The Disney Lorcana marketing team announced that Lorcana decks could only use up to two different ink types during deck construction. Credit goes to Nive’s Nerd Corner for this exciting news in his video (! This surprise reveal is unique because we don’t have access to the game rules to understand what this means for players. Without a sense of direction for gameplay, it can be challenging to gauge how valuable this information is. We have already seen people flock to social media to post their thoughts and responses to the news. Today I want to write out some of my thoughts and parse what this means for Lorcana players.

First, I want to talk about deck construction in trading card games. Without knowing the size of a Lorcana deck, the news from Disney Lorcana is tough to discuss. We are also unaware if a Lorcana deck contains characters, songs, AND inks/resource cards in the same main deck. The news from Disney Lorcana is terrific, don’t get me wrong. However, many factors must be considered to understand what this announcement means for Lorcana players.

We also have no idea how the “mana”/resource system works in Lorcana. Our team produced an episode covering a post from about an “Inkpot Theory” here – TLDR: Lorcana players have a second deck that draws inks separately from your main deck that holds characters, songs, and any other cards yet to be revealed. A great example of this would be the new One Piece TCG from Bandai and their DON!! Deck. The news from Disney Lorcana leads me personally to believe the “Inkpot Deck” is pretty likely to happen. But that is another article for another day.

Back to deck construction, we now have to wonder what the size of a Lorcana deck will be. Magic: the Gathering & Pokemon use a sixty-card deck with creatures, spells, trainers, items, and mana/energy packaged into a single deck. The One Piece TCG has a fifty-card deck with characters, events, and stages inside. Plus, they have a separate ten-card DON!! Deck that contains the resources needed to play cards from your main deck. These are likely the best game designs we can look to when trying to guess what a Lorcana deck looks like.

What If?… Two Inks Helped Balance The Game?

Disney Lorcana’s announcement is impactful for Lorcana as a whole. Being able to build a deck with one or two inks creates an interesting discussion for the health of the TCG. The best part of this announcement is how easy deck construction will be for the players. Lorcana has six different inks or, in Magic terms, colors.

  • Steel (Grey)
  • Ruby (Red)
  • Sapphire (Blue)
  • Emerald (Green)
  • Amethyst (Purple)
  • Amber (Yellow)

When building a deck, you are allowed one or two of these options in your deck. This deck-building rule immediately removes the fear of multi-color “good stuff” or five-color control decks Lorcana. If you have never played Magic, this is a good thing to have never experienced. In essence, five-color control decks use all the best cards from all five colors to create a powerful and incredibly efficient deck to overwhelm opponents. “Good stuff” decks also increase the prices of cards on the secondary market since they use the best cards in the current format to build the best deck for that current meta. A Lorcana deck with only two colors/inks means we will never see “good stuff” decks in the same capacity as we have in other TCGs that allow free use of all the cards in the current card pool. This news also means decks will revolve around mono or dual-color builds during the lifespan of Lorcana.

Only allowing two inks in Lorcana decks is excellent news for players building decks and hopefully keeps the costs of cards down. In currently established TCGs, card prices can fluctuate because decks are usually allowed to use whatever cards are available in the current card pool/rotation. This open-ended deck construction means “staples” or generic cards usable in every deck fetch high prices because every player can and wants to use that card. As of December 2022, Lorcana has not revealed any universal or “colorless” generic-type cards for the game. So far, we have seen cards with one of the six colors mentioned above. Theoretically, each card *should* be affiliated with a color. And that means players will only need one or two colors for their Lorcana deck.

If cards are not generic, they cannot be used universally in every deck. That means cards will not achieve staple status across the entire card pool, and cards will only be staples within their color pie, and that is excellent news. For example, if you could play the newly announced Dragon Fire card in every Lorcana deck, it would cost a lot more $$$ than if it could only be played in Ruby (Red) decks. So how is this good news for Lorcana?

The One Piece Trading Card Game is a fantastic example of cards locked to their specific color pie. TLDR: Your deck has one leader, and that leader is a color (red, blue, green, purple). Cards in your deck MUST be the same color or colors as your leader (if they are dual colors, for example). If you visit and look at the prices for One Piece cards right now, they are averaging less than ten dollars for the most popular/expensive cards –

One Piece has common, uncommon, rare, and super-rare cards. Their chase cards are alternative art cards and parallel art cards of already printed cards. This rarity structure means you can build a deck with standard art cards and not pay a fortune for a deck. If you want to go for the maximum rarity, you can, but you are not forced to do so like some TCGs in the market.

