Magicka, the killing your friends and making it look like an accident simulator, brought a unique flavor to magic. Allowing a vast amount of customization on the fly, it offers players a deep spell-flinging experience. This experience has prompted a second adventure in the form of Magicka 2, which will be releasing on May 26th.
What has received less attention, however, is the free-to-play, pvp-based spin-off of the original: Magicka: Wizard Wars. In open beta since May 2014, Magicka: Wizard Wars received a large update today to its reward and progression system, preparing it to be a fair free-to-play game for its official release.
The update includes some mechanical gameplay tweaks, but the bulk of the changes are on how players progress and acquire new gear to assist them in their wizardry. The only microtransaction left is the ability to buy Crowns (Magicka: Wizard Wars' in-game currency) directly, as well as a few item bundles for those who want to skip the wait.
For those who are patient though, all items in the game are now available through in-game currency, which is earned directly by playing the game. Even items that were once available exclusively through real money purchases can be found being sold only for Crowns.
This update to Magicka:Wizard Wars has also opened up an entirely new progression system for the game: the mastery tree. Players are given mastery points whenever reaching a new level, or rarely as reward after playing a 4v4 game, which can then be spent to progress through the tree however they wish. Certain items that were previously available for real money have found a place on this tree, giving players the opportunity to earn them without having to crack open their wallets.
A new game mode, Soul Harvest, will also be available upon official launch, though the exact details of what this game mode is are being kept secret. A post from the administrator of the Magicka: Wizard Wars forums hints that this mode will be more objective-based than the team deathmatch that is currently available, with the goal of being more welcoming to newer players.
Magicka: Wizard Wars will officially launch on April 28th, but you can start playing the open beta now by visiting wizardwars.com.
Are you going to jump into the fray and war with other wizards? Do you think this new progress system is fair to players?