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Improving card layout

8 replies [Last post]
Joined: 12/08/2015

Hello game designers,

After the first blind test feedbacks rolling in I'd like to improve the layout of my cards. In the following 2-page-PDF you'll find the original layouts and the new ones!

Thanks for helping,


questccg's picture
Joined: 04/16/2011
PNP - don't bother

I have been told (or I read somewhere) that only about 5% of gamers will take the effort to build the game and play it. FIRST of all 5% sounds HIGH, but first you actually need to determine the amount of people who LIKE your game. So let's think positive and say 1,000 people. 50 out of 1,000 may take the time to put together and play your game...

Does that sound like a number (50 people) that is worthwhile designing for?

Remember that Kickstarters are LUCKY if you get HALF that amount - so maybe 500 people. That means 25 people who would be willing to take the time to print and put together your game. Still worthwhile?

Most reviewers want to have nothing to do with PNP. So you'll have a harder time marketing your game (for maybe 25 people or so...)

I don't want to discourage you - if you want to take the time and make the effort to produce a PNP version - just be aware about the figures. You'll have to design prototypes that are pre-made if you want people (reviewers) to playtest and "preview" or "review" your game.

Again good luck with your effort... Just post more - I feel you need more knowledge about "Game Design" that other designers (including myself) can help you with... Just so you don't spin your wheels... (so to speak).

Good luck with your game! Cheers.

Update: You may want to invest time in designing a Tabloro board ( This could probably get you MORE playtesters than PNP. All you need is to point people to the right page and then they can use your RULES and play the game online...

Update #2: Sorry about calling your out about the game's name "MOBA". You really need to find a different name - and NOT promote your game as being MOBA. You don't have lanes like the genre requires, you don't have NPC characters/units, etc. You should find something more appropriate for your game... Just trying to help...

Joined: 12/08/2015
Thanks for your reply. I got

Thanks for your reply. I got the PNP version already which can be found here:
As I originally designed the game mostly for myself an my friends I already had the files from prototype creation (and some Christmas giveaways :)) so doing the PNP version wasnt a big additional commitment.
I crafted some prototypes with wooden figurs as well, and I think they turned out great:

To this point about 15 people (including some of my friends) did the PNP and I recieve great feedback, so I think it's totally worth if it improves the game. I sent one wooden prototype to a reviewer.

@update1: I got the Tabletopia Version online, it's here. If you want to take a look you can just follow the link and move some figures around :):
I'm glad to show the game to everyone interrested via skype as well, just sent me a PN and we figure things out :)
I have to add, that I hugely overestimated the power of Tabletopia to get playtesters in. I found some people that were interested in German Forums but they would rather print the PNP than use Tabletopia in all cases! Up to this point I only used TT to show ithe game to friends/fellow designers.

@update2: I think about changing the name too (because of the massive amount of negative feedback it generates...), but about the reason you mentioned I have to respectfully disagree. There is so much MOBA in this game allthough some aspects are probably less apparent:
- team drafting
- different hero rolls (tank mage assassin...)/teamwork
- 4 different actions per hero (starting with 2)
- hero development (leraning new actions, getting items)
- anticipation of opponent moves is key (simultanious action selection)
- combat system represents MOBA combat quite well
- 3 different objectives on the map representing 3 lanes
- hidden movement mechanics in certain skills to reflect ganks/jungling
- hero-teamwork required to bring down opponents
The most important thing (and I posted this in another thread already) is, that my non-boardgaming friends that mainly play computer Mobas felt familiar with my game at once, could use strategies that worked in the computer Mobas and recogniced certain characters.

A lot of things that are "missing" were left out on purpopse and led by the opinion, that it is not possible to bring a pc game 1:1 to the table (if you don't want to work with timers, apps to calculate experience/money, tons of bookkeeping, cooldowns, moving 100dreds of minions over the table (thats why I left out minions, but they are represented by a mechanic where players put tokens on one of the 3 objectives at the beginning of the round).
This game is MUCH more MOBA than for example Rum and Bones is, that was kind of advertised as a MOBA too by CMON. I already tried to avoid the term MOBA and call it a skirmish game, but theres still the name apparently causing problems. As I wrote before I consider renaming that thing (a friend suggested: Super Fantasy Brawl, Super Fantasy Fighters, Bantam Brawlers but I'm not quite sure...)

