Old West Pharo Playing Card Deck. Old West Pharo Cards. Antique playing card reproduction w/ vintage style box. The playing cards of today look nothing like the cards of the old west. Cards before 1870 didn't have numbers . Early cards had square corners and full figure king, queen, and jacks. Coatings didn't start until the 20th century along with rounded edges. Cards were made of heavy paper called pasteboard. Boxes opened on the side unlike card boxes today. Cards were dog eared very easily, when this happened the decks were put in a press and straightened back out overnight. Faro was called "Bucking the Tiger" and was the favorite game in the early west and was played well into the 21st century, however this game cannot be found being played today.