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harrison hague

void

Description
bringing a dream to life

I have enjoyed playing and making strategy card games ever since I was a child - while my mom still saves the cards I made with crayons and safety scissors, I eventually wanted to create a game that could resonate with a wider audience. VOID is now the reality of that ambition, and as a whole it is driven by three concepts: to make a game that focuses on the individual player’s approach, that is devoid of pay-walls, and one that features a distinct visual style.

First and foremost on my agenda was to create an experimental game with integrity. Too many games rely on simplistic mechanics that focus not on the player but rather on the game itself, becoming “paint by numbers” for adults; you buy the product, assemble it the way the company tells you, then play against someone else who bought the same product, resulting in limited expression or variation. VOID throws this to the wind with an entirely new play-style, featuring cards created with no specific use case and no guidance; the player must interpret and indulge in their own tendencies to create something that is entirely unique.

Secondly, as a long time competitive player of trading card games, I was always frustrated by how the market would ultimately dictate the competition; the strongest cards were always the most expensive - individual cards could easily be worth over $200 a piece, and decks would typical use multiple copies. This very quickly shifts away from a contest of skill, to a contest of wallet-measuring. With the current road-map, VOID will not suffer this same fate, and will entirely eliminate individual card prices in the way it will function.

Lastly, an aspect of current game design that frustrates me is the use of product grade art- every game on the market currently falls into one of several safe categories; overly produced digital art, anime, or cutesy/silly cartoons. VOID had a contrary vision - and with the extensive help of another artist - I directed a dark, cynical, analytical, metaphorical, and experimental world.

In terms of visual design, the part that required the most notable development was the information hierarchy. Trading card design requires a balance of two factors: immerse visuals and usability. Games of this nature are fast paced, complex, and decision-based. The player needs to be able to easily access the information they need and to be able to quickly parse it. However, the player also wants to experience the world you have created, so balancing communication with the artistic and visual styles is key.

In the end, I found this balance with a minimalist, analytical style, that spoke to the dark and cynical style of the art. A clean card design, with a strong and organized grid resonated with the game testers - separating the number-based statistics into a left-hand bar allowed for players to keep things organized when holding larger quantities of cards in their hands, as the bar would stick out even when overlapped. This then opened up a large space for the feature art to be present and enjoyed, without effecting clarity. This system was then paired with a strong sans-serif typeface that fit the visual style and was easy to read at small sizes. On a larger scale, the grid and line based layout integrated itself into the brand system of visual assets; reflected in the logo, website, rulebook, and more.

what i did
  • Game Design
  • Research and Testing
  • Brand Development
  • Art Direction
  • Photography
what i did