TEPPEN is a new mobile game by CAPCOM and GungHo Online Entertainment, Inc. which focuses on a few of its franchises heading to a place called “The Land of Illusion”. Characters from Monster Hunter, Darkstalkers, Resident Evil, and Megaman have gathered by some unknown girl for an unknown master for an unknown purpose.
The gameplay is TEPPEN is that of a trading card game, more-or-less akin to Hearthstone or Magic: The Gathering. While it has a mobile-game exclusive feel by having when your attack will hit based on arrows that go from your card to your opponent’s card across from them, this adds a real-time element which makes it more engaging than a typical TCG.
I have spent a bit of time playing this game, so I am going to talk about three subjects in this impressions piece; the Gameplay, the Card Pack System, and Artwork. Sure, I could talk about the Single Player content which is “Hero Stories” and “Chronicles” or minor things like the TEPPEN Channel, but those are not integral parts of my review as I just really want to cover the most important things from my perspective.
The gameplay in TEPPEN is rather straightforward if you are a fan of trading card games, specifically Magic: The Gathering. There are a few aspects to this game; MP, Cards, Hero Arts, and Attacking.System Description
- MP — MP is the yellow bar that casually builds at the bottom from the beginning to the end of the match, this bar determines which cards can be played by how much MP is currently available. Also, whenever an opponent activates an “Action” card, you will automatically gain temporary MP (2MP) that is ONLY available during the 10 seconds they give you to respond to an opponent’s Action Card activation. You have up to 10MP for a single color deck, up to 5MP for a dual color deck, and 3MP for a tri-colored deck.
- Cards — Cards are what this entire game around, you have two types; Units and Action. Both types of cards have an MP cost assigned to them which is in the upper-left hand corner of the card. Units are your characters cards which have offense and defense points assigned to them as well as certain card abilities. These card abilities are things like flight, agility, victory, etc. Action cards either counter an opponents cards, power up your own, negate effects, or outright destroy other units. These can even restore life points and are integral parts of playing.
- Hero Arts — Abilities granted to each character that you pick that either effects your own or opponents cards; they are similar to the effects that Magic: The Gathering‘s “Planeswalkers” have. Each ability is slowly built up by adding up the combined total MP of the cards you play, at which you can activity one of three unique abilities that each hero have. Currently there are two heroes that represent each color; Green, Megaman X and Chun-Li; Red, Ryu and Rathalos; Purple, Morrigan and Dante; and Black, Wesker and Nergigante.
- Attacking — This game allows you to attack as well as defend; attacking is when your arrow reaches your opponent and defending is when an opponent’s arrow reachers you. Abilities such as “flight” allow you to bypass an opponent’s defense when you arrive to them, but you will still have to attack their card when they reach you.
The gameplay is fun and addictive and the combinations of cards you can make is impressive despite the small pool due to the game just getting started. I am incredibly impressed with how they made the fight system and how fun and diverse some of the decks are despite being only able to run 30 cards. I have fought every single Hero and multiple combinations of card types, I myself have fancied quite a bit and find myself revising, deleting, and remaking decks nearly every time I load up the game.
However, despite the diversity, there are already meta-decks that people are sharing and copying verbatim in order to get into the “Championship Ranks”; Spike Launch Nergigante, “Yawn”-Li (Chun-Li), and Morrigan Halt decks seem to be reigning supreme at the moment. However, you still do have good showings from Wesker, Ryu, and Rathalos (supposedly a Red/Green deck). Many say that Megaman X is not that viable, but he also happens to have my favorite Hero Art and one of my favorite normal cards (Makoto with Victory +1/+1). I have beaten the meta decks a few times with my non-meta builds, but it is not nearly as consistent due to me having to have specific things and luck on my end as far as my opponent’s draws.
I feel like things will get better in the future when more card packs are made available besides just the “Core” pack, as well as nerfing of some Hero Arts like Nergigante’s. Also, I feel like they need to raise the Tri-colored deck MP to 4 to at least have access to some cards that cannot be instant killed by Black-deck kill cards.
The card pack system within TEPPEN does what many other mobile trading card games do and attempt to mimic a live TCG pack that you can buy at your local store. Since TEPPEN is just starting, it is raining card packs and easy ways to earn them, though I do not expect that to be the case for the entire length of the game as it is not profitable to do it that way. However, I do believe that they have done a very good job thus far in pulling people in and have probably made enough money off of impatient gamer’s and those who want the Season Pass.
Every single card pack within TEPPEN contains six cards with alternate levels of being either a Common, Rare, Epic or Legendary.
Seems they are attempting to make sure that you are nearly guaranteed for your sixth card to be a Rare, and after 30 card packs with no Legendary, you are guaranteed to get one. However, it seems that if you get a Legendary before your 30th pack that the counter resets and will automatically grant you a Legendary if you go 30 more packs without pulling one.
As far as this pull system goes, I do like it. I have gotten nearly everything I wanted and have pulled legendaries usually by my 15th pack, the longest pack run I have had was getting up to 22 before the counter reset. Also, they are taking out any Legendaries you acquire out of the table, meaning that you should not receive any duplicates and can complete your Legendary Card collection without having crazy RNG like Dragon Ball Z Dokkan Battle.
You can acquire card packs by either getting tickets from completing certain objectives or leveling up Heroes by playing them, by spending either Coins (in-game currency) or Jewels (premium currency). I feel they give you more than enough opportunity to earn coins as you get them from Daily Missions, Season Pass missions, leveling up in Ranked Match, Achievements, and Chronicles. You can buy more ( at a rate of about $2 a card pack), or buy Jewels in bulk to save on it. This is honestly not bad at all, especially if you find yourself as engrossed as I am.
Something else that is amazing concerning TEPPEN is the card art. Sure, we know that other card games — Yu-Gi-Oh!, Magic: The Gathering, Cardfight!! Vanguard, etc. — have great art, but what makes this special is that it is CAPCOM’s characters and properties. Rarely outside of things like official art books or archaic game guides do we get to see images like this. In fact, I wish that they had something along the lines of a gallery to view all of the card art longways on your phone to get the full image within all its glory.
There should be noted that the card art can sometimes also have effects if it is a Legendary or Secret Rare card; often having moving parts from being slightly animated and having special introductions when summoned. Even just getting a “Gold” card with a slightly holographic shine to it can make a user happy, even if Gold or Secret Rare cards do not alter effects.
Many people were already saying that we need to support TEPPEN just so we can get more badass official art of characters from CAPCOM franchise, and I would agree with them wholeheartedly. TEPPEN is doing so much right and as an artist myself, I love to see these high quality takes on some of my favorite fictional gaming characters.