All of this comes back to Lorcana because we have a brand new TCG with a low barrier for entry AND a collectors market simultaneously. If Lorcana requires a deck only to have one or two ink types, then we should see the average cost of a card float around ten dollars or less. Now I will admit this is purely speculation, and prices may be much higher. Still, the One Piece TCG showcases how color-locked cards can have a much lower selling price on average as opposed to universal cards every player has access to put inside their deck.

Another good piece of news is that building a Lorcana deck will be much easier for the players. If you buy cards for a single-color or dual-color deck, you don’t have to purchase additional cards from other colors. Lorcana players can focus on buying and trading for the cards they want versus building a massive collection of staple cards PLUS cards specifically for their deck archetype. Card collections will be easier to obtain, and prices for cards should be much lower than the average compared to games like Magic and YuGiOh.

What If?… We See The Same Decks Over And Over Again?

I want to preface the following section by saying I am very excited about Lorcana and hope to see it succeed. I want to address some aspects of the announcement regarding decks using up to two inks I am worried about.

Deck construction is one of the most prominent aspects that pulls me into a TCG. I love the freedom to express myself and my playstyle with cards, abilities, and effects. Magic, YuGiOh, and Pokemon allow much liberty and player expression with their deck-building rules. Magic and Pokemon use mana/energy to play cards you want. YuGiOh limits how players can play cards with in-game restrictions and limitations. But all the big three TCGs have a wide range of deck-building diversity and freedom for players to explore and discover in their TCG journey.

Lorcana announcing that I am limited to one-third of the colors of cards in my deck hurts right off the bat. I will still play the game and see what amazing surprises they have to reveal. Still, I don’t particularly appreciate being restricted so early on before the game is even launched. I admit this is a personal opinion, but I believe letting the Disney Lorcana team hear it is important. I understand that younger players and those interested in trying out a Disney card game are the most logical demographic. However, I enjoy having the option to play cards of my choice in the decks I build. I don’t think two ink colors per deck are a terrible idea; I hope there is a point in the future when we can see a little more player expression in deck construction.

The second part about up to two inks in a Lorcana deck that concerns me is a stale metagame. With six colors available, only so many decks can be built. Eventually, we will come to a place where there will be a set number of decks that will do well in tournaments and more competitive events. I hope the Lorcana team is actively aware of stale metagames in local and regional game stores when designing their cards. I believe we all recognize that the first set will not have enough cards to distinguish a large meta. One to three decks will likely rise to the top because the card pool is limited when the game launches, and I am completely fine with that.

However, I hope the Disney Lorcana team is willing to look at the game in whatever state it’s in and make adjustments if necessary. Now, I need to make sure everyone reading this knows we do not have any game rules available, and we only have eight cards revealed so far. Our knowledge about Lorcana is minimal right now. The Disney Lorcana team is supposed to reveal more information in 2023, including how to play in the Spring. So that leaves us with a cool announcement from Nive and many questions and much speculation surrounding the news.

Personally, I think the news is a good thing. One Piece is a fun TCG, and the fact a competitive deck without alt art cards is less than two hundred dollars is impressive. I can see Lorcana following in the same lane with card rarities and deck-building options. I will also state that I dislike how limited the One Piece deck-building options are, but I hope to see more opportunities for three colored Leader cards in the future. Lorcana still has a long way to go before we see booster packs and products in our hands. I am confident that the game will do well. The Disney Lorcana team has already established that they are listening and interacting with the community in such an early stage of the game’s lifespan. We also have very accomplished and experienced game designers at the helm. Now we have to wait and see what they have in store for us when the game launches in 2023.

Thank you for your valuable time reading this article. Make sure to talk with your local game stores and plant the seeds now that Lorcana is coming soon. Many game stores plan their entire year out in January, so letting them know you’re interested in Lorcana will help the game grow and build up hype. And if you enjoyed this written content, check out LorcanaCast, your premiere Lorcana podcast! We have a lot of fun and engaging Lorcana content here on for your enjoyment!