How To Use Character Cards In Disney Lorcana

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  • How To Play Character Cards
  • Challenging With Characters

One of the most exciting aspects of Disney Lorcana is seeing which characters you’ll be able to summon to help you out. With Simba, Goofy, or Rapunzel on your side, your opponent won’t know what hit them as you rack up that lore and keep your opponents’ own forces at bay.



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Character cards are some of the most important in all of Lorcana, and if you want to come out of a game successful, you’ll need to learn how they work. Whether you’re challenging, questing, or just want their abilities in a pinch, here’s everything you need to know about character cards.

What Are Character Cards

Triton, Lilo, and Kronk cards from Disney Lorcana

Characters, alongside items and actions, are one of the three main card types in Disney Lorcana. As they name suggests, they represent characters from Disney movies who you’ve summoned to help you out.

There are a few things that make a character card unique. The first is that it is the only type of card that has two numbers in the centre-right, its Strength and its Willpower. Strength defines how much damage a character deals when it is challenging, while Willpower is how much damage it can take before it is challenged.

Simba, Protective Cub's Characteristics in Disney Lorcana

Immediately underneath this, there is a small bar with various characteristics listed, such as Storyborn, Floodborn, Dreamborn, Ally, Hero, Villain, Queen, King, or Mentor. Characteristics don’t have an immediate effect on the game, though cards may have effects that only apply to a specific characteristic, such as Mickey Mouse, Wayward Sorcerer allowing you to return cards to your hand if a card with the Broom characteristic is banished.

Mickey Mouse, Wayward Sorcerer and its ability box in Disney Lorcana

To the right of the abilities box, there will usually be a number of diamond-shaped pips in a line. This is that character’s Lore Value, or how much lore it makes when it quests. Not every character has a Lore Value, though – those with the Reckless keyword, like Gaston, won’t have one.

How To Play Character Cards

Pongo, Ol' Rascal and its Ink Cost

Character cards are played the same way as almost any other Lorcana card: by paying ink.

In the top-left corner of the card, there is a number surrounded by a hexagon shape. This is the card’s cost. To play that card, you’ll need to turn that number of ink cards in your Inkwell 90 degrees, exerting them. Once you’ve exerted ink, it can’t be used to pay for anything else that turn.

Many characters can be placed from your hand into your Inkwell. If the card has a larger circular icon surrounding its cost, it can be placed there and used to pay for other cards. However, there are no ways to return cards from the Inkwell once placed there, so be careful about which cards you ink and which ones you keep.

The big difference between characters and other types of card is that characters need their ‘ink to dry’ before they can be used. This means a character has been played can’t be exerted the same turn it entered play, whether that be to quest, challenge, or activate any of its abilities. Your characters must have been out at the beginning of your turn at least once before they can exert.

Stitch, Rock Star shifting onto Stitch, Carefree Surfer in Disney Lorcana

Certain characters also have the Shift mechanic, which allows you to play it for a lower cost on top of a character already in play with the same main name. For instance, by paying four ink rather than six, you can Shift Stitch, Rock Star onto Stitch, Carefree Surfer. This turns Stitch into Rock Star, complete with its stats and abilities, while also retaining things like the damage Carefree Surfer picked up, whether its ink has dried, and whether it has already been exerted that turn.

Questing With Characters

Maui questing in Disney Lorcana

Characters are the most important types of card in Lorcana, as they’re your primary way of generating Lore. If you’re able to generate 20 lore before your opponent, you win the game. Therefore, having multiple characters out and questing every turn if possible is essential to victory.

To quest, you must exert a character. When you do so, you add the amount of lore equal to that character’s Lore Value – Donald Duck, Strutting His Stuff, for example, has a Lore Value of two, meaning it makes two lore whenever it quests.

Though questing is essential to winning, it also puts your characters in danger. Any exerted character can be challenged by your opponent’s characters, potentially banishing them in the process. It’s important to not overextend when questing and keep some characters who are able to challenge your opponent’s forces, or protect your own with keywords like Bodyguard.

Challenging With Characters

Gaston challenging Kronk in Disney Lorcana

As mentioned, characters can only challenge other characters if they’re exerted. This means while you can’t prevent a character from questing at least once through challenging, you can prevent them from doing it again by hitting them when they’re exerted.

When a character Challenges, it deals damage to the exerted creature equal to its Strength. This damage will then remain on the exerted creature, until it is either removed by a card effect, or the total amount of damage exceeds that character’s Willpower.

When damage exceeds Willpower, that character is banished, and is moved to its controller’s discard pile. It is, effectively, removed from play and can no longer do anything.

Character Abilities

Iago, Aladdin, and Hercules in Lorcana

The final way you can use character cards is with their abilities. These are found in the main text box at the bottom of the card, and can roughly be split into two types.

The first are abilities that don’t require you to do anything to use them. These may activate in response to a game event, such as the Challenger keyword activating when the character challenges, or they may just always be in effect, like the Bodyguard keyword. All of these abilities still apply even if the character is exerted.

When playing with character abilities, it’s important not to accidentally exert characters with abilities you could need later on, unless you are out of options or don’t need that ability until your next turn.

Some, however, require you to manually activate them. These will require some sort of payment, like paying an amount of ink, or exerting the character. These kinds of abilities are rarer, but can be game-changing: Iago, Loud-Mouthed Parrot can exert to force a character to challenge rather than quest the next turn, while Tinker Bell, Tiny Tactician can exert to let you draw a card, then discard a card.

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