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Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010




Things have been pretty good for the Digimon franchise these past couple of years, especially outside of Japan. For TV shows, there's Digimon Adventure Tri, that...um...Appmon thing, and for video games, Cyber Sleuth and its sequel got exported, Next Order got exported (which I just had the pleasure of finishing - pretty solid game!) in spite of western people basically thinking the franchise was done for outside of Japan all the way back in 2008. How times change, huh?

Ah, but enough about the present. All this new Digimon stuff is excellent, but in the midst of it all I wanted to make time to go back and play an older game from the golden years that people probably don't remember that well. That would be Digital Card Battle, a card battle game for PS1 that I still enjoy quite a bit these days, as it's one of the few card games with more depth to it than you might think at first glance. In fact, I like it so much that I actually re-created the game in Tabletop Simulator for people to play.

Of course nothing beats firing up your old PS2 (or in this case an emulator) and playing the actual game, so that's what we'll do. It's worth noting that the game we're playing is actually a sequel! There was a second card battle game before this that never left Japan - fortunately, it's pretty much the same stuff but not as good. Digital Card Battle is packed with endless battles to fight and cards to collect - perhaps too many - but in that time I intend to show as many of the different strategies you can pull off with this game, from the horrendously game-breaking to the silly and impractical.

It should be noted: This is NOT a story-centered LP. This game has barely any story to begin with and I'm too lazy to transcribe dialogue anyways so we're focusing entirely on the gameplay, which is what you're even playing this for in the first place, right? Not to say that there aren't a few choice lines in the script, of course.

Contents:
Update 1: Beginner City
Update 2: Flame City
Update 3: Jungle City
Update 4: Igloo City
Update 5: Junk City
Update 6: Dark City
Update 7: Pyramid City & Sky City
Update 8: Steep Road
Update 9: Wiseman Tower
Update 10: Infinity Tower

Update 11: Post-game, part 1
Update 12: Post-game, part 2
Update 13: Red Digimon Analysis
Update 14: Blue Digimon Analysis
Update 15: Green Digimon Analysis
Update 16: Black Digimon Analysis
Update 17: Yellow Digimon Analysis
Update 18: Endgame, part 1
Update 19: Endgame, part 2 (FINAL)

Ephraim225 fucked around with this message at Jun 9, 2018 around 08:28

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Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010




Long ago, when Bandai wasn't merged with a company known for not exporting...



An intro movie rolls along with the show's English theme song.

That song is crap, so watch the Japanese intro instead. Oh, and since I know a little about the Japanese version, I'll be bringing up comparisons on occasion, I think they're interesting. Like the backs of the cards, for instance. In the original version they resemble the cards seen in Digimon Tamers and Digimon World 3, but in the US and PAL versions they resemble the TCG cards. (Sort of.)



And the title screen has an extra game mode in the original version, but due to language barriers I can't say much about it. Anyways, let's hit New Game and begin.



This game happens to have 3D battle animations. I tend to play with animations off just because it's faster and there aren't really many animations worth mentioning.



So, we get to name ourselves and then we get to choose a Partner card, which comes with a matching starter deck. The options are:



Veemon, who comes with an offense-oriented deck. I always, ALWAYS pick him first, and a lot of people did too. See, this game has a power-up for partners called Armor, and every partner has two Armors - except Veemon. He has three, but you can only get the third if you pick Veemon here and now. It's silly. The third Armor isn't even that much better than Veemon's first Armor, which is probably the best one. Anyhow, the other two.



Hawkmon, who comes with a balanced, speed-based deck. His Armors are based around speed, so that's something. And finally,



Armadillomon. He comes with a more defensive, support-based deck. His Armors aren't that good in my opinion.

I'm gonna roll with Veemon for the first few battles, then I'll let the thread vote on my name and starting partner. Doesn't really matter if Veemon gets picked or not, I've never selected the other two first.



And our avatar for this game happens to be the protagonist of the original Digimon World, who appears in Next Order under the moniker "Mameo". (god that's a dumb nickname)



We enter the first town, Beginner City. The point of this game is to compete in every town's Battle Arena to win the passcode to the next town. There is also a Battle Cafe, where you can talk to characters and card battle them for more cards. The Player's Room lists a variety of statistics about your play; naturally it's empty for now.



Upon entering the Battle Cafe, we meet Betamon, who can teach us how to play cards. Yeah, the Digimon themselves are your opponents in this game. Apparently they don't find it that odd to have trading cards with their pictures on them. What if I use the Betamon card against him? Wouldn't that be weird...?



Fortunately you can reject his tutorial, thank goodness. I can probably tell people how to play better than him, and I'm a terrible teacher. You can also battle Betamon normally, so let's do that.



There's a coin toss at the start to determine who goes first. I typically prefer going second because you can't attack on the first turn.



There are three phases in every turn. First is the Preparation Phase. You draw until you have four cards in your hand. If you don't like your hand, you can discard it and redraw. If you don't have a Digimon in play you'll be asked to play one, which Betamon already did in his first turn.



Digimon cards come in three levels: Rookie, Champion, and Ultimate. While you can try and play a Champion or Ultimate card straight away, doing this results in the Digimon's stats being slashed tremendously, so always start with a Rookie.



The second phase is the Digivolution Evolution Phase. (If I stick the word "Digi" before every word like the game wants to my head will explode, I'm sorry.) Once per turn you can send one Digimon card to the DP Slot, and if you have enough DP to pay the cost, you can Evolve your Digimon to a card of the next stage (Rookies become Champions, Champions become Ultimates.)

However, the color of both the old and new Digimon must match! My Kokuwamon here can eventually become Gururumon, but Agumon cannot, that's why I didn't play him. Anyway, it takes 40 DP to evolve to Gururumon so it'll take one more turn for that.



The third phase is the Battle Phase. Every Digimon has three attacks, which the players select by pushing the Circle, Triangle or Cross button (hereby referred to as O, T, and X just for simplicity).

O is usually the strongest attack, but not always. X is typically the weakest but almost always has some sort of extra effect - see how it says "O to 0" under Gabumon's X attack? That means that if he uses it, my O attack does zero damage that turn. Kokuwamon has a similar X attack, but it makes his opponent's T attack do zero damage.



