Disney Lorcana: A Complete Guide to the Trading Card Game

by | Sep 5, 2023 | Magic at Home, Multimedia

A complete guide to the Disney Lorcana trading card game, including how to play it, where to shop for it, and everything else you need to know.

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It’s finally here! Fans have been eagerly awaiting the release of Disney Lorcana, a new trading card game that allows players to wield magic to summon Disney characters. The new trading cards offer gorgeous artwork and exciting opportunities for fans of trading card games and Disney alike. We’re sharing your guide to what exactly Disney Lorcana is, where to shop for it, and how to play it.

Jump ahead to learn everything you need to know about the new Disney Lorcana trading game.

What is Disney Lorcana?

Disney Lorcana is a new trading card game set in the realm of Lorcana. There, players can take on the role of Illumineers, where they can wield magic ink to “summon a team of Disney characters known as glimmers, who appear in both familiar and fantastical ways.”

Whether you’re a trading card game newbie or an expert, Disney Lorcana was designed for you! The game is easy to learn but also offers a depth of strategy that experienced card players will adore. The cards also feature more than 200 original pieces of Disney art, which have already made them a hugely popular collectible for collectors.

As of now, there are several different ways you can purchase and experience Disney Lorcana:

  • Three Starter Decks: Each includes a ready-to-play game deck as well as quick start rules. Additionally, each includes game tokens, a lore counter, and a randomized booster pack.
  • Booster Packs: Each booster pack comes with 12 randomized game cards, including one foil card and two cards with rarities of rare, super rare, or legendary.
  • Gift Set: The gift set includes two collectible oversized foil cards and two playable foil game cards in addition to game tokens and four booster packs
  • Illumineer’s Trover: This collectible set includes a full-art storage box, two full-art deck boxes, eight booster packs, a premium player’s guide, and damage counters.

Along with these card sets and booster packs, there are also accessories you can purchase, including themed playmats, card sleeves, and portable card portfolios. Another way to keep track of your cards is through the Disney Lorcana mobile app, where you can keep track of your cards and even add a “wish list” of cards you are hoping to add to your deck.

Where to Shop for Disney Lorcana

Disney Lorcana is available at both local game stores and larger retailers. If you want to shop locally, there’s an easy way to do it! Disney Lorcana has created a local game story locator where you can put in your location and find the closest store that’s carrying them. 

These are the online retailers where you can shop as well:

How to Play Disney Lorcana

In Disney Lorcana, you will take on the role of an Illumineer, with the power to wield magical ink to summon glimmers of Disney characters. Together with your team of glimmers, you will race against other players to collect lore. The first player to reach 20 lore wins. Now, while those are the basic logistics behind the game, there is certainly more to it than just that.

Disney Lorcana has set up a website with a helpful series of videos on how exactly to set up your gameplay, along with how to play, which are available to view here. However, we’re going to take you through it step by step here as well to get started.


Photo Courtesy of Disney Lorcana

Setting Up a Game

Each player will need their own 60-card game to play with. To begin, you’ll shuffle your deck and then draw seven cards. While you can look at your cards, you cannot look at your opponents. Additionally, you will need a way to keep track of your “lore,” which are the trackable points that ultimately determine who wins. To do this, you can use a lore tracker which is included in some starter decks, or any other method you wish. From there, place damage counters nearby, and then randomly choose which player will go first.

Parts of a Card

There are certain parts of a card you’ll need to know to begin. These include the cost, inkwell icon, character name, classifications, ink, abilities, and effects. The cost is how much ink the card costs to play. The Inkwell icon is a gold symbol that can be found around the cost of some cards. Cards with this symbol can be put into your inkwell to use as ink.


Photo Courtesy of Disney Lorcana

On the card, you will also be able to find the character name (as you will find different variations of classic characters), their classification, and a symbol that indicates the card’s ink type. These are classified as Amber, Emerald, Sapphire, Amethyst, Ruby, and Steel. You can also determine their Lore Value, Willpower, Strength, and their Rarity.

Taking a Turn

Each Disney Lorcana turn is done in two parts. On your turn, you will first:

  1. READY: Ready your cards by turning them upright
  2. SET: Check for effects that happen at the start of your turn, and then follow their instructions.
  3. DRAW: Draw a card from the top of your deck (the first player will skip this on their first turn).

Once per each turn, you can put a card facedown into your inkwell to pay the costs of cards you play from your hand.Additionally, you can take any of these actions below any number of times:

  • Play a card.
  • Use a character ability that doesn’t require them to exert (see below for the definition of “exerting”)
  • Use an item ability.
  • Take an action with a character that’s been in play since the start of your turn. This includes a quest or challenging an opponent’s exerted character.

Turning Cards

When you’ve “used” a card (a.k.a. used an ability or feature from the card), you’ll keep track of that by keeping it turned sideways. This is something the official site references as “exerting the card.” Once the card is again ready to use, you can turn it upright.

Playing a Card

Playing a card means taking it from your hand and putting it face up on the table. Each card has an ink cost that you’ll find in the upper left corner — to play that card, you’ll need to exert that many cards in your inkwell.

Character Card: When you play a character card, you’ll put it on the table above your inkwell. Characters enter in the ready position but will not be able to do anything until the next turn.
Item Card: When you play an item card, you can use it right away.
Action Card: When you play an action card, do what the card tells you to do, then put the card face up into your discard pile.
Song Cards: Songs are a kind of action card, but with a special rule that gives you another way to pay for them. Each song will say something along the lines of “(A character with cost X or more can {E} to sing this song for free.)” If you have a character with the listed cost or higher, you can exert that character to play the song card instead of exerting cards in your inkwell to do it! Just keep in mind that rules for when you can exert a character still apply, so characters won’t be able to sing songs the same turn they come into play.

disney lorcana

Photo Courtesy of Disney Lorcana

Questing and Challenging

Questing: To quest with one of your characters, you’ll need to exert them and gain lore equal to their lore value.
Challenging: You’ll need to quest to win the game, but challenging comes in when you need to slow your opponent down. To do so, exert one of your characters to send them into the challenge. Then choose your opponent’s exerted character to challenge (note that their character MUST be exerted). Look at the strength of each character, and put that many damage counters on their character.

Ending the Game

The first player to gain 20 lore or more wins. If your deck runs out of cards, you lose the next time that you need to draw a card.

Quick Start Guide

Want a full quick start guide? You can download one from Disney Lorcana by clicking here.


Posts by Morgan Flaherty

Morgan is the Staff Editor for WDW Magazine. A lifelong Disney fan, her dream day involves just about anything to do with Animal Kingdom. Along with several years of experience writing about Disney, Morgan has also written as a contributing writer for Well + Good, Scary Mommy, Brit + Co, and Baby Chick.

Authored by
Morgan Flaherty

Morgan is the Staff Editor for WDW Magazine. A lifelong Disney fan, her dream day involves just about anything to do with Animal Kingdom. Along with several years of experience writing about Disney, Morgan has also written as a contributing writer for Well + Good, Scary Mommy, Brit + Co, and Baby Chick.
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