Are you an Ascension iOS snob?

More to the point... am I? What do I mean by this question? Where is this coming from?  Well faithful reader, let us digress and dissect.

 

First, I openly have been a huge fan of Ascension, ever since it first came into vision.  I had the opportunity to meet and get to know John Fiorillo several times during the height of World of Warcraft Minis and when I learned he was working on this with Justin Gary, well, yes, the Fanboy in me erupted in joy!

If you have not played Ascension, I highly suggest you stop reading (but leave the browser open on this page so it's here when you come back), go pick up a copy, and play it immediately!  It is a deck building game of simple nature.  There are Runes and Power used to acquire or defeat things.  Said things make your deck more powerful and add to your Honor total, which by the way, is how you win the game, having the most Honor when the last Honor token is claimed and the game is over.

Simple right?  Two resources, Runes and Power.  Buy stuff or kill stuff, with either helping you.  Rack up the most points, and viola, you win.  Well, as with many of the greats, Ascension is a game that is simple to learn and challenging to master.  Every game is different due to the ever changing "Center Row" of cards to acquire and/or defeat.  In addition, the expansion, Return of the Fallen, and the second base set, Storm of Souls, both added their own pieces to the puzzle as well with new abilities and cards.  So, whether you play the original, Chronicles of the Godslayer, or either of it's subsequent additions, you are in for a challenge at each flip of a card.

Ascension is a beautiful game, once both gracefully rendered by Eric Sabee from an artwork perspective, but also one that is simple in nature and just plain looks good when all laid out.  However, there's at least 100 cards to shuffle, along with several stacks of common cards, and a constant reshuffling of your deck as you acquire new cards, burn through them, and need to replenish your deck.  This leads to, well, a lot of things happening.

Enter the iOS version of Ascension, bringing us to the question posited at the beginning of this diatribe. Ascension's iOS version, made by Incinerator Studios, is arguably the best gaming app on the app store, even if you aren't into card/board games.  It's superbly polished and even offers online play.  Best of all?  It's super fast!  The game is set up with the touch of a button, and acquiring, defeating and shuffling cards has never, ever, been easier. The developers took full advantage of the iPad/iPhone's capabilities, and the game plays excellently well on either platform.

So why the question?  Well, I sat down with Storm of Souls tonight and attempted to play a solitaire game.  Which, if I can go off on a tangent, you should do, it's hard, but oh so fun, no matter the version of the game you are playing with. OK, End of diversion.  So, as I was saying, I sat down with Storm of Souls... and all I could think was, "Man, this is a lot of set up... it's not really, but it feels like it... I wish this set was on the iOS app." Then I immediately asked myself, self, "Are you an Ascension iOS snob?" 

Is this app so good it literally makes me not want to own the cards, let alone set them up and play with them, but rather has me pining for the digital versions and sets, to easily and blissfully lost in ignorance, set up everything for me and do all my "work" that I have to do to have fun?

In short, yes, it's that good.  However, holding the cards in hand, seeing Sabee's awesome drawings always is worth the price of admission for the sets to sit in your collection.

What do you think of the iOS app for Ascension?  Do you feel it's caused you to play less with the real thing?  Has it held you back from buying the expansion or the new base set, purely because you find it so good and know that thee will be on the iOS version sooner or later?

And... if you own and love the app... are you like me, and pining for the promos to be in there?  Two words kids... RAT KING!

However you cut it, the iOS app is a beaut, and one everyone with access to an i-Device should own.  That said, I do still find myself asking a lot of questions about it's affect on the "real life" game itself...


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