Scrolls is set to be a collectible card game with board game-esque element. Players will build decks of 'scrolls' and use spells and summons to battle against their opponents.
Jakob Porser is the lead designer and Penny Arcade's Jerry Holkins is working with Mojang on developing the story. The available cards will change constantly as new packs are released, and players will be required to adapt with the changes and build new decks accordingly.
The playing area will resemble a chess board, with a grid laid out on which to implement your scrolls. The object of the game is to attack your opponent, and bring his or her health down to zero.
Scrolls can be used to attack or defend -- however, they are dispensable in action, as destroying your opponent's units will not directly harm your opponent. Hence, the idea is to break through his or her line of defense and attack their "king," in terms of chess.
Players will shuffle their decks at the beginning of each game, and so will have no idea what order the cards will come out in. At the start of each turn, one new scroll is lifted from the deck and placed in your hand, ready for use on the battlefield.
A single-player campaign will be included, allowing players the opportunity to build up their decks and learn the ins and outs of the game.
However, the main focus will be on the online multiplayer aspects. Players will battle one on one against each other, with both friendly and ranked matches available.
Mojang are hoping to hold huge online world championships for the game, and are currently looking for a big sponsor for the league.
Other than battling, players will also be able to visit the online auction house, where they can buy or sell cards to and from other players.
Apparently Jakob Porser and Minecraft creator Markus Persson had already brainstormed the idea of Scolls five year ago.
A private alpha build is planned, and will be made available later this year. The opportunity to join the alpha will be offered to a number of people who bought the original Minecraft alpha. An open beta is then planned. Neither the alpha or beta builds will cost money, and will instead help the Mojang team to balance the cards and determine how the online play will work. Only the multiplayer elements will be available in these builds.