Finally, the day that all you freedom-loving Barrelhousers have been waiting for: someone has mustered up the courage to break down yet another oppressive, monarchic structure in favor of a more democratic ideal! And what I'm talking about here, of course, is playing cards.

No more Kings and Queens and Jacks ruling over the deck with their iron fists! No more "boring numbers." Fyodor Soloview, a graphic designer from Alaska, has invented a new "democratic" deck featuring a 64-person family in six generations.

"My customers asked me the quick explanation of this game. I told them, it's like playing cards. But instead of three characters of King, Queen and Jack, in my deck each card is a costumed member from a non-monarchic family. Here we match husband and wife, children and parents, but not the boring numbers anymore. It's not a fight between four suits; it's matchmaking and creation of the family."

And for those of you who love the thrill of gambling but want to throw off the shackles of traditional cards' monarchic rule, you're in luck: Soloview has introduced a new game, GenPoker, which is almost exactly like regular poker, if by "exactly like" you mean "completely different than." Soloview explains, on his own web site :

GENPOKER, as most of the Poker games, is a game of chance. The name "Genpoker" comes as a combination of two words: GENERATIONS and POKER. The major difference with Poker is: a card with lower number in Genpoker always has more value.

Genpoker is played with a standard 72-pack of Six Generations cards, but in the beginning the players must remove 8 cards from category #6 out of the deck, and play only with other 64 cards. The cards to withdraw are: any 4 couples from the same nation (country) from Set #6, total of 8 cards.

The other 64 cards to play with are divided into six categories, or sets. Each category portrays a different generation. There are couples from 16 countries of early 19th century Europe (32 cards) and five generations of American descendants (16, 8, 4, 2 and 2 cards), the last generation of which is a brother and sister living at the start of the 21st century.

The cards are ranked (from high to low) Children (#1) - 2 cards, Parents (#2) - 2 cards, Grandparents (#3) - 4 cards, XX century (#4) - 8 cards, Victorian (#5) - 16 cards, and Europe (#6) - 32 cards. The cards are also divided into "Europeans" (32 cards #6), "Americans" ( 32 cards from #5 to #1); "Ancestors" (62 cards from #6 to #2), and "Children" (2 cards #1).
There are two suits: red (women) and black (men), 32 cards of each suit; however, no suit is higher than another.

What could be simpler than that?

Of course Soloview's realistic about the future: "It might take some time before Las Vegas will accept this new deck to play poker in their casinos, but the time could come."


Six Generations Home Page >>>   Reviews >>> Down with the monarchs, up with democracy

By Mike Ingram