Finally, Magicka has a versus mode... which apparently ended up being even better because it's F2P.
Magicka: Wizard Wars is a F2P game based around the combat system from the original Magicka. The concept is simple - You have several elements you mix in order to create a powerful spell, whether its purpose is to heal, burn, or crush enemies. Alongside with three other players and some weak meelee-only imps, you are sent to kill out another team of four players. After winning a match, you are given experience points and 'crowns' (Sounds familiar to me, hehehe) you then use to get different equipment to crush your foes more easily. And that's about it for the concept. Fast, simple, fun.
One of the main advantages of this game is it's F2P aspect. It really is truly F2P - you can't make yourself stronger by purchasing stuff for real money. That's because when you buy a robe, ring, trinket or stave, you exchange some strenght of one of your elements to increase the power of another one, or alternatively increase your speed in exchange for less health and vice versa. The elements make up pairs - you can mix several types of equipment to decrease several of your powers just slightly, or get a full equipment set to make yourself a master of one element, rendering the other one in the 'balance pair' useless. So not having any equipment beyond the default one is also a very valid strategy.
Of course, the game requires you to reach a certain level before you can buy items with more drastic effects, while allowing you to buy them immidiately for real money. But this is also slightly countered by the 'daily chest' function - once per day, you can open a chest to get a random bonus, ranging from a little bit of coins or a crystal (more on that later) to a very valuable high-level robe. The chance of a valuable item drop is increased by winning Wizard Warfare matches that day.
The game itself then has two gamemodes: Duel and Wizard Warfare, both equally fun yet completely different. Wizard Warfare is a team-based gamemode where two teams of four players try to destroy eachother. There are also spawn points around, allowing you and your team members plus imps to respawn if they get a bit unlucky. Both teams then have 100 tickets to start with, losing one anytime a imp or a player respawns and, if the enemy controls more spawnpoints than you, dissipating over time. Your target is to capture all points or have the enemy run out of respawn tickets so you can eliminate them forever. It is very important to cooperate and lay waste to both the enemy and their imps, as these usually eat up most of the tickets, while also trying to keep the spawnpoints secure and your teammates healthy.
The Duel mode, however, is played in four - two players fight in an arena, while the other two spectate, with all players trying to score six kills to win. The winner of each fight stays in the arena, and is given another player to fight, while the defeated is sent to spectate until is chosen to fight again. This gamemode is, however, kind of secondary - it's a good practice, you'll learn to counter and outcounter your enemies, but it's usually less populated and matches may end up being stalemate-ish.
The fight itself is based around spells and magicks. You may combine up to three elements to create a spell, and rest assured these always make sense - three flame tokens make your stave a flamethrower, three earth tokens make it throw a giant rock, when combining these two makes you shoot a fireball. But you can also use spells on yourself, for example, combining one shield tokens with two arcane tokens makes you immune to arcane damage. There are many possibilities, and I am quite sure you'll find your own playstyle soon.
Magicks are then much more powerful than spells. In the bottom of your screen is slowly charging up your magick mana , letting you use your four magicks from different catagories. Using your first magick catagory only eats up 25% of your mana , the second one uses up 50% and so on. The magicks are also progressively more powerful as they require more mana, using the fourth one properly will usually result in at least one guaranteed wizard kill. It also means you may use the first magick four time in a row if you have enough mana - very useful in the case of Haste, for example. There are several magicks within these four catagories - you may unlock them from bundles from the store (real money payment) or get more of them trough crafting them from crystals. You will need more crystals for better magick catagories, which drop every time you reach a new level, or from daily crates.
Last but not least, your wizard is not only a magick user, but can also use meelee to eliminate foes. These are much more variable than other equipment options, and even though the damage and attack intervals don't change too much, each weapon has a different attack type - cleave, slash, freeze, dash, charge... fun stuff.
All this is packed into the now classical Magicka look with autentic feeling - the nameless and faceless wizard, the narrator with his lovable voice and sarcastic lines, puns in item descriptions, references to other games and movies, gore-filled deaths and the relaxing music in the backround all make the game feel even better. All this for free.
Actually, I don't know what are you doing here anymore. The game is free - so I hereby recommend it and am ordering
you to play it!