Shikihime Garden, also known as The Garden of Shikihime, is a combination of card battle and garden building simulation wrapped in a free-to-play experience for your browser. Set in a special Japanese setting, the game takes place in a fantasy world harassed by monsters and focuses on a unique garden that survived the rampage of evils for mysterious reasons. As owners of the mystic garden, you enter an unusual experience of helping Shikihime, beautiful and valiant female warriors, battle monsters while sheltering them in your garden.
Shikihime Garden walks you through a tutorial introducing everything fundamental from Shikihime enhancement and deck building to practical card battle and management of a garden. By that you can get the hang of the core contents which can be categorized into two major parts, card battle and garden management.
Card-based Shikihime Battle
Shikihime come in the form of cards in the game. With an initial deck you can participate in battles conquering the various monster seized locations on maps. To start a battle you can take up to 10 cards of which five will randomly show up in hand and inflict damages in turns on monster cards. A battle usually consists of three or four rounds with tougher enemies in later waves and bosses at the last. And if any cards in the hand are defeated, new ones in the deck will automatically be swapped in to fill the slot.
In every battle Shikihime launch attack based on their base stats in attack, defense and agility. Combined with their weapons, it makes distinguished battle style, despite the lack of animated battle scenes, for every warrior. They hack and slash with sword or axe, deal damage with arrows or magic, or skip attack to heal teammates. You win a battle by killing all enemies and earn a variety of items from victory including new cards, décors, potion, medicine, tickets and guidance books, just to name a few. And these rewards can be used to enhance favorite cards and decorate the garden up.
Among those rewards, you will get many low level Shikihime and monster cards after you defeat them. You can combine those unwanted to boost the stats of your favorite and once you hit Lv.5 you can fuse monster cards to create a greater card via the unity feature. In addition to combining cards you can also purchase and use items for enhancement, which cost a lot silver or gold, the premium currency though. You can directly purchase Shikihime packs – pay more and get rarer cards.
You start with single-player campaigns combating against monsters. A map consists of different color-coded nodes that indicate the difficulty from the standard to challenging. As you level up you may need to re-conquer a level with tougher enemies and gradually unlock dungeons, group-based battles and so on. The higher is the risk, the greater is the reward.
Casual and Interactive Garden Building
Between battles you manage a garden where you heal your wounded Shikihime and train them and customize the little niche with houses and décors step by step.
In the garden you can recover the health of Shikihime after a battle to the full by feeding them rice balls and let them have some casual fun like chatting and walking around leisurely there to keep good mood. And you also harvest rice balls, medicines and other items helpful in strengthening warriors from the different structures you place there. Other than the practical use, garden is a place of beauty. You can use a plethora of ornaments that are used a lot in Japanese horticulture including ponds, pavilions, sakula petals, pebbles, sedge mats, plants and flowers and more.
Shikihime Garden is developed by Appirits, an indie Japanese developers that created the strategy battle game Einherja – The Viking’s Blood. With the new title, Appirits continues its exploration of localizing Japanese culture-themed games into the western market but provides a new hybrid experience for casual players.