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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Deck the Halls » » Review: Cheap decks under $5 (Texas Star, Stargazer) (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

EndersGame
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Playing Cards for an Anniversary Celebration

In this review series, I'm featuring a number of decks I recently received as part of my first ever order from PlayingCardDecks.com (which I'll mostly refer to as PCD in this article). And because PlayingCardDecks is currently celebrating their first anniversary, from 24 - 30 April you can get 20% off everything on their website using the coupon code "YEAR1" at check out. They have 10,000s of decks in stock, with over 1500 different decks as part of their range. In my reviews so far I've covered many decks that were highly suited for card games and magic, and colourful and creative decks for the cardist or collector. In the current set of reviews I'm focusing more on some novelty decks and unusual titles, ones which will especially appeal to collectors, but also some of the cheaper decks that PCD has available.

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*** CHEAP DECKS (under $5) ***

You don't have to spend a huge amount of money to get a top quality deck of playing cards. In fact, PCD has a huge range of low-cost decks that are under $5, and yet are high quality playing cards. I've picked two fine examples, but many more decks are available in this budget price range, without sacrificing quality - see a complete list here.

Texas Star deck

The Texas Star offers big value, after all, everything is big in Texas. This deck comes from the makers of the Bicycle brand, and is inspired by the colours and imagery of the Lone Star State.

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The Texas Star is a key motif in this deck, featured prominently on the front and back of the tuck box, as well as on the card backs, where it resides against the pleasant background of vintage style parchment, creating a look that brings to mind the olden days of yesteryear.

In keeping with a touch of the wild west that is part of the theme, the Ace of Spades features both the name of the deck and a pair of of pistols, ready to fire up some action.

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The court cards feature the standard designs, but are reproduced in red and blues, for a whole new look, to fit with the colours of the Texas Star featured on the card backs and tuck box.

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The numerical face cards are all standard, but the theme returns with the Jokers, which are made up to look like Wanted posters.

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As for the card quality, despite the low price, don't think that short cuts have been taken, because these are top notch playing cards, with the usual air cushion finish from Bicycle. This is a deck that will be right at home in the hands of a magician, or at a card or poker table.

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Stargazer deck

Now it's time to head to the night sky, to check out the stunning Stargazer deck from Bicycle.

This deck owes its origin to the Starlight series produced by Collectable Playing Cards. The first Starlight deck featured a colourful pattern of glowing stars, while its sequel Starlight Black Hole took the stellar concept in a new direction, with the card-backs depicting a swirl of glowing stars fading into the dark unknown of a black hole. Further entries in the series included Starlight Shooting Star, Starlight Lunar, and Starlight Solar. The Stargazer deck is a separate product from Bicycle, however, and the stunning silver foil on the tuck box immediately gets us thinking about the sparkle of stars in the night sky.

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These decks were designed by Juniardi Satyanagara, and it is the design of the Starlight Black Hole deck that is chiefly responsible for the design of the Stargazer deck, with similar colours and style, although the black hole has been adjusted to a figure eight shape that incorporates two black holes. This swirling shape amplifies a sense of motion when used for twirling, and looks beautiful in fans and spreads, since the colourful artwork here has a full-bleed style. The use of a black canvas as the background of both the card faces and backs gives possibilities for an unusual yet beautiful palette of colours to shine.

The Ace of Spades has a classic shape, but features a galaxy of stars inside the design, as a tribute to the colourful heavenly views seen at night. The artwork on the cards looks like illumined signage, is very eye-catching and appealing.

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The design of the border-less and colourful card backs means that card flourishers can capitalize on the colours that go to the very edge of the cards, and maximize the effect of these glowing colours in fans and spreads.

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The court cards feature a burst of light touched with purple and pink, that is clearly inspired by a straight forward and classical design that has been transported to a colourful and starry night sky.

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As well as adding aesthetic beauty, the colour choices also ensures they can easily be distinguished in dim light. The white, pink, and purple colours work together beautifully against the black backdrop, ensuring that the visual clarity of the indices has not been sacrificed while using an uncommon colour scheme.

While the large pips on the number cards feature a combination of pink and purple colours, the indices use a binary choice of colour, with the traditionally black suits of Spades and Clubs featuring purple pips, and the traditionally red suits of Diamonds and Hearts featuring pink pips.

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The matching Jokers look like magnificent visions that have stepped straight out of the night sky!

This deck of playing cards was produced by USPCC, in their standard air cushion finish.

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Recommendation

So is PlayingCardDecks.com something for you? I won't repeat the more detailed conclusions I included in my initial article. But I can say that if you're looking a high quality deck of playing cards, PCD is definitely a terrific online retailer to check out, based on my own very positive experience. And getting 20% off with their anniversary sale that is running from 24-30 April (use the coupon code "YEAR1"), now is a great time to discover this site. Happy first anniversary Will Roya!

There's a great range of creative and high quality playing cards, the decks featured above being good examples, and I'm pleased to recommend them. Whether you're looking for decks suitable for card games, card magic, or card flourishing, you're sure to find something that fits the bill at PCD. If you're like me, you'll appreciate having a quality deck of playing cards in your hands, and I'm happy to report that the playing cards I've been able to showcase here have not disappointed.

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Want to learn more? Check out PlayingCardDecks.com
- Online Store: playingcarddecks.com (use code "YEAR1" to get a 20% discount site-wide during the first anniversary sale 24th to 30th April 2018)
- Related links: Blog, Kickstarter projects, Loyalty Rewards Program, Pip Box Club
- Social media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter

Direct links for the decks featured in this review:
- Novelty decks: Disruption ($13.99), Christmas ($11.99), Views ($17.99)
- Transformation decks: Wild ($9.99), Busy Bears ($9.99), Newtropolis ($8.99)
- Unusual decks: Coca-Cola Clear Plastic ($7.99), $100 Bill - Foil ($7.99)
- Cheap decks (under $5): Texas Star ($4.99), Stargazer ($4.99)

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BoardGameGeek reviewer EndersGame - click here to see all my pictorial reviews: => Magic Reviews <==> Playing Card Reviews <==> Board Game Reviews <==
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Deck the Halls » » Review: Cheap decks under $5 (Texas Star, Stargazer) (0 Likes)
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