This article is going to be a little bit looser than normal. We’ve got a bunch of info to dump, with a pretty big lore find a little later on.
We’ve got tonnes to cover, and it seems like every time we look up from editing this article, there’s more. So we’ve lumped everything together. There have been a few different discoveries, and we think we’ve got a fun one.
Card Art Revealed
Ravensburger updated their Press archive with a bunch of new art, headers, logos, icons, and the new Lorcana League Kit. We’ve covered the Organized Play stuff in another article.
First, a bunch of full card art was shown – to be used in article headers by content creators. There is some really impressive work here from current and new Lorcana art contributors. It’s very cool that general content creators can get access to art!
Lots of good stuff here, but wait – there’s more. We finally get some stunning full art for the unknown Shere Khan card from the side of the Trove. Jungle Book and all its characters loom large in my memory, and this encapsulates the character perfectly.
Then we get the other Beast card whose art is featured on the booster packs, boxes, and Troves.
For such high quality, consistently amazing art that fits the Lorcana style and lore – this is all one artist. Matthew Robert Davies created all of these, as well as cards like the Enchanted Elsa. We totally expect another Enchanted from them this set.
Lady Shalirin did the background, effects, and polish for The Queen – Commanding Presence. We’ve also been eyeing up a bunch of her awesome Disney Princess work and would love to see a few cards from them. Ariel?
Merlin’s Animal Forms Confirmed?
The last bit of art was this, from the Merlin–Shapeshifter card. Now, we already have an Amethyst Madam Mim – Fox card we know about (no art yet). We mostly covered it in this article but when Merlin fights with Madam Mim they both change into many different animals.
Now, nearly every animal Merlin transforms into is in this card art. A turtle, rabbit, caterpillar, mouse, crab, and a goat. The walrus is missing, but he becomes a fish (and a squirrel) in another scene in the movie.
There’s also a frog in the image. Merlin was never a frog in the movie, but apparently, there are unused character designs with him as a frog and a dog, plus Mim as a stork.
There is an unconfirmed Amethyst card from the back of the new sleeved boosters that we think is one of Merlin’s animal transformations. Now, we thought this could be either the squirrel, rabbit, or mouse. But looking at Merlin’s card art – doesn’t the rabbit here line up?
Taking a look, the arm shooting out to the right and the pose looks like a previous Ravensburger card used in the Villainous game. What if we took it to the next level…
After a bit of lining up, the rabbit image from Shapeshifter Merlin…. doesn’t seem to match the unknown card. Neither do the other images. Trust us, we’ve tried.
We thought it could be that the images used in the card were all card art from other cards of Merlin as animals. Similar to the Flynn Rider card art reference here. We can’t confirm that. However, it does seem very likely that this is a Merlin animal card, and that there will be other Merlin and Mim animal cards.
Scroll down for even more confirmation about this theory, we think this is almost certain Merlin – Squirrel.
More Animal Cards
We’ll probably also see Madam Mim in a non-animal form. We could even see the cards scattered over a few sets. In case you’re wondering, she turns into a crocodile, cat, fox, chicken, elephant, tiger, rattlesnake, rhino, and a dragon in the movie.
We actually think that it would make sense if all of the animal cards were shift versions! It would line up with the set theme, and could be used to trigger effects like Bucky – Squirrel Squeak Tutor!
If not, some way of swapping them between your hand would make sense with Merlin – Shapeshifter‘s ability.
That’s not even the only interesting thing in the art. It looks like the model of the Illuminary from earlier cards arts is also here… We’ll leave that for another article.
Product Images Shown
We’ve got a few more product images. Some you might not have seen or haven’t seen in good quality are the starters, sleeved and un-sleeved packs, and trove in more detail. Nothing much has changed except the tokens and general styling is darker.
So no starter deck lists. Unless someone was able to CSI the heck out of that little sliver on the Amethyst/Sapphire deck… (keep scrolling)
Accessory Card Names Revealed
From the back of the playmat, we now know that the stone gargoyle version is Beast – Forbidding Recluse, with art from Alice Pisoni. From the back of the sleeves, we have full version names for Sisu – Divine Water Dragon by Grace Tran and Mulan – Soldier in Training by Michael “Cookie” Niewiedomy.
The First Chapter cards in Rise of the Floodborn Starter Decks
Last night in the Lorcana HQ Discord, the Team Lorcana account was asked if there would be any The First Chapter cards in the new starter decks. The answer was: “Some“. So the new decks will have some old cards.
