Welcome to the Guardians CCG Page

This is a site dedicated to the Guardians collectible card game released by FPG in the mid '90s. This was a great game featuring beautiful artwork and a complex battle system. The game is now out of print and some cards are extremely difficult to find.

Here you will find alternate rules and game mods (including solo play), homebrew cards, and links to other Guardians sites.

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Monday, November 21, 2011

Update on New Cards

Sorry that I haven't followed through on new cards yet. I injured my back a over a week ago and I'm still healing. I haven't been mobile enough to use my computer much, I've mostly been laying around taking painkillers and visiting the chiropractor. I'm feeling as little better today, and hopefully I'll recover in the next week and get some things going.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Celestial Battlefield: More Details

Here's the promotional blurb for the new set, Celestial Battlefield:

"Long have the Mid Realms suffered the effects of the titanic struggle between Guardians, Vierkun, and their armies...they have become shattered lands, where armies find it difficult to face each other, leaving conflicts unresolved. The Vierkun found a way to shift battles to the Celestial Planes, but when both opposing Vierkun attempt to shift the battle, the destination becomes uncertain, and the conditions for battle become unknown. In addition, Vierkun must often work together to defeat Avatars, powerful denizens of the Planes. This is the new stage upon which the Vierkun and their armies find themselves, and the results are often unpredictible, ensuring that only the strongest tacticians will survive..."

Celestial Battlefield is a Guardians expansion of 100 cards, including 2 new card types, Planes and Avatars, and other cards that make use of these new card types. This new expansion is fully compatible with the Revised Guardians set and all other Guardians expansions.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Name of New Set: Celestial Battlefield

I agonized for hours over what the name of this set should be called. In the end, I'm pretty satisfied with the name. It reflects the direction of the new set, which will introduce some new mechanics, similar to the way C.J.'s Event cards were a new mechanic.

I'll have the first card up soon...

Thursday, October 27, 2011

New Cards In The Works

Some of you have expressed interest in my creation of a new set. I have the artwork nearly completed for about 20 cards so far. I will still be sticking to original artists, except for a few of my personal favorites that will be used as well. This will be similar to Champion's Odyssey, in that I have artwork and need to design card text around the art.

The symbol I'm going to use for the set is Cyrillic and looks like a sun:


The first card should be posted in about a week...

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I'm Back!

The weather has taken a turn for the worse lately, it has become cold and rainy. What better time to jump back into Guardians? I'd like to thank you all for your patience...I went all out on this blog for 2 years and really needed a long break to recharge. Now I'm ready to dive back in. A few thoughts/ideas about direction:

  • I may have gone as far as I can go with C.J.'s .sig cards...I have a funny feeling that I'll never find the artwork needed to bring the rest of those outlandish cards to life. But I'll keep looking.
  • On a related note, it's time to get hi res versions of .sig cards up in Google Docs for everyone to download.
  • My previous card creation tutorial only focused on creatures - I'd like to do a couple of tutorials on Terrain, Spells, and Items.
  • A whole new card set of (hopefully) 100 cards, with set name TBD.
  • Another game variant.
  • Thoughts about Drifter's Nexus cards.

It's good to be back!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Taking an extended break

Hey everyone, just taking a nice long break for awhile. I've got a couple of side projects going on which are sucking up all my time. Give me a couple weeks, I'll try to have some new stuff up by then....

Thanks for your patience!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Scrye #8 and Other News

You may have noticed a lack of posts lately. Summer is here, and the blog always suffers for it. In addition, I've been putting some work into my Arcadia CCG blog, The Wyld Hunt, which I have neglected for 2 years.

It will probably be a few weeks before I post again. In the meantime, I wanted to share with you some cool stuff I found. On his website, Phil has an "Articles" section where he shows Guardians material that appeared in magazines. I happened to order issue #8 of the now-defunct Scrye Magazine for some other material, but was surprised to find some Guardians-related content in the magazine.

