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Web/Graphic Guy New To Game Box Designing Needs Advice

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Anonymous

Hey folks,

I build websites but I'm ready to make the leap into designing a card game for a client. Can anyone guide me? I'm very fluent in Photoshop and Illustrator. New to InDesign.

Here are some of my questions:

1. Does anyone know where I can obtain some templates for some game boxes that I might slip my designs into? I need a box 1" high that can hold 4 decks of cards and an egg timer. I'm also looking for suggestions as to what the "innerds" would look like to hold these components in place. Must I resort to rubberbanding the decks if we're trying to keep costs down? If so, how do I display them nicely?

2. Is it best to work in InDesign over PS or Illustrator?

3. Does anyone have resources they can send me of things I should know as a beginning game box designer? (I'm interested in the nuts and bolts of delivering an appropriate file to the printer with clear die markings, exact measurments for folds, etc. Working on 3D packaging is all new to me.)

4. Would anyone out there be willing to send me a printer-ready game box file that I might look at to learn from?

Thanks so much for any help you can offer to any of the above questions.

Yours appreciatively,

Howard 8O

Chip
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Web/Graphic Guy New To Game Box Designing Needs Advice

I can't offer any specifics concerning your questions, but I'd suggest you request a sample kit from Delano Service (www.delanoservice.com), a printing company in Michigan that specializes in game production. They'll send you a packet which will include samples of the work they can perform as well as submission guidelines concerning electronic files, etc. You might find it useful. If you start discussing possible print jobs with them they may even provide templates for you. It might be worth asking once you get the sample kit.

Chip

Anonymous
Web/Graphic Guy New To Game Box Designing Needs Advice

"2. Is it best to work in InDesign over PS or Illustrator?"

Well, they're three completely different programs - though there is some crossover, chances are that Illustrator and Photoshop will do what you need for the box, and that InDesign is most suited for laying out the instructions if they're multi-paged.

Without knowing the visual style you have in mind it's impossible to know whether Illustrator of Photoshop is more appropriate.

Cheers
Andrew

Anonymous
Web/Graphic Guy New To Game Box Designing Needs Advice

As a designer, I can tell you it is best to do your layout in Illustrator. It will satisfy most printers.

If you have any raster images that were created in Photoshop, place them into your Illustrator document as Photoshop .eps files.

If you know the dimensions of the box, and you know what you're doing in Illustrator, you can easily make your own dielines for the box. Place them on their own layer and start designing!

If you need any help, let me know!

-John

FastLearner
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Web/Graphic Guy New To Game Box Designing Needs Advice

As a designer I'll say do the layout in InDesign, bringing in your vector art from Illustrator and your raster art from Photoshop. That's precisely what page layout apps are for and they generally do the best job. If you have a lot of drawing, though, for box edge foldovers and such then you might be better off in a drawing app like Illustrator. Depends a lot on the finished product.

No matter what you use, though, there are some things to keep in mind, most of which you can figure out by looking at existing game boxes. Things like one side of the box should be designed for the box to lay flat on the shelf and have the name clearly visible while the other should be designed for the box to be on-end on the shelf and have the name clearly visible; which orientation the words should have in all cases (you don't want your game to be the one that has to go backwards on the shelf to be read with the others -- it might seem clever but you'll just be overlooked); that the number of players, age range, and playing times should be on the sides if possible; etc. There are quite a few "standards" that retailers and consumers rely on, even if they're not printed anywhere.

-- Matthew

Anonymous
Web/Graphic Guy New To Game Box Designing Needs Advice

As a designer that works for a factory that doesn't accept InDesign, I say that is a bad idea. We work with a ton of big companies and nobody submits InDesign artwork.

Do it in Illustrator, it's much safer.

And, Illustrator is a great layout program, don't believe the hype!

If you're publishing a magazine, Quark and InDesign do a great job.

For a simple box top, you can't go wrong with Illustrator. And, everyone can open it!

Anonymous
Web/Graphic Guy New To Game Box Designing Needs Advice

As a designer that works for the Queen of England*, I'll suggest that the most widely accepted format will be Illustrator with Photoshop files place into the file.

I love InDesign (and Quark.. well, that's a love/hate thing) but Illustrator is most likely to give you the least trouble at the production end.

Recently, I got the Adobe Creative Suite and as blkdog7 suggests it's not widely accepted... YET! (cue evil laugh sound effect)

blkdog7, why doesn't your factory accept InDesign? I'm curious if you're planning to in the near future.

If you've used it.. well, it speaks for itself. I think soon it will be catching up...

[edit: I refer to my clients as "The Queen of England".]

Anonymous
Web/Graphic Guy New To Game Box Designing Needs Advice

Turner wrote:
As a designer that works for the Queen of England*, I'll suggest that the most widely accepted format will be Illustrator with Photoshop files place into the file.

I love InDesign (and Quark.. well, that's a love/hate thing) but Illustrator is most likely to give you the least trouble at the production end.

Recently, I got the Adobe Creative Suite and as blkdog7 suggests it's not widely accepted... YET! (cue evil laugh sound effect)

blkdog7, why doesn't your factory accept InDesign? I'm curious if you're planning to in the near future.

If you've used it.. well, it speaks for itself. I think soon it will be catching up...

At this time, we have no demand for InDesign. Almost never, does it come up. I would say that more companies submit artwork in Corel Draw than bring up InDesign. If it becomes something that is a constant request, we would certainly add it to our roster.

Illustrator is definitely #1 here when it comes to artwork submissions. I'd say that almost 90% of all artwork is submitted in an .ai format. Quark is a distant second followed by Freehand and Corel Draw.

And yes, you echo exactly what I said, place your Photoshop .eps files into Illustrator, and you're good to go!

Anonymous
Web/Graphic Guy New To Game Box Designing Needs Advice

Guess I will be adding illustrator to my list of "super expensive but you got to have it" programs. I love my new PS CS though so I’m sure it will be worth the money.

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