Dark Artifice


  • R1TUAL

Dark Artifice




*Temporarily Out of Stock. Email to Preorder.*

ABOUT: Created in conjunction with a Marvel Comics illustrator, every element of R1TUAL (encoded for obscurity) was custom designed, illustrated, or manufactured.

It unfolds in three phases, building in tension until the final phase: a chilling, impossible message from beyond.

The props are all 100% examinable, and performance requires no memory work, no sleight of hand, and no angle concerns. The original effect (and method) is foolproof and perfectly justified, as well as fully customizable. 

The cards are passed around and given what we call “The R1TUAL Shuffle”, a false mixing procedure the spectators unknowingly perform themselves. The cards are passed around like this until returned to you. A spectator then deals the cards as per the instructions, only to find multiple unsettling messages arise under impossible conditions. The messages are entirely up to you: light, dark, cryptic, direct, aggressive or gentle. 

R1TUAL can be a captivating opener to your séance or a remarkable moment of real magic strong enough to close any performance.

CONTENTS: Inside the stunning, custom box can be found a deck of uniquely illustrated alphabet cards, a specially designed and cast pewter candle holder, a custom matchbox (matches not included due to shipping regulations), a purpose-built six-sided die, a candle, and a spirit board, all perfectly nestled inside of the textured, form-fitting tray made just for Ritual as per the methods of the era.

HISTORY: In 1972, having witnessed the success of Ouija, a fledgling company from Ohio made the decision to follow suit. Andrew Van Schurman, the company's founder and Chief of Production, had the idea to create another spirit-contact device; a competitor to Ouija, and a concept he believed would turn the world of spiritualism on its head. He contracted Ena Twigg, a world-renowned spirit medium from London, to consult.

After the better part of a year, they presented a group of investors with a prototype. Ena Twigg conducted the presentation and, just fifteen minutes into their meeting, several of the investors walked out and never returned. Andrew Van Schurman was seen trembling, and neither Ena nor any of the investors ever spoke of what they saw.

Against Mrs. Twigg’s better judgement, Van Schurman continued with the project. Production of R1TUAL, as he called it, began – but it didn’t last long. Without investors, the company struggled to stay afloat. Coupled with a factory fire in their Cincinnati headquarters, Andrew Van Schurman felt that R1TUAL didn’t belong in this realm. He cancelled production and moved on to other projects, a decision which saved his company and, the way he saw it, his life.

Only a small number of R1TUAL prototypes survived the fire.