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161 of 166 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Break your habitual thought patterns to create new ideas !
The Creative Wack Pack consists of 64 cards each focusing on a different creativity principle. The 64 cards are divided into four sixteen card suits: Explorer, Artist, Judge, and Warrior. These represent the four roles or types of thinking of the creative process.

The Explorer is your role for discovering the resources you'll use to create new ideas. The...
Published on December 15, 2000 by Darren Burton

versus
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Has Yet To Substantially Help Me
This is sold heavily as a useful companion tool to the book A Whack on the Side of the Head: How You Can Be More Creative. Von Oech has an invested monetary interest in moving this item, and he hypes it hard in his original (and useful) book on creativity. If you are a single person, just buy the book and forget the deck of cards. You can approximate the deck by...
Published on October 10, 2011 by Judah


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161 of 166 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Break your habitual thought patterns to create new ideas !, December 15, 2000
By 
This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
The Creative Wack Pack consists of 64 cards each focusing on a different creativity principle. The 64 cards are divided into four sixteen card suits: Explorer, Artist, Judge, and Warrior. These represent the four roles or types of thinking of the creative process.

The Explorer is your role for discovering the resources you'll use to create new ideas. The cards in the Explorer suit highlight places and ways to find new information.

The Artist is your role for transforming your resources into new ideas. The cards in the Artist suit provide you with idea-generating techniques.

The Judge is your role for evaluating an idea and deciding what to do with it. The cards in the Judge suit lend decision making advice.

The Warrior is your role for implementing your idea. The cards in the Warrior suit give you the "kick" you need to get your ideas into action.

There are several ways the cards can be used. One of the best is the "Creative Licencing at Meetings". At the beginning of a meeting, deal out five cards to each participant. The cards give each person permission to make a point related to that card as you work though the meeting agenda. A participant may play a card at any time if he or she feels thtat its message will help the meeting.

Some examples of cards:

Card #27 - CHANGE ITS NAME - If a architect looks at an opening between two rooms and thinks "door" that's what she will design. But if she thinks "passageway", she may design something much different like a "hallway", "air curtain", "tunnel", or perhaps a "courtyard". Different words bring in different assumptions and lead your thinking in different directions. What else can you call your idea?

Card #9 - USE A RANDOM IDEA - Open your mind up to things that have nothing to do with the idea you're developing. Pick out the third word on p.134 of your dictionary - "broom". How does it relate to what you are doing? What similiarities does it have with your idea? Can you use it as a metaphor? Look out your window and find the first thing that has blue in it - "mailbox". How does it shed light on your idea? What random idea can you use to stimulate your thinking?
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40 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-have book in your Creativity & Innovation Library, & must-have card desk on your desktop!, May 29, 2006
This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
I am a raving fan of Roger von Oech's creative work as embodied in his books & card decks, namely:

Books:

- A Whack on the Side of the Head;
- A Kick in the Seat of the Pants;
- Expect the Unexpected;

Card Decks:

- Creative Whack Pack;
- Innovative Whack Pack;
- Ancient Whacks of Heraclitus;

I have used all his creativity stuff ever since I started my own strategy consulting (& book store) business in late 1991.

From my personal & professional experience, I would like to say that the entire collection of Roger von Oech's creative work has been designed to serve three strategic purposes:

- understanding - & removing - your mental blocks;
- breaking your habitual patterns;
- shifting your focus & changing your paradigms;

As a matter of fact, once you appreciate & commit to these three strategic purposes in your life, you will soon realise that there is nothing in this world to stop you from getting rid of old ideas & getting new & fresh ideas.

Allow me to quote Edward de Bono: "...the mind is habitually uncreative - it is usually preoccupied with organising masses of incoming data into convenient patterns. Once this pattern is established, then the mind tends to rely upon that pattern in future situations, in order to facilitate decision making & action in an otherwise complex world..." (The Use of Lateral Thinking).

Breaking old habitual patterns is definitely the first & foremost priority in your journey to creativity!

