Deckstiny very kindly sent the limited edition copies of both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A and B along with fourteen ‘Happy Squirrels’ surprise packs (seven for collection A and seven for collection B).
Created by Mate Horonumber alongside artists Oomsin Pumphat, Pettoonza, and Kiarana Singsamran, the Shuffle Tarot Collections A and B were first printed in 2020.
Who Is Deckstiny?
Deckstiny, formerly named ‘Shuffle Tarot’ is a Thailand-based company that has created numerous popular Tarot and divination decks that are available to purchase Worldwide.
Turning Tradition On Its Head
The idea behind these decks is to take the traditional Rider Waite Smith Tarot and to literally shuffle the cards around, placing characters and figures in alternative scenes from other cards within the deck. As it says upon the back of each deck “When everything is shuffled the fun begins” -the idea of shuffling key characters and figures around within the traditional Tarot is quite a unique concept, it literally turns tradition on its head whilst offering a much deeper, more informed method of reading the Tarot as more options, meanings, and messages are revealed within the cards.
Both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A and Collection B are encased within sturdy, smooth, cardboard boxes featuring colourful, detailed artwork on the front, back, and sides of the boxes. The boxes arrive wrapped in cellophane, and the cards have a plastic seal which requires removing upon first opening.
The Guidebook/ Booklet
Both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B come with a 114-page guidebook which is divided into two (fifty-seven pages of English and fifty-seven pages of Mandarin Thai). The black and white printed booklets include an index, an introduction/ preamble, images and eight keywords for each of the major and minor arcana cards, and four pages explaining the keywords for each of the Happy Squirrels Surprise Pack cards (which may be collected and added to the Shuffle Tarot decks).
Both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B feature seventy-eight cards (twenty-two major arcana, forty minor arcana, and sixteen court cards (the major arcana and court cards are “shuffled” differently for each collection though the minor arcana cards remain identical). Each box arrives with two cover cards, a certificate card featuring a sequential number (of 1010 decks), one Pamela Colman Smith card (for Collection A) and one Arthur Edward Waite card (for Collection B), and a 112-page guidebook/ booklet.
The cards are standard Tarot sized and are printed on matt-coated 310 GSM Japanese quality card stock which feels delightfully smooth to shuffle.
The Major Arcana
Both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B share identical minor arcana cards. However, the major arcana are completely different. Though the cards first appear traditional in style, the concept of shuffling tradition has changed the major arcana entirely as well-known characters and figures have literally stepped out of the box and have moved around into alternative scenes and atmospheres. Deckstiny was hoping by altering tradition that readers would be taken on new adventures to new places and new worlds.
Shuffle Tarot Collection A Major Arcana
Shuffle Tarot Collection B Major Arcana
The Court Cards
The court cards also differ within both Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B – they each shuffle differently and the results are quite astounding as for example, the King of Wands from Collection A is sat near water much like The King of Cups would traditionally be whereas The King of Cups (from Collection B) has been replaced with the figure of The Devil… tradition has left the building as new scenes and new stories begin to take place.
The Minor Arcana
Both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B share identical minor arcana cards. These cards remain ‘shuffled’ in terms of character, scenery, location, and such-like. Recognisable images such as the blindfolded figure trapped by the eight swords have been altered to a blindfolded figure trapped by eight wands, the suits have swapped or so it seems…
Images from well-known cards such as the ten of cups featuring the glorious rainbow in the sky are now featured in the ten of wands as scenery, atmospheres, figures, and characters swip-swap places, shuffling tradition.
The Happy Squirrels Cards
Alongside the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B, Deckstiny also offers a number of ‘Happy Squirrels Surprise Packs’ which can be added to the Shuffle Tarot Collection A and B (there are specific packs for each collection). Each Happy Squirrels Surprise Pack includes two surprise cards from a range of six characters, these characters and their meanings are explained in the guidebooks for each Collection.
Having opened fourteen Happy Squirrels Surprise Packs for both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A and Collection B, I managed to gain a complete set of all six characters from each collection. I have however got numerous duplicates which I have put aside as spare cards.
Unboxing & Unwrapping the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B & The Happy Squirrels Surprise Packs.
As always with Tarot and divination deck reviews, I have put together a detailed walkthrough of when I first opened, unboxed, and unwrapped the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B along with the Happy Squirrels Surprise packs.
Reading With the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B
I’ve been working and reading with both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B for a few days now and though it’s taken me quite some time to get used to the alternative placement of the scenery, atmospheres, figures, and characters within the decks, I’m really enjoying reading with these decks as I am finding that each card now offers more than it once did as the traditional imagery has been altered thus providing further information and messages.
I must admit that these cards are a little tricky to work with at first and in order to be able to use these decks effectively it is crucial that you must have a good knowledge and experience of the traditional tarot beforehand.
Purchasing & Pricing Information
The Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B are available to purchase either separately or together as either standard or limited edition decks, the prices of which differ somewhat.
The Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B and the Happy Squirrels Surprise Packs can be purchased directly from Deckstiny through their Etsy store retailing from £37.96 upwards. Prices vary according to standard/ limited editions of the decks, and whether you choose to combine purchases or to bulk buy.
Happy Squirrel Surprise Packs (for both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B) can also be purchased separately or combined in bundles or with deck purchases.
A limited-edition copy of both the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & Collection B along with ten Happy Squirrels Surprise Packs retails at £116.57 with an additional shipping/ postage fee (to the UK) of £29.37 (totalling £145.94). I’ll be honest – these decks don’t come cheap but their quality and unique attributes make them worthy of their price.
Whilst the Shuffle Tarot Collection A & B are quite similar as they share identical minor arcana cards, I am really pleased to be in possession of both decks as I’m not sure as to whether I would have been able to choose between the two. Having worked with these decks for the past few days, I will admit that they were a little tricky to understand at first as I was so accustomed to working with the traditional Rider Waite Smith Tarot.
Having the complete sets of six Happy Squirrels Surprise cards for each collection I’ve now combined these with the decks thus offering even more meanings and messages to my readings. I’m rather fond of these cute, fluffy little characters as they add an additional quality and element of uniqueness to the cards.
I love the fact that scenery, atmospheres, characters, and figures have been swapped around as this makes for a much more detailed, more interesting reading. I would suggest that the Shuffle Tarot decks are only suited to advanced Tarot readers but would certainly recommend these decks to anyone looking for a high-quality, unusual, alternative deck.
For further information on The Shuffle Tarot collections, The Happy Squirrels Surprise cards or alternative Deckstiny Tarot and divination decks visit www.etsy.com/uk/shop/ShuffleTarot
Disclosure: I was sent the above products for the purpose of this post however all opinions are my own.