After that, both players can select a Support Card to use. All Digimon cards have an effect for when they're used as Support cards, and there are also special Option cards that have powerful support effects, but are only good as Support cards. You can also pull a card from the top of your deck for support, which the game refers to as an "All-or-nothing gamble" even though it's not nearly as dramatic as that.

It's worth noting that when it's your turn, your opponent selects his card first, so you can choose something to counter his card, and the attacks selected aren't revealed until after support cards are chosen. This is where most of the intrigue of this game comes from for me - it's a game of predicting what your opponent will do, figuring out what the best play is based on the visible cards and stats, and in some cases, taking a calculated risk.

And yes, both players can in fact see both hands. This is a console game, so trying to hide the hands would be just cumbersome, and I feel it adds to the prediction game anyways. This is a PS1 game made to be a PS1 game, and I love it.



So I chose to use the top card of my deck as support, and it turned out to be my partner card. That's unlucky, partner cards are at their best when they do the fighting. Veemon's support effect is to raise my attack power by 100 for one turn, AND I get to draw 1 card. That's helpful for increasing your options during your opponent's turn since you can't draw on their turn.

That Monochromon card does nothing. Betamon chose it just to empty his hand so he can draw more on his turn. Anyways, battles are simple: you lose HP equal to the power of the attack your opponent chose. If it's your turn, you attack first, and that's important to make note of if you're close to losing all your HP, and it shows on Betamon's next battle phase.

If you have battle animations on, the music during them may sound more than a little familiar.



See, I drew this with Veemon's effect. It looks like it could give my T effect enough attack power to KO Gabumon.



However, Betamon has two cards in his hand that could raise his attack power by 300 points - high enough to where he could potentially KO me. It's his turn, so I choose my support card first, ergo, I don't know if he'll use these. Of course, I could just take a chance and go with that plan anyways.



In reality, the correct play is to use the Gururumon card. It forces both players to use T instead of whatever attack was chosen. If I do that, then I can't be KO'd this turn because he can only do a maximum of 520 damage if he plays one of those cards in his hand I mentioned.



So it's my turn now and my hand fills back up. I like these Option cards, but, Betamon has his own card in his hand.



See that effect? If he uses it (And I could be giving the AI too much credit, the AI isn't stupid but it is prone to making poor decisions) then my chances of survival on his next turn are very, very low. I should have actually re-drawn my hand, since I would have had a chance of actually Evolving, but I didn't do that.



Luckily he actually didn't play his Betamon card, and I KO'd him on this turn. You win the game when you KO three of your opponent's Digimon.



Betamon then returned the favor on the next turn. That support card I used is Offense Disk O. It doubles your O attack power for the turn, but his X attack reduced it to zero anyways. Sucks, too, because that was the only time I got KO'd in this entire update.



And on the following turn, I had to throw out my hand and re-draw twice because I didn't get any Rookies. I can also see that I could have Evolved to Gururumon if I'd re-drawn in the last turn. Evolving replaces old HP with the new HP, so if you're low on HP, evolving gets you back in good shape.



Anyhow, I got a Red Rookie and Tyrannomon, and by this point I had plenty of DP, so I evolved to Tyrannomon, and look at those attacks, 550 damage is just beautiful!



Betamon picks a very BAD support card. I know I'm attacking first, so I choose a card that forces both of us to use O. This means he can't use his X effect, and his HP is reduced because of his support card.



That's KO number two.



And his third Digimon has no chance against Tyrannomon no matter what. Palmon's X attack has the Eat-Up HP effect, which means she gets back HP equal to the damage inflicted. She gets KO'd in two turns anyways.



That one single KO will haunt me for a long time. I won't give an exact play-by-play of every card battle in this game, but, I felt this battle was good for giving you an idea of how strategy works in this game. In future battles I'll just hit the highlights and tense moments, because they do pop up often in the early areas.



When you win battles in this game, your partner cards get EXP. There are many EXP bonuses you can get for fulfilling certain conditions, but I got none of them for this one, go figure. Each win also earns you a pack of three random cards.



Moving on! The other NPC at the Battle Cafe is Babamon, who is a sort of female version of Jijimon from Digimon World. You need to talk to her and Betamon to open up the Battle Arena. We've got nothing else to do, so we may as well head on over.



Battle Arenas are pretty much a series of opponents that must all be defeated without losing in between any of them. You can create up to three decks and use any of them against each opponent, but you can't edit them between opponents. We're up against Agumon in the first round.

Oh and see that background? That's the same background you see in the 3D battle animations in this town - nice little detail.



Agumon is not a hard opponent, this being the start of the game and all. It's probably obvious by now that the more colors of Digimon in your deck, the harder it is to evolve, since your Digimon cards need their colors to match. Betamon was actually worse, I think he has all five of the colors in the game in his deck!



Worth noting that Darkrizamon and Gururumon break the trend of O being the strongest of the three attacks. There are more cards in the game that reduce O to zero than there are for T or X.



I completely nailed him without even getting KO'd myself. There just so happens to be an EXP bonus for that.



This gave Veemon enough EXP to go up a level. Leveling up can raise the base stats of the partner, and it can earn you Digi-Parts, which are basically pieces of equipment for your partner cards. Messing around with these can let you make some broken cards for your deck, but we'll explore that later.



The second and final round of Beginner City's arena is Babamon herself.



She is not that much harder than Agumon. Babamon has some more powerful cards, though, this Lucky Mushroom is the only thing that can potentially save her from a KO this turn. She did not use it, however, and two more KO's swiftly followed. Babamon's problem is that she's using Ultimate-level Digimon in a deck with three colors. Ultimates are a level above Champion, and SERIOUSLY powerful, but getting to them is very hard, especially in a multi-color deck.



And I won a card from her that I could really REALLY use for a certain arena later, but since I'll be starting over with whatever name and partner the viewers choose, this good luck is going to go to waste!



One arena down, only a bajillion more to go.



You also win a pack of Option cards every time you beat this arena. Arenas are repeatable, and this one is very short, so farming it for cards isn't a bad idea.



And the first time you win, you get an Ultimate card for your deck, depending on which partner you chose. This could have been a Red Ultimate, though, I'd prefer that to the Black Ultimates.

So, that's the end of the first update! I will need you to vote on a name for the player character and which partner card to pick! Remember, your options for the partner are Veemon, Hawkmon, and Armadillomon. Pick one!

