Skip to Content

Tips to make my card template look more professional

35 replies [Last post]
jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017

I have finished my first set of my game and its available on the game crafter, while other people have commented that they like it, i got the physical copy of the game and although i like my template i just think it could be better.

I am not talking about the character artwork, i cant do better than that and i cant or do backgrounds nor i want to pay someone to do it as it will cost me too much, but i could do a better template, I just need some tips or ideas on how to make the template more appealing. maybe rearrange some elements around

https://imgur.com/a/6ll8E2r

Jay103
Jay103's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/23/2018
I'm not a graphic designer,
I Will Never Gr...
I Will Never Grow Up Gaming's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/23/2015
Depends on where the card info is needed

If the cards are held in your hand until played, is that icon in the top right important information that you need to see while the card is in your hand? If so, consider moving it to the left. All vital information should be on the left side so when people hold their cards splayed out in their hand they can see it all.

Of course, this does not apply to the instructional text. That's good where it is so long as you're consistent throughout the cards in how it looks.

Other than that I've got no template suggestions.

I would, however, lighten up the background so that the foreground is more vibrant and noticeable. It all kind of blends together on the top half and then you have this burst of neon color across the center.

Jay103
Jay103's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/23/2018
I Will Never Grow Up Gaming

I Will Never Grow Up Gaming wrote:
If the cards are held in your hand until played, is that icon in the top right important information that you need to see while the card is in your hand? If so, consider moving it to the left. All vital information should be on the left side so when people hold their cards splayed out in their hand they can see it all.

Of course, this does not apply to the instructional text. That's good where it is so long as you're consistent throughout the cards in how it looks.

Other than that I've got no template suggestions.

I would, however, lighten up the background so that the foreground is more vibrant and noticeable. It all kind of blends together on the top half and then you have this burst of neon color across the center.

I tend to agree. I'd consider moving the top right icon to be below the number on the left, so both pieces of info are adjacent. Easier to read all around, maybe.

Maybe make the grey transparent under/overlay that goes between the pic and the text less transparent. By which I mean, darker, so the text is separated more from the pic.

I need to tweak my own prototype cards now, maybe :(

larienna
larienna's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
I managed to do by myself the

I managed to do by myself the following templates:

https://boardgamegeek.com/image/3031649/eldritch-express

Once you know how you position is configured on the cards ( you can test this with a minimal black and white prototype, you can start designing the templates.

There is 4 criterias that I considered when doing those templates. Not sure if it can be used for any template:

A: Shape: Determine what shape you want where. How does the information appears within this shape. The theme of the game or the card could influence the design of the shape. For example, for my spell cards, I tried to reproduce a parchment paper with some ink marks

B: Color: What will be the color of the shaped. What will be the color of the information inside the shape. Think about color combinations, contrasts, complementary colors, color coding of information, etc.

C: Bevel: That relief do you want to shape to have. Is is bumby, rippled, carved. Try to determine how it would have felt to touch the card if relief was true.

D: Texture: What kind of texture do you want the shape to have. Texture does not have to be very strong. Sometime a simple semi-translucent overlay texture can add detail, but not too much. Think about texture combinations if you use more than one. They must have something in common if possible.

E: Decorations: The final touch and details that will make your design more rich. Symbols, marking, etc.

----------------------------------------------------

It'll give you my personal comments on your cards from a color blind point of view:

1. Grey monster on gray back ground is bad

2. Red or brown icons on brown background is also very bad. You want icons to contrast a lot to make them easy to discern.

3. "Sanguine Abomination" has icons over the "Cost" label making it impossible to read. Move the cost tag elsewhere. Like floating on the edge above the area

4. I don't really like the identification font at the bottom. Maybe using something like arial would be better.

5. Yellow and red cost icon (top left) should mix wih a neutral instead. Like red BG and white number. Or red on black.

6. You have a lot of neutral colors on your cards: Brown, gray, etc. Neutral 's don't mix well with each other, but mix well with other colors. So you might want to change the texture color of your background or your cost box.

7. Can't you not put a kind of filter on your drawing to enhance them. Like an oil painting, or watercolor filter. Just to give your drawings more style.

Jay103
Jay103's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/23/2018
larienna wrote: 3. "Sanguine

larienna wrote:

3. "Sanguine Abomination" has icons over the "Cost" label making it impossible to read. Move the cost tag elsewhere. Like floating on the edge above the area

Oh, I forgot that in my comment. You don't need the "cost" text at the bottom.. It'll be in the rulebook and it'll be very obvious at all times to anyone who's played for more than 10 seconds. Remove the clutter it creates.

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
What background color do you

What background color do you suggest for the background and the cost box?

with the cost box i tried to make it like a construction area, you know with the yellow/black pattern.

6 cost will be the maximum for any monster also so, how to make it so the material icons are even with every other type of icon, as you can see 6 metal icons have spread out to the end of the card and 6 blood icons are all together, since the icons are sized differently, i cant spread out the blood since it will leave huge gaps between them

larienna
larienna's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
Do you have card categories

Do you have card categories in your game like Magic of the gathering (red, white, blue, etc) If that is the case, you can use those colors.

