Parallel is a Trading Card Game (TCG) nestled within the Echelon foundation, brought to life by a team boasting experiences from numerous AAA titles. This game has swiftly gained recognition across social media platforms, with positive feedback pouring in from both TCG enthusiasts and newcomers. The title even made our Best of August 2023 list for its massive uprise and entertaining gameplay. At present, Parallel is exclusively in closed beta, accessible through invite codes. These codes are obtainable by players who have triumphed in over 25 ranked matches or through selective invitations granted by the development team. The game is compatible with Windows, although resourceful players have found ways to emulate it on mobile and iOS platforms.
Parallel's lore revolves around a cataclysm unleashed by humanity, resulting from the reckless depletion of Earth's resources. Following a mass exodus, five Parallel civilizations emerged from the ashes of humanity. After a 10,000-year hiatus, Earth regenerates, reawakening the five civilizations, each vying to assert dominance over their ancestral homeland.
Upon entering the game, players encounter the main menu and are directed to the rookie queue. This queue allows newcomers to explore each Parallel faction with a basic set of cards, rewarding them for each victory achieved. After securing five wins with each faction, players receive multiple apparition packs containing fundamental cards. If you want a comprehensive rundown of the mechanics you need to be aware of before you jump in, check out our starter guide.
Within a match, each player starts with 30 health points, with the primary objective being to deplete the opponent's health. An energy bar, located in the bottom right-hand corner, must be charged to play cards. Energy accrues by banking a card from the player's hand. Varied strategies can be deployed to secure victory, and each Parallel faction possesses unique advantages to exploit.
Distinctive playstyles emerge due to the diversity of native cards. For instance, Shroud's cards enable actions known as Banish, transferring the opponent's cards into Shroud's singularity instead of the waste, permitting later use. To execute this, Shroud must employ cards that facilitate the retrieval of singularity-bound cards.
Earthen, on the other hand, emphasizes energy generation and the defender effect. Playing the Neremiah paragon grants all defender effect cards an attack bonus equivalent to their health.
Parallel introduces a battle pass system, enabling players to earn apparition packs filled with cards by completing daily missions. Future updates may bring limited edition cards as battle pass rewards, applicable in both the current trading card game and the forthcoming Colony game.
Parallel excels in providing an engaging introduction, with minor areas for improvement. The game's growth has been steadily climbing, fueled by initiatives like the Avatar challenge, which awarded a Parallel avatar to players who referred others completing the rookie queue.
Graphics-wise, Parallel features a dark main background, adorned with the distinctive yellow brand color in the main menu. Within matches, every card is voice-acted, accompanied by well-designed animations. Although there are no unique animations for specific cards, each visual element feels crisp and provides players with vital cues about game events. Overall, Parallel's graphics are highly satisfying for a TCG, with the Paragon's initial taunt during the loading screen adding to the visual appeal.
In terms of audio, the game delivers a well-crafted experience. From the main menu's soundtrack to the sound effects accompanying menu interactions and card plays, the audio design is impressive. Even the Paragons within matches offer limited audio options for taunting opponents. Improvements could include expanding Paragon options or randomizing their spoken messages during the loading screen.
Regarding gameplay, Parallel offers an effective tutorial, with minor areas that could benefit from enhancement. These include clarifying that effect cards must be dragged to the center of the field and providing players with basic playstyle insights for each faction. While the rookie queue helps players discover faction playstyles, early guidance could expedite new players' learning curve. Beyond the introduction, the game shines with its extensive customization options for decks and Paragons, making it challenging to predict an opponent's deck and necessitating adaptability in each match.
As the game remains in closed beta, each patch introduces its advantages and disadvantages, resulting in evolving metas. Earthen and Marcolian currently dominate due to recent buffs they've received.
As a gamer typically uninvolved in TCGs, this game engaged me and facilitated easy learning while revealing the depth awaiting skilled players. The gameplay demands strategic card choices, reinforced by engaging visual cues. Audio design impresses, with the in-game soundtrack appropriately balanced against sound effects. Parallel promises an engaging TCG experience with potential for further refinement.
Finally, make sure to check out our guides for each one of the available Parallels to decide which one is best suited for your preferred playstyle.
Parallel stands out as a remarkable title within the web3 gaming ecosystem's Trading Card Game (TCG) genre, offering addictive gameplay, exceptional graphics, and rich lore. The astonishing milestone of over 200,000 games played within the initial 30 days of the closed beta release underscores the sheer enjoyment that Parallel delivers. This title possesses broad appeal, captivating both TCG enthusiasts and those unfamiliar with the genre. The team's active presence on social media platforms has generated significant buzz, making Parallel practically impossible to overlook. As a result, Parallel distinguishes itself in the TCG realm, successfully attracting even traditional gamers familiar with titles like Hearthstone and Magic: The Gathering.
Engaging and captivating gameplay
Meticulously crafted audio and visual elements for an immersive experience
Well-structured lore to deepen player engagement
Minor shortcomings in the tutorial
Recent server problems leading to matchmaking disruptions
Dominant metas impacting early gameplay dynamics