David Greene
United States
Texas
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I woke up a week ago with an idea. It's blossomed into something completely viable and the more I explain the game to folks, the more it solidifies. I'm not ready to do the bigger art aspects of the game (box, placards, gameboard, etc) but I'm ready to start reaching out to folks and build relationships and start on the one aspect of the game: the play cards.

I can talk about the game for hours (and have already) but the general premise is that people die (generated by play cards) and the players are morticians who make money (goal of game) by collecting, processing and showing the deceased. Along the way, upgrades can be purchased to increase the throughput of the funeral home and/or add options to the services provided (cremation, for example).

The game centers around the randomness generated from combining first name and last name cards together. First name cards have a modifier and the last name cards have a base value (along with some optional conditions).


For example:

(Frist name) Jessica:

Jessica, while well liked as a child, grew up to be disliked by the whole family. After running away at age 16, she married and divorced multiple times and hasn't spoken to a single family member in over ten years.

ART: Picture of a woman who would possibly fit this sort of description. Artistic liberty is encouraged.

Modifier: -50%

(Last name) Jimenez :

The Jimenez family is well regarded in the community and has thrived since the elder Jimenez emigrated almost 80 years ago. The Jimenez family generally spends $8000 on a funeral.

ART: Picture of a nice middle-class home

Someone who collected this card and fulfilled the steps required to show the body would collect $4000 for the funeral.

I need 52 "first name" card art (split, 26/26 male female with a desire for ethnic diversity).

Additionally, 42 "last name" cards would display either a house or general landscape which coincided with the base $ amount. The last name "Diamond" for example might be a drawing/painting of a mansion. The 10 last name cards that are missing are the "Doe" cards. Here, I'm looking for 10 sad city/town views. Dilapidated houses, bridge underpass, etc.


Right now I'm looking for a style that jumps out and catches my eye. These pictures can be drawn, painted, computer drawn, etc. Right now, the sky is the limit. Ideally I would be interested in multiple artists who could churn out a handful of cards in the given style.

If you're interested in discussing this any further than this post, send a PM with a portfolio and we'll get together over Skype if I think we're a good initial fit. I'll respond no matter what.

PS - This is paid work, if you have a comfortable idea of what your rate is, feel free to include that in your PM. I do not require exclusivity for this particular art so if you have existing portraits and/or city/town scapes in your portfolio already, I'd be interested in just buying the rights to that art for use in the game. Eventually, this will blossom into the need for box art, booklet cover art, gameboard art, etc. I'm focused on consistency in style so one or more individuals who work on the cards will probably be hired for the rest of the art. All artists who are hired for work will receive a complimentary copy of the game.
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Scott Nelson
United States
Draper
Utah
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unless you have expendable income up the whazoo, you might try clipart in sleeves to test it over alpha and beta tests. The need for art is not needed until heavily invested into the game, and know very few changes will be needed. Otherwise, the artist can get annoyed if you want to change this or that over and over, as the game play is finely tuned.
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Tim Davidson
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Sounds like a unique idea, although I don't know if the theme attracts me. I think, you will need to put a lot of thought in to the artwork and feel of the game. I can see certain design choices --- cartoony, caricature, darker realism, etc. --- turning off a lot of potential players. (My first thought is a Tim Burton, nightmare before christmas, salad fingers look is the only way it would work.)

If you came up with this idea a week ago, this is likely WAY too early for commisioning artwork. Games pivot during beta testing. Create a prototype with placeholder art first and start testing. Your requirements will almost certainly change, if not also big aesthetic changes from theme feedback. Artwork you think you want now won't be exactly what you want in the end.
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Norman L.
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California
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Initially I thought your game would be about black market trade of human body parts after death..so I'm relieved to see that i was wrong(although I might just have to pursue that topic in the future).

I like the general theme and wanted to offer a suggestion that would help potential artists (myself included).

Please include the age of Jessica as that would determine how the artist portrays her. To go even deeper, is the artwork supposed to portray this person as they were alive during their lifetime (I assume at their prime?) or is it supposed to portray this person's age at their death? Depending on game play maybe you would want both? Part of me even wondered if the card art is supposed to show this person in their 'death' state before being made up by the mortician and also if there would be an alternate card art for the 'open casket' version of the person. See? Lotta possibilities. I don't know anything about the game play but these are things you should make clear before deciding to pick up artwork. The more detailed you are in what you want, the easier it is for the artist to give you something that will suit your needs.

A game you might want to check out is The Bloody Inn. It has a similarly dark theme and stylized grotesque artwork to match, but is done in a way that is not too uncomfortable or offensive. Just something to think about. Good luck.
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David Greene
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Texas
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Great feedback everyone!

I'm aware that I'm early on the art commissioning timeline. It's hard when you're excited about something. That said, I'm most certainly in the "investigate options" / "build relationships" phase.

I'm entertaining the idea of commissioning 1-2 card art from a handful of artists and then using those as stock art for the play-testing phase. Right now the biggest part in flux is the game board (phase 1/2).

I have the 4 phases set:

1) body(ies) are placed
2) collect bodies
3) process bodies/show bodies
4) get paid, purchase upgrades, etc

rince, repeat until end of game (out of cards & one player "clears" their funeral home) - winner has the most $$ at the end (that's the current end game state).

I started with a grid idea (6x6) but have entertained ideas as far as Monopoly "run in circles" style to Settlers "hex" style. As I said, it's still in flux and requires more play-testing.
 
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Grace McDermott
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Since this is just for your playtests - have you considered just buying a couple of stock art photos?
 
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Norman L.
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California
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glad you took the feedback to heart. to save you some money (and in case you don't want to use stock photos), maybe just commission wip rough sketch art as opposed to finished paintings? wip drawings and even black/white or greyscale looser style sketches/paintings would be a lot easier on your wallet than full color paintings at this stage in your development. That way, you would still be paying for the sketch and then later on if you decide to use the artist/artwork you can pay the remainder of the normal art fee to the artist to complete the 'finished' color version. I think that would work easily for both parties if you are up for it.
 
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Alexander Johnson
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Hello,

I'm a recent graduate from the University of Illinois at Springfield, having majored in Visual Arts. I'm hoping to start a career as an illustrator and your offer sounded promising. If you'd like to review some of my work, my online gallery can be visited here alexanderjohnsonart.my-free.website . I'll be happy to email a copy of my resume too if you need it.
My style as an artist is very flexible depending on the project or situation, and I also have no problems negotiating payment. Your game seems like it could be pretty interesting and I'd like the chance to work on it with you.

Thanks for the consideration,
Alex Johnson
 
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