In the year of 2016, I covered a little game called Cardfight Vanguard Online, an online version of the popular-ish trading card game Cardfight Vanguard. This version of the game quietly slipped into BETA in January 2016 where I first found out about the game in a working format (I knew about the game thanks to Bushiroad contacts I met at PAX Australia 2015) and was very keen to give it a go, even including a then up-to-date tutorial of the Cardfight Vanguard game itself for anyone looking to join the game itself or had access to the Online version… Then by December 2016, the game was cancelled.
Cardfight Vanguard Online was a very good game at it’s core. Everything needed to get the game up and running was there available to be used. However at the time the cards used in the game were several releases behind and in a completely different generation of the card game to be worth trying to update. Cardfight Vanguard Online was in the original era, where current card series where in the new “G Generation”, which had different mechanics and abilities, a lot of risk for a company like Bushiroad to take at the time. (Plus they just sunk a LOT of money into New Japan Pro Wrestling, buying 50% ownership in the company, which wasn’t giving much return outside of the yearly Wrestle Kingdom event.) So they cancelled the game and haven’t bothered releasing any Cardfight Vanguard video games… At least in the west. In Japan, there are 3 3DS games available to play along with other mobile offerings.
This continues today with Bushiroad’s latest release with development company FuRyu: Cardfight Vanguard EX
Just like previous editions for 3DS, the game is based around the current era of the anime (Cardfight Vanguard V Series) and there’s a main character who is new to the series and exclusive to this game only. Outside of the basic idea of a character going around battling people from the anime series, there’s not much I can tell you about the story since I don’t read Japanese and the official site is hard to get a translation of. But that’s not what people are going to pick up Cardfight Vanguard EX for, it’s about the gameplay.
From the looks of things, it seems that not much has changed in the core aspects of the game. It’s still all about getting bigger numbers on your side of the board than your opponent and getting the right “Triggers” to do effects to make your numbers bigger or to help you avoid damage from being hit with big numbers. I would go into things a bit further but I already have a whole tutorial about the game linked in the opening paragraphs if you want to learn about the game itself… Or just head down to your local card shop and see if they have the game in stock and have anyone around who knows how to play.
Cardfight Vanguard EX will be the first time that the game series has been on a non-handheld console with the Playstation 4 release… kinda. There’s also a Switch version and if you count that as a handheld console then it’s that too then. But the bigger thing is that Cardfight Vanguard EX will be (at this stage) only released in Japanese, continuing Bushiroad’s reluctance to deliver products to the western markets when it comes to video games. Given how popular and profitable games like Magic Online and Pokemon TCG Online are, it’s weird to see yet another Japanese company only making something to be played by Japanese readers/speakers while there are a lot of their physical product on the market (Though, Bushiroad Singapore handles the English side of things).
Cardfight Vanguard EX will release in September 2019 via Japanese markets and will be region free. So if you can read moonrunes, then grab a copy of the Playstation 4 copy or Switch copy via worldwide games exporter Play-Asia. Both editions of the game come with an exclusive version of the card “Exculpate the Blaster” from the V series card game. If you want to try your skills at reading more about Cardfight Vanguard EX, then you can try the official website by FuRyu or just stick to the small bits of information that’ll appear on the English Cardfight Wiki page. And just keep up hope that someone decides to do an Asian release with English translation, or just learn Japanese instead.