The Lorcana TCG ‘The First Chapter’ starter deck: Amber and Amethyst is slow but persistent.
Magical sorcerers of Amethyst conjure up cards from deck and discard piles. Amber contributes to this too but also has the ability to heal.
This starter deck contains 60 cards from the Amber and Amethyst glimmers. There are a total of 29 Amber cards and 31 Amethyst cards.
Full Card List:
Characters: 2x Ariel – On Human Legs, 2x Cinderella – Gentle And Kind, 1x Dr. Facilier – Agent Provocateur, 2x Dr. Facilier – Charlatan, 1x Flotsam – Ursula’s Spy, 1x Hades – Lord of the Underworld, 2x Heihei – Boat Snack, 2x Jafar – Wicked Sorcerer, 2x Jetsam – Ursula’s Spy, 3x Magic Broom – Bucket Brigade, 2x Maleficent – Sorceress, 2x Maximus – Relentless Pursuer, 3x Mickey Mouse – True Friend, 1x Mickey Mouse – Wayward Sorcerer, 3x Minnie Mouse – Beloved Princess, 1x Moana – of Motunui, 3x Olaf – Friendly Snowman, 2x Pascal – Rapunzel’s Companion, 3x Rafiki – Mysterious Sage, 3x Stitch – New Dog, 1x Sven – Official Ice Deliverer, 3x The Wardrobe – Belle’s Confidant, 2x Yzma – Alchemist.
Actions: 2x Be Our Guest, 2x Control Your Temper, 3x Friends On The Other Side, 2x Hakuna Matata, 1x Part of Your World.
Items: 3x Dinglehopper
The focus of this deck is card draw and recycling cards. There are several characters that can do this. Maleficent – Sorceress and Hades – Lord Of The Underworld are great examples.
Dr. Facilier – Agent Provocateur and Mickey Mouse – Wayward Sorcerer allow you to bounce a character back to your hand when they are challenged and banished with the latter is more specifically on your Broom characters. One of those Broom characters (and the only one in the game so far) being Magic Broom – Bucket Brigade, which allows you to shuffle a card from any discard pile back into that player’s deck. If your opponent has played anything to allow them to see what their next card is then this ability is great for a little control.
There are several cheap options in Stitch – New Dog, Pascal – Rapunzel’s Companion, Olaf – Friendly Snowman and Heihei – Boat Snack with each bringing something different to the table. These are useful to play early on while you load up your inkwell each turn.
There are a number of princess characters in this deck. Cinderella – Gentle And Kind is versatile. Firstly she can quest for two lore. She also has a decent Willpower of five. She does have the Singer 5 keyword and although there are no songs of this value in this starter deck, it is certainly a useful trait to have (outside of the starters) being able to play a card for cheaper than its printed value. For the cost of 4 ink she is worth getting to the table. She is an inkable card too should you need that as an option. If you are in a tight spot, her ability “A Wonderful Dream” can remove up to three damage from a chosen princess character and with a total of eight princesses in the deck (and ways to return banished characters) there’s a fair chance of pulling this off.
When Moana – Of Motunui quests you can ready ALL of your other princess characters. Although they won’t be able to quest for the rest of this turn this can be big, particularly if you have several of them in play. This is when your healing cards will come in handy should you decide to challenge.
The Amethyst glimmer in general is good for card draw. Partnered with Amber, the songs in this starter deck are pretty solid.
Friends On The Other Side is a really good action/song and is often found in many Amethyst builds. Drawing two cards can really get you out of a tight spot, especially if you are top decking and need some options.
Be Our Guest essentially lets you sift through and cherry pick a character by letting you look at the top four cards of your deck. You may reveal a character and add it to your hand. Choose wisely though as the remaining cards will have to go to the bottom of your deck and you will unlikely see them for the rest of the game. There are 47 character cards in the deck so you would be pretty unfortunate not to see a single character playing this card.
Part of Your World allows you to recycle a character card from your discard back to your hand. Whether you want to play that character again after it was banished or to simply ink it, this song gives you options. Unlike Friends On The Other Side or Be Our Guest, this is not a random draw as you can pick a specific (character) card.
This deck has the least amount of items compared to the other starter sets. Dinglehopper is a cheap healing card and by exerting, you can heal up to one damage from a chosen character. Outside of the starter decks, there are some much better healing cards and against a more aggressive deck this card won’t seem worth having. For the cost of one ink though it seems a “fair” card and could just help keep a character around for a little longer.
Combos / Synergy
Maleficent – Sorceress has an ability which allows you to draw a card when played. Any character like this with an on-play ability is worth using to sing songs later in the game as their lore value is generally low and you will have already benefited from their on-play ability. The best use for these type of characters however is to challenge. If they are banished themselves there are ways to get them back to your hand and make use of their on-play ability again. For example, Hades – Lord Of The Underworld has the on-play ability to return a character from your discard pile to your hand.
As mentioned previously, resetting your Princess characters with Moana – Of Motunui can really swing a game and utilising Cinderella – Gentle And Kind on top of this will allow you to get extra value out of some of your characters.
Out of the three ‘First Chapter’ starter decks, Amber and Amethyst contains the least amount of non-inkables with a total number of seven. Too many non-inkables in a deck will clog your hand but this seems like a fair number.
There are no ways to get extra ink down during your turn so you will need to play at a fairly slow but persistent pace.
As there are a number of cheap characters here, you can start building a board fairly quickly while you proceed through the game inking each turn waiting to play your bigger characters.
Card draw and recycling characters is your main focus. Don’t be afraid to lose your own characters at times especially if it means banishing your opponents as there are ways to get them back.
Utilise your healing cards and character resets to get the most value out of them.
Aim to ink every turn. You will have a greater chance with the extra cards you are drawing. Early on, make use of the cheaper characters while eventually building up to the bigger plays.
This deck has ways to remove damage and so it is beneficial to banish a character outright so they don’t have time to heal and keep characters around longer than they should. Having said that, they also have ways to recycle cards from their discard pile. This is a bit of a contradiction in itself as the player will want to make use of recycling cards but will also want to utilise the healing options that Amber brings.
You will need to see how the game goes and what path your opponent chooses before deciding how you want to approach who to challenge. For example if there are a load of princess characters down then you will want to focus on taking Moana – Of Motunui out to avoid them resetting characters.
Keeping a constant check on the board state and what is being played is important playing against this deck. This is also a good way to approach playing Lorcana TCG or any card game for that matter.