Also, feel free to ask questions if there's something you don't understand!

Zanzibar Ham
Mar 17, 2009

You giving me the cold shoulder? How cruel.



Grimey Drawer

Voting Veemon because 1. Hawkmon looks meh and 2. I'm feeling charitable and giving you as little opportunity as possible to misspell Armadillomon.
e: changed vote in later post

As for the kid's name, dunno, not really important to me. D.J. maybe?

Good luck with the LP!

Zanzibar Ham fucked around with this message at Mar 20, 2018 around 14:47

mateo360
Mar 20, 2012

TOO MANY PEOPLE MERLOCK!
ONLY ONE DIJON!


I vote Veemon and the name GeneralYeti or if that's too long giver336

XainZero
Feb 16, 2011



Dang, this was a good game. Throwin' in another vote for Veemon for the partner and why not name the kid Yugi.

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010


Zanzibar Ham posted:

I'm feeling charitable and giving you as little opportunity as possible to misspell Armadillomon.

Makes me wish they went with "Armadimon" like over in Japan.

mateo360 posted:

I vote Veemon and the name GeneralYeti or if that's too long giver336

Curious, why those two names?

Randalor
Sep 4, 2011




I'll vote Veemon as much as I would prefer to see you use armadillomon, I just don't like his armor forms.

Chimera-gui
Mar 20, 2014


Ephraim225 posted:

Makes me wish they went with "Armadimon" like over in Japan.

Armadillomon sounds more natural to me honestly and I know people hate on the English song but I truthfully don't mind it and adore the English intro for Frontier specifically.

Zanzibar Ham
Mar 17, 2009

You giving me the cold shoulder? How cruel.



Grimey Drawer

I'd only approve of Armadimon if one of their digivolutions was a Spanish galleon.

Yapping Eevee
Nov 12, 2011

STAND TOGETHER.
FIGHT WITH HONOR.
RESTORE BALANCE.

Eevees play for free.


Soiled Meat

Ephraim225 posted:

Curious, why those two names?
The joke is that those two goons were encouraged to LP this game while they were doing Digimon World 2003.

This should be fun, bad opinions on the English theme song aside.

mateo360
Mar 20, 2012

TOO MANY PEOPLE MERLOCK!
ONLY ONE DIJON!


Ephraim225 posted:

Curious, why those two names?


Yapping Eevee posted:

The joke is that those two goons were encouraged to LP this game while they were doing Digimon World 2003.

They were also doing Yu-Gi-oh Forbidden Memories at the same time so the logical conclusion would be them doing this game. Also I was the one who started encouraging them.

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010


mateo360 posted:

They were also doing Yu-Gi-oh Forbidden Memories at the same time so the logical conclusion would be them doing this game. Also I was the one who started encouraging them.

How anyone could stand LPing both of those messy games in the same time frame is beyond me.

I guess it's somewhat appropriate that I was leaning towards LPing either this or the middle Battle Network games.

Eeepies
May 29, 2013

No, that's Magic!


I'll be the vote for Armadillomon because Rares are by far the hardest to play. For name, I'll agree with GeneralYeti or giver336.

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010


Eeepies posted:

I'll be the vote for Armadillomon because Rares are by far the hardest to play. For name, I'll agree with GeneralYeti or giver336.

The good news is "GeneralYeti" fits perfectly in the amount of space you're given.

The bad news is, everyone voted Veemon, so it looks like I'm going with that. Guess we are getting that third armor after all.

jimmydalad
Sep 26, 2013

My face when others are unable to appreciate the

AGDQ 2018 Awful Block Survivor


Eeepies posted:

I'll be the vote for Armadillomon because Rares are by far the hardest to play. For name, I'll agree with GeneralYeti or giver336.

I’m in agreement with this vote cause rates are weird as hell and probably would be really fun to play with their effects.

Zanzibar Ham
Mar 17, 2009

You giving me the cold shoulder? How cruel.



Grimey Drawer

I'm changing my vote to Armadillomon after spoiling myself on one of their forms while trying to find the starter deck lists.

Though it might already be too late I dunno.

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010


Zanzibar Ham posted:

I'm changing my vote to Armadillomon after spoiling myself on one of their forms while trying to find the starter deck lists.

Though it might already be too late I dunno.

You just made it a tie between Veemon and Armadillomon.

Hmm. Decisions, decisions. I already got screenshots of the next two arenas, thinking Veemon would be voted for the most.

Then I realized I'd love to try the early game with a Yellow deck.

Okay, here's what I'll do: The very next vote for Veemon or Armadillomon decides who I play with. I don't mind re-playing the first three arenas.

Monk E
May 19, 2009


Armadillomon because if I remember correctly thats were all the poop digimon are.

Chimera-gui
Mar 20, 2014


Armadillomon cause I adore him in the dub.

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010


Monk E posted:

Armadillomon because if I remember correctly thats were all the poop digimon are.

It is decided! Armadillomon it is. And the Yellow color does indeed contain Sukamon, Numemon, and Nanimon. This should be fun.

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010




Okay, the viewers have spoken! This name luckily is just one character shy of the cap. That's a lot of space for your name, normally you only get seven letters in JRPGs from that time period.



They also voted to roll with Armadillomon. His starter deck is Yellow and Blue instead of the Red and Black deck Veemon had.

Quick explanation of what each color of Digimon brings to the table:
Red: The best in terms of raw power, but with low HP.
Blue: The highest HP values, but low raw offensive power.
Green: The fastest to evolve. Most Green Digimon are worth 30 DP. Average power levels.
Black: The slowest to evolve, but if you get to Ultimate, you get a massive amount of power. Also notable for having lots of support effects with big drawbacks - bad support timing can ruin your play.
Yellow: Low power levels, but their support effects are wacky and unpredictable. Play them right and you'll surprise your opponents, play them wrong and you'll be beaten quickly.



Each partner also has a different background color, so instead of that nice Veemon blue, we get a really bad shade of yellow. Seriously, if it were a little brighter this would be fine.



Here's an example of why I love Yellow Digimon. I'm almost certainly going to get KO'd on this turn, so if I use this card, I at least drop their HP down to where mine is currently.