Once your shift your focus, you begin to change your paradigms or the way you look at the world around you. Always remember this: Your brain follows the direction of your dominant thought. Once you focus on something, that thing becomes the foreground. Everything else around it will fall into the background. Most opportunties are unfortunately hidden in the background. The moment you begin to shift your focus, you are pushing the 'foreground' into the 'background', & pulling the 'background' into the 'foreground'. Get it?

'A Whack on the Side of the Head' will help you to break through your mental blocks. They will open up your mind for innovation. This book is filled with provocative puzzles, exercises, stories & helpful tips.

'A Kick in the Seat of the Pants' takes you on a guided tour through the four stereotype roles of the creative process - Explorer, Artist, Judge & Warrior. Understanding - & applying - these roles will fire up your personal & professional creativity. Tactically, they will change your mental focus as you change to play each of the four roles. I would like to add one more role from what I have learned from the Japanese creativity experts: Antique Dealer. This singular role will allow you to combine all the four roles into one.

'Expect the Unexpected' uses thirty of Heraclitus' (the world's first creativity master) epigrams as creative springboards. It has intriguing questions designed to topple old habits of thought & fire up your imagination.

All the three card decks are basically extensions of the three books, to allow convenient usage during brainstorming sessions.

From my strategy consulting experience, these three card decks have proven to be inexhaustible sources of inspirations.

In fact, the 'Innovative Whack Pack' combines the creative power of both the 'Creative Whacks' & 'Ancient Whacks of Heraclitus'.

I strongly urge readers to seriously consider having the entire collection of Roger von Oech's creative work added to your Creativity & Innovation Library, & all the three card decks placed permanently on your desk top at all times.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't live without them!!!!, May 15, 2003
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This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
I have had these cards for about 8 years now and they have never failed to help me or my team out of a bind. Anytime you are at a loss for an idea, need a solution for a problem or just plain brainstorming, pull these out. At first your colleagues will look at you as though you have 3 heads (cards???), but they will soon come to realize that your end results would not have been nearly as productive or successful without them.
Nearly everyone in my office has a deck now!!!
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent tool break out of "rut" thinking, October 31, 1997
This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
I acquired a copy of this product two+ years ago. It encouraged me to be an "explorer" in my thinking. The first card I picked was the card to "Drop Assumptions". Applying this principle in the course of the next hour--I shaved two to three days off my project schedule! It payed for itself many-many times over. Excellent product - BUY.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Incredibly Wild, December 9, 2003
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"scalby5" (Rhode Island) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
I'm hesitant to say that it's going to change your life; you would certainly be better off meeting a wonderful teacher who can show you wonderful things about the world (and if you haven't emt one yet then you need to get cracking), but Roger Von Oech's Whack Packs are so very fun to play around with ;)
Predictably, all of the cards are just critical enough to be applicable to everything in the universe, just like depressing movies will never fail to get you thinking about the things you might want to change in yourself... But it's incredibly enjoyable to share with friends and have some fun with.
I'm particularly partial to the art style (it reminds me of Terry Gilliam) and the vignettes are fantabulous.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly Useful, December 3, 2006
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
I think everyone should have a pack of this cards because everyone sometimes feels stuck with a problem to the point that he is unaware of other possible solutions. The ideas in this pack help to look at the perplexing issue from many different perspectives. Sooner or later one may see the light, an open door, most likely many, many doors leading to numerous possible solutions. These cards are a valuable tool for brainstorming ideas, prompting the person to think of ideas that might have never crossed his mind otherwise. The wonderful think about coming out with creative ideas is that you also have lots of laughs while you're doing it because you begin to think of wild, whacky and outrageously fun things.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yes, great pack!, April 11, 2007
This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
It's amazing that this product gets five straight stars from all the reviewers. Nothing is worth a perfect score like that, but this product does. This is truly an amazing product. I used these cards all the time (well, maybe not all the time, but when I need a little boost of creativity, these cards really help.) I've had these cards in my arsenal for over ten years. I have not lost a card yet.

