So I recently won a contest on the Ellusionist forums and the prize was a deck of Gold Arcanes and a DVD. Now I know the deck is very collectible but I'm more magician than collector and I opened them. I'll be honest it took some rationalizing and bargaining on my part but we all knew I was going to open them. I have never handled the regular Arcanes so I can't compare these to them but I like these cards. My first impression was one of surprise, I expected the gold to be more shiny, but instead its a muted matte gold that works really well. Being a brand new deck it handled really smoothly as to be expected. Its hard to say why but the gold really bring something to the cards especially the face cards. It saves them from a two toned hell. The Ace of spades is unique and it looks great, I like how the outline of the spade more hinted at than definite.The joker is some sort of summoning circle summoning a demon of sexiness. The second joker contains a reveal and its so subtle that I spent a minute looking at them side by side trying to find it before it hit me. And it freaking works. When I do a force and then simple reveal with that card people are so shocked that they grab the card from my hand it works so well. The last bit of fancy to them is a double backer which is kind of useless to me but it may come in handy one day.
Now for some of the cons, there's only one really this being a black deck even with the minimal use I've put it through there's a bit of chipping around the edges. I know this can be touched up with a sharpie if I thought of it as a problem.I don't see it that way though so as long as its only a question aesthetics I'll let my black decks chip. But if card manufacturers are going to make black decks they should use black cardstock.
If you found this review to helpful or you thought it sucked let me know in the comments section.