And that Betamon card in his hand is far less useful because I have ClearAgumon in my hand - that's the transparent Lego-looking thing. His support effect actually negates the opponent's support card, but only if it's a Digimon, not an Option card.



YES! These are excellent cards to pick up. Even if the colors don't match, you can still include a Digimon just for the support effect, and it's good for DP as well.



This is the Ultimate I got for beating Babamon on this playthrough.



Players also start with an Ultimate in their inventory, it's just not in the starter deck for some reason. If you select Armadillomon, it's Mamemon, which happens to be the player character's canonical partner in Digimon World. Kind of ironic that it wound up being a Yellow card, come to think of it...



Anyhow! Enough observations about Yellow Digimon, let's head to the next city!



Only Flame City can get away with putting a giant frying pan on top of the Battle Café. That's epic.



Inside, we meet Davis from Digimon Adventure 02. This game features lots of characters from the TV shows, but you can't play cards with them until the post game. For now Davis just informs us that weird stuff is happening in the cities. The player character states that he only just arrived in Digi-Land "a few days ago" but I'm pretty sure this file only has half an hour of playtime on it so far.



Well gee, that's informative. Leave it to the main character to not know anything.



Also in the Battle Café is a Digimon named Rosemon, though the game refuses to call her that. Come on, anybody would know her name, especially if they played the previous, Japan-only Digital Card Battle. Anyway, she leaves after more vague foreshadowing, and the Arena opens up.



Flame City is full of Red Digimon. It can be pretty exciting to fight fire with fire, but we get to use "Rare" Digimon instead. (Rare? What's Rare about them?) First up is Meramon.



Ooh, lucky draw! I get to demonstrate Evolution Options. These are cards you can use only during the Evolution Phase. If they get used in the Battle Phase, they do absolutely nothing. Speed Digivolve is simple enough, it lets you Evolve without having enough DP - but you can't use it if you played a Champion directly without Evolving to it.



We have just enough attack power to nail Litwick Lumiere Candlemon in one shot - but WAIT. Look at his X effect. He has a Counter ability.

Specifically, he has O Counter, which means if I select my O attack, and he selects his X attack, my attack does nothing, and I take as much damage as I would have inflicted. On the other hand, if he selects X and I did not select O, my attack goes through normally and he only does the displayed amount of damage (always zero unless you raised it with a card effect.)

Counters are massively powerful if you can predict what your opponent will do. Whenever I see one I typically avoid using the attack that would get countered completely, even in a spot like this where I could go for the one-hit KO. Of course in some cases I would take the chance and go for it anyways, but not here.



I took most of the Blue cards out of the starter deck because of this. Meramon's deck is like a hard counter to Blue Digimon, which I don't think many players used because there aren't any Blue partner cards. (Two of the Armors are Blue, though)



Check out his X effect. Plenty of Digimon have X attacks that triple in damage against specific colors of Digimon, which looks dangerous as is, but support effects are applied before the damage gets tripled, so you could use another card to increase or even double the power of the attack before it's tripled for an even more devastating blow. Just watch out for opponents with X counter.

Anyhow, I picked up a pretty neat Option card on this run, the Lucky Mushroom. It gives you 500 HP if both players select different attacks, which is pretty good, it always has a 2/3 chance of working if you aren't trying to predict your opponent's attack. I use this and other recovery cards to keep my HP up.



He didn't manage to put up much more resistance. Onto round 2!



Next up is Phoenixmon, who has some interesting cards. She uses avian Digimon, who in this game like to not only hit hard, but hit first.



Biyomon's X effect, for instance, allows her to attack first even when it's not her turn. Also pictured: an incredibly annoying Option card.



The fight goes fine for a little while, then Phoenixmon pulls out her own card. Its support effect is to keep your Digimon alive even if it's KO'd on that turn - it still counts towards the three KOs needed to win, but you can use this to keep an Ultimate alive if you really want it to stay alive, and clearly the AI did.



Then in the following Battle Phase, Phoenixmon manages to pull an Attack Chip from the top of her deck for her first KO. Didn't see that one coming.



So I bring in another ModokiBetamon. Okay, THIS time I know what to do. My T attack KOs her, but her X attack can KO me and it attacks first even on my turn, so I need to keep my HP up. Fortunately, Psychemon can change my HP to match hers. This can be used in numerous ways, but here I use it for survival. That's KO number two!



Her next Digimon evolves to Piddomon (which is a recolor of Angemon.) Note the card background - recognize it? It's Mt. Infinity from the original Digimon World. Nearly all the Digimon cards in this game have backgrounds from Digimon World, which is a great homage. Even Digimon that weren't introduced in that game have such backgrounds.



Now it's time to bring out the BIG GUNS. ToyAgumon has one of the most overpowered support effects: Discard 1 card, and both players are set to 200 HP. No matter how big your opponent's HP is, it gets dragged down to a very possible KO range. Shame I have to get rid of Armadillomon, though.



On the very next turn I bring out a new Digimon and evolve it to Numemon, and then finish the match. That was a close one - first time so far I've gotten KO'd two times!



Phoenixmon's deck never changes in the entire game.



The last round turns out to be Veemon, Davis's partner. In the Japanese version of the game, this is the first battle to use a song from the TV show for the background music: Target for the main music, Break Up for the battle animations.

Due to license problems (I guess) they couldn't use that in exported versions, so they used recycled tracks from the previous Digital Card Battle. I don't really mind the change, but the music can get repetitive later on, especially in the post-game but that's a long ways off.



Veemon uses lots of dinosaur Digimon. I'm going to use this Option card to get them out of his hand. It's not exactly random if only one card is in his hand, is it?



Couple turns later, and Agumon's down to 10 HP, that's rare. Well, now I can Evolve to NiseDrimogemon (A recolor of Drimogemon with a cool 'stache.)



The following turn, Veemon Evolves a Digimon to Greymon (Oh the irony). I've kept my HP up, but 600 is pretty high, and he has a Counter attack.

(Haha I love how self-aware the attack names are)



Oooh this is bad. I picked up Speed Digivolve but I don't have an Ultimate to Evolve to. Unfortunately, when you want to re-draw your hand, you have to throw out the whole hand, so the Speed Digivolve card is going to be stuck there while I throw away my other cards while I wait for an Ultimate. Try to avoid that.



