Skip to Content

An alternative to The Game Crafter

16 replies [Last post]
questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011

Hi All,

I was wondering if there was any of POD other than The Game Crafter (http://www.thegamecrafter.com).

As of this moment TGC is telling me they can't do a custom die to suit my card size and match their packaging options. So I am stuck looking to see if there is another service like TGC out there that can do the job (I doubt it...)

Traz
Traz's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/06/2009
Go Blue

Dude - give Steve at Blue Panther a call. I don't know how large he can go, but he can make you custom dice images - full color if you like - on wood that are very sweet indeed.

larienna
larienna's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
I heard about another popular

I heard about another popular printer in china I think with the word "cow" in where you can print cards and other stuff on demand.

Awaclus
Awaclus's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/17/2012
Is there anything like this

Is there anything like this in Europe? The shipping costs from the other continents tend to double the cost of a game, and promoting a game in Finland for me is easier than anywhere else, because I happen to live there.

drktron
drktron's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/18/2010
You may want to try Superior

You may want to try Superior POD or Artscow. Not sure about the dice but Superior POD does have more packaging options than TGC though its not as user friendly.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Not dice, cutting for card

Traz wrote:
Dude - give Steve at Blue Panther a call. I don't know how large he can go, but he can make you custom dice images - full color if you like - on wood that are very sweet indeed.

No a custom die is a special tool used to CUT paper. Basically it is a piece of wood with very sharp blades inserted into the wood. The blades are shielded by using rubber pads. When the DIE is put in a press machine, the power of the pressure flattens the rubber and exposes the blades so that it cuts the paper according to the shape (of the blades).

In my case, the die would need to have blades with rounded corners with a size of 2.5"x2.5"...

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Superior POD, hmm...

drktron wrote:
You may want to try Superior POD or Artscow. Not sure about the dice but Superior POD does have more packaging options than TGC though its not as user friendly.

Thanks for those 2. I am looking at Superior POD because they have "http://www.adventuregamesource.com/". They also say they have *custom* options. So maybe they might be a possibility. However they have a fraction of what TGC has in terms of parts...

I will keep you all posted.

bluepantherllc
bluepantherllc's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/29/2008
Custom Cards

Thank you Traz.

There are two ways to get consistently cut - custom cards.

The first would be to spec out a custom die for a roller/cutter press and you would also need one of the presses out there like Accucut or Ellison. Depending on the shape and size of the die, you could be looking at $100 - $200 or more for a custom die. You're also looking at a few hundred for a manual press and even more for any type of automation

The second would be to get the cards laser cut. Any size, any shape is possible with no tooling. But you would pay more per card for this method because it would usually be slower than a custom die.

It's really a question of how many cards to you think you will need. If you need just a few decks or you want an unusual shape, go laser, if you plan to crank out alot of cards, invest in the die or find someone with a press that will operate your custom die for you so you don't have to purchase an actual cutting press .

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Custom jobs

bluepantherllc wrote:
... Depending on the shape and size of the die, you could be looking at $100 - $200 or more for a custom die. You're also looking at a few hundred for a manual press and even more for any type of automation
...

Well TGC said that paying for the die would be nice, however there are more costs associated with the request. There are costs in integrating the requested size into their website and process.

Most printers I know that's all they do is custom requests (aside from business cards). And I know the approximate costs involved as "Bluepantherllc" said. I have already paid for a custom die at a local printer in Montreal (For Quest Adventure Cards). From my experience, everything you print is custom. The local printer will do basically anything you want - for a price.

Anyhow, I am hoping more designers need that size of cards for their games...

The Game Crafter
The Game Crafter's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/09/2009
You're absolutely right

You're absolutely right questccg, that most printers specialize in doing everything custom. We're kind of the opposite as them. The reason we're able to do one copy at a time for very low costs is that we only do specific sizes and shapes. As blue patter said, you need special equipment, which we have, and it's even more expensive to automate, which we do. But we can sustain those costs because we don't do the one offs. I'm sorry we can't help you with your 2.5x2.5 inch cards at this time. Hopefully we can in the future.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Under evaluation

The Game Crafter wrote:
I'm sorry we can't help you with your 2.5x2.5 inch cards at this time. Hopefully we can in the future.

We will be determining if the game can be printed with the 3.5"x3.5" cards. So far the preliminary results look GOOD. Our only concern is the play area for each player. The additional size works to our advantage in that rooms go from 16 squares to 25 squares. Okay they are a little bigger but not too much...

I will be working on the Photoshop/Illustrator prototype files next week. Hopefully with the samples and some play testing, maybe the additional size may only be a little more table space being used by the game!

Next week I will post the results of play testing (Tuesday-Wednesday-Thursday).

