Glad to have you, fluffles!
Alright, so character cards. Here's how they work. Instead of using XP, you get bonus points to make them stronger, because bonus points go farther and the character creation process is always applied. Yes, they are built within each of the essence guidelines Each session, every card as well as the duelist behind them gets 5 XP.
To create an essence 1-4, you get the usual amount of bonus points.
To create an essence 5-6 you get 15 more bonus points.
To create an essence 7+ you get 30 more bonus points.
Also, provided it is from a canonical Exalted book, or otherwise ST approved, you are entitled to use mechanics behind Monsters, Elementals, Demons, Undead, Fae, Dragon Kings, Mountain Folk, Primordials, Gods, etc.
Okay, Spell + Trap cards are going to be a bit of a kerfuffle. Basically, there are two types I had imagined.
Type 1: An artifact or weapon/armor for one of your cards to equip it (as appropriate). This is the simplest one to work around, and replaces the equip cards of Yugioh.
Type 2: The spell activates a charm of some kind, upon any target on your enemy's field or your field. When a spell card is used, every initial roll is 10 dice, to simplify things.
Now naturally, counter magic, perfect dodges, excellencies etc may need new mechanics for them. Turning Exalted into a trading card game is by no means an easy process. So I think it might be time for us to create our own discussion topic in the glorious performance of roles section, and talk there, before this topic turns into nothing but wall to wall Yugioh discussions. Besides, now that I've met my player minimum, I think it's time to move on to phase 2.
Yes, the cards do get charms of their own. However, they cannot be used outside of an attacking/defending phase with another card. That's what makes spell cards important and useful, because you are allowed to apply them. The idea of making a combo spell card isn't a bad idea. Definitely discuss this.
Trap cards, as said before, are reflexive unsoakable undodgeable damage applied to any one of the enemy's cards. You can declare a trap card to be used only if the enemy makes an attack onto your field.
The duelists are heroic mortals, generated by the players. They can look or act like whatever you want. If you want to make them ridiculous stereotypes and turn this into YGOTAS in Exalted form, I have no complaints. If you want to make them serious and turn this into SRS BUSINESS, it doesn't bother me either. As long as you're all having fun, I'm content.
EDIT: Alright, the new topic is up. All posts on this subject are to be made there.viewtopic.php?f=23&t=8796