Else for your cost, why don't you make the color match the required resource, this way you can ensure there will never be any weird color mix.

Is it always the same resource, or there can be a mix of resource. If it's always the same resource, you do not need a bar, just 1 icon and a number.

For the card BG, maybe you should of for something paler. If you don't have category color coding, maybe opt for something like light gray or beige. Beige and red should mix well, not sure about beige and gray monsters.

Else you can also give a color tint to your gray monsters to make them non neutral. Like turning them gray-ish blue instead of just gray.

I don't really like the construction yellow=black border unless you are doing it for a modern construction theme. Just make an edge with some beveling.

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
I'll appreciate it if someone

I'll appreciate it if someone can give me an example of the layout I should use, just so i can use it for some inspiration

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
https://imgur.com/a/2VNdkewO

https://imgur.com/a/2VNdkew

Ok i went ahead and did a quick mock-up of a potential revamp card

basically, the keyword and effect remains the same, same as the attack power and the monster type, but the number is white instead of yellow

now for the resource cost, i moved it to the left side so you can actually see the resource cost when you have it in your hand

I also added some electricity or energy beam on the sides just to give it some flair and the energy beam will change color depending on the monster type, its just for aesthetics

Progress of the revamp template https://imgur.com/a/BVkeeDy

larienna
larienna's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
Much better already. You

Much better already.

You might need something under the top right icon. Probably a circle like the left icon.

If you want to keep the background grey, I would go way lighter or way darker to have a contrast between the edge of the card and the background.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Good stuff

larienna wrote:
Much better already.

I agree. That card looks much improved.

larienna wrote:
You might need something under the top right icon. Probably a circle like the left icon.

I think you can altogether remove this icon and rely on the ICONS on the Left-Hand-Side (Fire Icons vertically). This could tell you the NATURE of the unit. And if there is a blend of "Fire" (3) and "Water" (2) ... Well that's like a mixed unit (Steam Monster)... OR BOTH. What I mean this is a part "Fire", part "Water" Monster.

larienna wrote:
If you want to keep the background grey, I would go way lighter or way darker to have a contrast between the edge of the card and the background.

I would make the background darker. Like #4C4141 a darker grey with a Red tone as the base.

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
Thanks for the compliments i

Thanks for the compliments i like it better too

yeah i might not need the fire icon, it is only to tell what monster type it is. because you need this monster in your resource zone if u want to actually play monsters, all monsters are worth one element type when in resource zone.

I actually do plan on releasing dual-type monsters such as needing fire and water to play a monster like steam

I actually made sure to make it lighter due to the game crafters fault in printing, their ink, when printed, is always so dark.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
Forgot about that!

jedite1000 wrote:
...I actually made sure to make it lighter due to the game crafters fault in printing, their ink, when printed, is always so dark.

Actually funny thing, I noticed this TOO with my Cardbacks for Monster Keep (MK). I had the same "Huh?!" when some of the cards came to be SO DARK?! And it made those cards hard to differentiate especially for people who have some form of colorblindness...

So that's a very good point... Most of them were OKAY, but Blue, Green and Black came out WAY TO DARK! And I could see them nice both on my 27" screen and laptop (a little darker than the screen) ... But overall they looked good (on-screen). But when I got the print copies from TGC, like you, I found the colors much darker!

Since getting my printed copies, I boosted the lightness a little to see how the NEXT "Batch" of card will look like.

True... Now that you mentioned it, I understand.

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
yeah tgc has a lot of faults,

yeah tgc has a lot of faults, especially with the drifting too

anyway finished card https://imgur.com/a/xTTlfrk i am not sold on the background color change, maybe i should use a different background pattern and color, any ideas?

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
I found this...

jedite1000 wrote:
yeah tgc has a lot of faults, especially with the drifting too.

I am using full-bleed "background" images. Meaning that the card has NO BORDER... The artwork extends to the very edge of each card. So art is also part of the BLEED. That's to counteract the possibility of any drift.

It's kind of hard to do when your art is only in the center of your card, like in your samples. Mine has art and a background, so the images get a 2.75" x 2.75" WITH bleed and the art in on the bottom-most layer of the template. (So everything goes on top of the art)

Again to counteract any possible drift.

You could maybe do this with YOUR "background". Instead of having a Black Border (which is prone to drifting), you just EXTEND the "background" of your card ALL the way to the EDGE.

But I agree you need a nicer "background"... Maybe a "Brushed Metal Background FREE" (Google for this and see if you can find a FREE one).

Here's one that I found (it's a bit BRIGHT):

http://www.myfreetextures.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/brushedmetal103...

You could probably play around with contrast and brightness to make it a bit darker (Overall).

You could also maybe use a BLACK "background" and use a MASK over the the metal texture using a Black & White Gradiant... Sort of like a FADE from White (100% concentration) to Black (0% concentration). That might also make for a better looking card LESS PRONE to "drift".

