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Dwayne's pretty much gotten one of his board games past the play-testing stage and it's pretty ready to market, so now I should probably jump in and get it the copyright stuff done for him and look into places that actually print the stuff up.  I know he's already looked into established game publishers, but at the moment most of their game design is done in-house and they aren't looking to buy from independents.  Time to tweak some of my game-designer friends for info on production and marketing.   Sadly, only a few on LJ, most of the others reside on Twitter, which is okay in small doses, but I really don't want to rely on.  So, designers, pipe on up -- we're looking specifically for a company that can create quality tile games, similar to Infinite City, but if you know of other resources (card games and the like) please feel free to list them too.  These are what I've looked at thus far on my own:



So far I've looked at SLP Packaging's website, which has been less than illuminating -- serving more as a point-of-presence rather than an informational outlet.  I've dropped them a request for more information, but I assume that will take a few days at the very least.


Paragon Packaging, whose web site was a lot more helpful and inspiring (just started the quote form on there). For the most part it looked good, except their little disclaimer about Order Tolerance. While I do believe it is an industry-wide standard, and hopefully they err on the plus side more than the minus, if I, like their example, order 5000 games, I damn well better get 5000, not 4500. They claim to help start-ups so they should know a 500 unit loss is a huge blow to a little company. Other than that little bit though, I'm fairly impressed with them so far. 


Lastly, I visited MJS Creations, which, merely looking at the first page of their site, gave me the shivers.  I'm not sure I want to proceed any further.  If you've had experience with them, I would be very interested to hear what it was like.   [Zim & Dwayne, I think I know where they got that truckers game published *yeesh* *shudder*]

Ok, bit the bullet and looked a little deeper into the site, not a whole lot, but enough to glean this: 1) wow, they do a lot of religious games 2) they do have an area where you can click to see a larger graphic of the game, but they don't include really good detailed pictures of the separate components.   Some of the game listings include a short list of contents in the box, but it is not detailed, nor is it present on every listing. Not real impressed. 


Edited to add:  

Okay, wasn't ready to go to bed yet.  Now I've looked at The Game Crafter, and I'm pretty impressed by what I see there. Well, okay, they don't do tiles, yet, so there is a big drawback to our current project; but for a card game, it very well could be the way to go for a first run.  It has its limits as it is more of  a one-size-fits-all type deal, but it could possibly be made to work. 



That's all I've managed for the nonce, feedback, suggestions, experiences and opinions of the above or any other entity you may know of are very, very welcome. 


Date: 2011-09-25 02:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] symbioid.livejournal.com
The game crafter is who I use for my prototyping of the card games. THe only problem with them is that they can't do tuck boxes. They're slowly improving things. If it's just cards I'd definitely recommend them.

Their coins, however... don't use. It's not pretty. But the quality of the cards is pretty solid. Not the greatest, but for the price, I think it's very good. The colors are bright and vibrant. You can get them printed in any number (at a place like superiorpod you need to have a specific deck size. YOu may want to check them out. I want to try them, as they can also do tuckboxes and such, but I'm not sure of the card quality.)

I still have an order on TGC right now, and it's taking a lot longer than my first couple prints, which I received within days, this time, I'm like queued up and it's been 4 days now. So I dunno if they're overbooked w/work and not enough staff or the guy is sick or what. But the past two times have been very quick. Maybe they're gettinga bit too popular. Anyways, I'm not too concerned, but if I don't hear from them by next week and the queue isn't moving up I'm gonna ask why it's taking so long.

The guy behind TGC is actually holding a game design meetup here in Madison every month. I skipped the last one (mental causes + location was a pub) they have now got a sponsored meetup by a game shop, so it'll be a more proper environment for discussing/testing games. :)

I've looked into this briefly and paragon is actually one I have listed on my website as a reference to check out. They seem to be quality.

The other one I know of was used by the guy that made pandemic, and we know the quality on that was good... panda game manufacturing, and you can see some pics of the different games they've done and see that it's pretty quality. Downside in some ways is that it's in China (but it's run by 2 american dudes who oversee the process).

The only problem with game printers like that is the need for minimum orders of like 500 or whatever. I think paragon might be the same way.

I'd say something like TGC or superiorpod (I've also heard of artscow but I'm not too sure about their quality -- I believe they're in the Philippines.

So those are the options I know of. And yeah - if I were you I'd stay away from MJS... That doesn't look good.

The SLP looks decent quality, but you know more than I do at that point.

Please keep us updated in whatever you end up doing.

WHERE'S MY CARDS TGC!!! *sigh*

Date: 2011-09-25 02:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] symbioid.livejournal.com
Here's some photos I took of the cards after I received them- not the best photos but they give a general idea of what they look like...

Date: 2011-09-25 09:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] symbioid.livejournal.com
OOOOOOOH!

If it's just cards, and you want DIY, you can try this method:
http://www.boardgameinfo.com/content/316-PnP-Making-Cards

Also, if you need to make tokens, you might be able to try:
http://www.boardgameinfo.com/content/315-PnP-Arch-Punch-Tutorial

The look on those cards w/the linen really has a nice appearance.

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