What Is MetaZoo?
You may have seen it on social media or collector forums and wondered: what is MetaZoo? Is it a flash in the pan or is this a major new force in the card collection game? We have the answers.
What Is MetaZoo
MetaZoo is a Kickstarter/TCG based on Cryptids. Cryptid Nation is a TCG themed on creatures, spells, and artifacts. Launched on Kickstarter, the first set is based on the USA cryptids such as Bigfoot, Mothman, Jersey Devil, and the likes. This probably means the designers want to keep their design options open to whatever is coming next.
It is a TCG similar to Magic: The Gathering and Pokemon. ‘MetaZoo: Cryptid Nation’ has its workings rooted in breaking the 4th wall or “meta.” This means that the environment you play in influences the strength of the beasties and spells. For example, if you play in rainy weather, your water beasties and spells will have a power boost. Playing close to a fire in the middle of winter makes your flame spells twice as powerful.
However, your opponent’s snow beasties will also get power boosts or might even be invisible to direct attacks. Thus, the environment is a crucial feature of the game. As such, you can build your deck to suit your surroundings and, therefore, boost your beasties’ power.
When Was MetaZoo Released?
The card game was released on the 30th of July following a Kickstarter fundraiser in the Spring. After a month-long campaign, Creator Michael Waddell and his MetaZoo team raised over $18,000.
They started by producing first edition Kickstarter booster boxes, spellbooks, tribal theme decks, blister packs, and promotional singles. The Kickstarter supply was marked with a “K” to separate it from the main first edition slated for release late in 2021.
How Do You Play MetaZoo?
In MetaZoo, you are a caster in charge of magic and beasties from your spellbook. You take on other casters in a battle for victory. You can use the cards or pages to attack and defend against your opponent. Winning is achieved by reducing your opposing caster’s life points from 1000 to zero. But, of course, you also have to make sure they fail in doing the same to you.
Your spellbook is all the weapons you need. Here are the features in your arsenal. The beasties are creatures, cryptids, and monsters you can contract to do damage on your behalf. Beasties pages make up the bulk of the caster’s force. They are also kind of permanent unless something removes them from play. Artifacts are also permanent but provide you with the effects you need while in the battleground. Spells and potions have one-time effects.
Aura pages are like “lives” or “lands” in Magic. You use them to pay for your pages. When you use them, you can contract other pages during your turn. There are ten different auras types if you don’t include the neutral ones. Most of the auras match up with the pages. Alien Astronaut, for instance, is a cosmic type.
The final type of page type is Terra pages. They define the environment you’re playing, i.e., forest, fire, or snowing. These pages give you location bonuses if you need them. Remember, you can boost the power of your beasties using your environment. For instance, you can increase the beasties Giant Salamander by playing a Forest Terra Page or if you are playing next to a forest.
Pages contain rarity symbols, the type of beasties, and the name of beasties. The top right corner shows the number one cosmic symbol followed by the beastie’s life points. The life point is the amount of damage the beasties can take before dying.
A banner on the extreme left shows the card type and ability, such as flight. The lower half is divided by a mark and offers bonuses. Pages have pieces of information beneath the picture. The info may include the value of damage, causes, and effects such as paralysis.
The Stages Of A MetaZoo Turn
Now that we have gotten all the terms out of the way, let’s get into it:
- First, you bookmark seven chapters from your spellbook; your opposing caster does the same. After that, you can bookmark another round or just a card if you don’t like your hand.
- When it’s your turn, you bookmark a page and awaken the fatigued ones under your control. After this, you await your turn again to do the actions you chose.
- You can contract an aura page from your hand into the arena awakened. Most aura pages won’t cost you anything.
- You can then contract a Terra Page, a beastie, artifact, spell, or potion page
- Make sure to use the abilities on your beasties or artifacts
- You can play a face-down page to trap your opponent in a move. Trap pages are a type of spell you can use to respond to another caster’s action.
- The next move is to declare an attack and resolve the combat.
For instance, you can bookmark two flame aura, fatigue one to play a Giant Salamander. Then, awaken the second aura to cast a fireball spell. In all, you should read the entire rulebook to understand all the effects and aura types before playing.
Major Concepts In MetaZoo
MetaZoo is a turn-based strategy card game meant for 2-6 players. There are four basic features to see on the cards. The beasties, artifacts, potions, and spells, which have two major actions that affect them. We will discuss what happens to them further down.
While most TCGs have a lot in common, MetaZoo has some new terms we will explore shortly:
- The deck or pack of cards is known as a spell book in MetaZoo. It has at least 40 cards, although you can go higher.
