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Poker size playing cards inspired by the masterpiece of the Italian literature: Dante Alighieri's Divina Commedia. Printed by LPCC.
Poker size playing cards inspired by the masterpiece of the Italian literature: Dante Alighieri's Divina Commedia. Printed by LPCC.
693 backers pledged $35,919 to help bring this project to life.

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Dante Alighieri is the most prominent Italian poet and "La Divina Commedia" (the Divine Comedy) is his masterpiece, representing his vision of afterlife, divided in three reigns: Inferno (hell), Purgatorio (purgatory) and Paradiso (heaven). “La Divina Commedia” also marks the beginning of the Italian language, used in an important piece of literature, replacing the official Latin language.

This project has been conceived during 2015, to celebrate 750 years from Dante's birth, with Avernum, a limited (250) edition, considered by Kardify among the best decks of the year Stefano Protino was the author and we decided together to go ahead and create a new version for Kickstarter, building on top of the Avernum edition.

A comparison between the Avernum and the Inferno version of the same character.
A comparison between the Avernum and the Inferno version of the same character.

The concept behind Avernum was to represent an "unfinished" work, from the beginning. Inferno continued where Avernum has stopped: by "completing" the artwork in a final form.

Now, thanks to your help, we can finish what we started and print Inferno in two different versions: Inferno Dite and Inferno Cocito.

Dite is the city in hell where sinners are punished with flames and extreme temperatures, therefore we designed the tuck case and the back with red glowing colors and foil.

The center of the back is a circle containing twisted flames, with the famous quote: “Lasciate ogni speranza voi ch’entrate” (Abandon all hope, you who enter here).

Rendering of the box (foiled and embossed) and the back
Rendering of the box (foiled and embossed) and the back

The Jokers in Inferno - Dite show the two famous poets: Dante himself and Virgilio (his guide through hell) in a diptych.

Inferno - Dite has two black Jokers representing Dante and Virgilio together, at the gates of "Inferno"
Inferno - Dite has two black Jokers representing Dante and Virgilio together, at the gates of "Inferno"

 

Cocito is the frozen lake at the bottom of Dante’s Inferno, where he puts the worst possible sinners for his ethics: the traitors.

That’s why, at the center of the back, you can see spikes of ice, replacing the flames.

Rendering of the box (foiled and embossed) and the back
Rendering of the box (foiled and embossed) and the back

The Jokers in Inferno - Cocito show Lucifer, as described by Dante: a demon with three faces munching with his three mouths the three worst sinners (according to Dante): Judas, Brutus and Cassius.

Inferno - Cocito has two black Jokers forming a diptych of Lucifer
Inferno - Cocito has two black Jokers forming a diptych of Lucifer

 

Inferno Acheronte

Inferno Acheronte is a novelty created specifically for this project: a double tuck case, that opens like a book and holds respectively, Inferno Dite and Inferno Cocito, The tuck case will be manufactured in Italy by Archivio Tipografico, numbered (250 copies) and signed by the Author: Stefano Protino.

Dante, following ancient myths, states in the “Divina Commedia” that all of the rivers and waters in hell stem from the tears of an old man’s statue in Greece.

rendering based on an early prototype
rendering based on an early prototype

Inside the “open book” you’ll find the words used by Dante Alighieri to describe the city of Dis (Dite) and the lake of Cocyto (Cocito).

 

The court cards and the aces represent characters that Dante and Virgilio (the Jokers in Inferno - Dite), his guide, meet during the journey, until they find Lucifer (the Joker in Inferno - Cocito).

The red cards show sinner who are damned for passion-related sins, while the black cards portray sinners who used their intelligence to betray and deceive (Dante places the latter much deeper in hell).

Here you can find a list of all the characters: Dante, Virgilio, Paolo e Francesca, Ulisse e Diomede, Cerbero, Erinni, Minosse, Semiramide, Minotauro, Malacoda, Taide, Conte Ugolino, Pluto, Cleopatra, Gerione, Arpie, Giasone.

