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Anatomy of a Card

A. The card number. In each suit, the cards run Ace, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, Youth, Hero, Champion, and Legend.

B. The suit. More information on this is below.

C. The prompt. This is the most important part of the card: the inspiration for this part of your story. You do not have to use this exact word. Instead, focus on the concept.

D. The quote. To help put the concept into a context, I have included short quotations referencing ways the concept might be used.

picture of the face of a Story Caed

The Four Suits

On each of the story cards, you can find one of four symbols-- the suits of the deck. Each suit is a different motivation for your story's protagonist: desire, wonder, justice, or charity.

For most story games, these are an optional feature, but an option which can help a practiced storyteller add depth to their characters. For more information, keep reading!

red swan silhouette


Suit of Desire

Swan stories are about knowing what you want (be it wealth, health, fame, and/or power) and having the motivation to go and get it.

The reverse of desire is repulsion, which motivates stories of attempted escape

blue owl silhouette


Suit of Wonder

Owl stories are about realizing there is something you don't know, and trying to figure it out.

The reverse of wonder is conviction. Conviction stories are about people who know the truth, feel the need to share it, and do not see any need to learn anything more.

red hawk silhouette


Suit of Justice

In Hawk stories, something, somewhere has gone wrong, and your protagonist aims to fix it.

The reverse of justice is supremacy. Supremacy stories are about the triumph of one or a select few, over those who are not so much people as tools or obstacles.

blue dove silhouette


Suit of Charity

In Dove stories, someone needs help, and you're the only one who can (or will) even try. The odds are against you, but not (quite) insurmountable.

The reverse of charity is desperation. In desperation stories, you can't afford to lose what is threatened. You must act, or you may die (or wish you had).

Now what?

Now that you understand the card you're looking at, click on the Games button for suggestions of how to use these cards!

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