Bandai Namco released Zenonzard: Artificial Card Intelligence in Japan last September and with its huge success and consistently growing popularity, Zenonzard: Artificial Card Intelligence has finally been made available globally. Zenonzard is a brand new virtual collectible card game much like Magic: the Gathering, Hearthstone, and Yu-Gi-Oh! with unique elements and complex mechanics designed to be played and enjoyed by both CCG enthusiasts and strategy game-lovers out looking for a challenge. Its popularity lead to the creation of an anime, manga, and physical CCG of the same name.
Beyond the amazing card artworks, the huge library of cards, and the vast opportunities to strategize around deck-building and actual gameplay, what sets Zenonzard apart from all other CCGs is the AI system that not only walks you through each game, but offers strategies as well in every situation. With a current library of 753 cards and 16 unique ACI to fight alongside with and challenge, Zenonzard guarantees that no two decks in a match will have the exact same components just like no 2 matches will be entirely the same.
There is certainly a lot to learn in Zenonzard even for experienced and veteran CCG enthusiasts. You should not be discouraged, though, if it is your first time to play an online CCG or any CCG at all. The initial tutorial session may tap into a lot of information to easily pick up but with your buddy AI or codeman always at your side, you will surely get the hang of the basic mechanics.
If you feel overwhelmed by the details and mechanics you need to understand or if you are having a difficult time bagging some victories in matches, then read our Zenonzard beginner’s guide, as it comes with plenty of useful tips, cheats and strategies. With the help of this guide you will be able to build some powerful decks and net more wins in Zenonzard!
1. Initially Take Your Buddy AI’s Advice
While the end goal is to be proficient in both deck-building and dueling all on your own, it is best for you to initially go with your buddy AI’s recommendations with regard to actions within a match and deck-building. For one, it will take some time and several matches to get fully accustomed to the basic mechanics of Zenonzard even with the tutorial, so having your codeman take point for the duration of each match will give you more familiarity of each phase and the actions you can do within each one.
You buddy AI essentially gains experience much like you do with every single match you engage in. As hard as it is to believe, the strategies and decisions your AI buddy makes in each scenario can change as he reaches higher ranks. Beyond the basics, therefore, you should pay attention to your buddy’s recommendations. It is best to think about alternative courses of action but initially consider recommended actions. Later on, when you are familiar with the entirety of your deck and the duel mechanics, then you can try engaging in a match relying more on your own strategies.
Deck-building is an integral part of Zenonzard and with more than 700 cards you can collect and use, it can be very challenging to build one from scratch as a beginner. To begin creating or editing a deck, tap on the “cards” icon at the bottom of the main screen and click on decks. Once you are able to access this feature, there will already be 7 pre-built decks. There are 7 basic colors that categorize cards with 1 color being neutral and forms part of practically every deck.
Although most decks only utilize 1 color along with the neutral color, you are also free to mix as many colors as you want in a deck, although it can be expected that doing so will be very challenging and best left for when you are an expert. You can typically only have up to 3 copies of each card you can use on a deck as well, but there are some minions that can be used as many times as you want.
Another unique feature of Zenonzard comes with the force system. On top of each deck having different traits and unique compositions, you need to equip 2 different forces to support your deck’s strategy. At the deck-building page, tap on the “change force” button to equip and change forces. Be sure to read each what each available force can do as there are only a few of them.
While engaging in duels can be very challenging especially to the uninitiated, deck-building can be an even grittier task. Choosing from among the colors which one to go for as well as getting to know each card and how they synchronize with the rest. To start off, you can simply tap on the exclamation mark to the right of the “build deck” text at the top of the screen and again let your buddy AI do the deck-building for you. It would help a lot if you view the deck afterwards to know what each card in it can do prior to taking it for a spin.
2. Get To Know Each Available Card
Zenonzard’s 753-card library, which is bound to grow even more, can be a pain to browse through. For the most part, you would want to jump right in on the action and engage in one match after another. You might be convinced that you can read through each card’s description within the match anyway so there’s hardly a point in doing so prior to the match. Well, for avid fans of any other CCG, it pays to get to the point in the game where you know everything about the card just by seeing its picture. Beyond that, seeing a few cards from the opponent’s deck will then give you an idea of what else he is packing under his sleeve.