So aside from that, I still like to get some feedabck on the card layout, even if I won't publish the game or have a super succesful PnP/Tabletopia version - even if it's just to have a better game for me and my friends to enjoy! (I sometimes get the idea, that this forum is quite publish-orientated, I think a game can be well designed and a "success" even if its just the designer enjoying his creation. The reason, why I post stuff here is because my friends like it and I want to see if others like it, too - and of course to get feedback for further improvement.)

ElKobold's picture
Joined: 04/10/2015
I've played chordcommander's

I've played chordcommander's game and it's definitely a MOBA. You don't have to include minions and lanes to call something a MOBA, Overwatch is a MOBA.

Not that it's important anyways. The game has quite a few cool twists and I'm very curious how it will turn out when it will be complete.

I Will Never Gr...
I Will Never Grow Up Gaming's picture
Joined: 04/23/2015

Your action cards look very .. busy.

There is a lot going on there with so many symbols and so many colors, along with the VERY bold borders it's a bit confusing and a bit intimidating at first glance.

I assume the blank canvass looking area is for either flavor or instruction text, yes?

Moving the symbols to the left was a good call as people generally fan their cards in the hand that way.

The improved battle cards are better (B-2, not b3 or 4 .. you used the parchment/canvass in the action cards, continue that into the battle cards).

If you're using B2 for the battle cards, you would have to use A3 as the action card to keep the symbols the same of course.

What those symbols mean had best be laid out in the rules though (I have not looked through your rules, just at the artwork).

I like the look, but if there is a way you can simplify the number and clarity of symbols that would help a lot.

ElKobold's picture
Joined: 04/10/2015
I Will Never Grow Up Gaming

I Will Never Grow Up Gaming wrote:

The improved battle cards are better (B-2, not b3 or 4 .. you used the parchment/canvass in the action cards, continue that into the battle cards).

Removing parchment from the action card might work as well.
Text is best read on the light background. It would also make the card less "busy" I think.

The main background of the action card is a blue to white gradient. While the parchment is only used for the text. So there's no real inconsistency.

I've just realized - you could use the unique text background (simple gradient) for each hero. That would help with the action card selection (in addition to the hero icon).

Joined: 12/08/2015
@ I will never grow

@ I will never grow old

Thanks for your feedback!
You're right about the canvas, most attacks will have additional information here and non-attack actions will have a bigger canvas box. I'll probably go for a lighter canvas or even a white box to make the text more readable, even though i graphically like the canvas element.

I think I cannot simplify the cards more without taking a lot away from gameplay. If you attack an opponent you check range (the plain number in the box on the right) and then lay down as many battle/attack cards as indicated in the yellow circle. Battle cards will show the 4 available hit zones. As you have 8 attack cards you can go twice for the same zone or split.
Now the symbols on the attack card show, which effects the targeted unit suffers if it receives hits on the corresponding zone (for example, a hit on the head with the Bola Strike would cause 2 damage = 2 red crosses).
Before showing the cards the defender tries to anticipate where you are going to hit him and selects (most of the time 1, sometimes more) battlecards (they are called defense cards now).
Both players flip their cards. If a defense card shows the same zone like one or more attack cards all hits on that zopne are considered blocked and do no damage/cause no effects.
This is how the card is supposed to work. Suggestions how to improve functionality/design are appreciated!

Joined: 12/08/2015
Just wanted to present the

Just wanted to present the final results - thanks again for your very valuable feedback!

Combat Cards look like this now:

Action Cards look like this:

Much cleaner look (especially tha canvas thing...), thanks to your advice - if you work too long on a project you sometimes get kind of blind and need some input from outside I guess.

I'm experimenting with the fonts now, and these could give the cards an even more cartoon flair:

Do you like the last drafts?

I Will Never Gr...
I Will Never Grow Up Gaming's picture
Joined: 04/23/2015
Much better I would

Much better

I would definitely go with the font you showed in that last link, complete with more whitespace and less black stroke around it. It's much more legible and seems to suit the theme better.

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