Some keywords have a side-effect, that requires a token counter. Player can choose up to three token counters for each deck in the deck section. It is possible to assign the token counters automatically by selecting the "Auto" button. When deck is completed and no token counters are set, token counters will be chosen automatically. Playing a card with keyword, which is associated with the token counter, will raise the value of the token counter. The number of tokens received varies with each keyword (see the Keyword section above). When a token counter reaches 100 or more by playing a card with that keyword a side-effect will happen and the token counter will be reset to 0. This side-effect takes place directly after the card effect of the played card. Each token-associated keyword has a token gain. This information tells you how many tokens are gained when card with such keyword is played. Token gain consists of basic gain (number of tokens you get for the played card) and bonus gain (number of tokens you gain for each additional card in hand with the same keyword as the played card). Keywords with high basic gain are generally better used as support keywords, since they don't require to have many cards with the same keyword in hand, however their token gains might not be very high. Keywords with high bonus gain require many cards with the same keyword, but when there are such cards in hand, token gains can be very high.
Let's take the Alliance keyword for example. First you need to set one token counter to Alliance keyword (in the deck section). Then you normally start a game with this deck. Alliance keyword has 17 basic gain and 3 bonus gain. So, when you play a card that has Alliance keyword, it will raise the Alliance token counter by 17 plus 3 for each additional Alliance card in hand. When the counter reaches 100, it will add a Production x2 to the effect of the played card and will be reset to 0. By paying close attention to the token counters, you will be able to make good combos of card effects and keyword side-effects. For example Soldier and Ceremonial guard or Alliance and Stilshrine of Miriam can make good stock boosting combos.
Let's look at another example. Luna the Sorceress has both Mage and Far sight keywords. Under certain conditions Far sight keyword is able to raise the value of the Mage token counter as well. When Luna the Sorceress is played, following can happen:
- Mage keyword raises the value of the Mage token counter, but not to 100
- Far sight keyword raises the value of the Mage token counter to 100
- the Mage keyword side effect is not triggered despite the fact, that Mage token counter reached 100
Why? Keywords are always executed in a fixed order. In this case Mage keyword first, Far sight keyword second. Only the Mage keyword can trigger its side-effect. When the effect took place, the Mage token counter value didn't reach 100. Far sight keyword raised it to 100 later, but too late for the side-effect to happen. In this case, you need to play another card with Mage keyword to activate the Mage keyword side-effect.