Obviously this is all because of the latest changes allowing the medium box hold the 3.5" cards...

Traz
Traz's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/06/2009
dude!

The Game Crafter wrote:
The reason we're able to do one copy at a time for very low costs is that we only do specific sizes and shapes.

I just wish you could do simple 8.5x11 playboards! I'd have already been ordering from you if you did standard paper size! What's so hard about printing on linen paper, then gluing it onto chipboard?

Arrgghhh! Maybe I should give up trying to find somebody and just do it myself at the local Office Depot or something.... [grumbles to self...]

Sorry. We now return you to your regularly scheduled forum topic. :-(

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
As promised = results

questccg wrote:
I will be working on the Photoshop/Illustrator prototype files next week. Hopefully with the samples and some play testing, maybe the additional size may only be a little more table space being used by the game!

Next week I will post the results of play testing (Tuesday-Wednesday-Thursday).

Obviously this is all because of the latest changes allowing the medium box hold the 3.5" cards...

Okay so the bigger size cards (3.5"x3.5") seem to work pretty well. They are not too encumbersome. I am happy that the squares are larger (almost the size of a joystick pawn). This is very positive news for us... We will be able to have The Game Crafter make and sell our game.

Thanks again for all your valuable input!

The Game Crafter
The Game Crafter's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/09/2009
That's the first request I

That's the first request I can recall for that sort of thing. Certainly we've had request for boards, but not 8.5 x 11.

The most popular requested sizes are always much larger like 27x18 or something like that. We also get quite a few requests for a 10x10 board.

An 8.5x11 board isn't something we'd do at the moment simply because we don't offer a box that it would fit in. But a 10x10 is more likely. Is that interesting to you?

Traz
Traz's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/06/2009
I like it like that!

TGC - THANK YOU for addressing this!

Here's what I have - most of my games are sold in shipping boxes. Designed to hold standard paper [8.5x11] and 1" deep, I get them at the local box store and they work great for me.

My problem is that one of my games - GODS ALONG THE NILE - has a large player board. This is for the individual player, not all the players. [you can check out the player board on the GATN page on BGG, it's the main image] It's designed to do 2 things:
1> be big enough to hold six playing cards
2> be small enough to fit in the box
-but it also does something else. Because it fits in the standard box, it is EASY to ship [because the standard box fits] inside USP flat rate boxes.

Each player gets one [think the chipboard player cards from ALHAMBRA or STONE AGE, only bigger]. If you check BGG files [especially home made play aids] that are made for lots of games, most of these are made for 8.5x11 printing as well. I'm thinking there is a crying need for these. For the Commonwealth folk who use A4, I'm sure the dimensions are different.

I understand what you guys are doing for game BOARDS where the main action takes place. What I am pushing for are PLAYER AIDS where each player gets their own 'personal game board'.

I had the originals done by another POD service. The front was printed on linen paper [and the colors freaking popped off the board - that's what linen does and why most publishers use it], then glued onto chipboard. My last order, they were printed on glossy cardstock, then glued to chipboard. While they look nice and are acceptable, they don't hold a candle to the linen boards.

When I contacted the provider, I was told that linen was no longer available [?!]. I've been doing the headless chicken routine to find a replacement ever since.

As to your 10x10 boards if they were 11 x10, I could take them and then cut them down, but I need that extra inch at the bottom. I guess what I don't get is WHY you don't offer a STANDARD sheet size? I was a printer for 10 years - I get paper sizes. Standard sized paper is the rule - as is chipboard. Why you go to over sized exclusively and not offer standard sized makes no sense to me.

But.... not being a manufacturer, I may be totally off base here. Have you considered running a poll among your customers to see how many of them might be interested in 8.5x11 player aid board, or even 8.5x5.5 [half sheet] player aid boards? If you only get a 25% positive response, would your bottom line be help by 25% more board printing?

Just sayin'.

Your Buddy, Chester

The Game Crafter
The Game Crafter's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/09/2009
Well everything we do is full

Well everything we do is full bleed, which means to do 8.5x11 we still have to print on much larger stock. So 8.5x11 isn't a standard size for us. Also, while our printer is capable of printing on linen paper, it tends to gum up the printer and cause other problems. To do linen well you need to go with traditional offset presses.

Traz
Traz's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/06/2009
hmmm...

Seems like my best bet is just going to be doing it myself...

Well - if you guys ever find a way to do linen [or perhaps even a matte finish - my main problem is that I don't like the gloss look because it reflects the light], let me know...

Oh, and as far as the full bleed thing - does that include artwork that is delivered with a 1/4 inch white space around the outside?

Please feel free to email me directly - cehendrix@sbcglobal.net

Syndicate content


forum | by Dr. Radut