Preparing Your Cards

Jeff Montgomery -

Preparing Your Cards

InDesign or Illustrator are your best file-prep options. You might also consider the free layout program, Scribus.

For a host of reasons, we suggest you do not use Microsoft Word. You also shouldn't use Photoshop on its own. (When used in tandem with InDesign, Photoshop will help yield quality results. When used alone, text oftentimes will not print as clearly as desired and it will not export PDFs to spec.)

For preparing custom-printed tuckboxes PDFs, you will only be able to use InDesign or Illustrator. 

Printing Specifications

Tutorials

Templates

Card Size/Type

Template (InDesign)

Template (PDF)

Template (Scribus)

US Poker (2.5” x 3.5”) Get this template Get this template Get this template
Euro Poker (63mm x 88mm) Get this template Get this template Get this template
US Bridge (2.25” x 3.5”) Get this template Get this template Get this template
Mini (1.625” x 2.5”) Get this template Get this template Get this template
Tarot (2.75" x 4.75") Get this template Get this template Get this template
Tile (6” x 6”) Get this template Get this template Get this template
Tile (8” x 10”) Get this template Get this template Get this template
Page (8.5” x 11”) Get this template Get this template Get this template
Small Poster (12” x 18”) Get this template Get this template Get this template

*NOTE: If your InDesign template downloads with an .xml extension, rename the file so it ends with the proper .inx extension. 

Card Ordering

The order of the pages in the PDF will be the order of the deck's printed cards. Page 1 of your PDF and the Last Page of your PDF will be cards/graphics visible, top and bottom. 

Portrait vs. Landscape

Regardless of how your cards are meant to be played, your print-ready PDF must be in portrait orientation.

If your cards are meant to be played horizontally (landscape), it may impact how your file is prepped.

If you want your cards to flip this way:

OrientationHeadtoFoot.png

... then your PDF will contain the pages/cards rotated the same way, like so:

OrientationLayoutSampleHtoF.png

[Samples courtesy of publisher Cheapass Games and "Falling: Real Time Card Game."]

 

If you want your cards to flip this way:

 ... alternate the orientation every other page, like so:

[Samples courtesy of Michael Kiely, Mass Middle Games, and "Twistocity."]

Rulebook and Print-n-Play Cards

Common Card Preparation Issues and Solutions


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