PAX East 2024 – SoulForge Fusion Scratches My Card Gaming Itch Like Few Games Can

Image Credit: Stone Blade Entertainment.

Whether it’s Magic: the Gathering or, more recently, Lorcana, I tend to get pretty involved in trading card games. My enjoyment normally comes from playing in person with friends. The days of grinding out competitive tournaments on a regular basis are long gone, but it’s still nice to play in weekly events at my local game store. 

Despite these games being available to play online, nothing can match the enjoyment I get from playing the game’s physical version. There’s a lack of intimacy and personality from playing digital card games. Yet, after spending some time with SoulForge Fusion’s digital version at PAX East 2024, I was excited to spend more time with the digital game. 

SoulForge Fusion Offers A Unique Way To Build Your Deck

The first thing I was told before sitting down was how decks are constructed. Since the decks are algorithmically generated, there’s no need to scramble to pick up cards. Instead, you’re encouraged to play with your deck; the more you play, the better it gets. Even if you lose your match, your cards become more powerful as you play them. 

SoulForge Fusion
Image Credit: Stone Blade Entertainment.

As someone notoriously awful at building decks (I play ’em, not build ’em), it’s a design choice that resonates with me. SoulForge Fusion proves that it’s not all about building the best deck. It’s about mastering the ins and outs of your deck. The more you understand how your cards work together, the better you’ll do, which is good because there’s a chance you’ll lose—a lot. 

That’s by design, though! You’re supposed to learn from your mistakes, right?

SoulForge Fusion’s Is Simple Yet Surprisingly Deep

My time at PAX East dealt with diving into the single-player campaign after a brief tutorial. One thing that stood out was how simple it was to get accustomed to the game. Yes, it has its own branding of mechanics (which I mentally compared to its Magic counterpart), but one thing SoulForge has going for it is its simplicity. 

Instead of dealing with a mana system, you place one card per turn during your rounds into one of five available lanes. From there, the cards in each lane will battle based on their offensive and defensive stats. If there’s no one defending, players will take damage. Run out of life, and the game is over. Simple enough, right? The complexity comes in from strategically placing character cards in lanes, utilizing spells to turn the tides of battle, and using your deck’s unique abilities. 

As you play through your match, your cards will become more powerful. The same is true as you continue through the campaign. It’s a clever balance of letting players learn the ins and outs of their decks while allowing them to improve their decks without constantly changing cards. Part of competitive Magic, for example, is bringing the right cards to a tournament. What worked last week may not work this week, for example. It allows players to let their decks be part of their identity.

SoulForge Fusion Is The First Card Game I Feel Comfortable Playing Digitally

Being rewarded for sticking with one deck offers a bigger challenge in a digital card game than I’ve ever had. More often than not, I find myself running over computer opponents. I don’t mean to toot my own horn here, but I’m pretty decent at these games. Playing against AI opponents tends to be boring. If I’m playing against an inferior opponent in person, at least we have the appeal of face-to-face interactions. 

SoulForge Fusion
Image Credit: Stone Blade Entertainment.

SoulForge Fusion’s campaign demo brought me to my limits. I earned my victory by digging deep, and, you know what, it felt great. I felt ready for more. But, you know, I have to be courteous to those waiting in line. I know people are busy with obligations. 

Speaking of obligations, there’s something else that appeals to me about SoulForge Fusion: their seasonal events can last for months. If you’re busy one weekend, you’re not out of luck. You can hop in at your own leisure and still participate in a greater campaign. 

SoulForge Fusion’s demo is available now on Steam. As someone who can never shake card games, you better believe I’ll check this one out when it releases. 



Written by Jake Valentine

I am the Editor-In-Chief of BossLevelGamer. I'm also a lover of video games, food, and beer.

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