That might seem fairly surprising, given that this is a new set and you’d expect new products. But this makes sense for a couple of reasons, and if it’s maybe 10 or so staples, we’re fine with it.
When you’re designing the first few sets, you need to add staples for each color. They’re mostly vanilla cards, and in this case especially they’re low-cost ones to play early and then Shift over. Some colors have 1 cost uninkable characters with 2 lore, some get 1 cost inkable chars with 2 strength/willpower.
A few years down the line, all colors will have all of these staple vanillas for most costs – plus a few standard-cost draw cards and some others But for now, printing everything in one set would make the set very boring.
By including these must-have cards, it makes the starter decks a little more viable than The First Chapter’s. That’s a very good thing, as we know it’s going to be hard to get packs of any set for at least the next 3-6 months – if not longer.
More players with access to cheap, decent decks makes the game better for everyone. But there’s more starter deck stuff too…
Starter Deck Card Surprises
From the starter deck display image, Raviolo on the Lorcana HQ Discord first did some image editing to lighten up the words on the side of the Amethyst/Steel deck. The other deck isn’t visible. We did a bit more editing and some straightening out plus a reverse-color version.
We know from the first lot of starter decks that the top list will be the top color – Amethyst, followed by Steel lower down. The cards will be in the order: Characters, then Actions + Songs together, then Items. Everything will be alphabetical too.
So based on that, this is our list based on many suggestions from the Discord and our own guesses/previous cards, plus the Merlin/Mim section above. We don’t have guesses for the numbers of each.
- ? Character – Maybe Archimedes – Highly Educated Owl
- Dr. Facilier – Savvy Opportunist? (Suggested on Discord)
- ? Character
- Madam Mim – Fox (Confirmed card from the back, fits alphabetically)
- Madam Mim – Snake?
- Merlin – Crab
- Merlin – Goat
- Merlin – Mouse or Rabbit (The only animals he was that fit here alphabetically)
- Merlin – Shapeshifter (Confimed in the deck)
- Merlin – Squirrel (Fits sleeved booster image)
- ? Action/Song/Item
- ? Action/Song/Item
- Beast – Forbidding Recluse (Confirmed steel card, fits)
- ? Character
- Cinderella – Knight in Training (Confirmed steel card, fits)
- ? Character
- Hercules – Hero In Training? (Suggested on Discord)
- Kronk – Junior Chipmunk
- ? Character
- Kaa? / Lilo – Galactic Hero ?
- ? Character
- We can’t see lower but Tiana – Celebrating Princess is in the deck around here
That’s enough wild speculation from us. On cards at least.
The Ink Flood, The Hero + The Inklands?
Another very interesting bit of art is this header image. We’ve seen it before in much lower quality, in a teaser video. Aside from the incredible art, it’s now clear that the Illuminary is in a dire situation.
The character looks like the one we’ve seen in a few videos and bits of art. But it also looks like the character has definitely changed between some of these. It could be simple character design changes, it could be two characters, or it could be the same character at different ages. Maybe they’ve returned? Who knows!
Now we can see much clearer that a huge amount of magical ink is pouring out of the bottom of the Illuminary. So much that it’s flooding the lands around it. In fact, we even noticed before that mountains from this specific art were used in the background of Raya’s art in the new Trove.
We mentioned the mountains of different shapes. Now, we think those mountains reflect the six different inks, and that means the world outside has been transformed by ink. Now how about this lore from the release announcement?
“When storyborn or dreamborn glimmers encounter this mixed ink, they surge with a power that changes them, transforming them into floodborn glimmers. As the magical ink poured out of the illuminary, treasured lore went with it, including King Triton’s powerful trident.”
If it can transform glimmers, why not land, or items? Let’s take a closer look. To us, these mountains seem like they’ve changed to represent the ink. We’ve seen tonnes of different everyday items, decorations, and scenery look like them before – is this the birth of the Inklands?
To us, these seem pretty clearly influenced by ink. If not, it’s very odd as a purely random choice. Amethyst is probably the weakest, but we have a theory that Amethyst’s Inklands aren’t above the surface…
What Are The Inklands?
We’ve seen this word used before, and even in art. Check Mickey Mouse – Steamboat Pilot‘s flavor text below.
In an interview with narrative lead Samantha McFerrin she said: “each piece of lore is a “fragment of a larger story,” and that while much of it is kept safe in the Halls of Lorcana, others have been “scattered throughout the Inklands.“
So it looks like we’re seeing the great flood that created the Inklands, scattering lore throughout them, leading to the disappearance of the Curator and the original Illumineers, and creating the Floodborn.
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