Recoculous Tokens & Fine Art Cards

angelI created some cards that can be used for tokens or proxies with Magic: the Gathering, and I had them professionally made. I created a website for them called “Recoculous Tokens.”

I made cards that can be used for tokens that are commonly used or that have never been officially released. I also made fine art cards of various locations, like Taiga, Bazaar of Baghdad, and Library of Alexandria.


Spellslinger: A Free Combat-Oriented Card Game (Updated 3/23/14)

coollogo_com-445304c© James W. Gray 2013

gnome druidI  developed a combat-oriented fantasy card game based on what I believe collectable card games could have been like if they were made in 1893 — a hundred years before Magic: the Gathering was made. The idea of the game is that you are a wizard that duals against other wizards. You both cast various spells, and raise an army of characters to attack the opponent.

The rules and all the card images are available in PDF files below. I advise people to print out three of each common, two of each uncommon, and one of each rare to make a “cube” — a pile of cards that can be used for drafting the cards. Continue reading

Baby Steps: My Newest Magic Set

HullabalooI created a small Magic set that can be used to learn or teach the rules for Magic: the Gathering. There are three difficulty levels used, so that players can learn the game using consecutively more complex rules and cards. The easiest difficulty level is much easier than Magic would be otherwise. The cards and rules are available online, and I have also written about what it was like for me to design the set — why I made the set one way rather than another.

This Magic set was made to be fun for everyone, so it can be used to learn the game, teach the game, or as a cube (random set of cards for draft) for more advanced players.

You can find the cards and rules at these locations:

  1. Baby Steps: The Beginner Level
  2. Baby Steps 2: The Intermediate Level
  3. Baby Steps 3: The Advanced Level

Information about the set from the design perspective can be found here:

  1. Teach Kids Magic Using Baby Steps
  2. Baby Steps II (A Fan Set)
  3. Baby Steps III (A Fan Set)
  4. Baby Steps Updates

Medieval Images Used for Tarot Combat II

ashmole elephant boa pythonAll the card games I’ve shared on this site at this point were games I speculated to have actually exist during the medieval times. I don’t think they really existed, but I did want to know what combat-oriented card games similar to Magic: the Gathering could have been like if they were originally made in the medieval times, around the time playing cards and tarot cards were introduced to Europe in almost exactly the same form they exist in now. Even though Tarot Combat II is based on a tarot deck, the cards greatly resemble cards from “collectible card games.” The cards all feature colorful artwork and tell you what the card does on it.

The main reason I decided to create this website is precisely so that I could share Tarot Combat II with the world, and one reason that I decided to share that game with the world is because I was able to find medieval artwork for it that’s now in the public domain in the USA. This is only possible now that museums, universities, and libraries are sharing high resolution medieval artwork. A lot of the artwork used for this game were from illustrated medieval manuscripts that can be found on those websites. The illustrations found in medieval manuscripts are called “miniatures.” I thought this artwork would be more appropriate for cards because they were literally painted by hand and tended to be quite small. They tend to be simpler than other paintings from the time period. Continue reading

Combat: A Battle-Oriented Playing Card Game

1850 playing card Атласная_колода_экстра_дама_бубниThe first combat-oriented game I have discussed on this website is called “Battle.” This post will discuss a newer game I invented called “Combat.” Like most combat-oriented games, players take turns drawing a card, attacking, and playing cards. In this case any card can be played as a soldier or farm (resource), but only the Ace, Two, Three, and Joker can be played for a special ability (with a temporary effect). If a card is used for a special ability, then the card is put into the discard pile. Continue reading

What’s the Purpose of Fantasy Cards?

Playing cards were invented in China in the 800’s, and by the time they reached Eurworld tarot card Visconti-Sforzaope (in the 1300’s) they were pretty much the same as the 52-card deck of playing cards we use now.

Fantasy cards are cards that feature spells and imaginary creatures, such as dragons. The main purpose of these cards is generally game-oriented. The first fantasy cards were from the “Tarot deck,” which was originally used to play games in the 1400’s, but was eventually used to tell fortunes, which is why I will consider them to be “fantasy cards.” The Tarot deck is pretty much the same thing as a deck of regular playing cards with twenty two “trump” cards thrown in, each with a colorful illustration. Continue reading