Queen by Midnight Rulebook Updates Since First Printing

Here you can download the most up to date digital rulebook for Queen by Midnight – last updated September 8, 2023. Cards with significant errata are also printable here for reference or for sleeving into your deck!

Also check out our FAQ & Rules Reference Sheet to make your first time playing a breeze.

The changes to the rulebook are primarily of a clarifying nature, including:

  • Purchased card replacement clarified (page 4)
  • Damage from non-Attack cards clarified (page 5)
  • Reaction card timings clarified (page 6)
  • Reorganizing and clarifying glossary terms

However, a few other small game improvement changes are worth calling out as we’ve done below, alongside their design reasonings!

New Action - Archiving Your Hand at the End of Your Turn

When your turn ends, you may choose to place all cards in your hand into your Archive, ignoring any Play or Discard effects, and then draw up to your hand limit. You can still choose to end your turn and keep the remaining cards in your hand, but you will still only ever draw up to your hand limit – any remaining cards will count towards that limit.

We went back and forth on having this as a rule, but we ultimately decided giving players more flexibility to cycle through their decks created more compelling gameplay patterns that lead to a more fun experience.

Guardian Keyword - Removed

Guardian was proving to be a problematic keyword that interacted unintuitively with the game’s other mechanics and didn’t appear on enough cards to justify its mechanical overhead. Consequently, we removed all instances of Guardian and reworked cards with the Guardian keyword to preserve the spirit of the card but not tie it to the now antiquated keyword.

The following cards have been impacted:

Bodyguard now reads:

  • Summon a Bodyguard with 5 LOYALTY.
  • When Bodyguard is in your Armory, reduce damage from Attack cards targeting your Princess by 4.
  • When an opponent reduces Bodyguard’s LOYALTY, they take Major SCHEMER damage. This counts as an Attack card.

Explanation: Bodyguard was a prime culprit for cards that caused rules and incidental damage questions for Attack cards. We wanted to preserve the spirit of a protective Schemer card that could help mitigate the damage of some of the more powerful Midnight Bazaar cards. This change is meant to make it easier for the card to resolve rules questions in a vacuum.

Briar Thorns now reads:

  • Summon with 5 LOYALTY.
  • AWAKE: Incoming Attack cards must target Briar Thorns. When an opponent reduces Briar Thorns’ LOYALTY, they take Minor CASTER damage (counts as an Attack card).
  • TRANCE: Briar Thorns cannot be attacked, and you gain 2 PROPHECY TOKENS whenever you are targeted by an Attack card.

Explanation: Briar Thorns maintains the pseudo Guardian effect but specifies that only incoming attack cards that target Rosaline must target Briar Thorns while she is Awake. This simplifies the card by explaining the impact on the card.

Other Card Updates

Below are a few cards that have been updated. We felt they did not meet expectations due to either printing errors or a rule change which causes them to perform out of line with the design intent.

Temporal Stasis

Temporal Stasis has been changed from a Reaction to a Utility and now reads:

  • The next time this turn you target an opponent with an Attack, treat all non-Bane cards (including Reactions) in their Armory as if they didn’t exist until the Attack is resolved.

Explanation: In most situations, Temporal Stasis was being played more like a Utility card and was too powerful for knocking out a single player. We’ve adjusted its type to make it more intuitive to play and more in line with other cards at its cost.


Payback should read:

  • Roll 1 DIE and add your minor BRAWLER Level. Deal that amount of damage to an opponent.
  • If any opponent has negated an Attack card of yours this turn, add your Major BRAWLER Level instead.

Explanation: Payback was dealing too much damage for its cost, with its damage type being tied to the current round. This adjustment is much more in line with its current cost.

Bide Time

Bide Time should read:

  • Cannot be played if you’ve played an Attack card this turn. Increase your BRAWLER and SCHEMER Levels by 2.
  • WHEN PLAYED: Gain 1 CLOUT for each card in your hand, then end your turn. Dismiss at the end of your next turn.

Explanation: Bide Time was always meant to end your turn when played. Otherwise, Erdene could just sequence their Attack cards after playing Bide Time to ignore the downside.

The Beast

The final ability on Dr. Lux’s Ultimate Card The Beast should read:

  • Banish a card instead of Discarding it to deal 5 unblockable damage to a random opponent.

Explanation: This ability has been overperforming at lower player counts and is being slightly tweaked to bring down its ability to end games outright.