Dale of Merchants – FAQ

Frequently asked questions

This page displays answers to frequently asked questions about the Dale of Merchants series.

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Table of Contents

General questions

Do the stacks have to be built in order?

Yes. You must always start with the stack 1, continue with 2, then 3, and so on.

Are passive card effects mandatory?

Yes, as long as they don't state "may" on them. For example, Cookies ([macaws] Macaw 2) always increases your hand size by 1 when drawing new cards. This also means that all passive Chameleon cards must copy a valid target if possible.

Is it possible to combine two passive effects?

Yes, as long as the effects happen during the same time. For example, you can use Accordion ([squirrels] Squirrel 5), Stashing Vendor ([squirrels] Squirrel 1), and a single junk [junk] card to build your 8th stack. Accordion can be used as a 6 and Stashing Vendor allows the inclusion of junk [junk] cards.

If a passive card leaves my hand and I regain it during the same turn, may I reuse its effect?

Yes. You are not required, and sometimes even unable, to track if a specific card has been in your hand this turn or not.

Do I refill the market during my action phase if an effect removes cards from there?

No. You only refill the market during the clean-up phase or if a card effect asks you to do so.

If a card’s value is altered, can I use the new value of the card when building a stack in my stall?

Yes. If a card’s value is altered for any reason, you must use the new value for any actions you might use the card for, like building stacks and using it to purchase new cards from the market.

If a card’s value is altered by multiple effects, in which order do I apply the alterations?

Apply the alterations in the order in which the altering effects were played. For example, if you have a card valued 1 and first play Flashy Show ([macaws] Macaw 5) and follow it up with Practical Values ([penguins] Penguin 5), the card is first turned into a 2 and then into a 4. Playing the cards the other way around results in the value changing from 1 to 5 to 6.

What's the difference between swap and exchange?

When you swap two entities, they do not have to be equal in amount. For example, you may swap your deck and discard pile with Wily Fellow ([raccoons] Raccoon 1) even if either of those are empty.

When you exchange two entities, they have to be equal in amount. For example, you cannot take any cards from your opponent with Gamble ([ocelots] Ocelot 5) if you don't have any cards left in your hand. Resolve the effect with the maximum number of exchanges possible.

Team rules

How do cards that affect stack building work in team games?

Both players build the stack together, and any effects that alter which cards can be included in the stack or their values affect both players.


  • Flashy Show ([macaws] Macaw 5) applies +1 to your and your teammate’s card values.
  • If you or your teammate uses Stashing Vendor ([squirrels] Squirrel 1) to build, both of you can include junk [junk] in the stack.
  • If you or your teammate uses Nostalgic Item ([squirrels] Squirrel 3) to build, one of you may include a junk [junk] or animalfolk card of any set from your discard piles.
  • If you or your teammate uses Winter is Coming ([squirrels] Squirrel 5) to build, you may immediately build an additional stack with or without your teammate’s help.
  • If your teammate has Snack ([beavers] Beaver 2) in their schedule, and you build together, one of you chooses a card from the market and places it into their hand.
  • If you or your teammate uses Stove ([penguins] Penguin 4) to build, both of you can spend for the effect.

[traps] Trap cards

During setup, do I replace junk [junk] cards with chosen traps?

No. Trap cards are added into each player's starting deck in addition to the 10 base cards and any possible character cards.

[squirrels] Hoarding Flying Squirrels

Can I take a card from different animalfolk set or junk [junk] from my discard pile when building a stack with Nostalgic Item ([squirrels] Squirrel 3)?

Yes. You are allowed to search your discard pile for a single card to add to the stack. Just make sure the total value of the stack is correct.

Nostalgic Item ([squirrels] Squirrel 3) has updated card text in newer print runs. We offer update packs for those with old copies.

[ocelots] Lucky Ocelots

I played Gamble ([ocelots] Ocelot 5), rolled a 3, and have only 1 card in hand. How many cards do I get from the other player?

You get one card because you only had one card. Whenever a card effect asks you to exchange cards, they must be exchanged one for one.

[chameleons] Adapting Veiled Chameleons

Can I throw away a card from the market deck with Good Old Times ([chameleons] Chameleon 3) when there are already cards in the market's discard pile?

Yes. You can use the passive ability even when there are already cards in the market's discard pile. Good Old Times is always a copy of the market discard pile's topmost card, even if a new card gets thrown away there during your turn. The order of the sentences in the card effect has been updated in newer print runs.

If I throw away a card from the top of the market deck with Good Old Times ([chameleons] Chameleon 3) and it also happens to be Good Old Times, can I throw away another card?

Yes. The Good Old Times in your hand is now a fresh copy of the other Good Old Times on the top of the market's discard pile.

[beavers] Systematic Eurasian Beavers

If Practice ([beavers] Beaver 5) is in my schedule when I play Acorn ([squirrels] Squirrel 4) or Gift Voucher ([chameleons] Chameleon 4), do I get the played card back into my hand?

No. Practice card's effect only affects technique cards which would get placed into your discard pile after their effects have been resolved.

Practice ([beavers] Beaver 5) has updated card text in newer print runs. We offer update packs for those with old copies.

If Overtime ([beavers] Beaver 4) is in my schedule when I build a new stack, can I use cards from different animalfolk sets or junk [junk] from my discard pile?

No. Overtime simply lets you use cards from your discard pile to build a stack as if they were in your hand. You still have to follow other stack building rules.

[turtles] Enthusiastic Wood Turtles

Can I Finish turtle cards in the same turn they are played?

Yes, if the card has a bonus action icon [plus]. The only turtle card without the icon is Collector's Desire ([turtles] Turtle 2).