Trading Card Game Rules

This article explains the rules for the Aria's Tale TCG, a trading card game based on Aria's Tale.


Aria's Tale TCG is a simple and fun way to experience the art and lore of the Aria's Tale universe.

The game is recommended for 2-8 players, although it's possible to play with more players. A two-player game typically takes ten to twenty minutes, while an eight-player game will take significantly more time.

Besides the simple rule system, unique narrative universe, and multiplayer support, other notable features of Aria's Tale TCG in contrast with popular trading card games include:

  1. It can be played with household items such as a standard poker deck.
  2. It has a lower cost of play: A deck can be as small as a single card.
  3. It's fully open source!


Gameplay involves two steps:

  1. Setup
  2. Turn-by-turn play until a game-ending condition is reached


A minimal setup involves a six-sided die and one playing deck per player. A playing deck can be a standard deck or a custom deck.

Setup occurs in three steps:

  1. Players prepare decks
  2. Players roll to draw
  3. Players determine turn order

Optionally, players may want to bring four of their own six-sided dice, so they can roll their own dice. Many cards use a d20 approximation which involves four six-sided dice.

Preparing Standard Decks

A standard deck works by using a 52-card poker deck without jokers and comparing those cards to the Standard Deck Tables.

A 52-card deck can be shared between multiple players. A recommended approach is to have players roll for choice order and then choose by suit, then discard any undesired cards from their own suit. This way, if two players share a deck then they will each have a deck of up to 26 cards and if four players share then their decks might be as many as thirteen cards.

Players can also combine standard poker decks to build a standard deck larger than 52 cards. Be sure to review the notes on preparing a custom deck if you choose this approach, and note that numbered cards are always stereotypical cards in a standard deck.

Preparing a Custom Deck

A custom deck works by assembling a deck of between one and ninety-nine playing cards. Stereotypical cards may be duplicated while other cards must be unique within the deck.

Players are allowed to include standard poker cards in their custom deck.

Rolling to Draw

After player decks are prepared, players then each roll

Game-Ending Conditions

Turn order is determined in the setup step and there are three game-ending conditions:

  1. A game can be ended by field domination, in which case a player is identified as a winner.
  2. A game can be ended by natural stalemate, in which case multiple players are identified as winners.
  3. A game can be ended by card effect, in which the winners, if any, are identified by the card(s) trigger the ending.

Standard Deck Tables

A player using a standard deck can only select a single standard deck. Standard decks cannot be mixed. A player must declare which standard deck table they will use before rolling to draw begins.