Luckily the AI isn't good at predicting my moves, for some reason he thought I'd try my O attack.



BINGO!



Just look at the numbers! Etemon's O attack does over 700 damage, you just can't see it because Agumon lowered it to zero. But the T attack will suffice!

"Yellow decks, if you like it, if you feel it, you can't help but move to it. That's what happens to me. I can't help it." -- Etemon, probably



He was actually dangerously close to pulling out MetalGreymon, and I kinda wish he did, you can't have Phoenixmon KO me two times and then have Veemon KO me zero times.



By the way, Armadillomon has been gaining EXP and ranks the whole time. Every five ranks, the partner's base stats increase - not by a meaningful amount, but it's something to note.



I wonder what color of card we will find there??



Flame City's arena gives you a Red pack every time you beat it. If you're interested in building a Red deck, this is where you can get plenty of cards to get started.



I got a second Yellow Ultimate too, and it's the best one in the whole game.

Okay, fine, it costs 50 DP, but it's a teddy bear of doom, how can you not be impressed? Look what it does to Black cards!



Oh yeah, after clearing that arena you can talk to Davis to recieve a bonus...



The first Digi-Egg! Digi-Eggs are artifacts that allow Digimon to Evolve to Armored forms. As I mentioned previously, all partners in this game get two armors, except for Veemon, who gets three.



This is the Partner menu. You can view the stats of your partner, their equipped Digi-Parts, and any Armors you have. Armors are overpowered. Partners can Armor Evolve for absolutely no cost whatsoever - the only downside is they can't normally reach Champion or Ultimate level, but nearly every Armor outclasses most Champions anyways.

That said, Digmon, The Drill of Power Knowledge, is one of the Armors I'm not fond of. You can see that all three attacks do the same damage, and 400 is a lot, but all other Armors except one tie or beat that amount with their strongest attacks. Digmon also has no X effect, but we can fix that.



Digi-Parts are pieces of equipment you get by ranking up your partners. Each partner can equip three and the effects range from stat boosts, to changing the support effect, to changing the X effect, and all equipped parts also affect the Armors, too. Some have drawbacks, but this really lets you customize your partners, and you can do creative things with it.

Mind you, this only really affects three cards in your 30-card deck unless you use a Gameshark to duplicate your partner, in which case all copies of your partner card (you can have up to 4 copies of any card in your deck, by the way) gain the buffs from their equipment and they can all Armor evolve.



For comparison, here's what Veemon and his first Armor look like at this point in the game. You get the Digi-Parts in a different order depending on the partner chosen, so Veemon players can do something like this. Flamedramon is probably the best Armor you could ask for in the early game, with a 500-point O attack and a Counter attack, so you don't have to use a Digi-Part to give him one.

And just look at how big the numbers get with those Digi-Parts. Partner cards can be VERY game-breaking.



No poo poo, Phoenix.



Anyhow, one last feature opens up when you beat Flame City's arena: The Fusion Shop.



Fusion Shops have two features. One, you can give up two cards you aren't using and get a new one in return. You can carry up to 6 of each card (even though you can only use up to 4?) so this is a nice way to get rid of excess cards and maybe get something new.

At this moment, we have few cards to burn and can only fuse Rookie and Option cards anyways, and we have no idea what the result will be besides the color. Fusion results are sometimes fixed, but there hasn't been a lot of research into ALL the different combinations. There are some consistent combinations listed on sites with info on this game, though.



The other feature of Fusion Shops is to convert excess cards into EXP for your partner. The more powerful the card, the more EXP, and if the color of the converted card matches the partner's color, there's a boost to that EXP as well. You may want to do this if you're in the endgame and want to max your partner ranks.

Anyhow, that's enough for now. Next time, we check out the jungle!

Chimera-gui
Mar 20, 2014


It should be noted that the six main partners capable of Armor Digivolution each get at least one Armor stage form for each of ten Digimentals (the Japanese term for the Armor Digi-Eggs).

And while 02 itself only allowed the Davis to use three, Yolei and Cody to use two each, TK and Kari to use one each, and doesn't allow Ken to use any, a CD drama does let the five use each other's Digimentals and gives Ken his own resulting in Sagittarimon (Hope), Rinkmon (Friendship), Pteramon (Love), Manbomon (Light), Butterflymon (Knowledge), and Bucchiemon (Kindness):

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010


Chimera-gui posted:

It should be noted that the six main partners capable of Armor Digivolution each get at least one Armor stage form for each of ten Digimentals (the Japanese term for the Armor Digi-Eggs).

And while 02 itself only allowed the Davis to use three, Yolei and Cody to use two each, TK and Kari to use one each, and doesn't allow Ken to use any, a CD drama does let the five use each other's Digimentals and gives Ken his own resulting in Sagittarimon (Hope), Rinkmon (Friendship), Pteramon (Love), Manbomon (Light), Butterflymon (Knowledge), and Bucchiemon (Kindness):



I am sad that none of these appear in Digital Card Battle. The Armors we DON'T get are some of the coolest ones.

Blueberry Pancakes
Aug 18, 2012

Jack in!! MegaMan, Execute!


Oh boy, this game. I played through it recently, though not the full thing. I always chose Veemon as the starter, of course.

Looking forward to the craziness.

Edit: Wait the Japanese opening for this game was Target? That's pretty cool.

Blueberry Pancakes fucked around with this message at Mar 22, 2018 around 01:22

Zanzibar Ham
Mar 17, 2009

You giving me the cold shoulder? How cruel.



Grimey Drawer

Oh, you start out with that clockwork gear digimon (Hagurumon), glad I made the right choice.

General Revil
Sep 29, 2014

"Congratulations! You're all smarter than some of the most brilliant minds on Tendao that worked on this revolutionary project."

Ephraim225 posted:

I am sad that none of these appear in Digital Card Battle. The Armors we DON'T get are some of the coolest ones.

And now I'm imagining a version of 02 where the armors continued to play a large role in the series, and they swapped armors when that would give them an advantage.

Blarghalt
May 19, 2010

"Eight weeks? You've been gone for two days!"

"Not in here."


Holy crap, I remember this game, and my angry 10-year old self constantly accusing the game of cheating.

From what you can tell, does the AI actually know what cards you have or what it'll draw, or does it just seem like that?

