It's been a while since we last checked the Kickstarter offerings in the playing card category. Out of the projects currently running on the platform, there are three that stand out to me: a couple of super deluxe decks for deep wallets, an affordable good-looking option, and a couple of cheerful novelty ones.
Let's start with The Azure Dragon & Time Machine playing card Collector's sets. The Azure Dragon features a paper sculpture inside the tuck box: an ornate Chinese dragon design in 3D that you can display on your shelf if you take the cards out. This is limited to 1000 pieces, and the boxed set includes a white and a black deck. The campaign has another 23 days to go.
In a similar vein, the Time Machine deck comes inside a box with a cog that turns when you open it. It is steampunk-themed, and the illustration on the back of the cards moves like a motion picture when you riffle them. The tuck box itself also moves like turning the pages of a book when you pull the deck out.
These are clearly collector's items that would match a living room with walnut paneling, leather couches, expensive whiskey in the glass and a cigar in the ashtray. Or just any playroom, if you're willing to pay a little extra.
Moving on to the Inferno playing cards, inspired by Dante's Divine Comedy. We have another richly decorated deck here, featuring Celtic-style curlicues, modern gothic figures, and a nod to ancient Greek mythology. I suppose you will enjoy the deck more if you have read the book, but if you're like me and haven't, you can still get it for its sheer beauty. I think the terrifying faces in the court cards will work great in any dungeon crawl-themed game. The Kickstarter ends in 25 days.
After these visual feasts, we need a palate cleanser and a refreshment. How about a Cola-themed deck, and maybe some popcorn to go along with it. From Fast Food Playing Cards, the company that brought us the fries, ketchup, and mustard decks, come the Popcorn and Cola ones. And yes, the people in the court cards sip on fizzy drinks and munch on corn snacks. These are cheap and fun to play with, and won't make you cry bitter tears if you accidentally rip the tuck box. You can pledge for them within the next 22 days.