Here is the cover:

And here is a full page ad:

Finally we have a two-page article. Here is page 1:

And page 2:

One thing I really like about the article is that it spends some time explaining what a Vierkun is, probably the most information I've seen about that name up to this point.

I hope you enjoy this!

P.S. If Phil is reading this, feel free to add this to your Articles section...

Thursday, June 23, 2011

New Wider Layout

I've gone to a wider layout to expand the width of post sections. It always felt so cramped! The width is now 1024. I apologize to any of you who are still running 800x600 resolution. I'd like to go wider, maybe 1200. if anyone has objections to this, please let me know...

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Espiral - A Guardians Game Variant

This game variant has been posted over at boardgamegeek.com for some time. Since I have made a habit out of creating game variants for Guardians, I'm posting it here to draw attention to it, to keep game variants centrally located and easy to find, and because it has some cool features. It is a solitaire game created by Will (willdesigns) at boardgamegeek. Will has created several outstanding solo variants for board games such as Arkham Horror, Runebound, Descent, Dungeoneer, Heroquest, and several other games. His solo rules are well-conceived, and I use several of them for my board games. Here is his creation for Guardians, Espiral...

I like Guardians a lot, not only for the impressive artwork but also for the great and simple design of the cards, so being one of the few people that have this game in my country I decided to create this solitary game system called: "ESPIRAL". It is very easy to adapt to magic the gathering but I definitely recommend that you try Guardians first.

Please do not confuse this as a simple variant in the rules, to play "ESPIRAL" you have to forget completely about the rules and check the cards with new eyes.


- 23 Land Cards.
- 2 Stronghold Cards.
- As many creatures as you want.
- 1 Hero card (You can choose any kind of card as it will only be a graphical representation of the Hero).
- 1D10, as many D6 as you can grab.
- 1 Miniature to represent your Hero.


Our Hero has been summon to deliver an important message to the next town. To do so he will have to travel through dangerous territories, facing terrible creatures that will delay his delivery. But do not worry for balance should exist in the universe and through the aid of unthinkable allies he will meet his goal.


MAP: Shuffle the lands deck and place the cards on spiral like on the image below starting with 1 stronghold and finishing with another one.

HERO: Pick a card to represent your hero. It can be anyone really because it will only represent the image of your hero discarding the stats or other text in it. Place the card to the right of the map as in the picture above and put a dice on the bottom left corner with the number 1 on top to represent the starting level of the hero.

CREATURES: Split the creatures pile into 3 decks. The first one containing creatures up to level 4 (vitality 4), the next one with creatures from level 5 up to level 8 (vitality 8) and the final one with creatures from level 9 to 30.

Place a dice above each pile with the numbers 4 and 8 as a reminder.

Below the first pile place a dice with the number 1. On the second pile a dice with the number 2 and a dice with the number 3 on the third one. This dice will represent the number of cards you will have to draw on encounters with this type of enemies.

STARTING ALLIES: Take 2 creatures from the first deck and put them to the right of your hero. These will be the starting sidekicks that will help you through the adventure (if they survive that long).

MINIATURE: Finally place the miniature that will represent your hero on the first stronghold.

Now it is time to begin with the game.


Your Hero moves 1 landcard at a time and throws 2 dice (DICE TRIAL). If sum of the numbers in the dice is bigger than the number on the landcard the hero has an "ENCOUNTER" if not the hero can "RECRUIT" OR "HEAL".

RECRUIT: If you have passed the Dice Trial you can recruit 1 member from the FIRST DECK.

HEAL: If you decide not to recruit you can heal all your allies 1 level by leveling down your hero 1 level. You can never heal more than the original vitality of the allies. This effect can be done several times (1 healing level per hero level - 1). For example: Your hero is level 5 and you decide to heal all your creatures 4 levels leaving your hero on level 1.

Your Hero can never go back. The mission is too important.


When your hero fails on the "Dice Trial" he has to check first the size of his party. Count how many allies he have:

- up to 4: he draws 1 card from the first deck.
- up to 8 but more than 4: draws 1 card from the first deck and 1 card from the second deck.
- more than 8: draws 1 card from each deck.


