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Reviewer EndersGame
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It's no secret that I love playing cards. I love using them for card games first of all, but there are also other purposes that I enjoy: card magic, card flourishing, and card collecting.

We are living in a golden era of playing cards, and a large number of wonderful and creative decks continues to be produced. One of those producers is Will Roya from PlayingCardDecks, and in this article I'll feature some of his latest creations.


* * * Circus Nostalgic Playing Cards* * *

What better deck to begin with than the Circus Nostalgic Playing Cards.

The news about the circus coming to town has always excited children around the world. This deck aims to rekindle some of that childlike enthusiasm and excitement, by bringing back childhood memories, and being a nostalgic tribute to the world of circus entertainment from yesteryear.


Artist Joe Ruiz was inspired by distant memories of his own visit to the circus when he was just seven years of age. For him, the lasting memory of that trip was the lion tamer Gunther Gable Williams. Joe reminisces about it as follows: "The way he fearlessly entered the cage with all those big cats left an indelible image on my young mind. The tuck box cover is an homage to that time and experience."

The graphic design of the tuck box does a good job of capturing the feel that Joe was looking for, with retro style fonts, and small touches like a custom seal that says "Admit One". The seal is individually numbered, since this is a limited edition deck.


The Ace of Spade welcomes back our lion performer from the tuck box, and in fact all the Aces have an oversized lavish design that matches this style. I also love how the faces of the cards have vintage borders, and how the big top design from the card backs returns in a more subtle way on all the faces.


The card backs have a "big top" circus tent pattern that is instantly recognizable and memorable, with a borderless design that has red and white stripes branching to the very edges of the cards, for an eye-catching look. The stripes give extra colour and style that card flourishers can make good use of.


In making this deck, Joe researched vintage circuses, and his goal was "to convey the exuberant energy of these old circus performers", and he's done a good job of doing that on the court cards. These feature classic circus performers, like a strong man, escape artist, trapeze artist, juggler, and more, with the ringmaster featured on the King of Hearts. The artwork is colourful and vibrant.


Due to the engaging graphic style, even the number cards look colourful and vibrant, with a customized design that includes indices so that the deck is still playable in card games if you wish.


Two circus clowns (one sad, one happy) provide Jokers, while two humorous cards are provided as gaffs, a "Tent of Spades", and a "Freak of Spades".

It all adds up to a very lively and whimsical deck that I love shuffling and looking through, and has amused and pleased everyone I've shown it to.



Some might think that there is a glut of custom playing cards on the market, but I'm personally appreciative of the large diversity that is available. There's a variety of tastes, and the growing number of decks meets this need. Card gamers who love cyberpunk fiction will appreciate the Cybertech deck, while collectors who are fans of ladybugs will snap up this insect-themed deck. Almost everyone will appreciate the novelty of the whimsical Circus deck. And while the Faro deck may suit a smaller niche of magicians, even some card gamers will appreciate the fresh and "pure" feel that these cards give.

It's also worth mentioning that all of these decks have been produced by the United States Playing Card Company. That means that they all have an embossed air cushion finish, will handle smoothly and consistently, and have been printed to last. Props to PlayingcardDecks for continue to deliver the goods with some great new decks of playing cards, that fans of card games and collectors around the world can enjoy!

Want to learn more? You can find these decks on here:
- Circus Nostalgic Playing Cards
- Ladybug Playing Cards
- Cybertech Playing Cards
- Faro Edition Bicycle Playing Cards


BoardGameGeek reviewer EndersGame - click here to see all my pictorial reviews: => Magic Reviews <==> Playing Card Reviews <==> Board Game Reviews <==
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