A big part of a creative process is knowing that it’s okay to start over. You may have an amazing initial idea, but as you put it into action, whether writing a book, drawing a picture, or making a game, you may discover that you can do better than that initial idea. And that’s okay. It’s all part of the process. Just ask Ken Levine.
But sometimes you get lucky, and the first idea you have hits it out of the park. That’s what happened with Second Dinner, the developers behind Destructoid’s pick for the best mobile game of 2022. As studio co-founder Ben Brode told the Washington Post in October:
“We came up with the idea for”Marvel Snap‘ quite quickly. In fact, it was so fun so quickly, we actually put it on pause and said, ‘Look, we need to explore some other things. We can’t have a good idea that fast,” said Brode, recalling. “As the first idea is never the best. But after a bunch of iterations, all we could think about was playing this game. So we ended up going back and cutting it out. It’s been fun ever since.”
Yeah, it’s been fun ever since. Marvel Snap has devoured hours of my life like a well-placed carnage and I know several people who have deleted the app because they know that it easily consumes their free time. I remember the first time I launched it on my Android, I thought there is no way a collectible card game built around 12 card decks could offer much strategy. How quickly this inclination was proved to be foolish. Despite the limits on how many cards each deck can carry, there is an absurd amount of strategy you can use Marvel Snap. The more cards you unlock, the deeper the meta goes.
Right now I have several decks around destroying cards, discarding cards, moving cards, stealing cards, Arnim Zola-Black Panther-Wong combo, and finishing off my opponents. I also have an Agatha Harkness deck for when I want to watch the world burn. Every time I open a new card, I feel the need to build a deck around it, experiment and iterate and see if I can maximize its potential. And that’s what this game encourages players to do.
By limiting deck sizes to only 12 cards, building a new deck is no herculean task. As long as you know the rules of the game and the flow of how it all works, you can put together new effective decks in a jiffy. What a feeling it is to bring a fresh deck into battle, and see the cards line up in your favor as you shoot fours, fives, and sixes and watch your strategy play out exactly as you planned. It doesn’t always work, as luck plays a role in your success or death, but that’s why it’s damn gratifying to know your scheme works.
As we move into 2023, Marvel Snap has some work to do. As of now, its events suck, its menus aren’t that great, and it’s unknown how long players will be happy to pony up $10 every month for a new season of lean content. But as with all games-as-a-service titles, things can change and improvements can be made. What is most important is the gameplay is great, and that gameplay is why we are happy to mention Marvel Snap as Destructoid’s Best Mobile Game of 2022.