The four aces: Paolo & Francesca, Ulisse & Diomede, Cerbero and the Erinni
The four aces: Paolo & Francesca, Ulisse & Diomede, Cerbero and the Erinni

 

 

The hearts: Semiramide, Minosse and Minotauro
The hearts: Semiramide, Minosse and Minotauro

 

 

The spades: Taide, Malacoda and the Count Ugolino
The spades: Taide, Malacoda and the Count Ugolino

 

The diamonds: Cleopatra, Pluto, Caronte
The diamonds: Cleopatra, Pluto, Caronte

 

The clubs: Arpie, Gerione, Giasone
The clubs: Arpie, Gerione, Giasone

 

Rewards marked with “decks only” or similar are... just the decks (Cocito and Dite) in different quantities (1,2, 4, 6 or 12).

Rewards marked with “Collection Ed". or "Ultimate Collection") contain more exclusive items, and are meant to appeal the avid collector:

  • COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO DOUBLE PAIR: contains 2 standard decks (1 Cocito and 1 Dite) plus 1 limited and signed double-deck (1 Cocito + 1 Dite) Inferno Acheronte in the exclusive book-like tuck case.
  • COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO HALF BRICK: contains 4 standard decks (2 Cocito and 2 Dite) plus 1 Inferno Acheronte (1 Cocito + 1 Dite) and 1 Booklet.
  • COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO BRICK contains 10 standard decks (5 Cocito and 5 Dite) plus 1 Inferno Acheronte (1 Cocito + 1 Dite) and 1 Booklet.
  • COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO SUPER BRICK: contains 8 standard decks (4 Cocito and 4 Dite) plus 2 Inferno Acheronte (2 Cocito + 2 Dite) and 2 Booklets.

Tales from Inferno Booklet describes the artistic journey from Avernum, the early limited edition of Inferno tothe current project, portraying all of the characters (aces, court cards and jokers) in their evolution. Each character will be accompanied by verses from Dante’s Inferno and a commentary.

Original drawings: 10 backers can obtain one of the original drawings for Avernum, signed by the author, Stefano Protino as add-on. The very same drawings that are at the foundation of the Inferno decks. Click here to see the available ones in low-res.

 

the beautiful original A4 drawings by Stefano Protino.
the beautiful original A4 drawings by Stefano Protino.

 

Every tier with at least one deck can add items as described in the following table:

add-on table
add-on table

 

Passione relies on LPCC for printing its own premium decks. LPCC is a reliable partner, already involved in the Love is a Smoke and Teliad projects Inferno will be printed on Classic Finish, one of the most appreciated by cardicians and players.

LPCC can print playing cards at the highest standards of quality, for collectors, magicians, players and casinos
LPCC can print playing cards at the highest standards of quality, for collectors, magicians, players and casinos

The double tuck case will be printed by Archivio Tipografico, on Fedrigoni paper with letterpress technology. LPCC focus on quality for playing cards, Archivio Tipografico craftsmanship and Fedrigoni’s products are the best match for the awesome illustrations by Stefano Protino.

Heidelberg OHZ, courtesy of Archivio Tipografico
Heidelberg OHZ, courtesy of Archivio Tipografico

 

Archivio Tipografico is an active and collaborative space for the preservation, the study and the practice of typographic arts. The aims are to preserve, to keep alive and to reinvent in a contemporary way the craftsmanship knowledge for movable types composition and high quality letterpress printing.

 

 Graphic Designer, Artist

Stefano Protino developed the passion for drawing since childhood. He graduated in graphic design and has attended a course in Illustration at IED Turin. He currently works as an art director in a creative digital communications agency with expertise on fantasy character design and painting techniques.

