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Topic: Guardians playing cards - impressions
Message: Posted by: The Amazing Noobini (Sep 13, 2007 09:24AM)
I received my order of "Guardians" playing cards today. So I thought that I'd make a thread for them in which people can give their opinions on these new cards from Theory 11.

I think it's good to see a black backed card which still has white borders and fairly regular faces. You don't need to put on a thick layer of black eyeliner to use these. Although it may help. The cards do not look like regular cards. But they are certainly more functional for everyday use than cards on black card stock. Or pink or green for that matter.

The card faces are standard USPCCo faces but with altered colors: The yellow is replaced by a light gray and the red and blue is darkened. Some blue lines are replaced by black ones, mainly in the facial features of the court cards.

The Jokers have the same armored angel figure as the backs and the word "Joker" is in the same exact font as in Ellusionist's Ghost card Jokers.

The pack comes with two Jokers, one D-backer and an advertising card.

Surprisingly, the card stock appears to be slightly thinner than Bicycle Rider Back stock. When I put one new pack of each next to each other (sans Jokers), the regular Bicycle deck is two cards taller. The sides of the Guardians pack also look slightly darker or rougher but to me the decks feel similar. Maybe the USPCCo has changed the standard Bicycle stock since I bought my Rider Back deck. The Guardians have the same slightly dodgy print alignment as regular Bikes.

All in all, a nice alternative for those who want something which is not red or blue. I personally think the back design suffers a little from the now common practice among designers without a background as an illustrator (like myself to be honest) of assembling bits and pieces of vector and bitmap stock art, which means that the different lines and swirls are in different styles that don't necessarily go all that well together. You have ornaments that look like they are from different design periods thrown together. I suppose that could be justified as being "Steampunk" or of "redefined, intricate, industrial, modern design" like their ad says.

In any case, if you don't sit and stare at it like I do, it looks like a very nicely composed image. Very detailed without being distracting.

Are they "elite playing cards" as advertised? You be the judge. I welcome them.
Message: Posted by: MagicMattMan (Sep 14, 2007 10:37AM)
I received my Guardians today, and they are so awesome looking. The edges have a silky feeling and they fan nicely. I'm an Intern at Baptist Collegiate Ministries at U. of South FL, and I perform a lot of Evangelical Magic with cards alone, and I'm probally going to switch to the Guardians because of the hardcore ArchAngels on the deck.

In a review on theory11, someone mentioned that there is a one-way feature built into the cards. It took a couple of minutes to find, but it's there.

The Ace of Spades is really cool as well, with wings closed together (looking like they could spread open to reveal something).

Message: Posted by: AnthonyMaze (Sep 20, 2007 04:09AM)
I have got a deck of Guardian Angels and they ARE very nice. A change of pace that is not EXTREAMLY dramatic like the Black Tiger's, but different enough to not be red's or blue's that everyone see. They look nice and feel great. I have NO CLUE what the one way feature is though, although I havent really looked into it that much.

Does anyone else know what this feature is?
Message: Posted by: The Amazing Noobini (Sep 20, 2007 04:50AM)
Well... I can say this at least without giving away any subtle secrets: The entire background is one way! Nothing is mirrored from the two halves of the card at all. :)

Having now used them for a while I have to say that they do not feel as nice as regular Bicycle cards. They have a kind of tiny feel of stickiness to them, like the Bicycle 1800s have, but not as much. I think it must be the non standard black ink which isn't as ideal as the good old red and blue. Sticky perhaps is not the right word. They are for instance a little tougher to Spread-Cull. And they just don't feel quite as nice.

Also they have slightly rougher edges. At least more so than the Bicycle Vintage New Fanback cards I use for comparison. This doesn't really affect anything (that I do at least), like Faro shuffles and whatnot. But again, it doesn't feel quite as nice as one would have expected.

I think this is clearly another case where I should have bought a single deck to begin with and not a lot. Oh well. My card folding practice needs to be fed.
Message: Posted by: MagicMattMan (Sep 21, 2007 02:39AM)
PUT THEM AWAY GUYS! Theory11 is sold out of Guardians and is ready to print Generation2! http://www.theory11.com/news/news_article.php?NewsID=18
Message: Posted by: The Amazing Noobini (Sep 21, 2007 06:39AM)
I don't support companies who put out products that are mediocre at best and then hype up each new version as being so good that the old one was almost laughable. It's soap detergent marketing.

Think of E who put out a COMPLETELY useless 1800 deck only to wait until everyone had spent their money on a dozen of them before they suddenly became aware that the deck was no good and put out a new version of it (which wasn't very good either).

This is the same type of thing. Not unexpected perhaps with so many inflated words on the website. I don't think that I will shop with them again.
Message: Posted by: MagicMattMan (Sep 21, 2007 07:24PM)
The Guardians were already PERFECT. They just decided to change the finish and get rid of the one way feature that people couldn;t understand.
Message: Posted by: The Amazing Noobini (Sep 22, 2007 07:04AM)
They didn't just change the finish and the back pattern. The page you linked to clearly states that "We've changed the type of coating, the finish, the paper stock-- everything. Every single element of the deck has been brought to an even higher level of quality".

