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Partial Disney Lorcana rules leak, new details on how the Magic competitor works

Brief details were mailed to subscribers of Game Trade Magazine a little early

Disney Lorcana art (not card) for confirmed character Mickey Mouse (as the Sorceror’s Apprentice) Image: Ravensburger
Charlie Hall is Polygon’s tabletop editor. In 10-plus years as a journalist & photographer, he has covered simulation, strategy, and spacefaring games, as well as public policy.

An introduction to the rules of Disney Lorcana, the new trading card game from Ravensburger, have leaked a little early as part of Game Trade Magazine’s May cover story. Issue #279, like all other issues of GTM, is intended to be read by an audience of independent retailers, but the multi-page product snapshot answers a few looming questions about the highly-ancitipated new game. Here’s what we know.

Disney Lorcana is an exciting new collectible trading card game (TCG) featuring glimmers of Disney characters who appear in both familiar and reimagined forms,” reads the beginning of the advertisement. “Developed by Ravensburger, Disney Lorcana is designed to be accessible and welcoming for newcomers to TCGs while still offering strategic depth and challenges for experienced players.”

A Mickey Mouse card from Disney Lorcana. The number 8 is in the top left corner. Next to Mickey’s name, there is a 5 on a circular background and a 5 on a shield-shaped background. A red banner under Mickey’s name says “Dreamborn - Hero.” The main card text reads: “Evasive (Only characters with Evasive can challenge this character.)” There are four diamond shapes in the bottom right of the card.
Monday’s rules leak explains nearly all of the symbology on the Disney Lorcana cards, including attack and defense value (both five here) and the lore value, represented by the diamond shapes, which is four on this card. We also know that this card can be converted into ink, since it has a circle around its casting cost — which is eight ink.
Image: Ravensburger, Disney

According to the copy, players (called illumineers) are racing to be the first to gather 20 lore. Each illumineer begins with seven cards in their hand, each drawn from a personal 60-card deck. Beginning with the first round of play, illumineers take cards from their hand to create a pool of ink, the game’s energy resource. Like land in Magic: The Gathering, ink is then used to summon creatures and to cast spells. Decks are each composed of no more than two colors of ink, and can be purchased as pre-constructed starter decks.

“All cards have an ink cost,” the ad continues, “that can be paid with the ink in your inkwell. The more cards you have in your inkwell, the more powerful cards you can play and the more you can do.”

Lore — Disney Lorcana’s stand-in for life or hit points — is generated by sending characters on quests. By “exerting” these characters (turning them sideways on the table) players will earn their value in lore, which is represented by small diamond-shaped icons on the bottom half of the card.

Once characters have been exerted in this way, other players can then challenge those characters with their own. The characters involved in these challenges both take damage in the exchange, and once a character’s willpower value has been exceeded they are banished — that is, removed from the game.

This may sound like a big leak, but in actuality it’s quite slim. Much of the finer points of gameplay go unremarked upon. For instance, it’s unclear how challenging a character impacts their ability to generate lore. The ad copy glosses over multiple types of cards, as well as the rules for building decks, and even the finer points of how ink is generated. It does mention an introductory series of in-store events lasting 12 weeks, as well as the fact that playmats, card sleeves, and card portfolios will all be part of the launch product lineup.

Expect more information on Disney Lorcana here at Polygon in the lead-up to this summer’s big launch at Gen Con.

Update: Following the publication of this article, a representative of Ravensburger reached out to clarify that the weekly in-store event series was given the wrong name in the Game Trade Magazine advertisement. We have adjusted the original article to remove that name.

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