If you have played Zenonzard for a bit and have enjoyed it enough to know that you will be playing it for a long time, then it will certainly help you in the long run to have a an idea about how each cards work. It is actually a long process and requires a lot of time and effort to achieve so feel free to do so little by little and only up to a point where you can still understand what you are reading.
There are so many unique abilities in the cards in that it will be difficult to lay each one out. Chances are that many unique abilities will also be added in future updates as the library is set to continuously expand. For starters, you need to get to know each card, even if you choose to focus on one color at a time, so that you can sooner begin to build your very own original deck. Secondly, having an idea about what each card can do will also help you set up ways on how to deal with them effectively in a duel if ever you encounter them in the opponent’s deck.
Exposure is always the best way to familiarize yourself with each card but it certainly helps to have advanced knowledge. If you feel that going through all cards in one go is too troublesome, then at least read a few ones in-between matches.
3. Browse Through The Top Decks
Beyond peering through the card library, another step to help you prepare your very own ultimate deck is by looking into the components of the top decks in Zenonzard. You can actually build each one although for starters, you will not easily acquire all the needed card components for any of these decks.
Take note that play difficulty is either beginner, intermediate, or advanced level and with various strategic card combinations and overall deck theme, it is best to go for the beginner level until after you have a deeper understanding of more complex strategies. The build difficulty as indicated by the deck’s star level should give you an idea how much time, resource, and luck may be involved in finally claiming the whole deck for yourself.
When you tap on eah pre-built top deck, you can see the components down to how many of each card Is needed. If you see a lot of exclamation marks on the card roster, then you still have a long way to go. Beyond identifying what each of the top decks’ cards are already part of your collection, it can be advantageous to peek into each card component as well. As these are top deck, chances are that you will encounter a lot of them in the matches and despite most players not having all the needed cards to exactly duplicate these top decks, you can expect everyone to still try and make their own versions work.
4. Play As Many Matches As You Can
There is hardly anything that prevents you from engaging in ranked matches as you strive to reach the top of the ranks in the Zenon tournament. The only limitations are the use of buddy hearts when you choose to enable auto battle on for the duration of the match, letting your buddy AI fight for you all the way. Win or lose, there is something to obtain from each match. Every match you engage in earns you experience points to rank up and each new rank comes with an extension of your buddy AI’s max level.
On top of the regular ranked match, there is also a quest mode you should engage in. These quests earn you valuable rewards although there is a limit in terms of entries per day. You need to consume quest keys for each attempt and, again, if you choose to enable auto mode, you need to consume a buddy heart.
On both counts, it is good to either go on auto mode or take your buddy AI’s recommendation at every turn. Once you feel confident about your skills and strategies, you can proceed to start deviating from any recommendation. Keep in mind that matches grow more challenging as you progress further in any match mode. On top of your buddy AI reaching new levels, you should also continuously hone your dueling skills and strategies along with deck-building knowledge.
5. Build And Upgrade Your Decks
Letting your buddy AI do the whole deck-building for you is only a natural resort at the start of your journey. Once you have experienced enough matches, grasped the basic game mechanics, and have read into a lot of cards, it should be a good time to start building your very own deck. It can seem overwhelming at first but it is something you will have to do on your own sooner or later. As you continue to earn more and more cards, it is best to start while you still have a relatively limited selection.
With the random element of securing additional cards, and the absence of additional costs creating extra decks, it would be best to try and build 1 deck for each color early on before focusing on which one you are most comfortable with to use more than the rest moving forward. Although you can create and use a basic deck utilizing only the neutral color, you can jump right into building 1 for each color or nation.
In case you have not noticed, each color of cards in Zenonzard has unique traits that you should be aware of. Just like in Magic: The Gathering, cards and decks of each color has their own set of strengths and limitations, giving to the concept as well that each has advantages and disadvantages against some of the other colors. Colors in Zenonzard represent nations and before you build around each one, you should familiarize yourself with their inherent traits.
Aguma – Nation of Fire (Red) is known for imposing aggressive strategies as characterized by flooding the battlefield with minions faster than most other nations. As minions typically cannot attack the same turn they came into play, most minions of this nation have the charge ability and can deal damage the turn they enter the field.
Kanatana – Nation of Light (Yellow) should be a favorable choice for those who want to strategize around surprising opponents with instant re-balancing of minions’ strength and numbers in the field. They specialize in being able to summon minions during the Flash Phase, making for a surprise blocker. They have unique ways of strengthening units in the field and can also return deployed enemy units back to their owner’s hand.
