SUMMARY: Perfect for people who like new and shiny things
When I heard about the shiny cards of the new Alloy decks, I could hardly resist. They are a gaming industry first, by having iridescent foil tuck boxes and card backs with iridescent foil. Iridescent means it shows changing colours from from different angles, like the rainbow effect you see in soap bubbles and on CDs.
Several editions of the Alloy Deck were created at the same time, the main difference being the available colours: Copper (brown), Amethyst (purple), and Cobalt (blue). Of these, the Cobalt version of this deck is the most impressive - it actually has iridescent foil on the fronts of the cards - another apparent industry first.
I can't say enough about how amazing the iridescent effect on these cards is. Photos really can't do justice to it, and you need to see it to believe it. Like most bling, you can't help but be drawn in by the sparkle, and the moving rainbows that emanate from the cards. It immediately grabs your attention with its high visual appeal and unusually bright appearance.
One issue with the court cards is that they have intricate borders, so the larger pips that are usually on court cards had to give way in favour of other artwork. There are still pips on the card indices, but the court cards aren't as quickly distinguished from each other at a glance as they might in a regular deck. However, I didn't find this to be a big issue in playing games with the cards. The deck is also somewhat slippery, as a result of the significant amount of foil on the backs. This isn't a deal breaker, because it doesn't make them unplayable. You learn to adjust, andreally, that's just a small price to pay for all this bling, isn't it?!
While I love the card-backs of the Copper and Amethyst edition, these editions aren't as impressive as the Cobalt edition, which has the iridescent foil on the card faces as well. Let me warn you, once you've seen the Cobalt edition in person, there is no going back! I have all three decks, but if I was only to buy one, it would be the Cobalt edition for sure, despite the larger price tag. As for the Copper and Amethyst, it's largely a preference as to whether you prefer a look with a brown colour palette or a purple one.
But all these editions are stunning. The Alloy deck is definitely something to consider if you enjoy something unusual, or are looking for a visually stunning deck of cards.
- EndersGame @ BoardGameGeek