Places are still open for the UK heat of the Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship 2007, Konami told us today, so if you're playing what we thought was "a superb card game, and arguably the best portable one we've seen in years", pay attention.
Never in a million years did we imagine that one day we'd start a review by reminiscing about the good old days of Yu-Gi-Oh! but that seems to be exactly what's happening here. Makes us feel sort of dirty, but we'll run with it for now. You see, World Championship 2007 really makes us miss the days of being offered a variety of starting decks at the beginning of a new game.
The basic starter set here is an absolute mess, a cobbled-together Elemental Hero deck with almost no decent cards and only a single copy of each. This makes picking up wins against even the most relaxed opponents something of a chore and building your deck into something more impressive is no mean feat either. Where other Yu-Gi-Oh! games have started with only a few booster packs unlocked and introduced the rest along the way, WC2007 starts with many of them open for business so finding your desired cards can be pretty tricky unless you know exactly what you're looking for. This is usually where the card password system would save the day but with single a good card setting you back as many DP (Duel Points, the game's currency) as 25 booster packs, you're better off just trawling through packs until you find the cards you need.
This slow start is a real shame because almost everything else about World Championship 2007 is as tight and expansive as the game's subject matter allows it to be. You can try your hand at all kinds of play modes - from solving duel puzzles (like newspaper chess puzzles, using a given set-up to flip the odds and pull out a single turn win) to competing in events with certain restrictions and even endurance matches. Even within the basic duelling, there's no shortage of opposition as each rival has a different and interesting deck concept that can inspire you to go off and create something bigger and better of your own once you amass the necessary amount of cards. And once your collection starts encompassing some of the better cards, there's almost limitless potential in what your decks can do.