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How much should I expect to pay for artwork?

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Squinshee
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My game is shaping up quite nicely, so I decided to get some rates from artists I liked and thought could create art that would represent my theme and audience well. My top choice got back to me and gave me these rates:

$375 per hero
$75 per minion
$30 per card design (this artist would be able to do both art and card templates, a plus in my book)

With those numbers, I'm looking at 4 heroes, approximately 110 minions, and 4 templates. That totals to almost $10,000, before rulebook design and box art.

Is that an insane number?

jonathanflike
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Hmm

What kind of art is it? And how does Hero art differ from minion art? Is there a fancy background or something? Most artists have a flat rate for pictures so it seems odd that the heroes would be so much different than the minions. Do you have a link to their work? I think $375 in general for a hero is insane. I would never pay that much. Seeing that you are doing bulk designs as well you should be getting a deeper discount, but then again I need to see what level of an artist you got there. $30 per card design seems reasonable, I probably would have charged a lot more when I designed my own because there is a lot of thought and analysis that goes into tweaking those things, which I learned the hard way.

McTeddy
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Joined: 11/19/2012
While it depends on specific

While it depends on specific details about your needs... I'd say that sounds expected.

This is where you need to be clever. It's important that you learn where to reuse art and where to cut corners to create a reasonable cost.

For your cards? Is there too many unique cards? Can you reuse the same art on multiple types? How about instead of full art can you use simplistic icons? Is there a way you can turn them into a thematically reasonable text template?

As for characters, can they be shown primarily as portraits? You may be able to get cheaper by using using smaller images or a simpler art style.

Also remember that images here can probably be reused for manual art or other assorted pieces. The only real way to reduce the cost of art is to buy less art.

Decent art is extremely expensive and the companies that go art heavy tend to have full-time staff to do the work. For the rest of us, we have to be more careful.

questccg
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Cutting the fat, so to speak

Squinshee wrote:
...My top choice got back to me and gave me these rates:

$375 per hero
$75 per minion
$30 per card design (this artist would be able to do both art and card templates, a plus in my book)

With those numbers, I'm looking at 4 heroes, approximately 110 minions, and 4 templates. That totals to almost $10,000, before rulebook design and box art.

Is that an insane number?

Okay, so I have just been through this with my WIP. You're not going to like it (I said the same thing - before I capitulated), an art budget for a game should be around $3,000 - $3,500 USD. This is according to Minion Games. While I thought that was CRAZY - since my game was nearing the $7,000 - $7,500 CAD mark.

But I decided to AIM for that goal and made it possible cutting down the number of unique pieces of art. So instead of 15 Starships, there are 5 x3 each (total 15 cards), for example.

And I soon realized that this was making a whole lot of sense.

  1. My artwork budget went from $7,000+ to $3,500 CAD (or $2,750 USD).
  2. It made more sense, if every starship was different it would be harder to remember which is which.
  3. The game is still as wonderful and maybe even more realistic because I managed to trim down the amount of artwork.

I saved my artist a lot of trouble and he still made money off the venture. I had to think about this a LOT. Since I have already invested about $7,500+ CAD in total (Graphic Artwork, Writing, Illustrations, Reviewer copies, Shipping, Preview Videos, FB marketing, etc.)

I think my artist was also happy with the lower volume of artwork. Otherwise he would have been busy from February 2016 until December 2016!

So consider thinking about how to cut back on costs...

Just my opinion based on what I too had to decide what needed to be cut from the game and what was essential in making it a playable game.

Update: In my cases have multiples copies not only lower the cost of the game, but also make it simpler to remember Starships A is the same for all "Capacity = 6" Starships... Same goes with the other cards in the game.

Update #2: Maybe you can "insert" the concept of "rarity"? Like say some Minions are tougher and therefore less of them in the deck. You could use a simple distribution such as: Rare (1x), Uncommon (2x) and Common (3x).

Maybe you could have 108 cards, with only 54 unique cards. That's HALF the amount of artwork just by introducing such a "concept"...

Again just some ideas - to help you out... Something may stick! :)

Update #3: You may "invent" a better name instead of "Rare, Uncommon, Common", like "Ultra, Enhanced, Normal" - just as an example. You don't need to use CCG nomenclature, you can invent your own.

Update #4: Two (2) other naming alternatives: "Gold, Silver, Bronze" or "Legendary, Mythical, Familiar"... I think you can think up more options ... something that speaks to your game!

Squinshee
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Joined: 10/17/2012
>.< So much monies... I'll

>.<

So much monies...

I'll figure out ways to reduce the number. I do think that the hero art is extremely high, but the bulk of the cost is still the minions.

I feel weird posting who the artist is...

ElKobold
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Joined: 04/10/2015
You should be able to find an

You should be able to find an artist for 30-100 per illustration.

$375 for a hero sounds extremely high. It's more of a high-res box art price level I think.

adversitygames
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Squinshee wrote:>.<So much

Squinshee wrote:
>.<

So much monies...

I'll figure out ways to reduce the number. I do think that the hero art is extremely high, but the bulk of the cost is still the minions.

I feel weird posting who the artist is...

I agree that the hero cost is *huge*, is there something special you're having done that could explain it? Like multiple poses, or really large and high detail, or something like that?

If you're unsure about naming the artist, ask the artist if they mind. If they don't mind then there's nothing to worry about.

(I really doubt they will mind, being known is good for their business)

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