Boda Games

Boda Games Tutorials: Player Mats

Player mats: how to prepare the artwork for them? A player mat is a great component for a medium to heavy board game. Normally, each player gets their own player mat, which can be used for a number of different things. Some board games use them to keep track of player statistics or their resources. Then, other board games use them as a reference sheet for the players, showing them different moves and options they have. And other board games have a different function for it altogether. Thus, it is safe to say it is a very versatile component. That can add a lot of depth to any game. They can be made from either cardboard or from punchboard, depending on what you plan to use them for.

Sounds great! But how do I make them?

No worries! We’ve gotten plenty of questions from our customers on how to best prepare the artwork. So we have prepare this guide to explain it. This tutorial shows you how to prepare the artwork for your player mats. We will use the Boda Games Template Generator to generate a custom sized player mat template and then paste your artwork into the file to get a perfect and print-ready file. Prefer to watch a video instead of reading? No problem, the video is at the bottom of this article. And can also be found on the Boda Games Manufacturing Youtube channel.

Steps to preparing your player mat artwork:

Step 1: Go to the Boda Games template generator at templates.bodagames.com.

Step 2: Choose the type of template you want to generate, in this case: Player Mat.

Step 3: Choose which metric units you want to use: inches or millimeters.

Step 4: Input the sizes of your player mat. The system accepts up to two decimal numbers.

Step 5: Remember to also input the radius for the rounded corners.

TIP: If you don’t want the corners to be rounded, just input 0 or leave the field empty.

Step 6: After you check that the measurements are correct, click “Generate Template.”

Step 7: A new tab will open, showing the newly generated PDF file. Click download and save the file to your computer.

Step 8: Using Photoshop, go the location of your file and open it.

Step 9: Select the first page of the PDF.

TIP: Make sure that the color mode is set to CMYK and the resolution to 300dpi.

Step 10: Save the file as a .psd file. Make sure that “layers” are selected. And that you assigned a color profile to the file.

Step 11: You can now start using the new document.

Step 12: Add artwork or text that matches the lines in the file. Or keep the template in a layer above as a reference. TIP: We recommend changing the layer blending mode to “multiply.”

 

Still have questions?

Send us an email, leave a comment on our Youtube channel. Or message us on our Facebook page. And we will gladly help you with any questions you may have.

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Create cut lines – Boda Games Tutorials

Cut lines: what do they do and how do you create them? Cut lines are one of these things that seem very simple at first, but they can cause a lot of delay when not done right. In order to make sure you don't lose a lot of time. Emailing back and forth with the graphics department, trying to understand what is wrong. This tutorial will explain to you how to prepare your cut lines the right way.     First of all, what are cut lines? When a cardboard component of a board game gets made. It will need to be cut to size. This applies to both complete game board, as well as tokens. Whether they are already punched out or not. In order for us, the manufacturer, to know what part is the artwork. And what part is where it needs to be cut. For that, we need the cutting lines. These cutting lines should adhere to the minimum distances required for bleed and margin. Also check our Punchboards article for more information on bleed and margin. Common problems A problem that the Boda Games graphics & artwork department encounters a lot. Is that we will be sent a .PDF that includes...

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How to curve text – Boda Games Tutorials

Curve text: what does it mean and why is it important? One of the great things about a board game, is that it is literally a blank slate. Game designers and artists take this blank slate and fill it with artwork, bringing the paper components to life. When you have a great theme and beautiful artwork, the next step is to use a font for all the text that matches with it perfectly. A lot of game designers and artists look beyond the standard font types available in programs like Adobe Illustrator to find the perfect fit for their game. Custom fonts Custom fonts can be found and purchased online, or even created by the artist himself. Using custom fonts can, however, lead to complications when preparing the files for printing. Boda Games has prepared a video tutorial showing the problem that can occur when using custom fonts. After that, we show you the solution to this problem. By curving the text before exporting the file as a .PDF file, you can avoid this problem. And ensure that your files appear the same way at our graphics department as you originally made them. Problem: font not available A common problem with preparing artwork files....

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Interview with Solarflare Games’ Dave Killingsworth

Solarflare Games is launching their latest project at the end of this month, QUESTS: Heroes of Sorcado. Dave Killingsworth, the creator and designer of the game, took some time out of his busy schedule to sit down with us. With over 10 successful projects under his belt, Dave shared with us his experiences developing games, running crowdfunding campaigns and of course some more details on Solarflare Games' exciting new project!   Hi Dave, thank you for taking the time for us! Solarflare Games has a new project coming up called QUESTS: Heroes of Sorcado. Could you briefly introduce the game and the gameplay mechanics to us? Quests is designed to incorporate the elements of a campaign story (written by a best selling fantasy and sci-fi author) combined with light Fantasy RPG, choice driven adventure elements, d20 combat, cards, and dice. The game is designed to have to read the story campaign part and every so often the story will have to encounter an adventure zone. The adventure zones are random card draws that the heroes face and resolve. These can be monsters, traps, events, side quests, and more. When you encounter a monster it indicates how many heroes can work to defeat it....

