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North American Card size - details

Discuss card making and cards you have made.

North American Card size - details

Postby Kurgan » Saturday July 13th, 2019 8:31pm

So I finally just thought "measure the dang card" and it turns out it's 55mm wide x 87mm tall. It's a paper card without a really glossy finish. Comparing them to a plastic coated poker playing card they are a lot more dull or matte finish but with a tiny bit of shine.

The front of the cards are yellowed a bit (possibly with age, they're "off white" if nothing else), and the drawings on the front side are in brown ink. And of course it has rounded corners (a "corner chomper" doesn't provide as small or narrow corners as these, they are very slight rounds). The backs are of course in color with the various suites (fire spells, water spells, air spells, earth spells, chaos spells, treasure, artifacts, monsters, no "equipment" in the US edition).

So if you're looking to make your custom cards like "the real thing" that's it. Any other variations? I see the UK cards are small, have brown borders (with the "tattered scroll" look, and most cards
have a different pattern to them for this "ratty edge" effect) and the cardbacks have a white border, and they're smaller (not sure how much smaller... maybe the size of those "cut out" cards on the ROTWL and KK artifact cards at the end of the Quest books?). The Monster cards are brown and white while the UK ones have a reddish color to the "fur." The Japanese cards have black and white drawings (black ink instead of brown) and the Monster cardbacks have a violet/purple fur and a big black border (that is off center). The NA cardbacks tend to be a more "realistic" style that looks like a painting, vs. the more "comic book" illustration style used by the other regional versions. But all use illustrations on the front that remind me of "Lone Wolf" sketches (if anybody remembers that series).

My custom cards vary from this to different degrees, but where possible I'm going to try my next batch to be a closer match to the "real thing," not to try to fool anybody, but so they match better with my current set during actual play.


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Re: North American Card size - details

Postby Kurgan » Monday November 16th, 2020 8:30pm

I got a second Hero Quest NA Game System and the card fronts were pretty white. Many of the reproduction images people are using are various shades of yellow/browned which is fine. Suit to taste! When US game (or US Board Game) size cards are sleeves next to the originals, they blend right in, just being a mm shorter, but equal on the sides.

Some cards are printed slightly off center (a have a few where the drawing/text on the front is off to the side and you can see the bleed edge of the next card copied on the edge of the front). It happens just like other types of cards. The "shiny finish" may have been a bit more in a brand new set and worn off but it's definitely not as glossy or waxy as a new set of bicycle poker cards. More like an old set of bridge cards from the late 80's. ;)

All official NA Artifact cards I've ever seen, the painting image of the book is nice and bright red, the wood behind it is a vibrant brown and and the yellow/golds pop. The various scanned/pics out there on the web tend to be much more drab and brown for comparison (but still look pretty good).
Last edited by Kurgan on Tuesday November 17th, 2020 6:04pm, edited 2 times in total.


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Re: North American Card size - details

Postby bigmiked43 » Tuesday November 17th, 2020 5:53pm

I bought a used set of HQ cards and they lost a little luster but I like them better that way.
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Re: North American Card size - details

Postby Kurgan » Tuesday November 17th, 2020 6:05pm

yeah, the "aged" look is fine by me. there's something about having a fresh, crisp set in good quality, but I like my yellowed undead figures and yellowed card faces give it character.


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Re: North American Card size - details

Postby iKarith » Monday April 5th, 2021 8:45am

So far as I can tell, the North American cards get classified as "Standard US Board Game Size". I don't know if any custom cards printed will precisely match the originals—I've been operating under the assumption that what I need to do is pick a printer (BGM seems reasonable), pick a size, and get every card in the game made up in that size. Bridge cards are ever-so-slightly wider than HQ cards I'm told (I don't have a bridge deck handy to compare), and even if the dimensions were right, corners might not be.

*sigh*

I understand that US Poker sized cards feel wrong in the hand for HQ, and the card art feels strange when resized to fit … but there's a good advantage to doing it in that it's really easy to box poker sized cards as most CCGs/LCGs use this size. Those that don't (Yu-Gi-Oh and a couple of others) are pretty close to the size of HQ cards (a couple mm difference), but … those are usually tossed into bigger deck boxes made for MTG anyway.

I've been trawling through this forum to see if someone had discovered some company to produce "perfect size" cards for a good price or a project file ready to go to get all the cards printed in a better size … It doesn't seem that's been done by anybody.
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Re: North American Card size - details

Postby Kurgan » Monday April 5th, 2021 6:10pm

Yeah MPC (and BGM) has US Game Deck Card size ("custom" just means the graphics on both sides are whatever you want) which is just 1 mm shorter (on top) than the NA HQ classic cards. If you shuffle them from the side, they work fine and if you put them in sleeves it's hard to tell unless you look closely. Supposedly you can ask for a quote for a custom size, no idea how much more it would cost for that 1 mm.

