After a long wait and much anticipation, Fire Emblem Cipher Series 18 is finally here! This popular set is the first to focus primarily on characters from the widely successful Three Houses game. It also includes more cards and characters from Awakening and The Sacred Stones.
Additionally, a special Three Houses themed ST Deck also released alongside the booster series. The deck features Female Byleth and comes with cards for the three lords and other heroes from 3H.
Click on the “Read More” button below for a look at cards from the booster packs and deck, as well as word on some of the set’s promos.
Note: To those who are still playing through Three Houses, fear not; there are little to no spoilers in the set. Aside from the time-skip appearance of Byleth, Edelgard, Dimitri, and Claude, and also some additional post-time-skip clothing for other students, the information below can be considered spoiler-free.
The same does not hold true for Awakening and The Sacred Stones, so spoiler warnings for those games.
S18 – Three Houses Cards
The first half of S18 is devoted to characters from Three Houses. Aside from the handful of cards included in S17 and some promos, this is the first time 3H has been fully represented in Cipher. While F!Byleth leads the ST deck, Male Byleth is the leader of the booster set, snagging three cards, including the first SR of the set.
As you might expect, Edelgard, Dimitri, and Claude all also feature strongly in the set, getting multiple cards and SRs of their own. All three lords also get an SR+ variant featuring a signature from their Japanese voice actor.
Most of the other playable students of Garreg Mach Monastery also appear in the set, though not all. From the Black Eagles, Hubert, Ferdinand von Aegir, Caspar, Bernadetta, Dorothea, and Petra all get cards. Of those, Ferdinand, Bernadetta, and Dorothea are all R foil cards.
From the Blue Lions, we get Dedue, Felix, Ashe, Mercedes, Annette, and Ingrid. Ingrid is the first non-Lord student to get an SR while Felix and Mercedes get Rs.
Representing the Golden Deer are Raphael, Ignatz, Lysithea, Marianne, Hilda, and Leonie. Lysithea snags the final 3H SR while Raphael and Hilda sweep up the R slots.
Furthermore, Byleth isn’t the only professor to appear in this set. Both Manuela and Hanneman make their Cipher debut at the tail end of the 3H block. Jeralt also gets a place as the final R foil. For everyone else, we’ll have to wait for S19 or later.
Everyone in the set appears as either Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced classes. Additionally, many of the non-Lord students wear their post-time-skip clothing but retain the hair and other aspects of their pre-time-skip designs. Presumably, Master Classes and more detailed post-time-skip information are being saved for later sets.
S18 – Awakening Cards
The third quarter of the set goes to characters associated with Awakening. Female Robin is the leader of this portion of the set, though her matching SR is actually for the female vessel of Grima.
The remaining blue cards are spread out among many other Awakening characters. Since Awakening has appeared in Cipher many times now, none of the characters included here are new, though many of them haven’t gotten cards in some time.
Cordelia and Tharja get the final two blue SRs of the set. Additionally, Tharja gets an alternate-art SR+ card, shown here next to her regular SR for comparison.
R foil cards go to Gaius, Gregor, Nowi, and Kiria of TMS#FE. Kiria is included in blue as her mirage, Tharja, is from the world of Awakening. Kiria’s holo pattern also features her idol signature, similar to the Itsuki and Tsubasa cards from recent sets.
Other Awakening characters appearing in this set include Chrom, Lissa, Panne, Libra, Henry, Emmeryn, and Aversa. Chrom and Emmeryn’s cards feature a rather tragic joined-art of Chrom watching on as his older sister sacrifices herself in hopes of averting war with Plegia. Mirage Tharja also gets a card to herself.
S18 – The Sacred Stones Cards
The last portion of S18 goes to The Sacred Stones. Interestingly enough, this is only the second time that the world of Magvel has had a dedicated place in a Cipher set, the first one being in S11. Last time, both lords shared the spotlight of the set, but this time around, Ephraim takes centre stage for himself, along with the first SR.
Franz, Gilliam, Cormag, Ewan, Tethys, Selena, and Valter all make their Cipher debuts this set. Of these, both Tethys and Valter get R foil cards. The final two R cards feature a beautiful joined-art of Tana and Innes.
The final two SR cards go to L’Arachel and Marisa. Both ladies also get alternate art SR+ cards as well. Additionally, this is not the first time Marisa has appeared in Cipher, but it is her first time as a booster card. Previously, she was only available as a tournament promo. Finishing up the set are new cards for Gerik and Myrrh.
