Kickstarter Cards with Carter: April 2nd, 2018

April 2, 2018

Kickstarter Cards with Carter is our regular column about playing card Kickstarter campaigns. Remember, Kickstarter pledges are not pre-orders and results are not guaranteed.

I know you’re looking at that skeleton at the top of the page with a very confused look on your face. Trust me, everything will become painfully clear soon enough.

Masquerade by Brain Vessel Creative (printed by USPCC)

The latest Kickstarter venture by Brain Vessel Creative (Bones, Sea Creature, Seven Seas) is a collaboration with award-winning artist and sculptor, Denyse Klette. The campaign is looking for US$13,000 and is just shy of half way there already. 

Klette’s known for her bright pastel portraits and fashion mag-style cartoons in which playfully exaggerated models in giant sunglasses sip lattes in French cafes. She’s an unashamedly “girly” artist, and her work on Masquerade is no exception. It’s very much a wine and handbags kind of deck, with hand-drawn pips and abstract royal faces hidden in foliage. Think Picasso by way of Teen Vogue

The regular version of Masquerade will be printed in grayscale, with splashes of red for the hearts and diamonds. A delightfully gaudy, full-colour, Mardi Gras Edition of the deck will also be released if the campaign reaches a stretch goal of US$34,000. 

A Masquerade deck will cost you $15 with free shipping inside the US. There are other goodies, such as deck pouches, coins and pins on the deck’s Kickstarter page. The campaign will run until May 1st.

Nervous by Kevin Keeney (to be printed by MPC)

This deck’s jack is a stretched stock image of a 90’s CGI skeleton wearing a baseball cap. 

I’d love to just end this segment there, with the promise that skeleton Jack’s poorly photoshopped hat is a design nadir from which Nervous nimbly recovers, but there honestly isn’t a single element of this deck that isn’t questionable. The custom pips feature more unsightly stock art gracelessly forced into awkward sigils, the index typeface is both ill-suited to the deck’s theme and touches the edge of the cards in the higher ranks, the art for the queen seems to have come from a different artist compared to the rest of the deck and the King is just hilarious, with his ridiculously square jaw, flattened cranium and perilously low crown that hangs in front of his eyes. One of the Jokers features a brain and nervous system that’s been stretched horizontally to fill out space and the other an artistic interpretation of a neuron that literally extends off the edge of the card. And just try not to turn the cards over because the backs look like what you’d see if you looked through a child’s kaleidoscope into a flashlight.

You can have all that for a mere US$12 plus shipping. If the campaign reaches its $4,317 goal, Mr. Keeney will be able to license the stock art he’s using for commercial use. 

Solstitium by Collectable Playing Cards

What comes to mind when you think about the life-giving importance of the sun? I really hope it’s gold foil.

Such is the power of gold foil that the Kickstarter campaign page for Solstitium spends most of its space showing you every possible (CGI) angle of the deck’s gold-foil encrusted tuck box. To be fair, the box is quite nice, featuring a deep red background and an image of the sun (rendered in foil that is gold) on its front and back. There are presumably some playing cards inside this opulent container, but this deck is designed by Collectable Playing Cards, and the thing about collectable playing cards is you’re not supposed to open them. 

The cards look pretty good. The backs have the same sun design as the tuck box, albeit without that all important GOLDEN FOIL, and the circular motif continues in accents around the fronts. The royals are custom across the board, with the only real standout being the Jack of Diamonds, who looks like a man carrying two watermelons while wishing he had three.

The Kickstarter campaign for Solstitium is looking for $14,000 and, as expected, has no stretch goals, variants or uncut sheets. The lowest pledge tier that includes a tuck box (and cards if you want them) is $15 with free shipping inside the US. 

Canvas by Ben Heirbaut (printed by Cartamundi) 

A custom deck of playing cards, designed for cardistry with paintings by cloudkid. A fresh and new concept.  

No. No. Nope. Hold your horses, mate. Your deck of cards does not get to be a deck of, “playing cards,” if the only game you can play with them is the world’s most boring game of Snap. 

I mean, it’s quite nice as far as not-playing cards decks go. The card backs are appealing, even if there are exactly twice as many of them as there should be, and yes, Cartamundi’s B9 finish is very nice. 

Canvas’ Kickstarter Campaign is looking for €7,000. A single deck will run you €13 plus another €10 in shipping. The campaign ends on May 2nd. 

 Now get off my lawn.

If you’re planning to Kickstart your own deck, drop us a line and we’ll feature it here.