Deck of Many Things
Project Completion Time : 1 Month | Completion Date: February 28th 2015

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It was just after Christmas, in class we were doing coding, something rather pedantic and uncreative, to break the monotony I resolved to do something artistic. I was in the process of finishing a long Dungeons and Dragons campaign, and was reflecting on the notable experiences. One of which was the Deck of Many Things. It's infamous in role-playing circles. It consists of 22 cards, each of which has a different effect upon being drawn. I decided that this would be an interesting project, since there's no proprietary representation to date. However, as always I required a twist, I decided to challenge myself I'd try a limited color palette, adopting the mantra 'less is more' and sporting simple but powerful imagery over more detailed but less striking images.

As usual, I started every card with a rough sketch of what I wanted the thing to look like, some went through many revisions while others simply worked right away. I knew I wanted the deck to have a pseudo modern look, and sought to achieve this by using vectors, I broke the images down into pieces and inked them, afterwards, I scanned the sheet and used InDesign's live trace to smooth out the artwork.I reconstructed the images in InDesign, tweaking colors as needed. I also chose an appropriate pattern and a texture overlay to make the artwork look less plain.

sketch concept

vectorizing sketches

combination of images in indesign

One of the challenges with the project was simplicity. I knew at the outset I wanted a trichromatic scheme. However, I wanted the moon to be special, in game, it grants wishes, so the show it's unique properties, I gave it a ‘spot color' of white. The void card, causes effective player death, so I opted to knock out the color red and give it a simple black design to make the card look more sinister.

The 'Moon' Card featuring white

the 'Void' Card, deprived of a color

I am pretty pleased with how this came out, the design feels professional clean and effective. It was pretty easy to actually put together after I figured out what image would be, the hardest part would be nailing down the imagery for some of the more abstract concepts. But after that hurdle the project kind of just fell together nicely.

This was the exact Deck of Many Things that was used in Critical Role's Battle Royal
This item has been reviewed on an independent blog Drop the Die

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