STEP 1 - ENEMIES) Place the enemies in the "Battlefield Area" as shown on the image above. They attack first.

STEP 2 - ENEMY STRENGTH) Sum the vitality numbers of all the enemies and take up to 6 dice to do the attack (if the summed vitality is more than that simply ignore the rest).

STEP 3 - ENEMY ATTACK) Consider for both sides a "STRIKE" on 5 or 6 and a "FAIL" on anything else. If a creature's vitality is reduced to 1 it does a berserk attack. Use for this 50% of the original vitality of the creature rounded down to define it's strength.

STEP 4 - RESOLUTION) For each "5" or "6" the enemy scores you will have to pick one or several creatures to receive the damage. None of the creatures that have been damaged will be able to counter attack this round so be wise. Check the vitality of each of your creature and assign the damage by placing a dice on the character over the vitality number with the new number of the creature's vitality minus the attack hits.

Example: The creatures attack with 3 dice and score with 2 "5". You have 2 allies, one of them with a vitality of 2 and the other with a vitality of 4, your hero has a vitality of 1. So you have 3 possibilities:

a) If you assign all the damage to the first creature it will die immediatelly but you will be able to fight with 5 dice (4 from the second creature plus 1 of your hero).

b) If you decide to assign the damage to the second creature that will leave it alive but with a vitality of 2 and it won't be able to counter attack leaving you with 3 dice (1 from your hero and 2 from the first creature).

c) You can decide to split the damage between your 2 allies but that will leave them unable to counter attack so only the 1 dice of your hero will be used.

d) You cannot assign damage to your hero since he is still level one (If your hero is on a level higher than one, he can be assigned damage by leveling him down 1 level per damange, yet he still can counter attack).

Your tactical decision will make the difference.

You cannot assign more damage to an ally than the vitality of that ally.

STEP 5 - DEFEAT CHECK) If you are forced to assign the last damage to your hero and he dies it is the end of the GAME.

STEP 6 - COUNTER ATTACK) Once you have distributed the damage it is the time for your party to attack.

Sum the vitality of all the members that haven't been damaged during the enemy's attack and throw up to a maximum of 5 dice.

STEP 7 - RESOLUTION) As you have done with your hero and allies you can do with your enemy only that this time it will be you who will pick the targets of your attack. You can assign as many damage as scored to any number of creatures. Put a dice on each of them marking the new vitality of the creatures.

STEP 8 - VICTORY CHECK) If the creatures that attacked you have died the battle is over and your hero has level up. Simply change the dice that is showing your Hero's vitality to the next number.

If the creatures that attacked are still alive a new round of combat begins.

Each creature killed is placed under the deck it belonged for further use.


Some elements of the original game are kept to make the game more interesting, but not all so watch closely and do not cheat.

OFF-COLOR BONUS: If the hero's party or the enemy's party is matched up in combat against at least one creature (on the opposite party) whose border is the same color as the off-color patch next to the Vitality Shield, then the number in that off-color patch is added to its vitality. For example: I have 1 ally that has a black patch with a number 3 on it. The enemy has an External (dark bordered creature) in it's party. So that ally has it's vitality plus the number in the black patch. Do this on each of your creatures as well as on the enemy's party.

Remember an important rule: If your creature has an off-color bonus you might add more damage than the original vitality of the creature up to the new vitality number. But the off-color bonus will leave as soon as the battle is over, so if by then your ally has a negative vitality value consider it eliminated.

LAND BONUS: If a creature (Ally or Enemy) has a bonus depending on the land you are fighting over, add that bonus to the vitality of the creature. That bonus leaves as soon as your hero moves to the next Landcard.

VERSUS BONUS: If a creature (Ally or Enemy) has a bonus against a specific creature (example: +10 vitality vs. Undead) and the opposite party counts with that creature as a member apply that bonus to the creature with that ability. That bonus leaves as soon as the battle is over.

IMMUNITY: If a creature (Ally or Enemy) has an immunity against another creature that is in the opposite party it cannot be assigned any kind of damage until the creature it has immunity against is killed.

