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Tales of Tribute Card Game Guide for ESO High Isle


Welcome to the Tales of Tribute Guide for ESO (The Elder Scrolls Online). Tales of Tribute is a new card game that will launch with the High Isle Chapter in ESO. In this guide we are going to take a look at the basics of the Tales of Tribute card game. At first it can look a bit overwhelming but once you understand how the basics work, you will have no issues with playing.

You can view all of the Patron decks and upgrade cards on our Tales of Tribute Overview Page. If you don't know what those terms mean, fear not, all shall be explained in this guide!

What is Tales of Tribute in ESO?

Tales of Tribute is a two player collectible card game that provides a fresh, new challenge for the heroes of Tamriel. Over the course of a Tribute match, players assemble decks from a shared pool of cards and attempt to "tell the great tale" by combining those cards into a winning strategy. While players can participate in Tales of Tribute strictly for fun, ample rewards await those who relish a challenge! Find renown with Roister's Club daily quests, seek out hidden Founders, and climb the Tales of Tribute leaderboard to become a Tales of Tribute master!

Yes, the Tales of Tribute card game in ESO will have its own leaderboard (ranked mode). However, if you are new to the card game don't worry about that just yet, focus on learning the game and participate in unranked social matches.

Tales of Tribute cards in ESO High Isle
Tales of Tribute cards in ESO High Isle

How to Access The Tales Of Tribute Card Game in ESO

You will have to purchase the High Isle Chapter to to play matches in the Tales of Tribute cards game in ESO. However, even if you don't have the chapter you can still collect Tales of Tributes decks and card upgrades, you just won't be able to use them. This is similar to how the Antiquities System works, you can get leads, but you just can't use them.

First you must visit Gonfalon Gaming Hall which is located in Gonfalon Bay in the High Isle and Amenos zone. Just outside the front of the Gaming Hall, you will find Bragas, a rather talkative Wood elf. Speak to him to begin the tutorial quest for Tales of Tribute. During the tutorial quest you will play a quick game with Bragas where he will teach you the basics of Tales of Tribute. It is impossible to lose this game, it only serves to show you around.

After doing that, you will need to defeat one of the novice tribute players, NPCs whom you can play against found in the upstairs area of Gonfalon Gaming Hall. Once you have done that, you can hand in the quest to unlock the two different daily quests, which are also picked up from Gonfalon Gaming Hall. 

These daily quests are obtained from two NPCs in the downstairs area of the Gaming Hall - Kishka the Broker will give you a daily quest to defeat three NPCs in different parts of Tamriel. 

Marunji the Broker will give you a daily quest to defeat three players. 

In both of these cases, you can hand in the quest after winning just one game, but you will get more rewards if you do two or even three. Three is the maximum amount of wins that you can get daily quest rewards for though.

Note that Tales of Tribute progress and unlocks are shared between all characters on your account. You only need to complete the tutorial once to unlock matchmaking with the card game. Once you have completed the tutorial, you can play matches on any character on your account. You can still complete the full Tales of Tribute questline on every character, if you wish to do so.

Start your Tales of Tribute career at Gonfalon Gaming Hall in High Isle
Start your Tales of Tribute career at Gonfalon Gaming Hall in High Isle

How to Play Tales of Tribute in ESO

Each player has to select two decks (Patrons) at the start of a Tales of Tribute Match in ESO (Elder Scrolls Online). The first player picks the first and last deck, while the second player picks the second and third deck. Once you have selected all four, the decks will combine to create a "Tavern" in the middle of the board, which is a shared collection of cards from all four selected decks. There are currently 8 different decks available to choose from.

There are three different resources in the game, visualized by numbers shown on your side of the board. The first resource is Coin. Coin is used to buy cards from the Tavern or buy favour of some Patrons. You get Coin from various card effects. Any Coin that is unused at the end of your turn will be discarded, so try to plan your moves so that you don’t waste any. 

The second resource is Power. You can spend power to attack your opponent’s agent cards by clicking on them. This will subtract your power value from the health of that card until the card’s health reaches zero or you run out of power. Some agents can be very powerful and things can get out of control if you let your opponent keep several agents in play, so it’s sometimes worth doing this. Any unspent power at the end of your turn will be added to your prestige value, explained below. 

Prestige is the third and final resource in the game. Prestige is basically the score of each player, and the objective of the game is to amass the most Prestige. Usually you get Prestige from Power as explained above, however there are some cards that directly increase Prestige. When a player reaches 40 Prestige, their opponent will have one turn to exceed their Prestige total, otherwise they lose the game.