Follow Stefano on Behance and Instagram

Risks and challenges

Passione Playing Cards, LLC gained experience from both Love is a Smoke Classic Edition and Teliad projects, we think we have a good understanding of the issues that may arise during or after a Kickstarter campaign. We also know that any project alwaws has risks, especially when you want to try new things. We do love try new things, indeed, but we also learned from our past experiences and we believe that we can handle them well. Here’s why:

DESIGN PHASE: the artwork for Inferno Playing Cards is complete, we will start the operative phases (digital proofs, hard proofs and production) as soon as the campaign ends.

PRODUCTION PHASE: LPCC is a reliable partner we are using their services since our first project and we are fully satisfied with their response and collaboration.

SPECIAL REWARDS: the double tuck case will be created by Archivio Tipografico, a renowed and trustworth reality in quality printing.

FULFILLING PHASE: we will fulfil Inferno through Gambler’s Warehouse, they have lot of experience when it comes to shipping decks of playing cards; we think we are in good hands.

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    INFERNO - DITE (1 DECK ONLY)

    1 deck of "Inferno - Dite".

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    INFERNO - COCITO (1 DECK ONLY)

    1 deck of "Inferno - Cocito".

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    EARLY BIRD: INFERNO PAIR (DECKS ONLY)

    1 deck of "Inferno - Dite",
    1 deck of "Inferno - Cocito".

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    INFERNO PAIR (DECKS ONLY)

    1 deck of "Inferno - Dite",
    1 deck of "Inferno - Cocito".

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    INFERNO TRIO (DECKS ONLY)

    1 deck of "Inferno - Dite",
    1 deck of "Inferno - Cocito",
    1 deck of "inferno - Dite" or "Inferno Cocito" (you can decide)

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    INFERNO DOUBLE PAIR (DECKS ONLY)

    2 decks of "Inferno - Dite",
    2 decks of "Inferno - Cocito".

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    INFERNO HALF BRICK (DECKS ONLY)

    3 decks of "Inferno - Dite",
    3 decks of "Inferno - Cocito".

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    E.B.: COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO DOUBLE PAIR

    1 deck of "Inferno - Dite",
    1 deck of "Inferno - Cocito",
    1 double-deck with both Dite and Cocito.

    (note: the double-deck is numbered - 250 total and signed by S.Protino)

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    COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO DOUBLE PAIR

    1 deck of "Inferno - Dite",
    1 deck of "Inferno - Cocito",
    1 double-deck with both Dite and Cocito.

    (note: the double-deck is numbered - 250 total and signed by S.Protino)

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    Pledge $83 or more About $83

    E.B.: COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO HALF BRICK

    2 decks of "Inferno - Dite",
    2 decks of "Inferno - Cocito",
    1 double-deck with both Dite and Cocito.
    1 booklet

    (note: the double-deck is numbered - 250 total and signed by S.Protino)

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    Pledge $88 or more About $88

    COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO HALF BRICK

    2 decks of "Inferno - Dite",
    2 decks of "Inferno - Cocito",
    1 double-deck with both Dite and Cocito.
    1 booklet

    (note: the double-deck is numbered - 250 total and signed by S.Protino)

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    INFERNO BRICK (DECKS ONLY)

    6 decks of "Inferno - Dite",
    6 decks of "Inferno - Cocito".

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    E.B.: COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO BRICK

    5 decks of "Inferno - Dite",
    5 decks of "Inferno - Cocito",
    1 double-deck with both Dite and Cocito.
    1 booklet

    (note: the double-deck is numbered - 250 total and signed by S.Protino)

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    Pledge $135 or more About $135

    COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO BRICK

    5 decks of "Inferno - Dite",
    5 decks of "Inferno - Cocito",
    1 double-deck with both Dite and Cocito.
    1 booklet

    (note: the double-deck is numbered - 250 total and signed by S.Protino)

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    COLLECTOR ED. INFERNO SUPER BRICK

    4 decks of "Inferno - Dite",
    4 decks of "Inferno - Cocito",
    2 double-decks with both Dite and Cocito.
    2 booklets

    (note: the double-deck is numbered - 250 total and signed by S.Protino)

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    Limited 13 backers
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Funding period

- (30 days)