Kardboard Kings Review (PC) – Hey Poor Gamer
Harry doesn’t know much about the trading card game Warlock, which is odd considering he runs a store in Parakeet Bay that exclusively sells his cards. But it was more his father’s arena, and it wasn’t until he died that Harry inherited the card shop, his wares, and his…feathered helper. And while Harry has adjusted quite well, but the whole situation has been hard to take in. Of course, managing the card shop, but also getting used to the variety of customers, being entrusted with the legendary cards, a talking bird, a dog talks a little, but it’s not the same as the bird, a barefoot friend turned foil…let’s just say Harry has his hands full (did we mention the talking bird?).
But it’s all part of the fun of kings of cardboarda fun card-based shop simulator developed by Henry’s House and published by Akupara Games. His Steam page invite players to “Gain reputation with customers, beat your store goals, unlock new decorations and organize exciting events to bring everyone to the best card shop in town!” which is exactly as fun as it sounds (a lot). Can you make a profit selling Warlock cards, satisfy your customers, complete your Warlock collection, and collect all the legendary cards to protect them from those who might harm them?
kings of cardboard opens with Harry starting over in Parakeet Bay with his father’s card shop open under new management. He is assisted by his feathered friend, Giuseppe, a clever bird who can’t keep his beak shut, and a large number of customers who adopt the little card shop as their own. Some clients have a little history with Harry, like his ex-girlfriend or his father’s ex-partner, Christopher Marlowe, while others have a little mystery, like the mysterious masked thief who gives Harry one 6 legendary cards and a dog that drives a tough business. Will Harry be able to make his father proud, or will his little card shop go bankrupt?
The number one rule of kings of cardboard is simple: buy low, sell high. Every morning, Harry will have to check the news to see which cards will be affected by market fluctuations, such as cards added or removed from the banned list, a star player mentioning his favorite card game in a blog post, or a church decrying a specific color card as satanic. Some events will cause the prices of specific cards to increase, while others will cause their value to drop. Buy and sell accordingly!
Although the script can be completed in about 1-2 hours, writing in kings of cardboard is nonetheless entertaining and funny. From a flirty bird to a queen of stone cold cards, from a snotty-nosed influencer to a skeptical surfer brother, and many colorful characters in between, the interactions between merchant and customer are fun and engaging. I especially liked the Postie, who talked about mortgage issues while yearning for his true love, surfing. My only complaint, really, is that I would have liked more interaction between everyone!
Now I know what you’re thinking — if the storyline is only 1-2 hours long, is it really worth playing? My answer is an unequivocal YES because the collection aspect can last much, much longer. I’m missing 2 cards from my collection of over 100 cards and I’ve poured in just over 30 hours already! So while the storyline is a bit short (for now, as the developers have promised more story and maps in the future), the gameplay is so addictive that you’ll likely be stuck with it for weeks. Maybe it’s because you can watch the market swings and have a little control over them, or maybe it’s that serotonin-inducing animation of ripping through a booster while hoping for some shiny card inside . All I know is that I still play an hour or two every day to collect more cards and make more money, and if you like this kind of game, I’m sure you’ll be hooked too!
kings of cardboard may have a short story, but its gameplay easily stretches into 20-30 hours and beyond. If you liked to collect Pokemon cards in real life and searched high and low for a Shiny Charizard or others, you need this game. Featuring laid back cafe music, a fun visual style and dozens of cards to add to your personal collection, kings of cardboard oozes that “one more turn” gameplay that will turn casual gamers into complete addicts. Can you collect them all?
Final verdict: 4/5
Available on: PC (revised); Publisher: Akupara Games; Developer: Henry’s House; Players: 1; Released: February 10, 2022; MSRP: $19.99
Editor’s Note: This review is based on a commercial copy of Kardboard Kings provided by the publisher.