- Chapters refer to the cards you are holding at any time, i.e., the cards in your hands.
- The cards themselves are called pages, not cards.
- Arena refers to the whole area you and your opponent are playing in – the battlefield.
- The terrace slot is a 6-slot area in the middle of the arena
- Limbo is where beasties and artifacts go when they are destroyed. Potions and spells, on the other hand, go to the cemetery.
- The afterlife signifies that cards are gone for good.
- Contracting a card means to play or deal.
- Bookmark means to draw a card.
- Fatigue means to turn a card horizontally while awaken to turn it vertical.
The spellbook has details like the set, rarity, card types, tribe, spellbook limit, and artist. Other elements include the aura cost, aura type, traits, 4th wall effect, attack strength, attack damage, and attack effect. If you’re already skilled at playing other card games, you shouldn’t have difficulty getting into this one.
What Are The MetaZoo Release Formats?
The Kickstarter supplies are the only ones in the market as of April 2021. MetaZoo says the first edition Kickstarter had the following:
- 2,500 Booster Boxes with 36 packs or boxes
- 1,000 Spellbooks of 10 packs or box plus
- 2,000 Blister Packs of 1 Mothman Promo and 1 Gold Coin
- 500 of each tribal theme deck (there are five different decks with 2,500 total)
The regular first edition will begin shipping in a few waves, starting in the Summer of 2021, consisting of 10X the Kickstarter print run per MetaZoo. Here are the details
- 25,009 Booster boxes of 36 packs per box
- 10,000 Spellbooks of 10 packs per box plus
- 20,000 Blister Packs with one pack, 1 Mothman Promo, and 1 Gold Coin
- 5,000 tribal theme decks of each kind (total of 25,000 since there are five different decks)
How Much Does It Cost?
The prices for the Kickstarter first editions are all that you can see right now. Most of them are well over $2,000. They may continue to rise as more of the first edition is released. Check the current price on eBay.
All you will see of the buying and selling of the MetaZoo cards is the secondary market. We are waiting for the release of the first wave of the first edition (non-Kickstarter) product. MetaZoo had its Bazaar marketplace up for some time. But, unfortunately, they shut that down so that not all buying and selling takes place on eBay or private forums and Discord.
Where to Buy MetaZoo
You can preorder a MetaZoo game on the MetaZoo marketplace or buy from a TCG store near you. You can use the store locator on their website to find a close-by store selling the games. All you need to do is enter your location, search radius, and search radius measurement. You can also order online from Amazon Kindle or eBay. Keep in mind that this is for cards that MetaZoo has released.
Why Is MetaZoo So Expensive?
There are a few reasons that could explain the hike in prices of MetaZoo cards. One reason could be the promotion. The promotion of the cards has been a big success.
Another reason could be scarcity. There are only 2 500 booster boxes of the Kickstarter in the market. They are pretty limited and, thus, rare. Scarcity drives up the value of things – trading cards are no exception. Collectors are scrambling to get their hands on it so that they can hoard it, hoping that value goes up.
Although it looks like MetaZoo wants to keep the price fair and affordable, they might not be able to prevent the secondary market from influencing the price in the long run.
MetaZoo versus Magic: The Gathering: Similarities and Differences
MetaZoo shares some gameplay similarities with MTG. Players can draw cards and spend auras in both games. The equivalence of MTG’s mana to MetaZoo is putting creatures and artifacts on the table to reduce your opponent’s life points to zero. The spells and potions in MetaZoo are similar to instants and sorceries in MTG. Aura pages also work like lands in MTG.
Early MTG and MetaZoo have some differences. People that played MTG in the early days of 1993 disregarded the collectability of the card. Cards were used and tossed carelessly into the trash. Only a few investment qualities, such as Alpha, survived. That is why MTG cards are super expensive today. Owners of the early MetaZoo cards will be more clever with their investments. The cards will be carefully stashed away in the hope that they will appreciate over time. That is, of course, dependent on how popular the game becomes.
MetaZoo definitely has all the recipes for becoming one of the leading card collections in the industry. The idea behind it seems appealing to many. They have managed to incorporate some of the mechanics from popular games like Magic. While also creating a unique twist using Cryptids and real-life weather.
What’s more, the artwork is lovely, and there’s no sign of slowing down in creating more appealing themes. If they can keep up with creativity and innovation, MetaZoo will go far in the TCG world. In addition, there seems to be a lot of future expansions planned. That will sure keep customers excited and on their toes.