Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | PC
Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 Box Art
System: PC, PS3, Xbox 360
Dev: Stainless Games
Pub: Wizards of the Coast
Release: June 15, 2011
Players: 1-4
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Mild Blood, Mild Suggestive Themes, Violent References

However, what might annoy those who are more experienced with Magic is the fact that there is no true deck editor. Part of what makes Magic such a compelling experience when played in person is the fact that advanced players can make decks that are completely suited to their strategic play styles. Unfortunately, you can't really do that in Magic 2012. Sure, you can add unlocked cards to your decks, but as far as controlling the number of lands or spells in your deck, you don't have any way to trim or add cards, which can be a little annoying. Of course, when you think about it, this decision was probably made to help protect poor newbies like me, but an "advanced" mode where only experienced players could gather and use custom decks would be a nice improvement in future releases.

Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 Screenshot

On the technical side of things, Magic 2012 works extremely well. The game doesn't have extremely strong technical specs, but it really doesn't need too terribly much in the way of fancy visuals. In fact I really enjoy its minimalistic interface, as you'll be thinking more about the gameplay than about fancy animations. There are only two real weak points for this game on the technical side of things. First off, the music is extremely repetitive. No matter whether you are planning on sitting down to marathon the single-player mode or just want to play a couple rounds the music will get on your nerves at some point. The second complaint I have is about the controls, and I will say that this one is a bit nit-picky: you can't select cards with the d-pad. This only applies to the console versions of the game, but it is something that got on my nerves consistently. For me, the d-pad feels like a very precise control method, and the natural choice to select cards with. However, for whatever reason, you are locked into using the left stick instead, and that choice feels counter-intuitive and awkward.

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Magic 2012 is a great downloadable game, and is certainly worth your $10, no matter whether you are a Magic fan or just a fan of strategic games. There is plenty of content to unlock, the single-player mode features plenty of depth, and the online modes give the game unlimited replayability. And in case that wasn't enough for you, Wizards of the Coast has announced that there is planned DLC for the game, which will give you even more excuses to jump back into the game when it releases later this year.

By Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Senior Contributing Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
4.0
Graphics
Graphics look smooth and well-polished. Though there's not a lot of variation in the visuals, they get the job done well.
3.8
Control
Though the lack of d-pad functionality is annoying, the control scheme works well overall.
2.6
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Music is very repetitive, but at least the opening voiceover sounds good.
4.2
Play Value
With a deep single-player mode, 10 decks to unlock, and new online modes, you'll get plenty of value from this $10 package.
3.8
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • All-new and redesigned, Magic: The Gathering — Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 takes last year's massive hit game to even greater heights with better graphics, more options, and new challenges!
  • Face off against the A.I. or gather your allies for the new multiplayer format, Archenemy, where you team up to take down a boss opponent. If one of your fellow Planeswalkers drops out, no problem—the A.I. will drop in for uninterrupted action.
  • Featuring ten unique decks, Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 also lets you customize those decks. As you progress in the game, you can enhance your deck by swapping in new, unlockable cards.
  • Gather your allies. A challenge awaits.

  • Screenshots / Images
    Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 Screenshot - click to enlarge Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 Screenshot - click to enlarge Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 Screenshot - click to enlarge Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 Screenshot - click to enlarge Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 Screenshot - click to enlarge

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