Thank you for considering U.S. Games Systems, Inc. for your deck or project. We sincerely appreciate the time you put into your proposal, and we put the same respect and care into our review of your work. You can expect a decision via email within two to four weeks after submittal. Please review the below requirements, technical information and FAQs before sending your submission to prevent any delays in response.
PROPOSAL SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS
Your proposal must include the following:
1. High resolution jpg or pdf samples of the work
— 3 or 4 Major Arcana cards
— 2 or 3 of each suit of the Minor Arcana
- ORACLE/INSPIRATION: 3 or 4 cards
- GAMES: 3 or 4 cards
2. Sample writing of instructions or booklet
3. Completed and signed Product Submission Form Agreement which should include:
- Brief description of project, including theme or concept
- Written summary of your background and relevant credentials
ARTWORK SPECS • TECHNICAL INFORMATION
- CARD SIZE—What is The Best Card Size?
TAROT: We can create any size, however the most popular tarot card dimensions are 70 millimeters x 120 millimeters. Other card sizes are acceptable, but keep in mind usability for readers
ORACLE/INSPIRATION: Oracle and inspiration cards can vary in size; however, they are typically 3˝ x 5˝ or smaller
- DECK SIZE—How Many Cards in a Deck?
• TAROT: The standard complete tarot deck has 78 cards: 22 Major Arcana and 56 Minor Arcana. Additional cards may be included, such as Quick Reference/Tarot Meanings card or Card Spread Layout card.
• ORACLE/INSPIRATION: Most oracle decks have 40 to 48 cards
- BORDER TREATMENT—How Do You Envision Your Cards?
• WITH BORDERS: Borders may be white or solid color, and must be (at least) 4 millimeters wide on all four sides—from edge of trimmed card to picture area
• BORDERLESS: Artwork must bleed (extend beyond the trimmed edges) at least 1/8˝ on all four sides. Please take into account 1/8” bleed is measured when artwork is positioned at 100% of final card size.
When considering size and dimension of your cards, keep in mind that an area must be allotted for text
- Title and Number
Option 1: Each card includes a separate space (usually at bottom) for card title, card number, or title/number combination.
Option 2: Card title and/or number are located within the same space as picture image. Please be sure enough space is allowed within art image so text is legible and not obscured by artwork.
Option 3: Combination of Options 1 and 2.
- Other Text: Oracle/Inspiration cards may include short messages on the face of the card.
Regardless of which option is chosen, the text should be “live” (an active font, not rasterized) on a separate layer from the artwork for editing and translation purposes.
- Artwork for card back must also be provided. Please note: most tarot readers prefer vertical “mirror image” for card back so card orientation is unknown when face down during a reading.
- In keeping with our Rider-Waite-Smith heritage, we recommend Minor Arcana cards be full pictorial scenes, not simply iterations of geometric shapes or suit icons. Decks following Marseilles tradition, however, will be considered for publication, as our company is committed to honoring the heritage of all tarot Stuart R. Kaplan dedicated himself to.
- Please make sure each card has the same artistic style and level of execution. If individual cards don’t follow the continuity of the rest of deck, you may be asked to re-do an image.
- Small images (such as 72 dpi) enlarged to fit the 300 dpi requirement are generally not acceptable for print and will likely be rejected.
- Cards with watermark or another artist’s copyright present anywhere within the image will be rejected for copyright violation.
SENDING THE FILES
- If file size allows, email samples, description, writing, background and completed and signed Product Submission Form Agreement to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Larger files may be sent via file sharing site such as Dropbox or WeTransfer. U.S. Games does not have an FTP site.
- Files may be burned onto a CD or DVD disc and sent to:
U.S. GAMES SYSTEMS INC.
179 Ludlow Street
Stamford CT, 06902 USA
- Can I use hand-drawn or digitally rendered card titles on my cards?
Yes, as long as the text is clear and legible and is put onto a layer that is separate from the main card image.
- Can I include extra text in addition to the card title and number on my tarot cards?
Yes, however, most tarot cards do not have extra text.
- Do I have to include an instruction booklet/guidebook? How much text do I need to provide?
Yes. Short answer is whatever your project warrants. Long answer is once your project is approved, we are happy to offer more formal recommendations
- Does U.S. Games provide custom print services for individual decks and deck/box sets? How much would it cost?
Yes, however a minimum print run is typically 3,000 complete decks. Cost per deck is determined by the individual specifications. Contact us for a quote. Please include as much detail as possible with your request.
- What else should I keep in mind as I work on my deck? - If your project is approved, final art files must be submitted as high resolution digital files(tif, psd, eps), preferably in Mac format.
—Minimum size of each card: 300 dpi when sized to 100% of the final card dimension. (Anything larger is also acceptable.)
—If you choose to include text (card titles, numbers, etc.) in the final digital art file, it must be set up on its own separate typography layer (i.e., not on the same layer as the artwork). Please include the font.
—U.S. Games will likely remove the text from the art file and reset the card InDesign, so excluding the text is preferable.