RANGED: If a creature has points on range attacks this creature can attack eventhough if it is assigned damage but instead of using it's vitality to do so use the ranged attack points. If it has not been assigned damage use the vitality points as normal. Remember that on the "Woods" no range attack is allowed.


I hope you like the game. As you will size you can adapt this adventure to many other card games. With magic the gathering you can include even a defense system in which you attack with as many numbers as the attack level of your creatures and the enemy defends with as many dice as his defense number. Explore the possibilities. It's good to have fun with others but if your deck is collecting dust why do we have to wait for others to be in the mood when a cool adventure is at the doorstep.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Deck Library Is Online

While we are waiting for C.J. to weigh in on his choice for River Delta, I thought I would let you know that the Deck Library project is up and running. You'll find a Guardians Link in the sidebar called Deck Library. This takes you to a folder in Google Docs where all the decks I could find will be stored in one place for reference. There are some decks up already, so check it out if you get a chance.

The format of each deck lists the deck name, creator, which card sets the deck uses cards from, a card total (which does not include Guardian & Stronghold), Guardian, Stronghold, all cards used in the deck, and a notes/strategy section where the creator explains the purpose of the deck and some of their thoughts.

I have scoured the Yahoo! Groups, old Usenet posts, C.J.'s website, magazine articles, the Guide to the Midrealms, and other sources to build up a large list...the decks posted so far are only the tip of the iceberg. I'll be adding new decks to the folder as I have time. Hopefully in the near future I'll add some Champion's Odyssey decks as well.

NOTE: If a deck was not named, I gave it a name based on the theme. If you are the owner of one of these decks and want the name changed, let me know.

Let me know if you have any suggestions or comments...

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

C.J. Burke's .sig card #111: River Delta

Like we did for the Stronghold, First Circle of Hell, I'm submitting 5 versions of the River Delta terrain for you to decide on. As before, C.J.'s vote will carry more weight since it is his set. Here are the entries:

#1 - Frere

#2 - Heyden

#3 - Jermilex

#4 - Naismith

#5 - Whelan

Place your votes in the comments section!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Creating Guardian Cards, Part Three: Icons, Text, and File Format

See part one here
See part two here

We've now completed the border and image. Let's move on to icons. Open your card and the icons.psd file (that came with Phil's templates) side-by-side. Each icon has its own layer, so make sure the proper layer is selected whenever you're going to copy something.

Use the Selection Marquee tool to draw a selection around either the red bar or green bar, depending on whether or not your creature can receive channeling.

Select Copy from the Edit menu. Select your card and then select Paste from the Edit menu. This pastes the icon into its own layer. Rename the layer so you know what it is - red bar or green bar will do nicely. Now use your Move tool to move the bar from wherever it is floating in you image, down to the little shield in the bottom right corner, just above the "CMP" lettering.

Repeat this procedure for any bribery icons...remember to select the correct layer when copying and to rename each icon layer that results from pasting into your image. Bribery icons go next to the off-color bonus box in the lower left. Here is what War Angel would look like with a beer bribery.

Since Angels don't have bribery, I remove it from card by simply deleting the layer. This is true for any icon you wish to remove - delete the layer.

On to text. Since I don't have the font style Phil calls for, I use Times New Roman. First let's create the name of the card. Select the Type tool and click in the title box under the artwork. You'll notice in my screen captures there's a little window below the layers window. This is the Character window and is useful to have open for text. To display it, go to the Window menu and select Character. Now, in the character window, make sure the font size is 8, and that the horizontal and vertical type scales are at 100% and the color is correct. Type the name of your card. In my case of course, it's War Angel.

Move to the creature size area. Click there to automatically create a new layer. Change the font size to 9 and type the size. For War Angel, a M is typed for a medium creature. You can use the Move tool to align your text within the box.

Repeat the above procedure to enter F for flyers; channeling value if your creature can channel, then enter Vitality.

