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Subject: [QUESTION] Designing a game and a question on materials? rss

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John Sozio
United States
New York
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I am interested in designing a game that I thought up. What I'd be looking to do is to capture that old school feel from the late 70s, early 80s when games came with a simple rulebook, a hex map and the small cardboard chits. Think games like Death Maze, Citadel of Blood, Dragonslayer, etc...

What I'd like to do is throw out a few questions and perhaps get some answers from any of you who may be more experienced in this than I.

1. What is the easiest method to develop ones own chits for a game?

A) Is there a software program that you use on a PC to draw or design the individual chits?

B) Is there any pre-designed blank cardboard/cardstock pages? I'm thinking something like Avery business cards where the pages are perforated so all you do is place the blank business card page into your ink jet and then print 6 or 10 at a time and just gently separate them by hand without the need of scizzors, or a razor, etc... ?

C) If I were looking to make chits on that somewhat thick cardboard like the games mentioned above, would I need some special kind of printer, or can some standard ink jet printers print onto that heavy cardboard or cardstock?

2. What program is best to develop a game manual or such? In the past I've used MS-Word and had no problems, but I'd like to know what those of you who have done this before feel is the easiest and best program to get commercial type manual designs?

3. Lamination. I've looked into getting a laminating machine to laminate the hex battle maps that I plan to design. What I found that I would need so far is the following.

A) Wide printing printer. The HP Officejet 7000 wide-printing inkjet seems like a good and affordable printer. It can print 13x19" paper and cardstock.

B) A laminating machine to laminate the 13x19 prints. The problem is that the only laminating machines I find are for 8.5x11 or 13x19. I'm thinking that is no good because if the laminator can do a max of 13x19, and the paper itself is 13x19, then the laminator won't be able to laminate that 13x19 paper. Does anyone have and suggestions here?

Well, I guess thats enough. I hope that some of you won't mind answering these questions. I've been designing games and such for years now although I haven't actually released anything. It seems to me that I develop something and then refine it, test it, refine it again, get some new ideas, add them, then refine it, repeat repeat repeat!!!!! LOL Of course then there is the whole new idea that creeps into my head and I abandon what I was working on to begin this new concept. Finally, I think I'm close to finishing this one design and getting it ready for testing so I thought I better start asking these questions now.

Thanks in advance for any help/advice/assistance with my questions.

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David Etherton
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I'm a big fan of full sheet labels -- print the design, stick it onto some chipboard, and use a rotary cutter to chop it up. You can also buy blank counter sheets from boardsandbits, and you can even have die-cut printed counter sheets done at when your design is further along.

For software -- inkscape and gimp are popular free alternatives, but the pros use adobe illustrator and indesign and photoshop. Plenty of people also get good results from microsoft word and even excel.

As far as lamination goes -- you can either crop the printed stuff a bit first before laminating, or just fit in all in as best you can and then trim after laminating. In my experience you don't need plastic "past" the edge of the paper, it will stick just fine and looks better IMO particularly if you take a corner rounder to it.

Read some of the pinned threads at the top of the Game Design forum for more details.

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