Shoubu's Beta testing is hosted at Screentop,
an upcoming browser-based board game simulator.

How to Play

Shoubu is a Dueling Card Game about Entrants that have each mastered a style of art. Favored by the gods of their art, whose forms vary from crystal koi to flaming gods, they battle for glory, fame, and some as-of-yet undefined anime nonsense.

You'll start each game by selecting an Entrant and its Reference Sheet, associated Summons, and 30 card Main Deck. All Summons and Entrants will be Standees, while some Entrants will also have tokens. Currently, Standees are represented by cards in Screentop.


Once you've chosen, place your Entrant Standee on the 5x5 grid in the bottom left corner. After that, read your Reference Sheet for additional rules for your Entrant, including Summons that you may start the game with.














Due to limitations of Screentop, games online are played left to right - so everything is rotated 90 degrees. Cards are still upright for convenience.

Entrant Zone
Entrant Zone
Your Entrant
A Zone
Real Life Player Perspective
Real Life Player Perspective

Starting a Game and Taking Turns

Once you've read your Reference Sheet and placed your starting Entrant and Summons, randomly decide who will take the first turn, then both players draw 5 cards. 

Each turn is taken with the same following steps:

  1. Recall- This is the step where you can Win or Lose: If your Entrant is not on the field, use 1 Vigor to place it in an empty Zone bordering your Summon.
    If you couldn't return your Entrant, you
    Lose. This is the primary win condition of Shoubu.

  2. Start - Do anything that your Reference Sheet says happens at the start of your turn.

  3. Main - Play an Intent card from your Hand, or use an Intent effect of a Summon or Entrant.
    Repeat this as much as you'd like!

  4. End - Do anything that your Reference Sheet says happens at the end of your turn. 
    Refresh all Entrants and Summons on the field. Draw 1 from your deck, then end your turn.


From here, let's clarify each step of a turn.

1. The Recall Step


Some effects will damage Summons and Entrants - when this happens, they're returned to your pool of Standees and Tokens, to be summoned again by other effects later. Here's an example game state where some Summons have been summoned, and your Entrant was removed from the field. Removing your opponent's Entrant is the key to Winning!

An Opponent's Entrant
Opponent's Summons
All entrants have unique summons.
Your Entrant
Your Summons

At the start of each turn, if the turn player's Entrant isn't on the field, they can use 1 Tenacity to return it to an empty zone bordering any of your Summons (bordering zones share an edge).

If, for any reason, an Entrant cannot return to the field, it loses. This can happen if you have no Summons on the field, if there are no empty zones bordering your summons, or if you have no remaining Tenacity. This is the primary win condition of Shoubu - either remove your Opponent's Entrant until they have no more Tenacity, or gain full control of the board.

Additionally, the first time you run out of cards in your deck, lose 1 Tenacity. You do not reshuffle your deck - simply continue playing as usual, but without using your deck whenever you otherwise would. You can still return cards to your deck with effects - if you deck out again, you do not lose another Tenacity.


Note: If you have no Tenacity when you deck out, you lose immediately.

At the start of your turn, you can use 1 Tenacity to return your Entrant to any of these zones.
If you can't, you lose.

2. The Start Step

All Shoubu Entrants have a Reference Sheet that creates unique mechanics. In the final release, these will be large cardboard plates rather than cards. The amount your gameplay is adjusted from basic Shoubu rules varies for each Entrant, and in some cases, an Entrant will introduce additional actions to be taken at the start of each turn. An example is the Enigma of Yuurei-Zu, which chooses a new Mist each turn:

3) The Main Step - Reading and Playing Cards

Card Type
Effect Type

In Shoubu, all Effects share the same formatting, and are either Intents or Reactions, as specified by their effect type in their top left corner. Reactions have a red symbol, while Intents have a green symbol.


Intent and Reaction cards make up your Main Deck. In the Name of Peace is a Reaction Card. Intent and Reaction cards have Card Type symbols matching those of an Intent or Reaction effect symbol.


When using the effect of an Intent or Reaction, place it somewhere visible to both players, and discard it after it resolves.

Entrants and Summons are kept in a separate pool from your deck. These will be Standee cards will be Standees in the final release, with their effects on reference cards, or your main Reference sheet. In either case, these effects will always be formatted the same as any other effect.


When using the effect of a Summon or Entrant, Exhaust it - this means turning the Standee in the final release, and turning the card in Screentop:


Reacting to an Effect

While Intents and Reactions are formatted the same, they are played very differently.
- An
Intent can be used at any time during your turn, as long as nothing else is happening.
- A
Reaction can be used at any time on any turn, but can only React to another effect.


After a player uses any effect, their opponent can React. If they don't, then the player of the original effect can now react. This breaks down into the following steps:

A) Use the Intent effect of a card in your hand, or of your Summon or Entrant, by performing its Costs.

B) Your opponent can React with a Reaction effect!
C) If they do not, you can now React with a Reaction effect.

D) Perform the Resolution of the original effect.

If either player Reacts, repeat those 4 steps above - every time anyone pays the cost of any effect, both players have the opportunity to react. As such, when neither player reacts to an effect, every effect used resolves in the opposite order their costs were paid.

This is simpler in practice than it might seem (and if you've played Yugioh before, it's pretty much the Yugioh Chain Link system). Here's an example of some effects reacting to each other:

1) Koi's Intent is used, and its cost to target a bordering zone is used.

2) Rabbit's Reaction is used.

3) Both players choose to not react to Rabbit.

4) Rabbit moves to an empty bordering zone.

5) Koi resolves on its now-empty target.

Koi is an example of how Shoubu resolutions work - if its Resolution was simply Deal 1 > Target, then after Rabbit moved, it would simply deal damage to an empty zone. However, as it checks the state of its target at resolution, it moves instead of dealing damage.

4. The End Step

Some Shoubu Entrants will have additional actions at the ends of turns - this is when you do those. After that, Refresh all Entrants and Summons, draw 1, and end your turn.

Additional Card Type: Masterpiece


Masterpiece cards are a Set Specific Mechanic - meaning that these first 8 Entrants will all take advantage of Masterpiece cards, but future sets may not have them.

Masterpiece is abbreviated as shown above in card text.

A Masterpiece card has a golden border. Each deck will have 3, and these are placed in your Masterpiece Areas during a game in various ways. The moment your Masterpiece is complete, flip your Entrant over. In the final release, when these 3 Masterpiece Cards are placed next to each other, they'll form one continuous art.

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