Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Node Card Creator - Sheetify JS - Automating Print Sheet Creation

The NodeJS Card Creator is finally coming together as a tool I can use to streamline the development process.  If you haven't read the first blog post, I encourage you to go check out how I built the Card Creator and how you can set up your environment to do the same in my post: Card Creator - Automating Card Creation in NodeJS  You can also view the entire project here, at my GitHub account:

The next big piece -- a simple, but important piece of the automation process -- was finished just the other day: Sheetify.JS.  This Sheetify script takes all of the cards that are created in the cards folder and groups them into groups of 9, which fit onto a standard 8.5" x 11" sheet of paper.  It then draws the cards to these sheets and outputs them to a sheets folder to be ready for printing.  Having this change it allows me to rapidly prototype by changing values, running 2 scripts and then printing the desired print sheets.  There is of course, the cutting out of the cards, so perhaps I can build some kind of cutting stencil, but in the mean time this has vastly improved the prototype speed.

Here is an example of the output sheet:

In addition to Sheetify the other thing I updated in the script was the ability to specify card images for the artwork section.  I made a few shitty drawings in Paint.NET to test it, but it works very well.

Here is an example of a Fire Spell with the image added to the card:

And that's pretty much it!  The sheet automation has been super helpful, so the next step is finding an artist to work with me on the project and playtest, playtest, playtest to hammer down the mechanics!

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