Starlight Stage is a fast-paced set-collecting card game in which you are playing a talent manager whose aim is to get the best talent of all your rival agencies. You start with the fresh talent of a model, an actress, and a singer. You help to build their careers by collecting lessons, events, and upgrades for them which earns them more fame. The manager with the most famous talent at the end of the game wins!
You start the game with three separate decks in a vertical row: the Idol deck, Fame deck, and Event deck. From the top of each deck, you draw a card for each player and lay them in a row next to the deck from which they were drawn. Each player starts with the beginning hand of new talent: the actress, model, and singer. To start the game, the first player has the option of drawing a card from one of the three stacks and adding it to the end of the row, increasing their options of what to purchase. They then use their accumulated talent points to either purchase an assignment card, acquire a fame card, or take a lesson. Play continues until the fame deck is empty. Then all players tally their fame points and whoever has the most points wins!
The English-language edition of Starlight Stage includes both the original Japanese base game as well as the fourteen cards of Starlight Stage: Expansion Card Set 1.