Yusuke Watanabe, the creator of The Eye of Judgment, answers questions set by PlayStation.com forum members.
What is your favourite card and deck type, and why? (Slarth, UK, & Dragonsummoner, the Netherlands)
. YAKSHA DECK
The deck that aims to make "Invisibility lock" among related NINJA creatures happen. It feels really good once I can make it work; however, since the summoning cost of NINJA is high as 3 mana, it risks struggling against opponents in the middle of the game. Simply stated, this deck is a "high-risk-high-return" deck.
FIRE: 3 x Flame Magus (No.001), 3 x Firefly Ninja (No.005), 3 x Partmole Flame Guard (No.008)
WATER: 3 x Tritonan Ice Guard (No.020), 3 x Wolf Ninja (No.024), 1 x Mercenary Savior Latoo (No.032)
EARTH: 3 x Spider Ninja (No.042), 1 x Blackhood Dwarf Vulitra (No.051)
WOOD: 3 x Swallow Ninja (No.062)
SPELL: 1 x Parmetic Holy Feast (No.091), 1 x Goghlie Altar (No.092), 1 x Fissures of Goghlie (No.098), 2 x Summoner Mesmer's Errand (No.100), 2 x Sciondar Inferno (No.103)
Where did you get this excellent game idea from? (cracymike, Germany)
I focused on bringing out the fascination of the CyberCode image recognition technology. We examined many game ideas in restricted environments using limited space and recognising the special CyberCodes. Then based on the findings, we found that a strategic game, scrambling for position using a 3 x 3 matrix, had the best possibility for making a great game.
Are the card characters inspired from stories and legends? (Darkangel80, Italy)
While some of them are inspired by ancient myth, mostly they are original characters whose aspects were established based on their card abilities. What these characters have in common in design terms though is that we imagined the figures to be in a miniature game and shortened their height. Plus, the characters were designed as if the imaginary and live-action are fused, so that they seem realistic and as if they actually exist in the game world with their exquisite and dynamic sculptured modelling.
What was the most difficult thing to realise during the game development? (Dangoon, France)
The card recognition - We had to assume that each player all over the world would play in a different environment. The card recognition had to work constantly in the various environments. To make it work, we kept testing and adjusting the precision until the very last minute of the Master update of the game. We even tested it in manually created environments where we closed off one of our meeting rooms with black curtains.
What tips do you have for someone wanting to improve at EoJ? (B2Brawler, UK)
[Principle of Victory]
1. Don't waste your mana! & Don't let your opponent save mana!
If there are only one or two creatures of your opponent on the board, you don't need to force yourself to destroy these creatures using your mana. However, don't forget to keep an available enemy creature on the board ready to destroy by attacking its HP at any time. This delicate balance of not wasting your mana and not letting your opponent save mana can be key to winning the game!
2. Calculate your opponent's response and deck!
It is important to predict how your opponent reacts and how his/her deck is built in the early stage by studying the opponent's creatures and spells during the first phase of the game. You can assume how many cards the opponent has left by checking how many cards of creatures and spells are in the opponent's graveyard. Calculating your opponent's deck in advance will lead you to win the game so try thinking:
"The opponent's concept of the deck is ..., so I will go with ..."
"I am sure that the opponent will summon that creature on this Field."
3. Look at when to attack! (under the SET 1 environment)
It is an important strategy to win the game if you start attacking when your opponent is losing strength. Example situations are if your opponent has only a few cards left in their Hand, if your opponent has zero mana, if most of the major creatures are all in the opponent's graveyard etc. You can't afford to miss this situation! However, it might happen that your opponent is bluffing - your opponent might carry a Ritual Spell card in their Hand. In that case, you should check if the Ritual Spell card is already in the opponent's graveyard or not before you take an action.
4. Never give up!
It may sound obvious, but it is very important! You have no way to escape when your opponent is in Check – What will you do in such a case? Resign yourself to it? Never! Why? Well, that is because:
. He/She may only have creatures whose Element is opposite to the unoccupied Field therefore he cannot summon.
. He/She may only have Spell cards in his/her Hand.
. He/She may only have high-cost creatures in Hand therefore he/she cannot summon
There are always such cases as above – therefore, never give up until the last minute!
For new sets, could you have creatures with two elements? For example, a Monster with two heads, one as a fire-head and one as a earth-head, both have different functions and you can use one of these elements depending on which the player stands on? (Nukleid, Germany)
This is an excellent idea which has a potential to evolve new combos. However, we will need an enormous amount of time to examine it, so we will think over it carefully. In SET 2, we included an ability which enables two Elements to exist in one Field at the same time. It was a challenge for us, but it turned out to successfully widen the strategy without losing the game balance. For creatures, too, we will continue our challenge in order to achieve a similar goal.
Are you thinking to raise the card limit to get over 30 cards per deck? (DEFER, France)
We don't plan to raise the card limit to over 30. Considering the time taken to play one game and a player's strategy, as well as this unique ruleset using a 3 x 3 matrix in which a player wins the game when he/she conquers five fields first, we are convinced that 30 cards per deck is perfect. Meanwhile, it is interesting to see how the gameplay changes if the players can modify the card limit in a custom match. We will think about it more for the future.
Will it be possible to mix several sets of cards together to get a special deck? (Leatherface, France)
Of course! You can construct a more powerful deck by mixing cards from SET 1 and SET 2 than using cards from a single SET. It enables each Element to demonstrate its primal power more strongly.
Will there be different action displays during game phases? (morpho, France)
That is possible, technically. However, at the moment we fix the action displays as they are now so that the gameplay progresses smoothly. In the near future, we hope to make it active so it can provide a deeper game experience to users.
Will it be possible in some point in time to set the mana income per turn in a custom match (so we can finally use all those heavy hitting biolith cards in one deck)? (ErVaDy, the Netherlands)
At the moment, we cannot change the mana income per turn. However, it surely looks like fun if we could include such a mode into a custom match, so that it can provide users more choices to play with. We will take it into consideration for the future.
Many thanks to Watanabe-san for answering all your questions - visit PlayStation®Store (PS3™) now to start expanding The Eye of Judgment with the Biolith Rebellion Set 2 expansion pack, featuring an additional 100 cards and a massive array of extra creatures, spells and strategies.