S18 – Hero Rares & Original Characters
S18 introduces a new rarity to the world of Cipher: Hero Rare cards. Hero Rare (or HR) cards take the place of previous R+ and +X cards in the booster set. S18 features two such HR cards, Lucina and Eirika.
Unlike R+ or +X cards, Lucina and Eirika are not alternate art reprints but instead brand new cards in their own right. In fact, neither Lucina nor Eirika even appear normally in the set. The cards are numbered 101 and 102 respectively. Additionally, the cards feature a unique, extra glossy sheen, unlike the foiling of + cards.
Pull rates have been altered slightly to account for these new cards. S18 booster boxes now contain 4 SR cards and 1 of either an SR+ or an HR card. The chance of pulling an SR+ card still appears to be the same 1 out of 4 boxes.
S18 also introduces one other new thing, a new original character, Poe! Poe has a history with Nieve, the other most recent mascot, and she appears in S18 with the 3H cards as a Brown Noble and Priest. Alice and Valjean also get cards in the set, as Blue and Purple cards respectively.
Three Houses ST Deck
A new ST Deck is also out now, heralding the arrival of a new game and colour into the world of Cipher. With M!Byleth leading the booster series, Female Byleth takes centre stage of the ST Deck, including a fancy signed foil card!
Furthermore, the deck includes an additional five other foil cards. Four feature new, deck exclusive cards for F!Byleth, Edelgard, Dimitri, and Claude. The fifth is a foil version of Edelgard’s HN card from the booster series.
There are two other exclusive cards in the ST Deck, one for Sothis and one for Flayn. However, the Sothis card was only temporarily exclusive. A version of this card with different art is available at certain tournaments in Japan, and yet another version with the same text will come out in S19.
The remainder of the cards in the deck are borderless reprints of other S18 cards. The deck also comes with a playmat and a rulebook.
S18 – Booster Box & Release Goodies
As expected, buyers of S18 booster boxes also get a few extra goodies along with their packs. The S19 Preview Promos feature F!Byleth and Seliph. These promos are packages with 4th Anniversary Reprint Promos of old magazine cards for Ike and Lucina. Each box also comes with a small pack of sleeves of pixel F!Byleth or Ephraim.
Each booster box contains one pack of sleeves and a promo pack featuring one preview promo and one anniversary promo.
Additionally, early adopters may be able to take advantage of the S18 release promo, which featuring notepads of the 3H house leaders. For each booster box you buy, you get a mystery sealed pack with a notebook of either Edelgard, Dimitri, or Claude. Unlike with S17, AmiAmi is providing notepads to international Cipher buyers.
S18 Promotional Cards
S18 already has a slew of promotional cards, most of them featuring Three Houses characters. The first few promos all follow established trends, such as the two preview promos shown above, and the six tournament cards displayed here:
Dancer Edelgard and Amelia are both tournament-exclusive cards, only appearing in tournament packs. Fishing M!Byleth, Christmas Tharja, Tibarn, and Alfonse are all alternate-art variants of existing cards.
The 9th promo features Sothis, new art of the otherwise deck-exclusive Sothis card. Fittingly, she is given away at special Deck Battle tournaments in Japan which started this last weekend.
The last two officially confirmed promos for Female Byleth and Male Byleth are also from special tournaments, this time from the upcoming Decisive Battle tournaments in November. These are also reprints of existing cards featuring new art.
Thanks to Cipher artist Nijihayashi, we also know that there will be at least one more Male Byleth promo coming out later this month in the next issue of Nintendo Dream. The magazine comes out on 21 October. There may or may not be a similar card in the matching Dengeki Nintendo issue.
Set List and Closing
While this article aims to be an overview of S18, it does not include all of the cards the set has to offer. If you’d like to see clean, digital images of all cards in the set, including all of the rare + variants, you can view them on the Official Cipher website. You can also see all the cards and their translation on the Serenes Forest Cipher Wiki.
That’s all we have so far for S18! With the set now released, there will likely be no further news to share. However, we may still see some more promos revealed.
Stay tuned for further news and information regarding S19, our December set. Soon we’ll share the pre-release information and art/news that we’ve seen so far, along with information on the Autumn Livestream. We also have Comiket to look forward to. Stay tuned!