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Subject: 3D effects on Cards? rss

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How The God
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The current draft of Warring Kingdom (www.warringkingdom.com) has some emboss effects on some of the text, such as the upkeep, strength and health numbers on the left. This is because lots feedback preferred the coming-out-of-the-page look and, simply, it looks cooler.

However, while the cards are readable when you have it in your hands, it is less so from a distance. I know most games do NOT have any embossing effects on texts to make them as clear as possible.

What are your thoughts? To 3D or not to 3D?
 
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Jiří Petruželka
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If there is a choice between coolness and clarity I would side with clarity. Visuals are great to have, but it can't obstruct gameplay flow.

I do not know how intense the distance problem is or whether it's possible to have 3D and yet have it readable from distance (invert embossing? less intense embossing?), that can play a role in deciding.

BTW.: the number 6 has a different design from other numbers and given it's placed above dotted line -which is often a symbol of "fill this in" in forms- it feels out of place. But maybe I'm alone.
(but it's actually visible most out of all the numbers there)
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Glen Dresser
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Is there much shuffling in your game? I would worry that embossing would wear quickly in a game with a lot of shuffling, since every time you're shuffling the cards, there's going to be hard edges of cards pushing against the raised embossing. If you get your coatings just right, it might not be a big issue, but I would still assume that all other things being equal, a card with embossing is going to wear much more quickly than a card without.
 
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Paul DeStefano
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octothorp wrote:
Is there much shuffling in your game? I would worry that embossing would wear quickly in a game with a lot of shuffling, since every time you're shuffling the cards, there's going to be hard edges of cards pushing against the raised embossing. If you get your coatings just right, it might not be a big issue, but I would still assume that all other things being equal, a card with embossing is going to wear much more quickly than a card without.
He means the graphic effect of embossing, not actual physical textures.
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Val Teixeira
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octothorp wrote:
Is there much shuffling in your game? I would worry that embossing would wear quickly in a game with a lot of shuffling, since every time you're shuffling the cards, there's going to be hard edges of cards pushing against the raised embossing. If you get your coatings just right, it might not be a big issue, but I would still assume that all other things being equal, a card with embossing is going to wear much more quickly than a card without.
OP said embossing 'effects on text' not actual, physical embossing. It's a graphic design thing, not a physical production thing. Shuffling makes no difference as the text is not actually raised, just made to appear to do so.

As for whether to use it. Generally, it can be used effectively in big, large text or in reference text that's constantly in front of all players (like the card type on a card back, etc.) and a large singular bold number within a symbol (such as a coin, etc.) - i.e. anything where you actually want (or are fine with) the text fading into the background.

If you have small text, or text that needs to be read in order to tell you what to do, then embossing is not such a great idea and text clarity is far more important. Rather go with a stroke effect to help the text stand out from the background, if you need to.

EDIT: I see a ninja
 
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Jiří Petruželka
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I keep rereading the original posts and still would like OP to clarify, since I am not totally sure if it's meant to be physical or not.

There's also a question of the meaning of embossing effect. Most often it has a shiny border on the side of lightsource as well (which I don't see here) and overall simulates the physical embossing, while the card rather has a shadow effect, which simulates the area being above the background.

That meaning of "embossing" should be done with extreme care as I rarely see it used and not turning out cheap or cheesy.

If not physical & shadow effect then - make the number thick and large enough to be read easily and then add a thin shadow. Using shadow on large amount of texts is often discouraged. With your particular card I would make the numbers on the left slightly thicker, but otherwise it seems okey.

Perhaps try to make side-by-side comparison with the same card one not having the effect.
 
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Beau Bocephus Blasterfire
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Whatever is easier to read.
 
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How The God
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To clarify, I did mean graphically create 3D effect via a combination of embossing, drop shadow and other "blending options" of Photoshop. Physical 3D is way to expensive to be considered at the moment...the game has 324 cards!

I can post a side-by-side comparison tonight; right now, there are no 3D effects on the main text, since clarity is absolutely crucial there. The question is on the 3 set of numbers (upkeep inside of a coin; att/def strength on top of a sword and shield; health inside of a bleeding heart). For consistency, I'd have the three numbers have identical color/style. I (with mediocre vision) find all three very easy to reach when in my hand, so the issue is really while it is in supply and someone new tries to decide whether or not to get the card and looks at it from a distance, whether the 3D effect distracts from clarity.

Hopefully that clarifies the original post!
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Corsaire
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I think the raised text effect is great. It looks really sharp against the orange background token. However, it doesn't excuse the need to have adequate contrast between the character color and the predominant background color. In the other two raised numbers, they are white font over a white pattern, even with the dark border that will be mostly unreadable across a table.
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How The God
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Here are two versions: One is prettier (IMHO), the other is clearer. (I also made the apothecary a bit brighter; ignore that for the purpose here please. Just whether the 2D numbers thicker text is better) Votes?
 
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Corsaire
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Top one with the thicker weight is better. I can read the numbers in the post even.
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How The God
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Corsaire wrote:
Top one with the thicker weight is better. I can read the numbers in the post even.
Thanks C C! Noted. Looks like you have 3 thumb ups; so this is unanimous?
 
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