Enter your card text with a font size of 6 and the horizontal and vertical scales set to 110%. Enter the creature class with a font size of 6. Finally, enter the artist by-line with a font size of 5. If you do not have a size 5 for Times New Roman, use size 6 with horizontal and vertical scales set to 85%.

If you're giving your creature a Stacking Penalty, size 9 for both Vitality and Stacking Penalty won't fit...you'll need to use size 8. Click and drag across your Vitality number to highlight it, then change the size from 9 to 8, and move it the word "Vitality". Then create a new text layer right below it for Stacking Penalty. Change the color to red by clicking the color selector in the Character Window. Finally, our last text to enter is the off-color bonus. This is also a size 9 font, but requires me to change the color since an Elemental's off-color bonus is white.

That's it! Make sure you save your file as a Photoshop file (.psd). Our original card size is 754 pixels wide by 1046 pixels tall. For web posting, go to the image menu and select image size, then re-size the card to 370 pixels wide by 510 pixels tall. Now save this version as a jpeg. You'll lose your layers but that's ok, this version is for display only. Select the jpeg quality as 10 (maximum), then save. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT - IF YOU CLOSE YOUR IMAGE, PHOTOSHOP WILL ASK IF YOU WANT TO SAVE CHANGES TO YOUR CARD...IN MY CASE, WAR ANGEL.PSD. SAY NO!!! OTHERWISE, IT WILL SAVE THE LOW RESOLUTION JPEG OVER YOUR ORIGINAL PHOTOSHOP VERSION AND YOU'LL LOSE NOT ONLY HIGH  RESOLUTION, BUT ALSO ALL YOUR LAYERS!!! Sorry to yell, but trust me, you don't want to do this. I did it once by accident and had to re-create a card again from scratch. Not fun.

So here's my finished Elemental, War Angel:

And that's all there is to creating a creature card. Not too bad, right? In our final installment, we will look at creating other cards such as Terrain, Shields, Upgrades and Downgrades, Strongholds, Magic Items, Spells, and Events.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Outrageous Prices for Necropolis Park

There was an auction on eBay that ended yesterday for 26 booster packs of Necropolis Park. The auction went for $86. Wow! I can remember buying a whole booster box for that much...now you get less than half a box for that price. Although I would have liked another McHooter's Distraction, that's too steep for me. I hope whoever won that auction gets an Exploding Tweezle.

Let's just hope the online store Troll and Toad doesn't get any boxes of Necropolis Park...their list price is $300.

Friday, April 29, 2011

C.J. Burke's .sig card #110: The Man Behind The Curtain

UPDATE:  I have a chosen an alternate version of the image with no watermark. I can't crop it without it being pixilated, so Toto is now in the picture...not sure if that's good or bad.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Creating Guardians Cards, Part Two: Border & Image in Photoshop

After we've moved past card design, we're ready to start making a card. For the purpose of this illustration, I've chosen the following Brom image, which I've named War Angel:

Since this is an Angel, it's going to have to be an Elemental, so we pull the image and the Elemental template into Photoshop side-by-side.

Use the Selection to determine which part of the image you want to move over. Sometimes, to make the image fit better, you may have to select a portion that won't be visible on the card, to maintain a proper proportion and not make the image look badly stretched.

Copy our selection, then go back to the Elemental template and Paste. You should have 2 layers now, the frame and the image.

Make sure you save your progress frequently so that you don't lose any of your hard work. Remember to use Save As and rename your file so that you don't save as Elemental and overwrite your template!

With the image layer selected, use the Move tool to position the image so that the portion you want to appear to come out of the frame is close to the edge. In this case the sword tip is positioned near the top and the wing is positioned near the right edge. Use the Free Transform tool to resize the image further, avoiding too much expansion or compression that would distort the image. Note that perspective is very important here...in this image the opposite wing appears farther in the distance. If that wing were made to "stand out" with the nearer wing behind the template frame, it wouldn't look right. The part of the image that you want to "stand out" should be closer, in perspective, than other parts of the image.

