Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Design: Srab's BANG! Card Generator

Srab at www.bang.cz has created a BANG! Card Generator.

BANG! card generator

Users simply pick the card color type they would like to use and then input a few bits of information:

1. A title for the card (no numbers or symbols allowed)
2. A title font size
3. The card's value (playing card value that is on the bottom left of the card)
4. The card's suit
5. The card's function (you select from amongst a variety of options that include attacks, defenses, range, distance enhancement, etc.)

Then you upload a JPG file (1:1 ratio) to go with the card. If you click "OK," Srab's generator will create a BANG card customized to your settings in Adobe PDF. The card's title is in the Perdido font that matches the card game's font, your uploaded image is centered in the right place, the card's function is centered underneath, and the appropriate colored border frames the card. A card is also created to the right that immediately gives the appropriate back side (for either characters or playing cards). Sounds great, doesn't it?

Unfortunately, there are some downsides to this generator. Some are aesthetic: the resolutions are poor so they don't make the most convincing print, the colors are off so they don't match others of their kind in the real game too well, and the suits and fonts used in the bottom left are not a good match either. Perhaps more problematic is the limited functionality of the cards. If you want to create a brown-bordered card that has two functions (like Dodge), this isn't an option. Your best better is to place the rules book symbol in the center and explain it to those who you are playing with. This is still irritating. Next, there is a printing issue. The front and back of the card is placed directly next to each other when produced, so there is no easy printing solution. They also have a black border surrounding each card. So you will have to cut and paste the produced images in the right areas to make sure that you can print off the front and align it so the back prints off correctly on it too. These collective faults make me applaud Srab for his efforts, but keep me from using his card generator. I'll stick to making my own templates in InDesign, Publisher, etc. and then inputing the pictures and information so that the colors are right, the fronts and backs aligned for printers, and all card functions are available. For those less serious about making close matching cards, however, this could still be a good option.

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