Thanatos – Nation of Darkness (Violet) is exactly how it sounds, banking on the strength of the undead and having special abilities that activate whenever their minion is destroyed. This nation also specializes in eliminating minions and forces. One powerful ability unique to this nation is the revenge skill that instantly destroys the enemy minion that engages your minion. This means that even the lowest costing minion from this nation can take out the most powerful minions in the opposing team.
Demete – Nation of Forests (Green) specializes in generating mana faster than all other colors. This enables summoning creatures that have high costs fast and can overpower the opposing minions. One of the nation’s unique skill is the pierce ability, which enables its minions to have the excess portion of the damage it inflicts on enemy missions down to its original target. This nation also exhibits the ability to put enemy minions in a rest state. Just to refresh your memory, minions that attack are put into rest state and will not be able to block an attack during the enemy’s turn.
Poseido – Nation of Seas (Blue) may not have the strongest creatures in terms of raw strength but the infiltrate ability home to this nation makes it so that only enemy minions of the same cost will be able to block them. Poseido’s strength comes from library management that can render it draw cards or look into and select the best cards from the library with conditions. On a more strategic aspect, this nation also utilizes minion movements more efficiently than all other nations.
Machinas – Nation of Machines (White) specializes in force protection as well as having both offensive and defensive raw strength. Their unique ability is resurge, which enables minions to be able to maintain an active state at the end of turn even after attacking. Machinas have minions that can replenish a force’s points as well as delimit the amount of damage enemy minions can inflict on it. This nation is best for those who want to have forces that stay longer in battle.
The wild Land, which represents neutral colors in Zenonzard, represent a unique feature in that it can stand on its own as well as be used along with any other color with ease. These cards typically have boosts that provide a wide variety of effects as well as other abilities that can complement any deck. In truth, it is difficult to build a full deck without employing cards from this group.
You can start off by building one deck for each color with the help of your buddy AI and if you find the time, look into each one and edit it further to your liking. Moving forward, be sure to revisit the decks as you obtain more cards, especially new ones that may further boost your deck’s strength.
6. Accomplish Missions For Extra Rewards
Every match you engage in Zenonzard and practically every moment you spend learning more about cards and decks, basically earns you merits and knowledge that you can apply to succeeding ventures. While a lot of rewards are obtained from various matches, more can actually be earned by accomplishing various missions.
On the home screen, be sure to click on the missions icon at the right side, symbolized by a check box. Zenonzard houses a variety of missions for you to complete and for the most part, these missions form part of the usual activities you should engage in as you play the game. There are daily missions that revolve around engaging in ranked matches and challenging the AI. Basically, accomplishing this each day will guarantee you accomplishing the weekly and monthly missions as well.
Beyond these missions that reset as implied by their category, there are other missions as well that provide one time rewards as well as time-limited event missions you need to accomplish within a limited period of time. These two categories of missions offer unique rewards, and some that are very challenging to obtain anywhere else in the game. While it is fairly easy to memorize what you need to accomplish relative to the first 3 groups of missions, you may have to revisit the other and event missions often to keep track of your progress in each objective.
7. Remember To Process Battle Data
Every match you partake in gets logged into the battle records for processing. You can view all these information by clicking on the record icon just below the missions icon. You can simply choose to tap on the “Process All” button at the bottom of the window so your buddy AI will take all the information into account and can learn from it. Be sure to look into the details of each match, most especially if the data shows some poor decisions along the course of the match.
You can also replay some of the previous matches you engaged in and even choose a different decision in any turn. You can basically try out different tactics in any battle you have already gone through to check if you can perform better in them. This is actually a complex learning tool that can greatly boost your dueling skills if you choose to utilize it. If you can, be sure to allocate some time in your regular playing sessions to learn from past mistakes or improve on previously laid tactics in combat.
There are still a lot of things to learn in Zenonzard but for now, this is where we will end our beginner’s guide. Again, exposure and time spend on the matches yourself are the best keys to reaching the top of the ranks so be sure to exercise a lot of patience to learn as much as you can with every match you engage in. If you have played the game extensively enough and have uncovered some tips, tricks, or strategies we have not mentioned in the article, be sure to share them with us below in the comment area!