Poker cards are wider. Several people on here like the Bridge size, and whatever you're doing they just end up re-printing the standard deck along with their customs. To think I printed my first set as Trump cards (way too big and tend to curl unless clamped together by those metal clips they sell). I just took my US game size cards and mixed them in with my classics and use them all together.

The thing about the standard HQ cards is they don't spend a ton of time in your hands. Shuffling is minimal (and gentle) for a good portion of the cards. Most of the time they just sit on the table and get turned over occasionally as they are used. So the level of aesthetic is up to you. I gave my customs a nice smooth finish even though they were going into sleeves right away and they are smoother than the classic originals. I am not going to be doing card tricks with them either so the linen and other fancier options seemed superfluous. Depending upon what type of card you use, you will want to scale up or down the graphics so they don't get too blurry (on bigger cards) or too hard to make out on smaller cards. Blurry text was a problem (not a big deal, you can still read it which is all that matters for gameplay, but still) for me the first time so I ended up re-doing the text of nearly every card using paint.net (no expensive photoshop for me!).


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Re: North American Card size - details

Postby iKarith » Monday April 5th, 2021 7:54pm

I think using Poker or Bridge size makes the most sense for printing cards. Poker is going to give the best results for sleeves and boxes, which are a good idea. I think drathe converted the base cards ages ago, but I'm not certain about the others. If the base cards and official expansions have already been done—especially if based on a card art tutorial here on the forums the art's been vectorized, I think I might want to put these in BGM's preferred format and upload them as a ready to go thing, add your custom cards here…

I'd be tempted to make Hero cards as well. We already have monster cards with effectively the same format as it is, and those are used for mercs, be they ours or servants of Morcar, so having them might encourage other hero cards to be made while you're ordering a set.

Adobe CS users … is an Inkscape svg a good/precise import format for you? Inkscape is user-friendly, but choosy about who its friends are. We're on speaking terms if we pass each other in the hallway, but Adobe and I don't run in the same circles. ;)
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Re: North American Card size - details

Postby Kurgan » Monday April 5th, 2021 10:54pm

Part of me thinks I would just use classic cards with the Remake set (if I don't just give it away to family/friends as I may do), but making customs in the "remake" style is tempting too.


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Re: North American Card size - details

Postby iKarith » Wednesday April 7th, 2021 4:35am

I'm pretty much committed to ordering a whole set of cards in whatever style I go with, whatever I do. New set, old set, hybrid, whatever. Totally custom front and totally custom back, although looking at the sort of canned borders they offer, I kinda like the borderless style, sort of like what's depicted here:

https://www.boardgamesmaker.com/print/c ... cards.html

I think the classic artwork might scale to fit the wider cards this way, and it'd result in larger text as well. Larger text is always a good idea where I'm sitting.

Still, one need not use one of their canned styles in any way. This is what any of us printing a HQ deck in poker size would use:

https://www.boardgamesmaker.com/print/c ... -size.html

The base game cards (64 was it?) print for $17. Add $3 or so per sheet of 18 cards. Basically for that price, if you think you might want a card, add it! And as it offends me that someone is selling the Inn's card sets on eBay in two separate (non-overlapping) decks at $90 apiece, it kinda makes me want to do as much as I can to make sure you can order both sets for less than the cost of one of these scalped on eBay.

I mean, it'd be different if they paid $25 to print and sold for $30. I'm a capitalist at heart*, so if I took the time to scour the Internet (let's face it most of it's here at the Inn in one place or another), put them in the format for BGM, placed a small quantity order, and had to invest in advance to be able to sell them with no lead time … I might expect a coffee's compensation, even per deck sold. And I certainly wouldn't object to anyone else doing so, fully crediting their sources of course.

Our eBay card seller isn't giving credit, and he's asking a lot more than a coffee in markup. I'm for capitalism, not for greed and the theft of moral rights! So my inclination is to screw with his business model a bit. :D

822x1122 png files they want? Okay!

* Actually, I'd say I'm a Distributist, but I can count on one hand the number of people I know who aren't part of my direct family circle who know what that means. Nutshell: There aren't nearly enough capitalists, which leads to too few owning too much. But that's a topic for an entirely different board. :D
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Re: North American Card size - details

Postby Anderas » Wednesday April 7th, 2021 6:10am

I was diving into this topic when I made my card maker, which I now use all the time when updating my card set.

My original cards have two themes, vanilla/Brown and black/white. The brown could come from age though, likewise the vanilla from nicotine... :mummy:

You need high quality images for reprinting. Don't know if it suits you but I made an attempt:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1jcnAuA ... p=drivesdk

Not all of them were luckily enhanced, though.

I have also put all the texts into a Google sheet, for easier generation of my placards. The texts are slightly recorded though.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/ ... p=drivesdk
Last edited by Anderas on Wednesday April 7th, 2021 6:43am, edited 1 time in total.


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