Review: Tarot 3D

I love to collect unusual tarot decks, so when I saw Tarot 3D on the shelf at Aquarius, I had to have it. It was less than twenty dollars, which is pretty reasonable given the extra expense of the pack’s gimmick.

The cards are in 3-d.

You know those little plastic plates that shift just a bit when you turn them? Kind of like that. But somehow they managed to get that texture plastic on a normal card stock, and the cards are flexible and shuffleable with no problem.

The images for the deck are taken from author Davide Corsi’s other deck, the Pictorial Key Tarot. Though the CGI on the cards makes some of the characters look a bit wooden, the images are clean and simple, with vibrant colors and a rather elegant feel. Tarot 3-D only includes the major arcana from that deck, probably due to costs associated with producing the cards. Just having the trumps works for readings just fine if you’re used to it, although I would be willing to pay more for the full deck.

Readings I have done with this deck are fairly clear; not as cryptic as Crowley or Archeon, but not quite as plain-spoken as my trusty Tree of Life Tarot. The 3-d images do have an odd effect of hinting at more background influences than I normally get without asking — I’m not sure if the Pictorial Key Tarot has this same quality or if it is a result of the 3-d imaging.

Personally, I miss the pip cards. I am capable of reading with just the trumps, but I like the complexity and detail that the pips provide.

This deck excels for pathworking. The images are bright and vivid enough that even with my lack of visual skills I can get good imagery off it, and the added depth really draws you into the card.

The downsides are relatively minor. I miss having the pips but don’t absolutely need them. The dimensions of the cards are a bit long even for my tarot-savvy hands, and are tricky to shuffle. Plus, there is some uncertainty as to how the textured 3-d coating will handle bridging, so I have a tendency to be very gentle with them (and I don’t like to coddle my decks). I’ve also noticed that the edges of the cards get a little sticky, especially when it’s humid, which is no doubt due to the binding of the 3-d texturing to the card stock, but can still get a little annoying.

If you’re a tarot collector, this deck makes a great conversation piece, and I recommend it. If you’re looking for something to use as a focus for pathworking, I also recommend it. But if you’re looking for a deck for heavy readings, you may want to consider something sturdier and fuller. This is a cookie deck: it’s a sometimes food.


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