Blueberry Pancakes
Aug 18, 2012

Jack in!! MegaMan, Execute!


There's only one boss I can recall angrily accusing of cheating, but it's less cheating and more forcing you to use attacks so he can counter you. Garurumon!

Monk E
May 19, 2009


I love this LP already just for the only instance of evolving to Numemon for the win ever.

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010


Blarghalt posted:

Holy crap, I remember this game, and my angry 10-year old self constantly accusing the game of cheating.

From what you can tell, does the AI actually know what cards you have or what it'll draw, or does it just seem like that?

I haven't heard of anything like that, though I have had them topdeck a convenient card on more than one occasion.



Jungle City...saint Cherubimon's rear end, this city wound up being way harder than it should have been, because if you have a Red deck it's completely easy, but other colors have a much rougher time of it.



Okay, positive thoughts. I like Jungle City's music. It's similar to the Tropical Jungle theme from Digimon World, same sound effects and drum beat. This song, as well as the Battle Café theme, get re-used in Digimon World DS for some reason. Come to think of it, the Fusion Shop themes get re-used in Digimon World 3, so clearly someone on the dev team liked the music in this game a whole lot.



Inside the Battle Café is another character from Digimon Adventure 02...

...what the gently caress? "Keely"? Her name in the dub is "Yolei". How the gently caress did that happen?



Awkwardly written dialogue follows. Apparently the guy running the arena stopped giving out the passcode. Only real way to get any info is to clear the arena, so what are we waiting for?



Green Digimon have the fastest Evolution speed in the game. Most Green cards give 30 DP and cost 30 DP, so a Green deck gets to Champion on turn 1 frequently. They actually make a good case for taking the first turn - if you take the second turn, you attack first, which Red decks like, but if you take the first turn, you can get to Champion, survive one round of attacks, and possibly get to Ultimate on the following turn.



It's because of this that Vegiemon is one dangerous motherfucker. A Red deck obliterates him before he has a chance to hit Ultimate. Yellow decks don't have that kind of attack power most of the time.



Instead, ToyAgumon drops his HP down to where I can nail him in one hit. Man, I love that card. Why hasn't ToyAgumon been a main character's partner yet?



Since they rely on Evolution so much, let's ALTER their card color with an ALTAR card.

I'm sorry.

Anyways, changing their card color stops them from Evolving since the color has to match. This can also be used to change the color to something you'll do triple damage against.



And not a moment too soon, if he had gotten to Champion I might not be able to stop him from reaching Ultimate. By the way, you may be aware that a fourth level exists in Digimon called "Mega". In this game, all Mega-level Digimon are classed as Ultimates, either as an artifact of the previous card battle game being made before Megas existed, or because they thought a fourth level of card would be cumbersome.



Anyhow, Palmon gets knocked out, J-Mojyamon comes in and knocks out NiseDrimogemon, so I've brought in Rockmon, who appeared in Digimon World, this game, and then never again. Guess he just looks too generic.



The weakness of Vegiemon's deck is that the attack numbers you see are what you get. He doesn't use many cards to raise his attack or HP.



Next up is Ninjamon, who sports a fun deck gimmick. (I didn't say it was a good deck gimmick.)



He uses a lot of Evolution Options. Pictured here are Mutant Digivolve, which allows him to "Evolve" to a Digimon of the same level...



...and Digi-Devolve, which reverts him back to a previous level, but doubles the new Digimon's HP.



Now why would he downgrade himself? Despite the huge HP bank, he also now has less attack power, right? Well he also has the Gotsumon card, whose support effect doubles your attack power as long as your HP is higher than your opponent's, which it clearly is here.



Let's fix that right away. (please don't discard my partner)



(gently caress!)



I'd like this gimmick if it weren't for the fact that Ninjamon has so many of those Evolution Options that they clog up his hand like crazy. Remember, they do absolutely NOTHING outside of the Evolution phase. Here he's started with a Champion out of desperation.

And yes, this card is called R-Gatomon, I presume it stands for "Real". Gatomon is a Champion-level Digimon, but for this game only they've made a Rookie Gatomon card as well since she's a potential partner - there are actually six partner cards you can get throughout the game.



Ninjamon then brings out Drimogemon, and Psychemon saves me from having to take a KO.



Now I'm starting to wish I had let him hit Ultimate, though I don't even know if Ninjamon has any of those. Well, this marks the first time in the LP I've Evolved to Ultimate, at least!



And it lasted all of one turn. There are various EXP bonuses for defeating Ultimates, evolving your partner to Ultimate, and I think you get a bonus for evolving to Ultimate in general.



I got a Digi-part that lets your partner's X attack triple in damage to a particular element...but look at that stat penalty! Well, actually, if Digmon equipped it he'd still have a 200-point X attack, that isn't too horrible.



Next up is Veedramon, who you might remember was Taichi Yagami's partner in the Digimon Adventure V-Tamer 01 Manga.

...I may or may not be the only one who knew that.



"V for Victory"? Sounds like that'd be the name of Veemon's deck, but okay.



Veedramon's deck is Green, but it focuses more on attack power. The Veedramon card actually costs 40 DP - unusual for Green Digimon - but boy is it a powerhouse. Let's stop him from getting there.



This card returns 3 discarded cards to the deck. I...have no idea why he used this, he has no cards in his discard pile...



I got some unlucky draws and even more unlucky trying to predict his attacks.



You know, some have found evidence that the computer is, ah, suspiciously good at predicting your attacks.



I was hoping to bring out Etemon, but after being KO'd twice, I discarded that idea and sent in Digmon instead.



Then I get my first KO, the second follows shortly after.



Then I draw the loving perfect hand for getting Etemon out there, but I figured it was too late at that point, seeing as Digmon was about to get KO'd and I can't be messing around with only one chance left.



Well, thanks to ToyAgumon abuse, I am poised to finish him. He even has no cards left.



Would be great if somebody could get to Ultimate level.



It seems losing at cards was just too much for him!

...seriously what the hell. How do you pass out over a card game?



This is the longest arena so far! The final match is against Wormmon, who I used to like, but not anymore!



I never thought it was possible for Wormmon to be a threat, but there's a way, all thanks to everyone who voted I use Armadillomon.



Oh yeah, you can save after the third battle in any arena. On my first attempt, I foolishly decided not to!