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Preparing for a quotation

It’s taken a great deal of effort and energy. But after many months of writing ideas in a notebook. Printing out pages and pages to make sample versions of your board game idea. Asking all your family and friends to playtest your game. Adjusting game mechanisms, adding new elements. Getting artwork done for all the different components. The time has finally come: your game is ready. All the effort, all the nights have paid off and you have a great looking, fun game. After the design and develop stage of your board game is over, what's next?   The production stage The next logical step is that you want your game to be printed. No more print and play versions, you want the real deal. Generally, there are two ways to proceed from here on out. You can start pitching your game to publishers. If you are successful and they like your game, they will take on the responsibility of getting it manufactured and published. But the other way is to publish it yourself, therefore becoming a publisher yourself! If you decide to go down the self-publishing path, what is the next logical step? To get a quotation for the manufacturing costs. So...

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Color mode: CMYK or Pantone?

If you’re a board game designer or publisher, you will definitely have heard one or more of these terms thrown around as you prepare all your artwork files for printing. You might even have a vague idea of what the terms stand for. But what is a color mode exactly? What is the difference between CMYK and Pantone? And when should you use which one. These are all questions we commonly get from customers. In this article, we will explain what the differences are between these color modes. When you should use which one. And what to watch out for when working with a specific color. Different board game components have different requirements for the color mode, so make sure you always check before you get started. We specify the color mode for each component in our Artwork Guidelines. So we always recommend starting from there when you start working on your files. CMYK (4C): The term CMYK is an abbreviation of the words Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key. In case these colors don’t ring a bell, you can think of them as blue, red, yellow and black respectively. CMYK is also referred to as four color printing (4C) sometimes. With CMYK...

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board game boxes

A great game deserves a great game box #1

A great game deserves a great game box. How to decide the best box for your game? It might seem that the type of box is the least of your concerns when designing a game. But that is where you are wrong! Although the game play is of course one of the most essential things, followed by the artwork, today we want to talk about choosing a box. How do you know what kind of box is right for your game? We previously discussed the many types of boxes, but today we want to delve into it further. What often happens is that designers have experiences with certain games that inspire them to create their own game. If the game that served as their inspiration came in a certain type of box, then they will likely envision their game as coming in that box as well. Other times people simply deduct the box type from a “will all the components fit” type of thinking. But here at Boda Games, we have seen the difference a box can make for a game. For you see, an undeniable part of this experience is the impression it makes on you. For example, if you...

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The multiple sides of dice

The multiple sides of dice. Dice are to this day the obvious choice when you need to generate a random number. Although over the past few years board games have developed a lot and with it a vast variety of other mechanisms to create randomized elements in games, few can beat the ease of use along with the reliability of a dice. As such, the majority of board games will have them being used in some shape or form. And they can be customized in many ways. Whether you change the amount of die faces, the colors or the size, you can make it as unique as well as exactly how you want. And let’s not forget: how much fun is it to roll a dice? The excitement of rolling and hoping for that one lucky 6 you need to win! For a component this important to many games, we of course also had to include it in our sample box. But as said before, there are many different ways to customize a dice. So instead of settling for only one type of custom dice. We designed 3 different ones! In this article, we will explain the different production methods and...

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Boda Games Temple – how to design a punchboard building

..When we started work on our previous sample box, we set a goal that the components would not only be indicative of the Boda Games quality, but also had to be great to look at and fun to put together. Thus when we were brainstorming what to do with the punchboard, we decided on a punchboard building. Our punchboard building is made to look like a traditional Chinese temple, including details such as circular windows, slanted roofs and paintings of Chinese door guards.  Prototyping When you are creating a complex punchboard such as our temple, the first thing is to sketch the overall structure. From there on, you can start thinking how the different pieces can fit together to eventually form the shape you have in mind. If you are unsure how to start, have a look at some board games (or one of our sample boxes) that you have on hand and carefully study each individual piece and how it comes together to create an overall structure. We also highly recommend first working on the shape before you get started on the artwork. That way, you can print blank versions and check whether all the pieces fit together and adjust sizing...

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History of 3 Boda Games Meeples – Part III

The final member to be introduced in our history of the 3 Boda Games meeples is Shenlong the dragon meeple. Unlike the other 2 meeples we’ve discussed, Shenlong is not in our newest version of the sample box. But he was in the previous one, so a lot of you have already seen him! Shenlong was a favorite around the office when we first made him, and has some really cool details. The inspiration came from traditional Chinese paintings, where dragons are often depicted. Then we started brainstorming, how can we do something cool and different with the design of this meeple? In the first part of the history of the 3 Boda Games meeples, we introduced you to our artist meeple. There, we also explained the wood cutting process of meeples. A long piece of wood is cut into a shape, and then the meeples are “sliced” off from the wooden stick. This is a common method for manufacturing wooden meeples and it gives great results, particularly for smaller and more traditional shaped meeples. But, actually there is another way to make wooden meeples. This time, each individual piece of wood is cut out from a flat plank of wood, one at...

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