK: Millennium Fight 2000. Here, though, the fighting mechanics don’t matter, and it’s all about the way the different rules play here.

Our Thoughts

Although at this time, there are some limits to what the systems can do, the aforementioned contemporary Pokemon Gameboy implementation was quite a decent implementation of a card game like this. At the same time, we have some other card games that follow the same idea like Yu-Gi-Oh, focusing on characters with high numbers to attack and defend. With it being a video game rather than cards, Card Fighters Clash can bring in some logic that you can’t easily do in person, but you’re more limited by the logic you can bring in as you’d need to program each special case.

What that means is that there are a lot of character cards in the game and that different group of characters (through their relationship in the franchise) get boosts when paired together. On the other hand, there aren’t many utility cards – probably the more complicated ones to edit, but you really end up focusing on getting characters set up. It’s a nice feature, but the default decks don’t have that much synergy and it feels like a lot of work and take a lot of time to actually get to that point.

What doesn’t help there is that the battles get quite boring – since you’re not modifying your deck much, and the loop of attacks and defending gets quite repetitive, there isn’t much more that the game seems to offer – get your matches right and use the utility cards when you can get them – just not that many.

Final Thoughts

I don’t know what more they could have done, but somehow this feels a bit emptier than the game could have been. It’s a good way to see an earlier version of these games, but it’s interesting to see how the genre moved on since then – and a later edition of the book would probably have gone for the more modern iterations.