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Subject: Vector, Bitmap or both? rss

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Simon Whittome
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Hi all, game design noob question here. (I did search beforehand and couldn't find anything).

When designing stuff for a game (boardgame, box, cards etc) should I be choosing vectors over rasters or vice versa? I assume I'm okay with either depending on the job at hand and as long as any bitmap images are larger than their final intended size.

So, for example, I'm planning the general area of the game board in a vector program, using a dtp program for layout of cards, rules etc, but plan on using photoshop (or whatever) for any graphic-heavy/detailed bits, making sure they're large enough to avoid any pixelation when it comes time to print.

Am I on point with this or do I need to be corrected?

Thanks BBGers
 
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Paul DeStefano
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Always choose vector where possible.

Obviously, it ain't always possible.
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Simon Whittome
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What would the final output be in though? I get that vectors are great, but if you have a lot of images/artwork in there then the final output must surely be as a large cmyk raster image? What I'm asking is, supposing I ask a printers for 500 boxes of my game to be made, what file type would they expect it as?
 
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B C Z
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Vector scales.

Raster/Bitmaps don't.
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Paul DeStefano
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Psyloke wrote:
supposing I ask a printers for 500 boxes of my game to be made, what file type would they expect it as?


Depends on the place.

EPS is common.

PDF with vectors/outlines as well.
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monchi
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keep this in mind. Printers typically print to 300DPI. Most will actually want your file to be a 100% PDF to print from. Some will ask for the native files if you want them to do any work on them for you. The main reason they want you to send them PDF files at 100% is that it protects them from being accused of changing a file.

Offset printers will use CMYK as a default. If you do your artwork in RGB or sRGB there can be some issues converting. If you are printing digital you can often get away with RGB. There are actually some digital presses that print better in RGB than CMYK.

When ever I used to work with a printer and a designer I would check with the printer to find out what their file preferences were and advise the design accordingly. The 300DPI thing is important as I know of some printers that will actually ding you for extra file working if your files are too big as it takes them so long to work with the files.

The only time printers need massive files with more than 300DPI is if they are printing very large pieces. If you are blowing up an image for a bill board you need to have higher DPI, but for a board game anything over 300DPI is pointless.
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Simon Whittome
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Okay, thanks for the replies. I actually have a fair amount of experience in graphic and media design, I've just never really done anything that eventually outputs in a printed product. I knew about the RGB/CMYK thing, and finishing to pdf makes sense now that you mention it. I'll just make sure that any raster artwork I do has a large enough dpi so I can mess around with it and still have high quality output when it's time to convert everything to pdf.

Many thanks all.
 
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The neutral evil villain known as
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One more thing.
If you are going to finish in cmyk, start in cmyk. Especially if there is a lot of blue. When you convert your files to cmyk from rgb, they lose depth of color especially in the blues. The color flattens out.
It's just easier to start cmyk and tweak as you go. Otherwise you're trying to liven up the blues, while supressing the others and it's just a fight.

You can always convert back to rgb without loss. So it's win win to start in cmyk.
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