The author asks you to challenge the rules and ask questions. As President and Creative Director of a highly creative web design company called AUDIN Web Design, these cards resonate deeply in my creativity. These cards are rule breakers.

The author challenges you to:

"Think like a kid"
"Change its name"
"Look somewhere else"
"Listen to you dreams"
"Check you timing"
"Exaggerate"
And finally:
"Be whacky"

Bottom Line: If you don't like to read (a book) and you want to stimulate your mind, get these cards. They will totally change the way you think about creative (and maybe not so creative) problems.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Has Yet To Substantially Help Me, October 10, 2011
By 
This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
This is sold heavily as a useful companion tool to the book A Whack on the Side of the Head: How You Can Be More Creative. Von Oech has an invested monetary interest in moving this item, and he hypes it hard in his original (and useful) book on creativity. If you are a single person, just buy the book and forget the deck of cards. You can approximate the deck by opening to a random page.

Useful in brainstorming meetings with multiple people, provided the people using the Whack Pack in the meeting are actually receptive/helpful, and not Dilbertesque managers or marketing people. If I ever sit in on another D&D campaign, I plan on using this deck for strategy decisions. But it only shines in a group setting, and even then the tool's impact is minimal, in my personal experience. Was a creative thinker before reading Oech's book. Sometimes a small push means a breakthrough, though I haven't seen that from this product. Yet.

If you are a big corporate manager and will try anything to jump start your million dollar creative team, then the cost of this deck is great investment. If you are a small one-person operation, buy the original book and pass on the cards unless you really love the book.

Reviewer's Note: I've owned it about two weeks now, may change my opinion later.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loads of Fun and Very Insightful!, April 14, 2007
This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
From the book: Human beings occupy a special niche in the order of things. Because we have the ability to symbolize our experience, our thinking is not limited to the real or the present. This capability empowers our thinking in two major ways. First, it enables us to anticipate the future. We are able to ask ourselves: "Suppose it rains tomorrow. What would happen to our picnic? What alternative arrangements should be made?" By simulating such possibilities we can plan the future. Second, since our thinking is not bound by real world contraints, we can generate ideas that have no correlate in the world of experience.

This deck and the accompanying book were created by Roger von Oech. It calls itself a "creative thinking workshop in a box." and I have to agree. Consisting of 64 cards, each card represents a way of thinking outside the box, and gives you a new angle to take on a difficult problem in your life.

More from the book: The practice of looking for the one right answer can have serious consequences in the way we think about and deal with problems. Most people don't like problems, and when they encounter them, they usually react by taking the first way out they can find, even if they solve the wrong problem. I can't overstate the danger in this. If you have only one idea, you have only one course of action open to you, and this is quite risky in a world where flexibility is a requirement for survival.

The cards are broken into 4 suits: The Explorer, The Artist, The Judge, and the Warrior, and each represent the 4 types of thinking in the creative process. The accompanying insert in the deck also gives an example reading using a 5 card layout. I was also fortunate enough to pick up the book entitled "A Whack on the Head" which made using the deck even more enlightening.

More from the book: There are places where errors are inappropriate, but the imaginative phase of the creative process isn't one of them. Errors or signs that you are diverging from the well-traveled path. A large part of creative thinking is not being afraid to fail. Remember these two benefits of failure. First, if you do fail, you learn what doesn't work. Second, the failure gives you an opportunity to try a new approach.

Lots of fun, and very insightful, this deck is a great tool for tapping into the creativity you're keeping locked away. My favorite technique with this deck is to draw one card each morning along with my daily reading, and try to incorporate its concept throughout the day. I have truly been amazed at some of the results!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Second copy of this tool, March 18, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Creative Whack Pack (Cards)
I wore out the first copy. I can't give a higher recommendation than that, but the Submit button won't work unless I'm verbose.
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Creative Whack Pack
Creative Whack Pack by Roger VonOech (Cards - Nov. 1989)
$16.00 $9.60
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