See the original Japanese here: http://www.square-enix-shop.com/jp/ff-tcg/rules/ruleguide.html
The following page is in the process of being translated. You may contribute translation assistance below the page images.
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What kind of game is FFTCG?
Welcome to a world where characters from the Final Fantasy series are constantly fighting each other!
Create your deck!
Being a trading card game, you must gather cards to battle using decks of 50 cards. You can make decks using any cards from Chapter 1 all the way to the latest or even just cards from Chapter 9 on.
Battle with various characters!
A real thrill of FF-TCG is how characters from various products in the Final Fantasy series appear together. By joining enemies and allies can join together, you can enjoy dream teams that couldn't happen in the original works.
Support with Summons and Items
Not only characters, but Summons ans Items familiar from Final Fantasy also appear. Supporting your characters with these cards will lead you to victory.
How do you win?
By attacking your opponent with your Forwards and having it go through without being stopped by your opponent's Forwards (Blocked), you can do 1 damage to your opponent. If that damage reaches 7, you win. Also, if your opponent becomes unable to draw cards, you win.
There are also tournaments and events at stores!
Since FF-TCG tournaments occur at most card shops in the country, please search for opponents. After passing the preliminary tournaments, there are national tournaments and pre-release tournaments. Please check the official website for schedule and place.
The 8 elements
Specialist in doing direct damage this is an element with characters and Summons specialized in attack power.
By blocking opponent actions, and discarding cards, this element forces your opponent to play with their hands tied.
This is an element with low cost and which empohasizes speed. There are many cards which deplete your opponent's deck.
An element with many large Forwards with high Power, it excels in defense and is suited for wars of attrition.
An element which removes opponent's Forwards without doing damage, it's suited to a game of instant kills.
An element which is good at creating an advantage by drawing cards and manipulating the deck.
Special Rare S
High - Low
There are 5 card rarities, from L, the highest, to C. There is also E, which is only in the entry sets, and PR for promotion cards. There are also premium cards.
How to read the cards
There are 4 kinds of FF-TCG cards. You can differentiate them by the writing on the top left of the text section.
There are 3 kinds of characters: Forwards, Backups and Monsters. Forwards mostly have the role of attacking and dealing damage to opponent. They can protect players by Blocking atttacking Forwards.
Backups can generate the CP to play cards and support your game through abilities.
Monsters have various abilities and can use abilities with the Dull icon from the turn when they are played.
Summons are one-shot cards, but with powerful effects. They can always be used, so they can be used in response to abilities and other Summons. Many also have EX-Bursts(page 7). It's not impossible for a single Summon to shift the game in your favour.
Items are cards that are equipped on a character. There are 3 types of items: Weapons, Armor and Accessories. Each type can only be equipped once on a character. By paying the cost on the [Remove] ability, you can always return them to your hand.
1. Cost - Element
Shows the cost to play the card and the element by its colour.
2. Name of the card
The card's name. Cards with the (3 cards) icon on the right side of this section can have any number of cards with their name on the Field. Also, when you take damage, a card with the (EX) icon comes up from your deck, ax Ex-Burst(page 7) activates. Cards with the (P) icon will be introduced about in page 5(party icon).
3. Card type
The Forward, Backup, Summon Monster or Monster type and the Job is shown.
The card's unique effects are written here. If the card's name appears here, it means this specific card.
5. Card number
The card's chapter and order number. The card's rarity and game appearance are written.
Only shown for Forwards, this is the amount of damage done to other Forwards in battle. If a Forward takes damage equal or greater than its Power, it Breaks, but even if it takes damage, the damage it deals doesn't go down.
- Forwards, Backups and Monsters and called Characters.
- You can only have 3 of the same card (cards with the same card number) in your deck.
- For cards with the same name (irregardless of the card number), if the have the (3 cards) icon, you can put any number on the FIeld.
- For cards without (3 cards) and with the same name, even if they are different cards, you can only have 1 in the FIeld (without counting opponent cards). You can't try to play a second card. If, due to some effect, a second card is put down, immediately put both cards in the Break Zone.
- Backups enter the Field Dulled and you can only have 5. You can't try to play a 6th.
