Fuego! Day of the Dead Inspired Playing Cards were successfully funded on Kickstarter in June 2015. 735 backers funded this deck to the tune of $21,762 USD. I have a few decks for sale in my shop – click HERE to get yours.
‘Day of the Dead’ or ‘Día de los Muertos’ is the Mexican tradition of honouring their deceased loved ones. It is not in the least bit morbid, but rather is a joyous celebration of their lives, and the festivities continue for two days from the 1st to the 2nd of November each year. In recent years, an abundance of Día de los Muertos inspired playing cards have been produced, each with their own unique take on the colourful skulls and costumes that are so ingrained in the traditions of the holiday.
Fuego! the first deck independently produced by Cellar Window, is most definitely what you would call unique. Inspired by the works of Mexican political printmaker José Guadalupe Posada, his Calaveras (skulls), and the Latin phrase ‘Memento Mori’ (remember you must die), Fuego! is a fun, colourful take on the Mexican holiday. The characters themselves have an almost cute, comedic look about them and aren’t scary at all.
In this review, I’m going to say as little as possible about the cards – because the designs speak for themselves – at full volume.
The deck has been beautifully designed from scratch, with every inch of every card and even the insides of the tuck boxes crammed full of detail. There are 2 versions available – the Sol deck (blue), and the black ‘Luna’ deck. Only 1000 were made of each of these, so definitely a collector’s dream.
The four suits are based on Mexican social classes from the days of the Mexican Revolution in the early 1900’s – the Spades, with their bandannas, guns and ammo, represent the Revolutionary Soldiers; the Clubs are the Federal Soldiers in their military regalia; the Hearts represent the Elites – the gentlemen, the upper classes; leaving the Diamonds who are the revelers – drinking, playing music, dancing and having fun, with the Jokers adding to the music making.
The back of the deck is a blend of minimalism and intricate designs – perfect for not only the collector, but also for the cardist. The truth is though, that this is one deck of cards that is going to be in demand from all quarters. Day of the Dead fanatics, Mexican Revolution historians, magicians, cardists, collectors or even those who simply love art – the uncut sheets are stunning!
The pip cards are given the full treatment too, which is great to see – they have the same backdrop and intricate designs of the face cards. Fuego! is brim full of colourful Mexican-style graphics, and the detail is just amazing.
The team of highly skilled designers behind this deck are the same team responsible for the prohibition-themed ‘Bicycle Made Gold’ deck, the luxurious British Monarchs deck printed on USPCC’s premium Tally-Ho card stock, and the Don Quixote deck printed by Legends Playing Card Co.
The Fuego! decks were printed by Legends Playing Card Company on their traditionally cut European card stock and Emerald Finish, ensuring perfect handling and an ultra smooth feel to these cards.
For more images and information on this deck, click over to the Fuego! Kickstarter page.
Fancy getting yourself a deck of these Fuego! Day of the Dead Playing Cards? Just go to my shop and order from there. I only have a few decks so when they’re gone, they’re gone.
What do you think of Fuego! Playing Cards? Would you add these to your collection? Any comments or questions, please feel free to add them in the box below. And please also share this post on your social media sites by clicking on any of the buttons below.
hi, this nice post i have read it and it is very helpful . I am new player of marked cards
Hi Jyl, Happy to come to visit your site, quite interesting! never thought people could be interested on playing cards.
As Mexican I find this set quite interesting, your review is great, think I’m late to get a set for me.
Unfortunately, these people happened to be scammers. They promise a lot and do nothing. I still haven’t got my Fuego decks or any explanation about the issue – they just ignore my attempts to contact them. Another shady businessmen on Kickstarter.
I’m so sorry you’ve had this experience with Cellar Window. I (luckily) did receive my decks in good time, but after getting your comment I checked the other comments are on the KS Fuego! page only to see that there are a lot of others who are in the same boat as you. It’s such a pity because they are actually great cards. Hopefully Cellar Window will get their act together and get the cards out to the people who supported their project, and hopefully they will do it soon. It was good to hear from you fellow-collector – I like your site a lot :):):)
I didn’t realize people collected playing cards…they really are a piece of artwork. Is there a price list for these playing cards? Do they appreciate in value? Does it matter if they have been used? Or are they supposed to be kept pristine? I know I have a lot of questions, but this is pretty cool. Are their antique playing cards collected as an investment. thanks for your article please try to answer some of my questions in an article. Thanks
Well Mac that certainly is a lot of questions! :D Thanks for your interest. This particular deck I am selling in my shop for Â£12.99 (sterling). Decks like this that have been funded on the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter are limited editions, which means that yes, they will go up in value. But you’re quite right you should try to keep them in the best condition possible – meaning don’t open them and don’t play with them. But that’s only if you want to keep them as an investment. I prefer to keep them for myself and to play with them – it’s what they’re for.
These are not typical playing cards that I’m accustomed to seeing, but they sure have cool graphics.
Why were only 1000 of each are produced? If these cards are popular, you would think the company will make more money by producing more cards. But you’re right that these will make collector’s item.
