It does a great job of using nostalgia to move the player throughout every season of Yugioh, and it also explains the newer mechanics if someone fell out of the series at one point.
The Draft and Sealed play is a fun alternative to playing the campaign, though there isn't much variety in the cards you can play with.
All the story decks you're supposed to use and play against are awful, there is absolutely NO balancing, making every story game either frustratingly impossible or stupid easy.
Unless you use your own deck that is, but obtaining cards for the decks is just as asinine.
I played Yugioh for probably more than half my life, at least 10 years, and for a long time I really liked it. I watched the show, I played the video games, and I collected my body weight in cards and then some. But after a while, I sorta grew out of the game. I think it was a combination of just finding Magic the Gathering more entertaining, and also because the game had this strange need to add a new game mechanic every time the show entered a new season. I didn’t hate a lot of the new mechanics but when they introduced Pendulum Monsters, I flat out stopped playing the game.
Then Legacy of the Duelist came out, surprisingly on Ps4 and XboxOne for digital download. The premise of the game is that it sorta abridges the entire story of Yugioh, Gx, 5D’s Zexal, and Arc V (or at least what’s out of Arc V) and you duel through all, or most of the iconic duels in the various shows using either your own deck, or a deck that resembles the deck used at that point in the story.
HERE ARE THE THINGS LEGACY OF THE DUELIST DOES WELL
One of the things I really liked about old school Yugioh was that the game was relatively simple, or at least the concept was. It had it’s share of complexities but it was playable and not that hard to learn. Legacy of the Duelist does a great job of recreating the old classic matches from the show, letting the player use decks and cards that by today’s standards would be completely obsolete or not worth using, but in this setting, they’re somewhat viable. It’s this nostalgic feeling of classic Yugioh that I liked about it.
Also, at first there’s a draft and sealed play. In draft play, its basically like a draft in any format, you pick a single card from a pack, then you get a pack with one less card, and so on. It’s a pretty neat system to have in a video game. My only problem is that there only appears to be 2 or 3 packs in the rotation, it would be more interesting with 5 or 6. Sealed play is much simpler, you basically get a random 45 card deck, you can edit it down and start playing. After 5 games, if you win at least 3, you get a prize of points (I think) to spend on packs and draft/sealed games.
Legacy of the Duelist also has the most cards out of any Yugioh video game with over 6000 cards. With that being said, obtaining cards is…less than ideal. Which brings me to the next segment-
HERE ARE THE MANY THINGS WRONG WITH LEGACY OF THE DUELIST
I like to think most people who played Yugioh also watched the show. Legacy of the Duelist does an amazing job of recreating all the bullshit that appears in the show, like the protagonists pulling out cards we’ve never heard of or seen before at the last moment, or doing stupid shit like having a monster attack the moon, so the water on the field would disappear. Hell, in Season 3 the main character literally got the magical ability to cheat!
In an attempt to recreate the iconic duels the show had, they took cards from what appeared in that episode, and made a piss poor excuse for a deck out of that. I cannot emphasize enough how badly unbalanced the story decks are, there was no thought put into them other than “the deck needs this card”. Both of the story decks you can use and your opponents use are stupidly unbalanced which results in two possible duels. One ends with your opponent getting a ridiculously powerful set up, and you have no chance at coming back, or you get a powerful start and there’s no challenge to it. I got to the final duel of Yugi vs the Pharaoh at the end of the original Yugioh, and there was no challenge at all, it was over in 5 minutes. There is absolutely NO balancing with any of these decks and it’s incredibly frustrating.
The other thing that really bothers me about this game is obtaining cards. As you progress through the story you unlock booster packs designed around the characters (implying that it’s cards that character uses) and currency you can use to buy those packs. But here’s the thing, the booster packs don’t actual represent the character, they represent that part of the series. Like the Mai Valentine is a character who uses Harpy Lady cards so you would think the Mai booster pack has Harpy Lady cards, and to be fair it does, but it also has dinosaur cards and insect cards from two other minor characters who showed up around that time in the show.
All of the booster packs are like this and you only get 8 cards per booster pack, and opening packs is a slow process! Not to mention it doesn’t notify you in any way if the card is new to you or how close you are to completing this set. So if there’s a specific archetype of card you want to get, like Blue Eyes White Dragons, you just have to keep buying Kaiba packs until you MAYBE get the cards you need. It’s frankly an ordeal to try and get the cards you need. You can get more selective cards through drafting and sealed play, but it’s based around individual draft and sealed play sets so you won’t get cards from specific characters this way. It’s almost like buying packs in real life! Only now you can get duplicate cards in a single pack and there’s no internet to buy specific cards you need.
So to summarize, the pre built decks are unbalanced beyond what you can possibly imagine, like having 3 copies of every piece of Exodia, and 3 Graceful charities in your deck-unbalanced. Also, if you want to make your own deck, getting cards for it is asinine. It is not a fun process to do either of these things in any way. I should mention, if you duel against a specific person in the story mode, you get a signature card, and a few extras, but I’ve found this isn’t a reliable way to get cards.
I want to say this is one of those games where it’s badly designed but kinda charming, but it’s hardly charming. The best thing Legacy of the Duelist has going for it is the nostalgic factor, but if the designers had put even a LITTLE thought into building the decks you’re supposed to use throughout the story, the game would be 100% more playable.
I didn’t really get a chance to touch on the graphics and music. Visually, it’s not bad, some of the iconic monster cards have little pop out animations for when they attack creatures, but it’s never really clear which or why certain monsters get this. The music is nothing to brag about, I mostly played with the sound off after I heard a few tracks and learned the game wasn’t voice acted.
It’s still…kinda fun, mostly because of the nostalgia, but it’s only gonna appeal to Yugioh fans, it’s not something someone new to the game would enjoy by any means. I honestly don’t know how to rate the game. It’s BAD by any way you look at it, but I’m still playing it! I guess if you like Yugioh, check it out, there’s a free demo, if not, don’t go anywhere near this game.