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
So i found a cool looking

So i found a cool looking background, it did say free download but unsure if i can use it, well lets say i can use it. anyway is the background too much?

https://imgur.com/a/h5FfNAr

This is what the card back used to look like then i added the hex background, i did the same for the front of the card, should it stay the same color or should it change depending on the monster type

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
I thing the color-matched background looks great!

The last one for the Lava Snake looks cool... Similar color tone but not 100% exact. The Green one might go better with "Earth" monsters... IDK.

For SURE that LAST one looks great! I'd go with "color-coordinated" background according to the class of the monster. That's my opinion. I like it when things looks similar but custom per class...

Cheers!

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
awesome ill probably go with

awesome ill probably go with that but little tweak on the hue, and my cards should be all set to be remastered :)

edit: hmmm yeah ive been trying to tweak the hue, i just cant get it right, no matter the color shade, the monster blends in too much in the background, dunno if i should just stick with a green background or a neutral background like grey, dont want the card too much red/orange

larienna
larienna's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
You can use a different

You can use a different background for each color type or simply reuse a BG and apply the right tint.

For the hex back ground, the hexes are too large compared to the rest. Always use 1/3 proportion between elements. That's a Christopher Alexander's rule.

Quote:
yeah i might not need the fire icon, it is only to tell what monster type it is.

Remember that there are color blind people, if you have the space, it cannot hurt to add an extra icons. Else, if your card cost icond can already identify the type of the creature, then it might not be an issue.

The card id at the bottom of the card (serpent, uncommon) is also much better.

I might darken the ability text box for more opacity to make the text easier to read. The red ability bar could also be less translucent.

Always print some color test before mass producing. Generally I mashup portion of print out in a single sheet and see how the colors end up. Reds are generally hard to pull out and are likely to be modified.

The final touch would be to either add some filter to the artwork, or use a compatible background (like a piece of cloth) to make sure the artwork quality does not clash with the background quality.

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
ok how is it

ok how is it now?

https://imgur.com/a/DilgAnP

hexes are smaller too

I honestly do prefer to keep the green background for all monsters instead of color-changing it depending on the type like i already have the red energy bars to indicate the colors. and color green associates to monsters

but its what the audience likes not what i like

well if not green what neutral color for all monster types do u suggest?

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
If you are using Photoshop...

Desaturate the layer with the "Background". It should give you a GREY colored background. See if that is more "appropriate"! If so, you can use the SAME background for all images.

I would give it a TRY...

larienna
larienna's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
Quote:I honestly do prefer to

Quote:
I honestly do prefer to keep the green background for all monsters instead of color-changing it depending on the type like i already have the red energy bars to indicate the colors.

If you want to keep your green backgroud, like questCCG suggested, make it a grey-ish green, so that it does not creates a color contrast with red or other weird color clash.

Again, you don't want your background to stand out, you want the information and artwork to jump in the face of people.

If you are going the gray-ish green route, you could also put a tiny touch of green in the gray edge border, just to make sure it's not a pure gray border. But again, that is nick-picking.

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
I’ll try it out

I’ll try it out

well here it is

https://imgur.com/a/XLUF46m

Jay103
Jay103's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/23/2018
Apparently your cards are now

Apparently your cards are now erotic and I can't see them without logging in :)

larienna
larienna's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
same for me.

same for me.

apeloverage
Offline
Joined: 08/01/2008
jedite1000 wrote:I am not

jedite1000 wrote:
I am not talking about the character artwork, i cant do better than that and i cant or do backgrounds nor i want to pay someone to do it as it will cost me too much

You could use public domain artwork.

questccg
questccg's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/16/2011
If you want to REGISTER

jedite1000 wrote:
...well here it is...

Well that version looks GREAT! The grey/green background is not a universally "grey" version which adds a bit of color (just a tad).

BTW I don't know why we have to REGISTER and sign-in to see the image. Believe me guys there's nothing 18+ just a similar card with a grey/green background and less Flame Icons (on the LHS) and overall a really improved version of the card.

I have no clue why it requires us to SIGN-IN ... The image is very similar to the previous version just with some minor fixes.

Cheers!

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
yeah i have no idea why it

yeah i have no idea why it does that, i never did anything to set it to that way

apeloverage wrote:
jedite1000 wrote:
I am not talking about the character artwork, i cant do better than that and i cant or do backgrounds nor i want to pay someone to do it as it will cost me too much

You could use public domain artwork.

half the fun for me anyway is doing the drawing myself, i rather do everything myself as its more fun to do that

jedite1000
jedite1000's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/18/2017
Do you guys think the

Do you guys think the background pattern too distracting or is it ok?

made some minor tweaks

https://i.imgur.com/m5ytw6D.png

I think its ok for now

larienna
larienna's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
Much better Quote:You could

Much better

Quote:
You could use public domain artwork.

The problem with PD artwork is that when you need multiple pieces of art, it's hard to get what you need while having a consistent look.

On the other hand, public domain Music and sound effects (for videogames) or public domain card design, like we are currently talking, is much more versatile and reusable for different kind of games.

Syndicate content


forum | by Dr. Radut