Use your Selection tool to select the part of the image that will "stand out". It's ok if you select part of the image that is not going to be covered by the template frame, since we are going to be working with a copy.

Make sure the image layer is selected, then select Copy from the Edit menu, then Layer Via Copy under the  Layer -> New menu. Now drag the image layer below the template frame layer. Your image is now under the template, while your new layer appears on top of the template frame.

Select that new layer, then select your Eraser tool and start erasing all the background around your element where it lays on top of the template frame, but do not erase the element that you want to "stand out" itself.

Zoom up in magnification and select a small Eraser brush size to make fine erasures if necessary.

  If you make a mistake, use your Undo or Step Backward to try again. You should be left with something like the image below, where my element is the wing. I erased all the whitish background over the template frame, leaving the wing "standing out".

Repeat this process for any other part of the image that needs to "stand out". In this case, I have a created another new layer and erased it so that the sword appears over the top of the template frame.

When you are finished it should look a little something like the image below. Note that we haven't altered the Elemental template frame or the original image, only copies of parts of the image. If you decide you want to start over, simply delete any new layers you added and you'll be ready to give it another try.

We've now achieved that eye-popping 3-D look that is a Guardians staple! Note that while most cards have this effect, some Spells and Magic Items don't, so it's not always necessary with those cards. Other types of cards like Terrain, Shields, and Strongholds never use this effect, so it's not appropriate for those card types.

Save your work again. In the next installment we'll add all the other stuff like text, channeling, bribery, and so on. We'll also talk about the appropriate format for sharing your card with the Guardian online community. Until next time, work on what we've covered here, and let me know if you have questions...

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Post #300: Buried Treasure Re-discovered

It's hard to believe, but this is post #300. When I started this blog I had no idea I would be taking it this far. For those of you who have been along for the ride, and those of you have recently discovered this blog, thanks for helping me to make Guardians CCG the best blog it can be with your suggestions and insights.

I'll have my second post on Creating Guardians Cards later this week. In the meantime, I made a thrilling discovery today...

Back when I started this blog, in my first post, I talked about winning an auction from Dave Gentzler for a Cheesy Con Souvenir Tweezle. I also remembered pulling an Exploding Tweezle out of box of Necropolis Park boosters. Sadly, those two cards have been missing for years, ever since I packed my cards away in the basement. They weren't with all the other cards - I had put them somewhere "safe". Which meant, apparently, safe from me being able to find them.

Today I was doing some cleanup in the shop and I moved a bookcase out from behind a pile of boxes. Imagine my surprise when I saw the bookcase had a Necropolis Park booster box on it. Now, don't get too excited - the booster box was empty. But next to the empty box was a hard plastic case for card storage. As I opened the case my hand began to shake and a wild elation shot through me. There on the top of the card pile was a Cheesy Con Souvenir Tweezle. Under that was the Exploding Tweezle!

But wait, there's more! I also found a Chaos Summoner promo card and that *blasted* Flame Cannon that I had such a hard time obtaining. Here is a picture of my re-discovered treasures:

It's a great day to be a Guardians player (and collector)!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Creating Guardians Cards, Part 1: Tools & Design

This topic comes from a suggestion by Mr. Yves-Arnaud Jouret, who wanted to make his own cards but had no idea how to go about it. I agreed that some kind of tutorial might be helpful to the Guardians community. Now, I'm no expert on Photoshop, and there may be easier or better ways to do things...but my cards seemed to have impressed a lot of you, so I must be doing something right. The methods I use I basically figured out on my own. Those with more expertise are encouraged to step in with suggestions.

Ok, on to the tutorial. You'll need a few things to get started. These are as follows:

    The card templates from Phil's site. Without these templates everything I've done would not have been possible. You can find the templates here. The templates include borders for Mortal, Elemental, External, Event, Magic Item, Spell, Shield Terrain, Standard Bearer, Stronghold Upgrade and Downgrade, and Terrain. Also included are icons for all three type of bribery, red and green channeling bars, and the command card symbol. The template shows the use of the Weidemann font, but I did not receive that with my version of Photoshop and I didn't want to pay for it, so I used the Times New Roman font instead. This required slightly different sizing methods than are listed on the template, but we'll cover those during design.

