What's the difference between Splinterlands and Hearthstone? Let's start with Gameplay.

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Well me, I'm glad I asked! Splinterlands and Hearthstone are both digital trading card games, but there are subtle and not so subtle differences between them. One of the biggest and most notable differences between the games is the gameplay itself. Hearthstone is a turn by turn game lasting 15-30 minutes with some matching lasting 5 or 45 minutes. Splinterlands is a make all your decisions up front as rule sets and mana caps change. Splinterlands takes about 3 minutes to play a round. Both are trading card games, but the play style is very different.


Hearthstone: I think the most notable difference between the two games is the gameplay itself. In Hearthstone you buy packs, assemble decks and then bring those decks into the arena to fight opponents. You draw a hand and have a small amount of mana to spend and how much mana you have increases every turn. When it's your turn you choose what to spend mana on including hero abilities. During your turn you choose which monsters will fight and choose to strike at other monsters or at the opposing hero. Whoever brings their opposing hero's health to zero will win. On average games would last 15-30 minutes with 5 min or 45 min extremes on either side.

Splinterlands: is a trading card game, but designed for much shorter play, and we removed the play by play aspect of the game. Players purchase cards and trade for cards. When players click Battle they are shown who their opponent will be and then they get to know the last 5 teams that they have used. They are also shown which splinters will be allowed, what the mana cap is for the match and they see which rules will be in effect for the game. Players then make their teams and submit them. The winner is decided automatically following the rules of game (mostly based on speed of the monsters) and players can opt to watch a replay of what happened in the fight. A match is roughly 3 mins from end to end when watching the rematch at a faster pace.


Initially many players from other games like Hearthstone and Magic are upset that we took away the play by play aspect of the game, but I've seen many players turn around and really appreciate that aspect of our game. Matt and I were both in the top 5% of Hearthstone players in the world. When I got to a high level it dawned on me that the game was all about making a team designed to do one "trick" and pop your trick before your opponent popped theirs. I quit playing the next day.

The other thing that we noticed when playing a LOT of Hearthstone is that ultimately the game gets narrowed down to just a handful of decks that all the top players field. So, there's literally just about 5 or 6 teams that win in a given season and everyone at the top just plays those 6 decks to grind out rank.

When Matt and I designed Splinterlands we wanted a different experience. We didn't want any one card or any deck to be the strongest in the game. It's awesome if cards or teams are really strong in some scenarios, but we want them to be weak at other times. That's one of the main reasons we built in the different rules. Every match can have standard, one rule, or two rules that are altered. And combined with a different mana caps every match forces different combinations of cards to be powerful.

While players are initially annoyed or even sorta insulted that they don't get to do a tactical play by play of their cards that seems to change over time. Players that keep playing Splinterlands appreciate the faster matches and start to appreciate they don't have to sit there with 1 card in their hand and be asked what are you going to do? I mean... isn't it obvious... I have one card here. I guess I'll cast this... So, where as the having tactical play is suggestive of having strategy elements often they aren't actually there. So, removing it allowed us to focus the strategy elements exclusively. Now every match is jam packed with strategy decisions and you iterate on them every 3 minutes!

Next up economy

In my next comparative post I'll talk about how the economies are different in the game. You'll have to tune in a couple days from now to see that one!

Thanks for checking out this article and if you haven't started playing yet head over to https://splinterlands.io


Yeah i'm not with you on this post sorry. You know I love the game and the investment.
However, let's not compare a game with 4k players to one with millions... it's not gonna end well for us.
And let's not bash some of the things that has made games like that successful for many many years... let's find a way to see how we can take elements and adapt them.

We lack a "battle of wits" style of game play... right now we have a "blind player vs meta" style. We don't have to change what we're good at in order to bring in elements that make millions of people happy. People might be missing the ability to react to what someone else does.

Here's the thing about a 5-45 minute game they actually are playing most of the time... because they are thinking of strategy for their next move while the other player is doing their turn. And people love that... that's 45 minutes of game play to some people and for millions of people that thinking, strategizing and out-witting is what they love.
Strategizing is fun in splinterlands... but can be sooo much more fun if you can strategize against the actions of your oponent not against a general guess and meta expectation.

Personally i think that can be fulfilled in a non-blind live drafting system. The game still focuses on the drafting and isn't as long as hearthstone but maybe appeals to the things that made those other games successful for many many years.
Even tournaments with blind drafting can still be good... because then part of the game play might end up focusing on learning your opponent and researching. Can't do that in the present style because you get the announcement right as game play starts giving you zero time to allow it to become a battle against the player

What we have is an amazing foundation on a great blockchain. We can do things those other games can't because of how they have built their foundations.

I think in the long term it would be great to see more gameplay styles of Splinterlands to be developed.
I really like the current battle system but still there is a desire to play your cards on a more tactical level. Heads up mode with taking turns during battle has its own charme to it and I would love to see this gameplay mode also within the Splinterlands world.

Thank you for the amazing game! I would hate it to put 30 -40 minutes in a single game... Most of us here have real lives, and we can't afford a long gameplay. Splinterlands is just perfect. I wake up every morning anxious about the daily quest, and have a wonderful half an hour for about 10 games while I'm enjoying my coffee.

I never play Hearthstone, all I know is @splinterlands is more than a game, it's a growing economy, a funny crazy investment and a gain and lost card machine, you can play a card game and also can buy and sell digital assets.

we can collet , trade and battle

I have played hearthstone, cryptofighters, cryptokitties and love Splinterlands by far more than any of these games! I own my cards unlike Hearthstone. Also the Ethereum blockchain has awfully expensive gas fees and is slow as molasses. I love Steem! Fast & free! I believe Splinterlands is going place! Mass adoption is coming! Splinterlands to the moon! 🌙

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I love the dynamism in Splinterlands than in Hearthstone...

Excellent. I've been exploring a consistent series of games, as they come to my attention over time. It's enlightening to find out that the (what I believe to be) high quality of Splinterlands grew out of people who were actually successful at a reputable game. I had been thinking that you had just developed the idea from scratch, but this adds more dimension and appreciation, and CONFIDENCE in the fact that you guys know what you're doing. Personally, I agree that the "on your feet", quick decision-making needs of this game keep it FRESH. At the same time, the decision to add the in-game token was (in my opinion) what created the long-term viability of the game. For me, the resource allocation/management aspect of the game is JUST AS enjoyable as the active battling, and adds some serious dimension to the experience. Yes, looking forward to your analysis of the economy of these specific games...

Splinterlands is the only game of its kind that I have played.

Splinterland is a step above many other card games out there mainly due to battles taking only seconds to play out while like you mentioned other card games can take hours. I prefer the quick but yet strategic game of splinterland.

@aggroed, I travelled a long Journey with Splinterlands and at this moment i cannot compare this game with any other Collectible and Card Trading game, with that said also excited towards all the developments which are happening on Splinterlands. Stay blessed.

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Congratulations on an excellent win. Best of luck in the rest of the tournament.

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