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Subject: Thinking about switching to square cards? Yes? No? rss

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Jesse Galloway
Canada
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Hey folks, new question.

I'm contemplating using a square card design for my card game. What's everyone's thoughts on that?

Some info. My initial launch will have 108-162 unit cards. Originally planned as normal poker size cards but I'm re-assessing that. My need for score tracking has taken cards from in hand, to placed on board so that lead to the opportunity to change card size.

The game comes with an "action card" deck. These cards will remain poker sized. A 24x12 board will house my cards in play comfortably. So no real need to hold unit cards in hand.

Pros...

The cards will show the full art.

Makes the card set unique. Premium?

Should result in a less cluttered card then the original. More space to work with for template.


Cons..

Replanning elements that were previously locked down. Board design, packaging, etc.

Pretty much commits me to board usage on any future game versions for this card set.

Do players expect poker sized cards? How will this size be accepted by viewers of campaign / players. Is it a nice touch that differentiates this card game / set from others or would it be viewed as a pain in the ass.


The other option I'm looking into is landscape orientation. This, like square, works better for the artwork. But has some of the same potential disadvantages.
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'Bernard Wingrave'
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The only disadvantage I know of regarding square cards is shuffling. I find it easier to shuffle standard size rectangular cards with rounded corners than to shuffle other shapes.
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Chris
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bwingrave wrote:
The only disadvantage I know of regarding square cards is shuffling. I find it easier to shuffle standard size rectangular cards with rounded corners than to shuffle other shapes.

Agree 100% with this. Shuffling is much easier for standard sized cards. I don't know if this is merely a practice issue, or if morphological,y rectangular cards are just easier to shuffle. I suspect the latter, but keen to see what others think.

That said, the difference isn't enormous. So, if there are good gameplay reasons to use square cards, run with it.
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Jesse Galloway
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Yeah. We'll add shuffling to the con list. There's no real gameplay reason to go square. More just as a neat feature.
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Jesse Galloway
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Not to change subjects as I'm hoping for more feedback on the topic but let me sneak in another question. What's the maximum playing surface I shouldn't go over in planning boards / play space. 36x36? 42x42? 48x48?
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Mike Jones
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I don't get the premium comment as a pro? Is linen finish so much cheaper on square cards then rectangle cards, that you will use linen on square and not rectangular?

To me, I think it's just a matter of if there is a spatial component to your game that works better with square cards.

I don't care much for square cards, but really wouldn't care one way or another.

I don't sleave, but are there enough companies making square sleave so that those that do sleeve can get cheap sleeves at same price or high quality at the same price depending on their tastes?
 
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Daniel Rodriguez
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I can't stand square cards, major turn off. The gameplay would have to be amazing to make up for it
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Jesse Galloway
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Premium was likely the wrong word. I wouldn't contemplate using anything other than high quality material regardless of shape. I guess I was looking for whether a player would prefer a square card to poker. You've answered that. So that was all I was curious about. I personally think it's a neat thing but I wouldn't want to hit the print button and adjust a lot of things just to accommodate me thinking it was neat. I hope that makes sense.

The benefit to square cards is added room for art / info but I can get by without it.

I haven't looked into square sleeves.
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Jesse Galloway
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The gameplay would make up for oval cards .

Jokes, but thanks for feedback. That's what I need to know. Yay? Or nay?


And if you're not feeling square, what about landscape? In this scenario, cards would be on a landscape accommodating player board.
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Ryan McGuire
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danrodz wrote:
I can't stand square cards, major turn off. The gameplay would have to be amazing to make up for it

+1 for this.

I once got some square playing cards for my birthday. It was a thoughtful gift, but... Hate Them. They're hard to shuffle and hard to hold. Sure, they may set your game aprt from so many others that use cards, but I personally would consider it being set apart in a bad way.
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Daniel Rodriguez
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ryanker wrote:
They're hard to shuffle and hard to hold.

This is why, I should have mentioned it in my post. Landscape isn't too bad but I've got big hands. Smaller hands might find it a hassle.
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Jesse Galloway
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You mean square cards. I think I'm gonna bail on that. I think square cards have a use. A small subset of boss cards or campaign cards maybe but after feedback / further thought I do t think it works for a large set of cards.

I'm exploring the option of landscape which would still be poker size but horizontal layout as opposed to normal / vertical. That way I get some uniqueness without the hassle of a card size change.
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Walt
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Diamant uses square cards. They're fine.

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George P.E., PMP, DM
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We're having a very similar debate with one of our designs, so I think this thread is interesting. Please let us know how things turn out for you.
 
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Jesse Galloway
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GeorgeMo wrote:
We're having a very similar debate with one of our designs, so I think this thread is interesting. Please let us know how things turn out for you.


Hey George.

I decided not to go square. I like square cards. I think there's a good opportunity to use square cards for things like event cards, or something like boss cards. Smaller subsets that fit in a game but it wasn't right for my main card set. My main set will start at 162 cards and someday grow to 500 plus. That's just way too many cards to be square. Shuffling, managing, etc. It didn't work.

My gameplay doesn't benefit from being square. If yours does then I'd say it's a good option. The benefit I guess would be, being able to turn cards to change how they are interacting with other laid out cards.

From there I thought hard about going to landscape orientation. I liked this option. I sketched out many landscape templates and found one that I liked. The things I liked about landscape.... My art is being created in a 1:1.6 ratio. The art could have sat very nice on the card. It would have been unique and would have made for a clean card.

The negative would have been that for any future use (I have a few variations planned) the cards would probably need to be placed on table for game play. Using landscape cards in hand is doable but awkward.

So, in the end, I decided to keep the cards in the portrait style orientation. Visually, I would have preferred landscape but I didn't want the risk of the card set not being accepted due to card layout. Plus I'm not handcuffed going forward.

I do however have half a plan to release a collectors version that would utilize a landscape orientation. But that's only if the game grows to a point that it makes sense.

So, I'm glad I went through the thought process, I chose what I know works and what I know won't turn off potential backers / players.

That's what was right for my cards. Good luck with yours. Let me know how it turns out for you.
 
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