Monday, December 12, 2016

Introducing Multideck

Multideck is an application for creating print-and-play card decks for table and card game prototypes.  Multideck requires Apple Macintosh and macOS 10.9 (Mavericks) or later.

We are pleased to announce that Multideck is now available for purchase from the Mac App Store! Please visit the Semicolon LLC web site for more information, 
and for a link to Multideck in the App Store.

How does it work?

You define your card deck by entering text in your favorite spreadsheet. One card per line, and each column represents the content of one "item" of a card: its title, or its victory points, or its icon, or its background image, or its flavor text, and so on.

Separately, you use Multideck's WYSIWYG layout editor to specify where each item goes on the card. You can place each item wherever you want it, and set details such as its width and height, font and font size, background color, and so on. One deck can have several different layouts if necessary. Multideck saves your deck and its layouts in a Multideck document.

When you're ready, Multideck reads your spreadsheet (actually, a CSV file that you export from your spreadsheet) and creates printable card images by filling in the items in your layout with the content from the spreadsheet.

You can choose the card size freely. The only restriction is that all cards in a deck must be the same size. (But if you need different sizes, you can do it by creating a separate Multideck document for each different size.)

You can also choose your paper size. When you print your cards, Multideck will fit as many as possible onto each sheet of paper. For example, it can fit 9 poker-size cards onto each sheet of US Letter-size (8.5x11) paper.

There are more details, and some sample output, below.

Sample Output

Multideck was used heavily during the development and testing of Villages of Valeria from Daily Magic Games. Here is a sample page of output from that game, showing 9 poker-sized cards on a US Letter-sized (8.5x11") sheet. (Note: the artwork in these images is Copyright 2016 by Daily Magic Games, and is used with permission.)

Here's one card from that page:

It is very close to, but not identical to, the final card artwork that will appear in the published game. The final art was not created by Multideck.

This card shows a number of cool features: 
  • The use of a special font
  • The placement of text and smaller images on top of a full-sized background image
  • Translucent colored backgrounds behind text items (white, in this case)
  • Rich text items which allow embedded images to be treated as if they were letters in the text.
And you can do much more with Multideck than you can see here. Get Multideck from the Mac App Store and get started!