An earnest if slightly officious witch named Thea is asking me to divine the fortune of her future career. Thea works in arbitration for what I understand to be the governing body for cosmic witchcraft, a line of work that surely must have plenty of potential for growth and development. I shuffle the deck and, by chance, draw my most-recently designed card, depicting a scorched battlefield littered with funeral pyres and witches tied to burning stakes. The card is titled Genocide. I assign it to the space for bad news and ponder how best to convert this into advice.

In its first game since 2018, Deconstructeam has built on the foundations laid in The Red Strings Club, a cyberpunk narrative adventure game in which players mixed cocktails to elicit particular emotions in characters or prompt certain narrative threads. In The Cosmic Wheel Sisterhood, a neon-lit bar is swapped for a floating asteroid, and cocktails exchanged for a deck of player-designed fortune-telling cards.

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Though he doesn’t consider himself a believer in the mysticism underpinning tarot cards, creative director Jordi de Paco told me the game stems from the cards’ ability to prompt interesting conversations: “It’s a way to interface with your friends and have conversations you wouldn’t normally get to have just by sitting and talking to each other. Incidentally, we discovered that tarot was a great mechanic for narrative design: It’s great to ask questions and having to draw cards to answer them, so let’s build a whole game around that.”

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