There's also the Deck Data option. I never mentioned this until now because all it does is give you a sentence or two of information about the deck you're facing.



The Wormmon card is loving pathetic. What it SHOULD have warned you about was THIS:



YEAH. He has four copies of that, and since I'm using a Yellow deck, him drawing that was basically a death sentence.

Wormmon is another of the opponents that uses a song from the TV show in the Japanese version. In this case, it's the theme of the Digimon Emperor. (yeah big time plot spoilers) They replaced that song in the US versions. It would suck if we had to hear that theme over and over again for several battles in a row.



I lead out with Hagurumon, the first Digimon so far to have the Crash ability. Crash is a LOT of fun in a Yellow deck. What it does is inflicts damage equal to your HP, then drops your HP all the way down to 10. There are dozens upon DOZENS of ways you can use this ability to your advantage beyond simple desperation. I've made entire decks around it!



The animation for it with 3D animations turned off still manages to be fun.



What. I did not expect that card to show up so soon. You can imagine the kind of hijinks this thing causes.



Internally, the game counts Armors as a level between Rookie and Champion, so if you have an Armor out and he just has a Rookie, this card is perfectly usable.



Wormmon is also a possible partner, though you have to wait awhile for a shot at getting him. The partners we can't pick at the start are Patamon, Gatomon, and Wormmon, and they all have two armors you can get, even though in the show Patamon and Gatomon only had one armor, and Wormmon had none.

There are actually TEN armors for each of the six partners in the Digimon canon, but that's way too many for one season of a show, a CD drama, and whatever other media there is featuring Armors. Armors still appear in other settings even when there aren't any Digi-Eggs to make it possible. (Or maybe there always are?)



Man, I used to write off X Attack Disc as being useless, all it does is double your X attack power. Except my card effect took place before Wormmon's, so I still got a KO here.



Didn't take much longer for the early mole to catch the worm.



Yeah you can probably guess where the plot is going, for some freakish reason Ken decided he wanted to take over the Digital World Of Card Games. We get no rewards for completing that arena and Wormmon scurries away.



Fortunately, if you head back to the Café and talk to Veedramon, he hands over the passcode and we can be on our merry way. Thanks, Veedramon! Let's hope the other NPCs are this cooperative.

HOWEVER! There is something you should take note of. Your save file in this game tracks how much of the game you've completed, represented by a percentage. Now that Wormmon has left Jungle City's arena, it technically counts as a separate arena - so completing it a second time is worth completion percentage. Many players made it to the very end of the post-game and completed everything, only to find they were at 98.7% or something despite having all cards and Digi-parts. Jungle City's "new" arena is one of the possible culprits.

You don't win anything for having a 100% save (although you do get a bonus Ultimate card for clearing the arena again) but it's still something that people were confused about for quite awhile.



You know how "hell freezing over" is a metaphor for something completely impossible?

It just did.

Blueberry Pancakes
Aug 18, 2012

Jack in!! MegaMan, Execute!


It begins!

Also, yeah, Veedramon was originally the master of the arena, but Wormmon came in and took him over, presumably with a Dark Ring.

General Revil
Sep 29, 2014

"Congratulations! You're all smarter than some of the most brilliant minds on Tendao that worked on this revolutionary project."

Ephraim225 posted:

You don't win anything for having a 100% save (although you do get a bonus Ultimate card for clearing the arena again) but it's still something that people were confused about for quite awhile.


But you're going to go for it anyway, right?

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010


General Revil posted:

But you're going to go for it anyway, right?

100% Story completion? Sure.

100% Cards? Um...

Blueberry Pancakes
Aug 18, 2012

Jack in!! MegaMan, Execute!


If you want, I could try and find the dialogue for the characters in the game and put it together for you for the LP.

Monk E
May 19, 2009


It's a shame Rockmon never got into anything past this it was probably one of digimon world's most creative pallet swaps (it's an edit of Frigimon).

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010


Hobgoblin2099 posted:

If you want, I could try and find the dialogue for the characters in the game and put it together for you for the LP.

If you don't mind doing it, sure.

Monk E posted:

It's a shame Rockmon never got into anything past this it was probably one of digimon world's most creative pallet swaps (it's an edit of Frigimon).

I'm...not sure if I ever noticed this, but now that you mention it, Rockmon's animations really do remind me of Frigimon.

Ephraim225
Oct 28, 2010




The moment you've probably been waiting for.



Igloo City is an infamous nightmare for most players. A majority of players are likely to have chosen Veemon, meaning they're playing a Red deck, and Igloo City is home to many Blue decks.

The arena has one opponent who can withstand Red's strong offensive, another who hard counters Red in numerous ways, and the third opponent is a bitch in general.



But I can save the complaining for later. We meet Cody at the Battle Café, who tells us the same story Yolei did. What's he doing in Igloo City when Armadillomon is a Yellow card?

Well, when you see the town with the players that uses Yellow cards, you can make up your own theory.



Can I just point out one more time the absurdity of this? "Let's take over the card game world!"



Garurumon is here too. Guess what happened to him!



And finally, Rosemon tells us to go level grind some more.



Oh right, here's the card I got for beating Jungle City's arena again, it's not that great.



Anyhow! Since we're up against Blue decks I've added this card. The current best speedrun of this game actually goes to the Fusion shop to create four copies of D-Otamamon, just for this arena.

This is also D-Otamamon's debut game, oddly enough. No complaints here!



Contestant number 1 uses a deck with lots of recovery cards.



Most recovery cards just so happen to be food items. Have I mentioned most of the Option cards are items from Digimon World?



Red decks may have trouble here, but Frigimon is no problem for a deck with ToyAgumon in it. It's worth taking note that most of the time, the turn player's card effects resolve after his or her opponent's. In this case, it certainly mattered, because that Ice Crystal is a healing card.



Not long before I run into trouble, though. Yellow cards still have the issue of low attack power, so they can't punch through the defenses of Blue Digimon on their own.



I hate that Lucky Mushroom card. Fortunately, I figured out a way to loving counterfeit it. On this turn, I have O selected, and a support card that forces him to use O, so Lucky Mushroom can't activate. I love SandYanmamon, it's one of the great "swiss army knife" cards of this game. Only 20 DP to evolve to him, decent stats, great support effect.



