Marvel Snap January season update adds friend battles

The latest season of Marvel Snap travels to the Savage Land and adds some highly requested features.


Marvel Snap has a late Christmas gift for its player base. A new season is underway, taking players into the Savage Land. On top of adding new cards and shaking up the meta, the mobile hit is getting some new features. This includes one of its most notable launch omissions: friend battles. Battle Mode will finally allow players to clash with their friends and in a way that's different from ranked PvP matches.

"Battle Mode sees two players play multiple games against each other with the same deck," Associate Design Director Kent-Erik Hagman said in the January season overview. "You and another player will use a code in order to match up and play against each other. Each player starts with 10 Health. The loser of each game will lose Health equal to the value of the Cube. So, if you play a 4-Cube game, the loser is going to walk away with four less Health. This means you need to be very smart and strategic about when to snap the Cube or when to cut your losses and retreat, so you don't lose too much Health."

Hagman adds that there are no ties in Battle Mode, so clashes will roll at a quick pace. While ranked matches basically pit players against random decks, friend battles will see players use the same deck. This opens the door to additional strategy, as friends will quickly become familiar with one another's key cards and win conditions.

Marvel Snap - Zabu overview

Source: Second Dinner

The Savage Land update will also introduce some new cards that dig deeper into that side of Marvel lore. Here are a few cards that were revealed during Monday's video reveal:

  • (3) Zabu (2) - Ongoing: Your 4-cost cards cost 2 less. (minimum 1)
  • (3) Sauron (3) - On Reveal: Remove the abilities for all Ongoing cards in your hand and deck.
  • (4) Shanna The She-Devil (2) - On Reveal: Add a random 1-Cost card to each location.
  • (4) Dazzler (4) - Ongoing: If you have 4 cards at each location, +6 Power.
  • (4) Shadow King (3) - On Reveal: Set all cards here to their original base Power.

New locations include:

  • Eternity Range: After turn 3, add a Rock to the losing player's side.
  • Plunder Castle: Only cards that cost 6 can be played here.
  • Collapsed Mine: Fill this location with Rocks. Skip a turn to destroy your Rocks.
  • Rickety Bridge: After each turn, if there is more than one card here, destroy them.
  • Altar of Death: When you play a card here, destroy it to get +2 Energy next turn.

As is the case each season, some of the new cards will be available exclusively through the Battle Pass for the first month. Zabu, specifically, can be unlocked at Level 1 with a new variant available at Level 50. Premium pass purchases cost $9.99 USD.

Marvel Snap is a big hit and a favorite here at Shacknews. Over the holiday break, it earned honors for Best Strategy Game and the Modojo @ Shacknews Mobile Game of the Year. It also finished high on our list for overall Game of the Year. This looks to be just the beginning for the game, as Second Dinner has a substantial development roadmap laid out for the year ahead.

The Marvel Snap January 2023 season is underway. Climb the ranks or play with friends. In-between games, we'll make sure to keep following what's next for the mobile phenomenon. Keep it on Shacknews for further updates.

Senior Editor

Ozzie has been playing video games since picking up his first NES controller at age 5. He has been into games ever since, only briefly stepping away during his college years. But he was pulled back in after spending years in QA circles for both THQ and Activision, mostly spending time helping to push forward the Guitar Hero series at its peak. Ozzie has become a big fan of platformers, puzzle games, shooters, and RPGs, just to name a few genres, but he’s also a huge sucker for anything with a good, compelling narrative behind it. Because what are video games if you can't enjoy a good story with a fresh Cherry Coke?

From The Chatty
  • reply
    January 3, 2023 6:00 AM

    Ozzie Mejia posted a new article, Marvel Snap January season update adds friend battles

    • reply
      January 3, 2023 12:11 PM

      I grinded a bit after finding a deck composition that didn't feel like it was completely at the mercy of RNG luck, made it up to rank 50 for the season that just ended.

      Friend battle sounds interesting, the overall lack of social functions seems a bit strange for a modern mobile game

      • reply
        January 3, 2023 1:27 PM

        You can absolutely climb with an RNG deck, that's what the snap mechanic is for

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