If you do manage to beat their score, then the game effectively enters a “sudden death” situation, where the first time someone fails to beat their opponent’s Prestige score, they lose the game. You will also probably want to make use of the Patrons on the right side of the board. Have a look at them when you are playing to see what their price & reward is, and don’t be afraid to make use of their services as they can sometimes be very powerful.

During the early stages of the game, it’s a good idea to choose the chest icon in the middle of the Patrons area, which will cost 2 gold and allow you to convert one of your cards into a Writ of Coin card which gives you 2 Coin, which will help you to afford the more powerful cards from the Tavern later in the game.

If you aren't sure where to find things on the Tales of Tribute game board, then see the image below and find out what everything does via the legend:

Tales of Tribute Game Board - See Legend Below
Tales of Tribute Game Board - See Legend Below

  1. Tavern Discard Pile
  2. The Tavern
  3. Draw Pile
  4. Active Agents
  5. Your Hand
  6. Played Cards (moved to Cooldown pile at the end of your turn)
  7. Cooldown Pile
  8. A Patron
  9. Coin
  10. Prestige
  11. Power
  12. End Turn

How do the Tavern, Cooldown Pile and Draw Pile work?

When you buy a card from the Tavern, in most cases it will go into your cooldown pile. Some cards behave differently, more on those a little later. Cards will stay in your cooldown pile for a few turns after they have been played or purchased.

Your Draw pile is basically your current deck. At the start of your turn you will draw five cards. There are some cards which allow you to do additional draws. If your Draw Pile is empty, then you will shuffle cards from your Cooldown pile into your Draw Pile and continue drawing as normal. 

Card Types in the Tales of Tribute Card Game in ESO

There are four different types of cards in Tales of Tribute:

  • Actions
  • Agents
  • Contract Actions
  • Contract Agents

Action cards, when played, will perform whatever action is associated with them and then go into your Cooldown Pile. When you first purchase them from the Tavern, they will go into the Cooldown Pile for a while, so you cannot use them right away.

Agent cards remain on the field until they are knocked out, either via your opponent's power or a card effect. Agent cards usually have a play effect, and you can activate this again each turn by clicking on them. They can also perform their combo every turn by activating the play effect of other cards from the same deck - this is why allowing your opponent to amass several agents on the board at any one time is very dangerous, it allows them to easily perform combos each turn and get tons of Coin and Power. When an agent is defeated, it will go into your Cooldown Pile. 

Contract Actions are put into play as soon as they are acquired and never go to your cooldown. At the end of your turn, any played Contract Actions go to the Tavern's discard.

Contract Agents behave similarly to normal Agents, the main difference is that they are played instantly instead of going into the Cooldown Pile, and when they are defeated they will go to the Tavern Discard. 

What are the Patrons for in ESO Tales of Tribute?

Each Patron has a card deck associated with them, and the four Patrons chosen at the start of each game will have their decks added to a common pool of cards which will be randomly drawn and placed in the Tavern, along with cards related to the Treasury, which will always be present in every game.

The Patrons currently in the Tales of Tribute game are:

You may choose to interact with one of the Patrons once per turn if you meet their requirements. When you meet a Patron's requirements and call upon them, their state towards you shifts to neutral or favored. If you are already favored it cannot improve further. Having the favor of all patrons immediately results in victory.

Some Patrons abilities change depending on which state they are in. For example, the Duke of Crows will not let you interact with it when it favors you, but your opponent may still use it. The Treasury Patron favors no one and does not affect Patron victory.

What are Decks and Cards and how do you get them?

There are different decks and cards in the Tales of Tribute card game. Every Tales of Tribute card deck has plenty of different cards and one Patron. All decks consist of a starter card and standard cards, some of those are upgradeable. Unlocking the upgraded cards can improve a deck. Both players will benefit from the upgraded cards because you pick your whole deck at the start and everything gets mixed together for both players.

Initially you start out with 4 decks that were gifted to you by Master Razhamad. You can also acquire more decks by completing Tales of Tribute activities, earning certain achievements and completing specific content on High Isle. The hints to upgrade cards can also be found in the Collections menu of the Tales of Tribute card game in ESO.

Please visit the Patron Decks Overview Page for info on all the decks.

Explaining the Turn Timer of Tales of Tribute

Each player has 90 seconds to complete their turn in the Tales of Tribute card game. If 90 seconds pass, the active player's turn ends automatically. However, if a player is idle for a full turn, meaning they don't activate any cards, their next turn will be 20 seconds long. If a player is idle for 3 turns in a row they automatically forfeit the game.