Thanks for your comment Tina. This deck, as with all the other decks funded on Kickstarter, are printed up independently. Someone (it could be you) comes up with designs for a pack of playing cards and they put these designs to the followers of Kickstarter to see if those people will help them raise the money to have them printed. A lot of playing card printers have a minimum quantity run and 1000 seems to be the average. If the printers themselves were printing these then yes, they would probably just keep printing while they’re popular and selling. But as it was an independent designer who created these they simply got 1000 printed using the funds that 735 backers provided through KS. Hope this answers your question :)
What a beautiful set of playing cards. I love the Day of the Dead festival. It’s so unique. No other cultures seem to have anything similar at all.
This is such a great idea for a deck of cards. I have always had a thing for skulls. I used to draw them every where when I was a teen, so these really do appeal to me in a big way.
Thanks Hannah. I have a bit of a thing about the Day of the Dead myself and there are a few different decks out there to choose from, but these little fellas make me smile :) I’ve got some other Dia De Los Muertos decks to review, so keep an eye out – coming soon!! :)
What an impressive article and all the scary pictures :) It seems little bit weird for me to play with suchlike cards but as you say this could be a great catch for collectors.
Do you have these in your collection? And how many decks do you have in your collection?
Hi Arta. That’s the thing with this deck – the almost cartoon-like nature of the characters take away much of the scary aspects to them. Which I love about this deck :) Yes, I have these in my collection and I also have a few decks of them in my shop in case you’d like to get yourself a pack :) I honestly don’t know how many decks I have…. I’ve never counted them all. But I am adding to my collection all the time, there are so many amazing decks out there :D Thanks for your comment :)
Hey, Jyl. These Fuego Day Of The Dead playing cards certainly do seem a little scary, lol! I love playing card games, and also at the moment my friend is teaching me how to do some pretty cool card tricks. I will definitely be back at your site for some inspiration and great card ideas :D Neil
Hi Neil – can you imagine doing a really cool card trick with an even cooler deck of cards…?? There are loads of decks on my site that are just fantastic for cardistry and magic. Make your spectators oooh! and aaah! :D Good luck with the tricks. My hands are very small so I’m not so good at that… :( Thanks for the comment :)
Truly a Mexican inspiration, I have seen the dead musician like this before but never found them in the card like yours. I used to collect cards but those were the collection of heroes from Japanese movies. You have a good knowledge and a lot of experience in this hobby it will be giving you more credit in this niche and I believe you will have more people coming to your website.
Thank you Tinnakon. I’m glad that people are finding the site interesting – it’s important to get return visitors so I have to keep adding decks to keep it all fresh :) And there are so many decks that I want to review – what choice! :)
Love the design and color scheme on this deck of cards! I also found the article very interesting.
I have to consider getting one of these decks,
Be quick Vicky!!! There’s only 2 hours to go to get in on the funding!!!! A deck like this is always a pleasure to review – it speaks for itself. And I think that people acknowledge and appreciate when they know a designer has put a lot of work into something. Definitely worth investing in :)
this is very well written. I think you did a great job, and I am going to go and buy me some now. I do magic tricks and this would make it look 100% better.
Great AJ, glad you like them – but you’d better be quick! There’s only 21 hours until the end of funding :)
Nice deck !
I feel like I need to eat some brains.
I like the smooth feel of the cards, but Jyl, if I may ask:
Are these cards made from paper or plastic ?
Hi Anas, they’re paper – made from European card stock with a smooth finish :)
These cards look super cool, love the design. I like it when you find something unique like this, it’s why people start collecting I think, especially when few others will have them.
Yes Tony, with most of the decks that are funded on Kickstarter, these are limited editions. I like to collect unique decks. But I have decks that are valuable so I can’t open them, which actually saddens me. Because I like to LOOK at my cards. I want to hold them and feel them and play with them. It’s hard to be a collector, but it’s also so much fun! :)
This is the best deck I have seen in a long time, I like the black ones. I really enjoyed all that you had to say; a very comprehensive article pointing out all the details that might go unnoticed by those who might pass up the chance of purchasing this Day of the Dead deck of cards.
Thanks Debra – that’s the thing with many playing card decks. With there being 52 cards plus Jokers and ‘gaff’ cards, designers have to be clever with the imagery. You’ll find that there are little bits here and there in every deck that the designer has thrown in but not mentioned, just so people have something to look for :) Those cheeky little designers!! :D
What an interesting subject. Very attractive and interesting website. Well done.
Thank you Lucinda – I’m very lucky that the imagery here does all of the talking. It always helps to be reviewing a stunning deck :)
Great website, seen a different side to playing cards An interesting collection and great playing cards.
Keep checking back Jason, because I’ll be doing more reviews on more fantastic decks. Thanks for your comment :)
I love to add these playing cards to my collections :)
Hi Keye – you’d better be quick! You’ve got 43 hours as of now to get in on the funding. $14 and a deck is yours – with free shipping. Here’s a tip for you…. there will only be 1000 of each of the 2 decks ever made. That means they’ll be RARE. And you know what that means :) Click on the link!!!
Interesting way to honor the dead. This idea should get many people’s attention. Great Job!
Thanks Michael. I love how it’s not morbid in any way – celebrations rather than commiserations. I think we could all learn from it. As a side note, the artwork in this deck – even in the ‘black’ deck is fun and colourful :)