This is part 2 of my series: “The Evolution of Game Design.”
Check out part 1 - Notecards and Proxies if you missed it.
Should You Use Microsoft Word to Make Cards?
I was going to name this article "how to make a card game using Microsoft Word."
While using Microsoft Word makes your cards look better, it still isn't very efficient when you need to balance (edit) your cards.
So this is not a tutorial. And I won't go into too many details as to how I did this (here is a tutorial of someone else showing you how if you are curious).
But I do think it is interesting for new game designers to see the different ways I have used to create my own card game prototypes.
And then they want to make their cards look better. So they use a program like Microsoft Word to format and layout their cards.
Again, I don't recommend that you use Microsoft Word to make your cards, so I won't go into detail.
But I will tell you a summary of the...
Using Microsoft Office for Card Games - Pros and Cons
- Looks Nicer than the cards you created with a pen and notecards.
- You can format the cards to be standard sized playing cards (2.5 in X 3.5 in.)
- It's a well known software. Most people know how to use Microsoft Word.
- Updating the cards is still very slow and time consuming. It seemed like I had to format each individual card every time I updated it's text (or name).
- Auto creation of the cards is very difficult. I used the Mail Merge function to set up my cards. But it was hard and I ran into multiple formatting issues.
- It's a worse option than NanDeck and Adobe InDesign.
Adobe InDesign and NanDeck are fairly similar and both can save you a lot of time during the prototyping phase.
But I use NanDeck now because:
- It's what I know best
- It's free
- The developer is really awesome.
- It was created specifically for game designers like you and me.
Which method of prototyping do you currently use for your card games? Let us know in the comments below.