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Ancient Warriors (Red) Playing Cards

List price:$11.99
Price: $6.00
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Inspired by past civilizations from around the globe. This amazing deck combines traditional and nontraditional playing card design techniques and concepts to bring you a stunning, all-purpose deck. Liberal use of metallic inks used on the fronts, backs and tuck case add to the beauty of the design. Besides a tuck case reveal, you may find some additional surprises on the cards. Release your inner warrior!


  • Printed by USPCC
  • Art by Marcelo Simonetti
  • Produced by Will Roya
  • Thin Classic stock
  • Embossed finish
  • Traditional cut
  • Poker size
  • Metallic inks on box and cards
  • Subtle one way back design
  • 52 cards + 2 Jokers
  • 2 bonus character cards
  • Tuck case reveal
  • Limited edition of 1,400
  • 2018 release

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Great as part of a set with both the Red and Black deck Report this review
Pro Privacy ON (login to see reviewer names) on September 14th, 2018
Sometimes a deck surprises you. You've seen pictures online and were interested. But then you see the real thing, and it blows you away. That's what happened to me with the Ancient Warriors deck, a new release that has just hit the market courtesy of Will Roya's PlayingCardDecks, which produced this with the help of crowdfunding on Kickstarter.

The Ancient Warriors decks are a limited edition two-deck set that comes with one in a red/gold colour scheme, and another in a black/silver scheme. Besides the different tuck boxes and different coloured card backs, the decks are a matching set, and identical aside from some bonus cards. I've always liked the concept of pairing decks together, and using gold and silver as colours for the details always looks great. When set against a backdrop of red and black respectively, they look even more terrific. One nice aspect of having two decks as part of a set is that it gives the opportunity to showcase different artworks, and that's what's happened here. The two tuck boxes aren't a matching set with merely a re-colouring that keeps them apart, but each has its own image and feel, and they look particularly appealing when placed alongside each other. It's a nice touch that the red deck has a gold rather than black seal, to fit with the overall colour scheme.

The artwork on the box naturally introduces us to the subject material that the title already gives us a clue about. These decks are an exploration of ancient warriors from ancient civilizations around the globe, and each suit will focus on a different civilization. The back of the tuck box features the artwork that also appears on the card backs of each deck. The main central design and the patterns on the corners match, but the ornate patterns are otherwise unique to each deck. The four icons in the center of this design are repeated - these are incredibly detailed, and are representative of the four cultures featured in the decks themselves.

Four cultures are represented in this deck, and are depicted on the court cards and Aces:
- Crusaders (Spades)
- Japanese (Clubs)
- Zulus (Diamonds)
- Aztecs (Hearts)

The level of detail is fantastic, and there's lots to admire and enjoy when studying the artwork closely. There's also incredible detail in the borders; both the Spades and Clubs have silver borders, but with the Spades there is a repeated cross shape to represent the Crusaders, whereas the Japanese suit instead appropriately makes use of a flower blossom. The Hearts and Diamonds meanwhile have gold borders. Each border also picks up something thematic to match the civilization on that card.

The civilization theme has also been applied to the Aces and the pips on the number cards. We've come to expect a flashy Ace of Spades in a custom deck, but in this deck you get an set of four heavily customized Aces, each of which has its own intricate detail and appeal. The pips on the number cards are all heavily customized and elegant, with the black suits being bordered in silver and the red suits in gold; each pip has a central icon appropriate to that suit's civilization, e.g. a crusader's cross for the Spades. Special mention should be made of the metallic inks used, and this makes the gold and silver accents on the faces of the cards look truly stunning.

That's already impressive, but we're not done yet - there's still the Jokers and bonus cards. For the Joker, a mischievous leprechaun has the secret to finding the legendary pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. All we need to do is combine the cards as a diptych, and we're on the way to making our fortune! Each deck also comes with two bonus cards that are unique to each deck. The Red/Gold deck has an Aztec and Crusader, while the Black/Silver deck has a Zulu and Japanese.

Special mention should be made of the artist of this fine deck. Marcelo Simonetti is an illustrator and graphic designer from Uruguay. His background includes architecture and graphic design, and he's also studied illustration. The original characters he's created for this deck are truly stunning.

Are the Ancient Warriors decks for you? These decks are a wonderful set of two, and would especially be ideal for anyone who enjoys a card game that requires the use of two decks with contrasting back designs. The indices are very clear and functional, and yet these decks are highly customized, interesting, and very attractive. I'm glad to have both of them, and am extremely pleased with how terrific these turned out. With printing by the USPCC, with the standard air cushion finish, the quality and handling is every bit as good as this beautiful deck deserves. Once again congratulations to Will Roya and PlayingCardDecks for producing another wonderful set of customized decks of the highest calibre. Highly recommended for fans of custom decks! - BGG reviewer EndersGame
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