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Rise of Man: Stone Age» Forums » General

Subject: Final card graphic design? rss

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Gergo Tothmihaly
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The game does sound interesting and when I look at the artist's work it really is great. But then the cards' graphic design ruins it for me.

I don't mean to be overly negative or mean here, quite the opposite, this is meant as constructive criticism but all the words I could say about the current graphic design are negative.
Is this final? Any chance to revisit this?
 
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Bryan Sloan
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Hi Gergo! I'm glad you like the illustrations. After a lot of playtesting, the Resource Card layout works really well for the game. We've tried laying out the information in a lot of different formats, and the current one works really well. When drafting the cards and physically laying them on the table, it works well to see the production values (green row) gained from each Resource, as well as the Special Events possible (blue row) which are possible. There is a ton of data on the card. Have you taken a look at the Elk Resource card labels on the campaign page? Thank you!
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Gergo Tothmihaly
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I'm OK with the layout, I see there is quite a lot of info on the cards and it probably wasn't an easy process to put everything there. I appreciate that.

My problem is with the graphical part. All illustrations look simply pasted on the same background that looks like a Photoshop cloud filter that was done in 10 seconds. The same goes for the frames, the cloud icon on a cloudy background with a yellow stroke, blue/green/red text on blue/green/red background.
I know it's subjective and I don't mean to offend anyone but imho it simply doesn't look good. Not to mention the readability issues the colors could cause.
Now that the cards' layout is final it would maybe worth to revisit their graphic design?
 
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John Coveyou
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I agree that the graphical portion of the cards could be improved drastically. The layout and information, I have no issues with! But it's aesthetics on the cards looks very amateur. I don't mean that to be mean at all, rather I am truly trying to be constructive.
 
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Bryan Sloan
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Hi guys. I've been working on the layout regarding making it cleaner. What do you think of this one? It's an Elk so you can see the difference as well. I think it is improved by making the main illustration less busy.
 
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Matthew Alcock
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The issue is that the use of CGI or any photo-realistic art destroys the immersion. You have the quintessential handspray and the simplified animal and nature shapes art done in a primitive ash/berry fingerpainting style as we know early man began representing their world with. Then the cards flip and we have modern fonts and detailed drawings more evoking 1990 than the dawn of civilization. I would have backed this game if the art was Stone Age, or at least a stylized version, across all of the tabletop components because the concept looks like a great idea.
 
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Gergo Tothmihaly
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bryansloan wrote:
Hi guys. I've been working on the layout regarding making it cleaner. What do you think of this one? It's an Elk so you can see the difference as well. I think it is improved by making the main illustration less busy.
Besides that brownish ~shadow removed I see no difference really.

If I were you I would start with the graphic design from scratch. Forget what you have now, keep only the layout, what is where on the cards. Then decide what aesthetic direction you would like to go: flat/realistic/etc.
 
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Lowell Drake
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I looked over the cards displayed on Kickstarter, and personally I like the artwork just fine. (Well, except for "Muscle Pain" - that card's artwork IS pretty bad.) I can't imagine not backing this just because of the art.
 
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Gergo Tothmihaly
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Yes, the artwork is fine; this is about the graphic design.
 
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Matthew Alcock
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Grinding to a halt at 34% of the minimum funding goal is symptomatic of a larger issue than just graphic design. It is hard enough creating an exciting game that draws people into a special world with a stack of cards, but now you have the added challange of saturation. With so many card games out already, the designer not only has to introduce unique gameplay, they must present something people have never seen before or is otherwise visually appealing. Sadly, when I look at this game it does nothing for me. The cave paintings got me excited, but that's not what you see when the game is set up. Just by looking at the table, I couldn't tell you the setting or theme of the game. Did we crash land on an island? EMP attack that crippled the West? Mad Max scenario? As it is, the game has no identity of its own that signals to gamers this is a new, unique experience. Sad, because I think it has potential if it is brought together and fully fleshed out.
 
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Atnier Rodriguez
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Boscotopia wrote:
Grinding to a halt at 34% of the minimum funding goal is symptomatic of a larger issue than just graphic design. It is hard enough creating an exciting game that draws people into a special world with a stack of cards, but now you have the added challange of saturation. With so many card games out already, the designer not only has to introduce unique gameplay, they must present something people have never seen before or is otherwise visually appealing. Sadly, when I look at this game it does nothing for me. The cave paintings got me excited, but that's not what you see when the game is set up. Just by looking at the table, I couldn't tell you the setting or theme of the game. Did we crash land on an island? EMP attack that crippled the West? Mad Max scenario? As it is, the game has no identity of its own that signals to gamers this is a new, unique experience. Sad, because I think it has potential if it is brought together and fully fleshed out.


I counter that.

I can easily see that this is about a prehistoric tribe trying to survive the many obstacles and hazards a brutal world would throw at them.

But the game is not Robinson Crusoe level of brutal, instead, it seems to be a multi-layered drafting game where you thematically try to acquire certain resources from the cards offered to you during drafting steps.

I see it like a traditional RPG or maybe even Red Dead Redemption, where you hunt down a wolf, skin it, take its pelt and fangs to town, and try to craft something out of it. Then, maybe on your next hunt trip, an NPC runs toward you screaming, and now you must stop the hunt because maybe a rival tribe is stealing your resources, or there's a huge dust storm coming your way, or your wife is going into labor.

Hopefully, you can see the appeal.

Kickstarter is tough. You can do your best and be paired up with behemoths that are siphoning the excitement away, such as Unfair is doing at the moment.

This game would benefit from a crisper visual aesthetic, as right now it is fine, but would not necessarily attract a bulk of the potential gamers that would enjoyu its play based on visuals alone.

If the campaign does not fund, then this is something the creators can focus on developing further. They got the theme, they claim to get the balance, though more playtesting rarely hurts, they only got to get the visuals clamped and everything refined one step higher, and hopefully get luckier on the next round of funding.
 
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Matthew Alcock
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I used to raid dungeons, explore ancient ruins,solve mysteries of bygone civilizations with little more than a yellow legal pad and a yellow number 2 pencil. Thing is, sure all gamers can make due with less, but why pay for that? Why settle for less? I can have great rules and a great looking table. We are in a time of gaming abundance and excellence. A game, especially a card game, has to stand out and show it is a jewel to get the dollars of gamers drowning in choices. Even companies like GMT and VPG have had to step up their aesthetics to change with the times. Just like radio plays faded away with the growing presence of film and television, games that rely on their rulsets alone will die off. A visually appealing table is what a game needs to givE in order to thrive. Styles and the extent of art will vary to cover all tastes, but it will be there.
Does this game have potential? Sure, but it needs to take a note from other games out there like Apex (the updated edition), Smash Up, Imperial Settlers, Cards of Cthulhu, and even all of Fantasy Flight's card games. These games sell not just on rules, but on the experience they evoke. They created a complete, fleshed out world and invited us to play in it. That world does not quite exist yet in this game, not without a lot of pretending on my part... but why do that when I already have my yellow pad?
 
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