Now that Fire Emblem Cipher’s 4th series Shimmering Illusions has finally released in Japan, we can take a look at the set’s full contents. Combining cards from 3 different Fire Emblem games, there are plenty of goodies in store for both players and collectors.
Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE makes its Cipher debut with a large variety of cards featuring Masters and Mirages alike. Each allied Mirage and its Master have paired cards made out of one larger piece of artwork featuring both characters, and the Masters also have promoted cards where they take on their Carnage Forms.
Additionally, all 7 Mirage Masters are featured with special SR+ or R+ cards with a gold foil signature from the character’s voice actor. Each booster box contains 1 R+ or SR+ card, and although not all of them are signed, there is such a large number of signed cards in this set that pulling one isn’t as uncommon as previous sets.
The most mysterious #FE card, however, belongs to Tiki. Appearing as a “Singaloid” Mirage in Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE, Tiki was originally revealed as an unpromoted red HN card earlier this month on the official @fecipher twitter account. However, shortly after release, a blue Tiki was found in some packs…
This card features the same text and card number as the red Tiki, but with different artwork, blue insignia, and the rarity “HNX”. Initial reports of people who have opened Series 4 booster boxes claim that the HNX blue Tiki is noticeably rarer than a typical HN and doesn’t even appear in every booster box. HN red Tiki also appears to be short-printed, but easier to obtain since the card is also in the associated Starter Deck. HNX blue Tiki does not appear on the official set list of Series 4 on the official FE Cipher website, so it is likely intended to be a secret card.
Many non-Mirage characters from Mystery of the Emblem also appear in Series 4. Marth is featured highly, of course, even gaining another signed SR+ card, and other popular characters printed in Series 1 get new cards for Series 4, including Minerva, Julian, Merric, Ogma, and the Whitewings.
Of course, not all of the Mystery characters are repeats. Mystery of the Emblem has one of the largest casts of a Fire Emblem game and plenty of new characters are introduced to Cipher for the first time. Some of these (like Mallesia, Yubello, and Yumina) are exclusive to Mystery‘s Book 2, others are characters from both books that are only just now appearing, such as Nyna and the Wolfguard.
To reflect his importance in the Mystery of the Emblem game, Hardin gets special treatment, receiving both an R and an SR in the same set, something no other character can claim to date. His HN and R cards both reflect his playable character from Book 1 (as evidenced by that snazzy turban), but his SR is of Dark Emperor Hardin, complete with his red cloak and eyes, wielding Gradivus.
The 3rd game featured in Cipher Series 4 is Awakening. Since Chrom is only included in his Mirage form in this set, Lucina takes center stage as the featured Lord, receiving another signed SR+ card to match her Series 1 debut. Many other of the most popular characters from Awakening score new cards as well, including SRs for Severa and Lon’qu, and a 2nd SR for Cordelia.
To the delight of many Cipher fans, Male Robin finally sees a non-promo release in this set, along with Female Morgan. Many earlier missed characters also get cards for the first time, including Donnel, Libra, Say’ri, Flavia, Basilio, and also the other missing children characters: Brady, Kjelle, Cynthia, Yarne, Laurent, and Nah.
For Cipher players, the set offers some interesting new options for the metagame. Hardin, Mamori, Lucina, and Sirius have begun to see some use as Main Characters, and Lissa decks can make use of some of the new flyers and Male Robin. Since the set is so new, it’s hard to predict how well these new cards will fare, but upcoming tournaments should shed some light on their competitive viability.
Alongside the booster series, a new Starter Deck and 4 new sleeve designs were also released. The deck, entitled Illusory Revelations, contains a number of cards from the booster series as well as deck-exclusive cards of Itsuki, Tsubasa, Toma, Kiria, and Eleanora. It’s also the only way to obtain a holographic card of the set’s #FE red Tiki. The sleeves feature as assortment of artwork from the series, including the SR prints of Lucina, Severa, and Tsubasa, as well as the red HN art of Tiki.
With the official release of Series 4, the FE Cipher website also official revealed the promotional cards that will be available for new events in Japan. Each player who participates in an official Cipher tournament receives one pack that contains two of the following cards chosen randomly, and winners receive an extra pack.
P04-003PR Matthis and P04-004PR Dark Knight Miriel are new cards, whereas P04-005PR Tsubasa, P04-006PR Catria, P04-007PR Itsuki, and P04-008PR Severa are alternate art reprints of cards from Series 4. Since these cards are only available to tournament participants, they cannot be bought from regular online retailers like the Series 4 booster boxes and deck, but are often resold on Japanese auction sites.
Two additional promos for Series 4 have also been announced. P04-009PR Marth will be available in the May edition of Nintendo DREAM, while the March Dengeki Nintendo includes P04-010PR Lucina. Each magazine comes with 2 copies of its card, so you can keep one and trade the other!
Another Series 4 promo will be released in the upcoming Fire Emblem Cipher Official Guidebook Volume 4. Although we don’t yet know what the full card looks like, we know it will be of Itsuki, and its artwork was revealed in Nintendo DREAM.
A complete list of all Series 4 cards and translations of their effects can be found on the Booster Set 4 page of the official Serenes Forest Wiki. More useful information can be found there as well, including older card information and rules of play.
If you’re interested in discussing Cipher with other fans, come visit the Fire Emblem TCG section of the forums! You’re welcome to ask questions, post your pulls, trade cards, or arrange for online matches.
Much thanks to reddit users /u/Dylthenoise and /u/galajo for allowing me to use their photographs for this article as a supplement to my own.