    Photoshop. There are several other paint programs, but Photoshop is the industry standard. It's a little expensive, the only Windows copy I found on eBay is $400, if you use a Mac there are a few cheaper copies.. I bought mine just for Guardians work but I use it for so many other things now, it has been worth it. There are several versions of Photoshop; I'm using version CS2. If you're using a different version you'll have to figure out the equivalent commands. I have used Photoshop Elements in the past, it's good for digital photography but not as powerful for art. I can't say whether or not it will work for this.

    Although you can use a mouse to paint, I decided to buy a Wacom graphics tablet. The precision of the tablet is crucial to making your image look good. The techniques I discuss will involve using the tablet. I bought a midrange model that cost me about $250 (with a student discount) from a school supply internet store; here is the same model at Amazon.

    Finally you'll need some artwork. Always remember that artwork belongs to the artists and is their means of income. If an artist states the artwork is not to be used without permission, it is best not to use it. I try to support the artists whenever I can; I have bought several art books or calenders from Brom, Parkinson, Maitz, Hildebrandt, etc.
      Once you've got Photoshop and graphics tablet installed, it's time to create the card. Sometimes you have the idea for a card and have to go find the artwork, like CJ's .sig cards. Sometimes you have a piece of artwork and you have to design the card around the artwork (like most of the Champion's Odyssey cards). I started with a book by Brom that had lots of great artwork, and I had to think of all the stats and text that support that art. At first I was just making cards that could destroy something. That is too easy and often makes cards overpowered. A better card design is to try to think of something that hasn't been done yet, like Zeenah, who blanked out Standard Bearers, or my Standard Bearer that negated immunities. But always keep in mind not to make cards TOO powerful. They unbalance the game and can make it less fun.

      Determining whether or not a card is too powerful depends on the context. For instance, a couple of people complained that Destroying Angel was too powerful. After reading their arguement I agreed and changed the text. A whole shield of Destroying Angels couldn't be beat. Wraith Lord, on the other hand, was changed slightly after some complaints but was still very powerful. My reason for doing this was simple: every set includes at least one creature capable of taking down a Guardian. I wanted my set to do the same, so Wraith Lord was unchanged. But Wraith Lord is really the ONLY card in the set powerful enough to defeat a Guardian, so in the context of the entire set I felt the ability was fine. I also felt a Wraith Lord should have been more powerful than a Wraith. So that's what I mean by context.

      A helpful guideline for card design was provided by Luke Peterschimdt, on Phil's site. He said the following:

      "The basic "formula" for the average card is this.... Vitality = X, Off-Color Bonus = 1/2X, one Bribery icon, no channeling, red CMP bar, no ability. So if you create a card with Vitality 12 and only give it an off color bonus of 2, it should have a good ability."

       I've run up against a time limit and I'll have to continue in the next post. I'm sorry I didn't get into the actual Photoshop design but that will be next. Until then, get your materials and designs ready to go!

      Friday, March 18, 2011

      New content coming, I promise!

      I know 3 weeks ago I said I would post more, but that was contingent upon the weather. And the weather, quite frankly, has been worse than terrible. Two weeks ago I received 5 feet of snow in less than 8 hours. I was at work and couldn't get home. I spent 2 nights with friends and another night in a hotel room. When I finally made it home, the power was on and off at random. And it was still snowing yesterday!

      Today the sun was out briefly, just long enough to melt most of the snow. The weekend forecast looks good, so I feel like my internet connection is a little more stable. This weekend I'll post a couple of things I've been working on...

      Saturday, February 26, 2011

      Extended break

      Sorry folks, just taking a much needed break for awhile. I'll have some new content next week, as long as my internet isn't knocked out by weather as it has been the past week. Stay tuned...

      Wednesday, January 19, 2011

      Larger Images of New Stronghold

      Eventually I will post hi-res versions of these images, when the set is complete...