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KADAR Playing Cards Designed by Christopher J Gould

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Kadar Sees - Kadar Knows.'

Remember those weird old fortune telling machines sitting in run-down amusement arcades?

What if you put in your coin and it unerringly spat out an answer that was so relevant and accurate that it made you catch your breath?

What if you could carry this machine around in your jacket pocket?

What if you were the great oracle Kadar?

With the Kadar Deck, we have broken with tradition and produced a truly original deck of cards.

We want our cards to look like nothing that you have seen before; this is a deck of cards that instantly stands out from the 'pack'.

We draw inspiration from the diversity of design throughout the history of playing cards. From the colourful pictorial cards of the 18th Century and the cards carried across Europe by the travelling fortune tellers to those strange old fortune-telling card sets from the 50's and 60's.

Our cards look colourful and intriguing. The design of the cards reflects the strange fortune telling cabinets that lurk in the shadows of old amusement arcades, the vivid picture cards we collected as kids and the graphic style of 'Silver Age Comics'. Our cards look vibrant and entertaining, but also hint at a deeper meaning beneath the surface.

Who are these cards aimed at?

The Card Collector. It is unlikely that you will have such a striking, original and unique deck of cards in your collection yet. Put the Kadar Deck out on a table with a few other decks and see which one draws the eye.

The Magician. As these are a full set of poker cards on the best Bicycle stock you can use them to perform standard card magic. In addition, we show you how you can take your magic to the next level; investing a simple trick with meaning and a personal connection to your audience.

The Social Animal. Our cards are aimed at simply making you the most interesting person in any group with something that will draw the eye and everyone's attention. We guarantee it! Also if you put a dime in the cabinets, the cards do something strange and mysterious; something that will draw a crowd of interested onlookers.

With each deck you will receive a PDF version of the 'Read your fortune with Kadar Cards' mini-book. This mini-book tells you how to mark the cards and do something more deceptive with them.

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Very mysterious looking Report this review
Verified buyer Pro Privacy ON (login to see reviewer names) on November 12th, 2020
Very nice deck. Interesting, especially when doing cartomancy you need a mysterious looking deck. This deck fills the bill.
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Beautiful playing cards, ideal for use with card magic Report this review
Pro Privacy ON (login to see reviewer names) on April 28th, 2018
While I don't believe in tarot cards for actuall fortune telling, I can appreciate the aesthetic beauty of a creative looking deck. In the beautiful KADAR deck we have a fine example of what happens when the idea of fortune telling comes to life on a deck of playing cards.

The tuck box creates an immediate sense of intrigue and wonder, with our mysterious and turbaned oracle friend Kadar staring into our eyes. The sides of the box say "Kadar knows all, Kadar sees all", which adds to the sense of mystery. Created by Christopher Gould, this deck is inspired by the idea of arcade style fortune-telling machines, where one could put in a coin in return for the wisdom of the great oracle Kadar. Christopher actually earned his living as a stage magician, and so his aim was primarily to give magicians a pocket sized deck of playing cards with plenty of nods to oracle reading.

This is what has inspired the artwork, as well as the fortune-telling card sets from the 1950s and 1960s, and also the colourful pictorial cards of the 18th century and those that were used by travelling fortune tellers in Europe. The original idea was to make the artwork look like a cheap deck found at a disreputable fun fair in the mid 20th century, but the creator decided to make them more polished, with plenty of inspiration also from the graphic style used by "Silver Age Comics".

Each suit has its own flavour and concept, described as follows:
Spades: The card of the thinker, the planner and the strategist.
Clubs: The card of the creative, energetic, entrepreneur.
Diamonds: The card of the solid dependable worker.
Hearts: The card of the romantic; the person whose heart rules their head.

The card backs are based on old carnival fortune telling machines, and are hand drawn with intricate detail. The court cards all have their own character, and are intended to represent a unique cabinet with its own Kadar. The Aces picture the slots into which you would place a coin, in order to get a message from the oracle. The deck is rounded out with a couple of colourful Jokers, a double-backer and an blank face card, both of which will be appreciated by magicians.

Printed by USPCC, these playing cards look, feel, and handle great, with an air cushion finish that you'll find on standard Bicycle decks. My only wish is that the white borders had been slightly thinner, giving even more emphasis to the stunning artwork, something along the lines of the image below. If a reprint ever happens, I hope it would be printed by EPCC and LPCC, a publisher that is capable of more consistent and narrower borders, while ensuring crisp registration doesn't suffer.

While perhaps not the most suited to a traditional card game, these cards will be appreciated by card collectors for their unique unique feel and look, making them stand apart from most other decks of playing cards. But they will especially find good use in the hands of a magician, given the sense of mystery and intrigue that they evoke. Gemini Artifacts Magic also makes available for purchase an 111 page eBook called "Kadar for Magicians", which gives more information about the deck, as well as several routines and performance ideas. As a magician, I'm happy to have this deck as part of my collection! - BoardGameGeek reviewer EndersGame
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