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Double Faced vs. Split (cards)

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MOON-E
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I'm working on a card game right now which involves cards that represent two things. There are two ways i've seen this done: Double Faced Cards and Split Cards. Double faced cards have text on both sides of the card, while Split cards print both halves of the card on the same face.

Each obviously has its own pros and cons. DFC are much less confusing and allow more room for text and art, but cause logistic issues. Split cards are much more cramped and can easily be confused, but have no functional downsides.

Which method do you think is better? My only experience with this type of thing is through MTG, so if you can provide other examples of games with either system, that would also be appreciated.

JaffetC
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MOON-E wrote:I'm working on a

MOON-E wrote:
I'm working on a card game right now which involves cards that represent two things. There are two ways i've seen this done: Double Faced Cards and Split Cards. Double faced cards have text on both sides of the card, while Split cards print both halves of the card on the same face.

Each obviously has its own pros and cons. DFC are much less confusing and allow more room for text and art, but cause logistic issues. Split cards are much more cramped and can easily be confused, but have no functional downsides.

Which method do you think is better? My only experience with this type of thing is through MTG, so if you can provide other examples of games with either system, that would also be appreciated.

Before Wizards use it on Magic, they used it on Duel Masters. A game that is very popular in asia at the moment. Now, the asian players are open to A LOT of Designs... American players... not so much... so you put your self in a position that can become 50/50 with your target audience. I dont think it is a bad idea in the sense of a board game, HOWEVER it must be done correctly. Take for example double faced hex games. When done correctly flipping to the other side can become really good or really back. So as a Stand Alone Card game you have to have a solid way of representing both faces.

Alderac was also working on a game that had two faces, Upper Deck with their Shaman King game the main character had two faces... IT is not a new concept, however you must make sure that it plays out correctly. Will you force players to use sleeves? Or will you have alternate cards to take their place similar to how Wizards took care of the problem... in the end it is your choice, I believe that double faced cards can have a game all on their own however the method in which i would incorporate it would be something like a Deck bulding game... the property is there im just not sure yet.. we will what the space can give us.

MOON-E
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My plan was to include "cover

My plan was to include "cover cards" that cover the top card of decks, keeping them hidden. The game in question doesn't involve "hands", cards are flipped straight from the top of the deck and are revealed to all players, so you'll never have to conceal only one side of the card.

Since the game in question is in fact a stand alone deck building game, this seems to be the easiest method. My only concern really was that it might be too much hassle, or if there was a natural aversion to this sort of thing.

Cogentesque
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Hiya Moon-E. Goddamnid:

Hiya Moon-E.

Goddamnid: Jaffet knows a lot about cards...

*takes hat off*

Without the insane bank of knowledge that Jaffet has, I would say go for split cards if you can. Keeps the overall movement of cards similar. If they are double faced, then how players hold them, draw them, play them and store them will have to be modified - you'll have players holding them under the table and when they want to view the back side, the cards will go everywhere when they drop them cause of their clumsy fingers etc.

If you CAN use split cards, I would probably recomend doing so - it will be cramped up, but have a play with some layouts and see if it can be done first :)

JaffetC
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MOON-E wrote:My plan was to

MOON-E wrote:
My plan was to include "cover cards" that cover the top card of decks, keeping them hidden. The game in question doesn't involve "hands", cards are flipped straight from the top of the deck and are revealed to all players, so you'll never have to conceal only one side of the card.

Since the game in question is in fact a stand alone deck building game, this seems to be the easiest method. My only concern really was that it might be too much hassle, or if there was a natural aversion to this sort of thing.

Well flip cards were not a success from wizards stand point but i think they could have done a bit better job about them. I dont believe they should have been used with large sums of text like most of them did, but i enjoyed the way they looked. However according to wizards it was a huge let down.

Split cards are good in the sense that you have 2 abilities on the same one card and you choose which to use. However, the reason why splits were successful wasn't the two abilities, it in fact was the mana costs. To literally have 2 cards in one, was better than Modal, because if you create a card with both abilities, and have the players choose then you need to create a balanced cost for the two abilities. Split cards let you set in stone the costs for each ability, even though you will never be able to do both, you couldnt in modal either except for when it had, This or/and or type of abilities... in which case it didnt matter.

http://www.alderac.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=123&t=82632
If you can make heads or tails of whats happening on that topic you can learn a bit of the game. Not in full detail obviously but just enough to get an idea of what they wanted to do.

http://duelmasters.wikia.com/wiki/Psychic_Creature
Thats information on how Duel Masters dealt with Double Faced cards... as you can see they created a zone that is public knowledge at all times and is not included in the deck.

So, if it were a Deck Building game, id probably guess that a good direction is to have a few double faced cards that players could take control of but wouldn't use within their deck.... Making players add stuff to their sleeves is a bit counter intuitive... not to mention you would be telling them to not use clear sleeves and to buy opaque. Knowing that most board gamers dont really play with opaque you would just set your self up for headaches...

im not trying to discourage you in any way, shape, or form. Make the rules post them online that way you have a lot of eyes reading and set up some play testing sessions, if after a few dozen games you feel the game could be well, open it up for blind play testing, then see how that works out for you. If then it comes out that it is good stuff work on getting it published, either self or through somebody... :)

MOON-E
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Thanks for the feedback! I

Thanks for the feedback!

I may not have explained the game all that well. In brief, the main mechanic is "War". Players acquire cards over time, and flip the top card to see the result. Because of this, there is no "hand". The only time you'd ever have to conceal a card is when it's on top of your deck (so you don't identify it based on its back).

This is why I'm leaning towards DFC, since they cause less problems than in a standard card game. However, I'm more than welcome to try split cards as well.

JaffetC
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MOON-E wrote:Thanks for the

MOON-E wrote:
Thanks for the feedback!

I may not have explained the game all that well. In brief, the main mechanic is "War". Players acquire cards over time, and flip the top card to see the result. Because of this, there is no "hand". The only time you'd ever have to conceal a card is when it's on top of your deck (so you don't identify it based on its back).

This is why I'm leaning towards DFC, since they cause less problems than in a standard card game. However, I'm more than welcome to try split cards as well.

isnt war a "who has the highest number?" So eventually the players will have memorized what card is on the opposing side. I dont think its a bad idea like i mentioned before, but how about some clarifying, Would all of one side have the same image? and if so, would all the opposing sides have the same or different image?

If for example all 50 cards lets say, have the same front with the number 5 on it. and your range is from 0-9. That would give the players to keep it or try and flip it for something higher if the bottom happens to be higher, but it could also be lower. I'm having a bit of hard time trying to figure out how it would work out...

Have you see Yomi? it uses a Flip Mechanic, Similar to Magic's Flip mechanic... and it works quite nicely, sure it is basically a standard deck of playing cards but each side has its own ability.

http://boardgamegeek.com/image/1000781/yomi

http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=78679

that way you can see what flip looks like if you havent already :)

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