- You can only play up to 1 card of type Light and Dark combined. You can't try to play a second one.
The way to use cards
The game's basics is to play cards by using Crystal Points (CP).
There are 2 ways to create CP
CP of the same element as the Dulled Backup is created.
1. Dull a Backup (1CP)
-Dull it- -Create 1 Earth CP-
2. Discard a card from your hand (2CP)
-Discard- -Create 2 Fire CP-
2 CP of the same element as the discarded Backup is created.
By paying the CP cost shown on the left side, you can use the card.
-The CP needed to play this card is- (Fire) at least 1 Fire + 1 of anything
-The CP needed to use this ability is- (Ice)(Ice) at least 2 Ice + Dull this card
-The CP needed to play these cards is at least as much CP as the cost of the card in any elements
When playing a card, you need to use at least 1 CP of the element of the card. But Shine and Dark cards can use the CP of any element.
Shine and Dark element cards are special because they don't create CP by being discarded, so be careful.
Even if you create more CP than needed, you can't use the extra to pay for other cards or abilities.
-When taking damage, take a card from the top of your deck and put it here face up. If you accumulate 7 cards, you lose.-
The various characters: Forwards, Backups, Monsters, are put on the Field face up. Forwards and Monsters are played in Active Mode (vertically) and Backups are played in Dull Mode (horizontally).
2. Damage Zone
When taking damage, turn over a card from the top of your deck and put it here. *If you have 7, you lose the game.*
Place your deck with all cards facing down. When it's time to draw a card *if there are no cards in your deck, you lose.*
4. Break Zone
Characters Broken by damage and stuff and things like cards discarded from your hand are placed here face up.
There are 4 general types of abilities possessed by characters. Use them well and approach victory!
Abilities that are always applying their effect while the card is on the Field. They do things like reduce the cost of Summons or increase the Power of certain Forwards.
Abilities that apply their effect by paying the cost on the left of the ':' in the description. Many of these cards Dull themselves as part of their cost (shown by the (Dull) symbol).
-A card of the same name is part of the cost-
These abilities have their name written in red and always have powerful effects. When using it, in addition to paying the cost on the left of the ':' like for Action abilities, 1? card with the same name as this card (card numbers can be different) must be discarded from the hand. That (discard a card of the same name) cost is shown by the (S) icon.
Abilities that trigger automatically when something happens. They are written like (When OO, do XX). Many of these have effects when the card enters the Field.
Normally, Forwards of different elements can't do a Party attack, but if they all have the (P) icon, even Forwards of different elements can form a Party and be used as one Forward with their summed up Power.
Normally, from the time when they enter the Field until the start of your next turn, characters can't attack or use abilities that require (Dull) but if they have Haste, they can as soon as they enter the Field.
Forwards with this ability don't Dull by attacking. But they can still only attack once per turn.
When attacking or blocking, does damage earlier than Forwards without Pre-Emptive Strike. If opponent Breaks, it doesn't get hit back.
If it does damage to the opponent or Breaks a Forward,? you can put it in the Break Zone, to search you deck for a card of the same name and put it on the Field Dulled.
When put on the Field, you can put on the Field a card with the element listed after Link and a cost equal or lower than the cost listed.
When a card with this enters the Field, you can activate the listed effect by putting the Backup in the Break Zone. If you don't put it in the Break Zone, nothing happens and it stays on the Field.
By putting 1 character with the Job listed after (War God) in the Break Zone, the cost of summoning the War God is reduced by the cost of the card. (This can't become 0).
When the character who has Overdrive is put on the Field from your hand by paying its cost is put on the Field having the Overdrive abilities by additionally paying paying the cost indicated after Overdrive.
When using this ability by paying the cost written after Awakening, you can search for a card with the same name and put it on the Field. This ability can only be used during your turn.
When a Monster with Blue Magic is in your hand, you can use the effect written after Blue Magic by paying the indicated cost and discarding the card. As with Summons, you can use this at any time.
Progressing with the Game
The flow of 1 turn is indicated below. The game progresses by alternating turns.