This is done to avoid AFKers in the card game. You still have to deal with them but the turns get a lot shorter if they just don't do anything.

If you are playing against an NPC, there is no turn timer. 

Tales of Tribute Game Modes

There are different ways of playing the Tales of Tribute card game in ESO (Elder Scrolls Online). The Tales of Tribute card game allows you to PVP (ranked or casual) or PVE (NPC matches).

Ranked matches allow players to face off against other players to increase their tier and standing on the Tales of Tribute leaderboard. Players receive rewards for winning or losing, and these matches count toward advancing Tribute quests.

Casual matches allow players to face off other players without increasing or decreasing their tier or standing on the Tales of Tribute leaderboard. Players receive rewards for winning or losing and the matches also count towards advancing Tribute quests.

NPC matches don't affect a player's tier or standing on the leaderboards. Players will earn rewards for winning or losing based on the challenged NPCs difficulty rating. Players can also make progress on quests when playing against NPCs.

Friendly matches with other players are entirely for fun and offer no rewards and don't advance quests.

You can invite other players to a game of Tales of Tribute in ESO High Isle
You can invite other players to a game of Tales of Tribute in ESO High Isle

How to Start a Match in Tales of Tribute Card Game

You have several options to start a match in the Tales of Tribute card game in ESO.

Activity Finder - You can challenge other players through the Activity Finder. Select either RANKED or CASUAL play in the Tales of Tribute section of the Activity Finder to be paired off with an opponent of similar skill level.NPCs - You can challenge certain NPCs that you encounter in the world. You can preview an NPCs skill level before you confirm the match.

Other Players - You can also challenge other players that you encounter in the world by using the social interaction wheel and choosing the Tales of Tribute Match option. If the invited player accepts, the duel begins immediately.

Friend/ Guild List - You can also challenge friends or guild mates via the friends and guild list tool.

To accept or offer a Tales of Tribute match invitation, both players must own the High Isle Chapter and both players must have unlocked the Tales of Tribute card game by finishing the tutorial in Gonfalon Bay.

Challenge NPCs or other players to Tales of Tribute matches in ESO High Isle
Challenge NPCs or other players to Tales of Tribute matches in ESO High Isle

Tales of Tribute Leaderboard and Ranked Tiers

Competitive Tales of Tribute features four tiers of play and one leaderboard that resets every month.

At the start of each Tales of Tribute season, you must complete five placement matches. Victories and losses in these initial matches determine your starting tier. Players can also benefit from their previous season's tier. You can potentially earn up to four free placement match wins based on how far you progressed. Each ranked match will earn you points that increase your tier and your standing on the leaderboard of the Tales of Tribute card game in ESO.

After reaching Rubedite tier, players enter the Tales of Tribute leaderboard where placement is determined by win rate. At the end of the season, players receive rewards based on both tier and placement on the leaderboard, with the top 10% and 2% of the leaderboard earning special rewards.

Tales of Tribute ranks in ESO High Isle
Tales of Tribute ranks in ESO High Isle

Tales of Tribute Tips and Tricks

There are many useful skills you can develop to improve your Tales of Tribute play. Critical among them is deck management. Effectively curating your deck allows you to keep it lean, thus increasing your chances of drawing your more powerful cards every turn.

A common way to curate your deck in the early game is by trading your starting cards to the Treasury patron for a Writ of Coin card, which generates two gold when activated. You can also use the Destroy ability to remove cards from your deck, so you are more likely to draw your best cards.

Oust and Refresh abilities are also great ways of guaranteeing which cards you will draw every turn. Oust sends cards from your draw pile to your cooldown pile, while Refresh pulls card from your cooldown and puts them on top of your draw pile.

Another useful skill is understanding the order that combos are resolved. The order that you can activate your cards every turn will trigger their effects and combos accordingly. When playing a card, its play effects are resolved first, followed by any combos on the card itself and then any combos on other cards that were triggered. Combos on other cards are resolved by their play order with cards that were played earlier being triggered first.

Before activating your cards, consider what abilities you wish to trigger first. For example, if you have an Oust and Draw ability, you may wish to activate the Oust first so you can choose what cards to discard before activating your Draw ability.

Now you know the basics of the Tales of Tribute card game in ESO (Elder Scrolls Online), developed by ZOS (Zenimax Online Studios). ESO is a MMORPG (Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game).



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