Erik Voskuil, who runs the beautiful for Mario (and has an excellent book written by the same name), has one of the world’s finest collections of Nintendo stuff. Recently however he managed to get hold of something special even by his standards: a few packs of 1950s Nintendo playing cards, depicting the company’s birthplace, Kyoto.
“I can’t emphasize enough how excited I was to find these seventy-year-old Nintendo cards, featuring Kyoto in the 1950s,” Voskuil wrote excitedly on August 7. “In all my years of collecting these are the only copies I have come across”. To put that in perspective, write on his blog Voskuil adds that this is the first time he ever seen the cards – printed entirely in English –for sale, after spending”over twenty years of searching for vintage Nintendo items”.
After publicly expressing his hesitation about opening the packages, these are valuable, and ifned closed would keep that value—Voskuil finally decided to open one and leave the otherbecause that way he could see what the cards looked like inside, while the second set also remained sealed.
Unfortunately, huhhis initial excitement did not last long.
“However, when I carefully removed some of the wrapper, I soon discovered that all the cards had completely fused together.” he is writing. “They had been compressed for so long, probably in hot and humid conditions, that the ink on all the cards had completely stuck them together. The pile of loose cards had become one solid stone. The photo prints on the cards, which contain a relatively large amount of ink, may also have contributed to this.”
Note that these cards are old, and so it lacked the plastic or laminate we would normally associate with playing cards produced in more recent decades. These were made entirely of paper, so when he says they fused together, he means it. This is no longer a deck of cards, but an expensive one block of paper.
In checking the second package, Voskuil found that those cards had suffered a similar fate, and while some have suggested “putting the packs in the freezer for a while”, or “putting them in a ‘sweat box’ also used by stamp collectors. used”, he says grimly That “these packages unfortunately go beyond any of these methods and will remain fused together forever.”
Unfortunately! The only consolation that can be found is that even the boxes are beautiful, and that Voskuil got away with at least one card, as one of the two decks had a sample card attached that could be removed.
You can see more photos of the cards and learn more about why they were so important, at for Mario.