Preparations before the game
1. Prepare the deck
Each player prepares a deck of exactly 50 cards. It can contain only up to 3 copies of a card (even if they have the same card name, if they have a different number it doesn't count as the same card). Suffle your deck well in front of your opponent. You can also get the opponent to shuffle your deck or cut it.
-Even if it's the same name-
-It's ok if it's a different card.-
2. Choose turn order
The player who wins at Janken or dice or whatever decides who goes first. THe first player, on the first turn's draw phase draws 1 less card, so be careful.
3. Draw 5 cards into your hand
You both draw the 5 top cards of your respective decks to form your first hand. If you don't like your hand, you can do a Mulligan (redraw). In that case, put your hand on the bottom of the deck in the order of your choice and draw 5 new cards from the top. Afterwards, the game starts with the first player's turn then progresses by alternating turns.
If there are Dull mode (horizontal) Forward or Backup cards, make them all Active mode? (vertical).
-Dull mode- -Active Mode-
Draw 2 cards from the top of your deck and add them to your hand. However, the first player, during his first turn draws not 2 cards, but 1 card. When it's time to draw a card, if there are no cards left, you lose the game at that moment.
-When it's time to draw a card, if there's no deck, you lose.
First Main Phase (star)
You can do the following as many times as you want, in any order you want.
Play a character card
By payin the necessary cost, put a card from your hand on the FIeld. Until your next turn, they can't attack or use abilities with the (Dull) icon. Backups enter the Field in Dull mode.
Enter the Field in Active Mode but can't attack
Enter the Field in Dull Mode. If they become Active in some way, they can generate CP.
Play an Item
Like for characters, you pay their cost to put them on the Field. However, if there are no characters they can be equipped on, they can't be played. By paying the cost for [Remove], you can always put them back in your hand.
Like characters, pay their cost to use them. When their effect is done, put them in the Break Zone. Summons can interrupt enemy Summons or abilities.
Use character abilities
Action abilities and Special abilities are used by paying the cost to the left of the ':'. They can interrupt enemy abilities or summons.
(PS: When I use "interrupt", I mean "play in response to, so that your effect occurs before the interrupted effect".
Attacking Forwards go through this order
1. Preparing for the attack? (star)
Before the attack, first the attacker, then the defender can use Summons or abilities.
2. Choose the attacking Forward (star)
You can choose 1 Active Mode Forward and attack with it by Dulling it. But Forwards that entered the Field this turn cannot attack.
3. Opponent chooses blocking Forward (star)
Blocker chooses whether to Block and which Forward to Block with. Only Forwards in Active Mode can Block.
-If you are not blocked, go to 4-2-
4-1. Deal damage to each other
Each Forward deals damage to the other equal to their Power. If a Forward's damage is equal or greater than its Power, it breaks. If they are not Broken, damage remains until end of turn.
Second Main Phase (star)
Like the First Main Phase, you can, in any order, as much as you like play characters, use Summons and? use abilities.
Effects that last until end of turn end now.
All damage done to Forwards is removed.
If you have more than 5 cards in hand, discard until you have 5 cards in hand.
4-2. If you are not Blocked, 1 damage
If the attacking Forward isn't Blocked, deal 1 damage to the opponent, regardless of the Forward's Power. Opponent must turn over the top card of their deck and put it face up in their Damage Zone.? When that damage reaches 7 cards, the opponent loses.
-1 damage- -Opponent's deck-
Checking the activation of an EX-Burst
If the turned over card has a EX-Burst, you may use it immediately. This cannot be interrupted by abilities or Summons. Also, if the card has an EX-Burst like (When this card enters the Field), that card doesn't enter the Field but the effect is activated.
-If the damage becomes 7, it's a loss.- -Damage Zone-
-Turn over. If it's an EX-Burst, activate.-
-Only activate this part-
5. You can attack with another Forward. In that case, return to 1.
Forwards with all the same element or which all have the (P) icon can form a Party. In that case, treat them as 1 Forward with their added up Power. They can all use their own abilities, but unless the entire Party has Pre-Emptive Strike, it has no effect.
-Power 7000 + Power 2000 = Power 9000-
(star) Times when you can use abilities or Summons