This is hype talk for "these are actually entirely different cards only with the same (almost) back design, because people were giving us negative feedback on the old ones".
Message: Posted by: Mark Rough (Sep 22, 2007 08:54AM)
On 2007-09-22 08:04, The Amazing Noobini wrote:
They didn't just change the finish and the back pattern. The page you linked to clearly states that "We've changed the type of coating, the finish, the paper stock-- everything. Every single element of the deck has been brought to an even higher level of quality".

This is hype talk for "these are actually entirely different cards only with the same (almost) back design, because people were giving us negative feedback on the old ones".

It seems to me that when a manufacturer changes their product because of "negative feedback" they should be congratulated and praised for fixing problems rather than slagged for ripping people off.

It happens in every industry. Model years end and the "new and improved" comes out. A first run sells out, and an a new one comes out, often reworked. A first edition book sells out, and the second, with additions, is released. It's not a bad thing. It's called staying up to date and keeping your customers happy. It's part of a free market economy. Companies produce what their customers want or need. If their first run of cards had problems that their customers communicated to them, then they had every right and reason for making the changes. I think you're coming at this from a very strange, slightly paranoid, angle, indeed.

Just my two cents, which won't even get you a stick of gum anymore.
Message: Posted by: The Amazing Noobini (Sep 22, 2007 12:00PM)
On 2007-09-22 09:54, Mark Raven wrote:

It's not a bad thing. It's called staying up to date and keeping your customers happy. It's part of a free market economy.

No, it's called deceiving the customer as long as they aren't being honest about it. It's part of a modern world in which people are sadly so used to being told lies that they accept it as how things should be and even defend it.
Message: Posted by: Mark Rough (Sep 22, 2007 04:20PM)
You know what? My mother always told me to smile and nod in situations like this. I'm just going let this go, before either you or I say something we regret.

Have a great day.
Message: Posted by: The Amazing Noobini (Sep 23, 2007 05:02AM)
Fine, Mark. Smile and nod away. Nobody is forcing you to discuss anything. :)

Why don't the rest of us try to get back on track and talk about opinions on the quality and use of these cards.
Message: Posted by: The Amazing Noobini (Sep 23, 2007 02:27PM)
P.S. The time window for editing my post has passed. I want to add that I don't mean in any way that you Mark have led this discussion into an undesirable area. I realize that I express myself badly at times (too often) and it may read like that.
Message: Posted by: Mark Rough (Sep 23, 2007 05:00PM)
No problem, I get my nose bent out shape too easily.

So what was the general feeling on the first run of these cards? Positive or negative? I thought it was pretty positive, but I could have been misreading something. And has anyone seen what is replacing it? How's it look? How's it differ in appearance?

Message: Posted by: Cain (Sep 23, 2007 11:59PM)
I did not know the Guardians had a one-way back design, or came included with a double-backer. I remember going to their forums and suggesting that they SHOULD have a subtle one-way design, and nobody (at the time, at least) corrected me. They're already basically gaffed. Also, I do not see a problem with revamping the second run. The problem, I suspect, is too many people view these cards as a "work of art" -- as the marketing suggests -- and not a mass made, disposable product. It's only problematic if they're consciously putting out a shoddy, sub-par product, waiting for it to sell out, and then replacing it with the new and improved version. It's unfair and premature to lambaste T11 for a first generation deck. Still, I think these novelty decks are vastly over-rated, and should be used sparingly, if at all. The number of people willing to fork over money for these things disturbs me.
Message: Posted by: niva (Oct 9, 2007 04:00PM)
That's why it's always wise not to immediately jump onto the wagon, no matter who or how much a product is praised.
Message: Posted by: Lumas (Oct 10, 2007 06:22PM)
I bought a few decks of guardians to try out when Theory11 first started selling them. I am pretty glad that I never opened them as a majority of the people seem to dislike them. It is crazy how these are going for triple the original price on auction sites. Maybe they will be a collectible for the future generation of Ellusionist people.
Message: Posted by: Sebashtion H. (Oct 15, 2007 11:29PM)
I recieved My deck From a friend as a gift
and before they came I was reading the sites and a lot of people were complaining
about the clumping issue. I stuck mine in the freezer and forgot about ther for 2 hours. after they thawed out they worked fine not as nice as the ghost deck or reg red back bikes but they are nice looking and they fan nice for me..
I normally by the latest and greatest decks that come out and put them in my collection and use my tallys or the ever faithful red back bikes......

Sebashtion H
Message: Posted by: Lumas (Oct 16, 2007 11:03PM)
I think the second edition Guardians are coming out this Friday. Hopefully these will be better and a third edition won't come out next month.

Just a side note, but the first edition Guardians are going for $40.00 a deck on auction sites. I really don't understand why someone would pay that much for a deck that isn't very good. The second edition decks are going to look the same as the first edition (pretty sure). I guess card collectors want the first edition? I don't know...
Message: Posted by: liljay510 (Oct 31, 2007 09:22AM)
I thought I was the only one, but the guardians do a have weird feel to them, compared to Bikes and Bees. The Faro/weave shuffle is much tougher, they need to be forced together and the edges get damaged.
Message: Posted by: WesleyBryan (Apr 18, 2013 04:25PM)
I've searched all over for this topic, but couldn't find anything on it. Anyone know the deal with the Guardian Double Backer? Is the double backer not included anymore? Why not? Are they sold separately?