Top Aces of WWI Playing Cards

Jody Eklund started another playing cards project and this time, things get slightly higher staked. The project is talking about Flying Aces of World War I. Just looking at the words Flying Aces will easily help you associate aeroplanes or even more specific, fighter planes. You might have come across the words Flying Aces in movies, books, history books but you probably may not know why Flying Aces are used. Since Ace is generally used to describe something or somebody as very good or the top, you will think Flying Aces refers to good pilots. However, what makes a good pilot or how good do you have to be in order to earn the title of Ace?

Usually, a fighter pilot can be considered an Ace if he or she gets an official confirmed five kills or more. You might think that is a small figure but if you think about the amount of training and flight time a pilot has to clock before he can even be a fighter pilot, shooting down even one plane isn’t necessarily a simple task. You also have to consider the fact that the pilot also needs to avoid getting shot down himself. It takes nerves of steel to really be considered an Ace and also some measure of luck in order to survive long enough for the pilot to kill more enemies.

According to Jody, he was fascinated with flight by his grandfather who loved flying and this project is dedicated to his grandfather and to the many other high flying daredevils who took to the skies and soared beyond the clouds to chase for the thrill that mere mortals can never achieve.

Following the approach in his previous Iron Horse project, there will also be a few editions in this project. Firstly, the standard edition will be an initial print run of 2000 decks.

Followed by the Limited Edition which is a limited run of 1000 decks and they come with customer number seal.

If you think that the difference between both decks are the colour of the card backs and the tuck box, you cannot be more wrong. Allow me to point out the difference for you because it may not be very obvious at first glance.

I’l start with the tuck box. For the standard edition, you can see the Red Baron with the signature red colour in the forefront at the centre of the box flying upwards avoiding an American plane. The limited edition also shows the Red Baron but he is alone and is printed in metallic inks. You might argue that it is not the Red Baron since it is not printed in red and I’ll leave it up to you to think what you like.

The card back designs are different as well. The standard edition card back is more fanciful and colourful and trimmings running to the edge of the card on both sides. It will make a good visual when you fan the card out. In the circle are the words “TOP ACES OF WORLD WAR I”. The limited edition on the other hand is more dull and looks like the metallic body of a plane but has trimmings running across all edges of the card.

There isn’t much images I can show you because there simply isn’t plenty of pictures on the project page to begin with. That is because the designs for the face cards are not yet completed but rest assured that characters on each court face card have been planned and you just need to wait for the project updates to know more.

Let’s take a look a the deluxe edition. It is the limited edition deck with a slip case like the deluxe case for Iron Horse playing cards. There is only 250 prints of the deluxe deck with custom number seals.

Lastly, the signature edition. It has a case to contain a standard and a limited deck and it comes with a booklet of the 8 Top Aces and a short biography about them. There is a print run of 500.

Among the Top Aces, the one most famous will undoubtedly be Manfred von Richthofen aka The Red Baron. He is perhaps the best of the best in World War I with an official 80 kills. Without a doubt, he owns the King of Spades spot.

TAWWI KOS.jpg

Fight on and fly on to the last drop of blood and the last drop of fuel, to the last beat of the heart – Manfred von Richthofen (AKA…The Red Baron). That is a famous quote from The Red Baron. Below is a snippet from the movie in 2008.

Finally, some details about the cards. All will be printed by Legends Playing Cards Company using Classic Finish card stock. For those who have already pledged for this project, do keep a lookout for updates on the artwork of the other royal face cards.


Sources

Jody Eklund

Flying Ace

Manfred von Richthofen aka The Red Baron

Red Baron movie snippet

Legends Playing Cards Company

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