How to Play
There are hundreds of cards in the first set of Empyrean and you have access to all of them. There are some deck-building rules, but here are the basics. You must first choose a General (a 5-Star Troop), then build your deck. You can mix and match cards from all Aspects and Cultures, but synergy should be your focus. Your deck must have 30 cards in total. You may have up to 2 copies of a card in your deck, however some cards have further restrictions which will be covered more in depth as we approach launch.
Your Advanced Deck may contain up to a total of 20 Cards.
Gameplay Basics Overview
There are 3 win conditions for a match. Reduce the enemy Player's Life to 0. Destroy the enemy General. Or Capture 3 of the 4 Conquest Points on the field. Some strategies can definitely be geared more towards achieving 1 of these objectives.
Each Player draws 5 Cards before the game begins. Either player can shuffle up to 3 cards back into the deck and draw the same amount. After this the game begins and player 1 draws one card.
Each Player begins the game with 3 Aether and their Power Marker set to 3. Each turn Players increase the Max Power by 1, so as the game goes on each player gain more power. Power is what you use to play cards.
You may only play Action Cards, Artifact Cards, and Hidden Cards within your Play Areas and these areas can vary based on how you have played the game. The Play Areas include the Base, a claimed Advantage Point, a claimed Resource Node, and within a 2-Tile radius of any ally Unit on the field.
You may deploy Troops within your Base, a claimed Conquest Point, a claimed Resource Node, and within a 2-Tile Radius of a 3-Star or higher ranked Troop. So claiming points and strategically moving your high ranked troops around can be critical in controlling the field.
There are a lot more refined mechanics that are covered in the rule-book.
There are 2 resources in Empyrean. Power, which generates automatically each turn, and Aether which generates by various actions and means.
Power will restore to full and increase it's marker by +1 at the start of each turn. Power begins at 3 in the start of the game and increases to a Max of 10. Claiming a Conquest Point can reduce your overall Power Cost, and there are some other effects that may affect Power.
Aether is the primary resource of the game and can be obtained through various means and effects. Players begin the game with 3 Aether each and have a maximum Aether storage of 8. If you capture a resource node you will generate 2 Aether each turn. There are various other ways to generate Aether as well.
You use Aether to play Process Actions, to use your Troops' special abilities, to power up card effects, to recharge Artifact Cards, and more. You should be generating and exhausting Aether constantly as you play.
Combat is a major aspect of Empyrean. Units may attack on your turn, however some may attack on your opponent's turn. Normal Units cannot attack or move on the same turn they are deployed, however there are some special Units that can.
To enter Combat and attack a foe you must first consider a number of factors. Your troop's Combat Range to start, either Melee or Ranged.
Once you enter combat and attack a foe, you must compare your Talent stat to the foe's Talent stat. Subtract the difference from the foe's fortitude. If the attacking troop's Talent is equal to or lower than target, it will inflict only 1 Damage.
When a troop attacks or is attacked, that troop becomes Exposed, meaning you turn the card horizontal and apply it's Exposed Talent stat in the following combats that round-if a troop is attacked twice it rotates again becoming Prone. So to take down a powerful enemy, you may need to plan a tactical attack to destroy it.
These are all explained in much more depth in the Rule-book.