Let's hope these fortunate circumstances stay that way in the next 3 matches.



Whamon really, REALLY hates Red decks for some reason.



This card, in addition to several that triple his damage against Red Digimon, have stopped many speedruns right here.



But we're gonna outplay him instead. He has Defense Disk O and Defense Disk T in his hand, both of which reduce the power of the respective attack to zero, and his X effect also does this.

What I've got here is one of the three Hitter cards (Triangle and Circle being the other two.) You can see that I pretty much OBLITERATE him if he uses X when I play it, and I had a feeling he would, since combined with Defense Disk T he could negate two of my three attacks - increasing the chances of survival on his next turn since he'd be in danger of being KO'd.



And I'm right! Take that, Whamon!



And I couldn't ask for a better hand here either, my luck is holding pretty well.



Whamon's support effect is to set your Digimon's HP to 700. Seems he doesn't want me to get as much out of Psychemon as I can.



Not much else of interest happened in that game. A Red deck here would have a way more dangerous fight.



Well, here goes. Garurumon yet again had a special song playing in his battle: It's a song from the Digimon Adventure OST.

I'll spoil something right now: They used this song for the final boss and it's SERIOUSLY out of place there.



About time I drew this thing!



One of the things I really hate about Garurumon is his own blasted card. It forces you to use O, kinda like SandYanmamon in fact. But Garurumon's deck is full of cards that negate or even COUNTER O, so he's often forcing you to use O while punishing you for it.



And he's apparently loving psychic and knew I would play Disrupt Ray, so he picked T, knowing it would get switched to X, while I was using O, and his X effect is O to 0...gently caress!

loving mind games in a Digimon game!



Okay, I'm angry now. Let's use it.



Ah, the sight of doubled attack power is always fantastic!



How about a lucky draw to go with it?!



And how about...a whiffed Lucky Mushroom...argh, this AI...



So he evolved to Hyogamon and got his second KO. I swear if Digmon doesn't manage two more KOs here I'm taking him out of my deck.



Thing is, I'm starting to run out of cards here. I'm on my last Digimon, so I discarded until I got Armadillomon, and of course he was near the bottom.



Fortunately, he tried to go for the Counter, so I used the Cross Hitter. That's a monster amount of damage!



Hyogamon goes down eventually, and it's now 2-2. Garurumon now has a Cross Hitter, so I absolutely should not use X, otherwise the AI might conveniently select it.



He went for a gamble instead, though, which adds more uncertainty but surely it's not anyth-



loving Zudomon card, that halves my attack! Only three cards in my hand now...but he wasted the Cross Hitter!

(In hindsight, I could have selected X and used Attack Disc X to double its power just in case, but whatever)



And he evolved to Hyogamon AGAIN!



gently caress NO! WHY DID THAT HAVE TO SHOW UP NOW?!



...he didn't use it? WHAT THE gently caress! I guess that last card in his deck was no good.



Holy poo poo though, both of us nearly used up all our cards. Can you believe there's an EXP bonus for having an empty deck and hand at the end?



Him? Him who?



Oh, that guy.



Oh no, Wormmon evolved to Stingmon.

Never mind that this means jack poo poo in a card game.

I guess his deck is better.



Yeah, that seems like an improvement to me.



Stingmon is just stubborn to me in this fight. Rockmon's support effect came in handy - it discards the top three cards of your opponent's deck. Attacking the deck itself is a valid strategy: You don't lose the instant you hit zero cards, but without a deck, you have very little options for fighting back.



Things don't start perfectly, and I end up taking the first KO.



But I soon KO him back, then he evolves to Devimon. Lucky I'm not playing a Green deck.



I didn't expect the AI to think it could use this to guarantee no damage this turn, but it did.



I get extremely lucky and pull off a counter of my own on this turn!...couldn't he have just used T to avoid that? This AI is really inconsistent.



Due to all of my attacks on his deck, he has so few cards now that he has no choice but to play Saberdramon even though it causes his stats to be halved. However, he also picked up a really dangerous Option card.



He instead goes for Mega Hand, which makes his attack power the same as his HP, at the cost of halving his HP afterwards.



It doesn't take long to finish him after that. Props for getting two KOs on me, though.



Just like before, we get no reward for that, so we head back to the Café where Garurumon decides to rope us into a rematch by pulling the "I wasn't myself let's do that again" card.

This is like loving salt on the wound honestly. Considering that I still have to re-do the arena AGAIN for the story completion, just like Jungle City. And in Igloo City's case, their arena actually changes a second time in the post-game, so if you haven't done this arena again by that point, you could lose that bit of completion percentage permanently! My memory card has a save stuck at 99.3% because of this!



Anyways. In the Japanese version, the Garurumon rematch is the first to use more anime songs: Butterfly and Brave Heart. Yeah, this isn't just any Garurumon, it's THE Garurumon.

I really hate this PSX rendition of Butterfly, though, so thank goodness I don't get to listen to it!



I also got the bonus you get for taking 2 KOs and then KOing three enemies.



Progress, finally!



Well look at what I got from the second run of the arena.



...WORTH EVERY PAINFUL SECOND.



Also, Cody has a gift for us - our SECOND partner card! You can get up to three over the course of the game. He only offers one of two cards, however, so it's time for another vote!

Your options:



Patamon. You can see that Patamon has a nice support effect and stats already. His first armor isn't that interesting, but his second has a massive amount of raw attack power.



Gatomon doesn't look like much, but she has a VERY interesting second armor - that won't show up until the post game, but I still think it's very much worth the wait.

So, viewers! Which will it be, Gatomon or Gatomon?!

...wait a sec

Patamon or Gatomon?!

jimmydalad
Sep 26, 2013

My face when others are unable to appreciate the

AGDQ 2018 Awful Block Survivor


Gatomon cause cats are the best and so is she.

Zanzibar Ham
Mar 17, 2009

You giving me the cold shoulder? How cruel.



Grimey Drawer

I never liked Patamon's design and they can't be renamed to Patapon in this game so Gatomon please.

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Eeepies
May 29, 2013

No, that's Magic!


As much as I want to vote Patamon because you said that, in the end Gatomon is just the best. And yes, the Snow Arena is a bitch and a half to complete, and is probably the hardest Arena for a good while.

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