SUMMER PREVIEWS #20: Can you judge a book by its cover?


As we roll into my third year at the helm of Legendary Games, we take a look back at things that are working well and things that are opportunities to improve. This includes writing, artwork, administrative tasks, and everything we do, but one area of focus recently has been rethinking our cover style, front and back. Legendary Games has established a fairly consistent and distinctive cover style, and it’s been working well so far, but that doesn’t mean it can’t get better. Last week, we posted up the preview for our upcoming Mythic Monsters: Aliens book, and it looked pretty good. Nice, classy layout, with a window into the artwork from Michael Jaecks featuring the awesome intellect devourer and the fabulous flumph. It invites you to look inside and see more.

But the whole illustration is really cool, and I started thinking about how best to show off a great art piece on the cover, and what that would mean for the rest of our standard cover look. What information would we keep, what would change, what would move? Thinking about the back cover, ours have usually been on the minimalist side, perhaps an artifact of our origins producing PDFs, where your back cover isn’t too relevant. As we continue to move into print products, how could we better show off what was inside on the outside? If someone were browsing through a game store or a booth table at a convention, what would best catch their eye and make them say, “Yes, THIS is the product I want to pick up!”

What you’re about to see is a proposed redesign of the Legendary Games cover style, and we’re interested in your input on a cover style like this as compared to our traditional cover design, certainly for the Mythic Plug-Ins product line and perhaps for others as well. You can send your comments by email to makeyourgamelegendary@gmail.com, in the Facebook or G+ comments section, or on the messageboards at Paizo.com. Whether you like the old style, the new, or a hybrid of both, we’re interested in your thoughts, and to show our appreciation we’ll be randomly selecting one person from everyone who posts a comment to receive a free copy of Mythic Monsters: Aliens!

Here’s the new version for the front cover.

 

Mythic Monsters - Aliens (front cover)

The current thought is to use the Mythic Monsters logo at the top uniformly across the line, with several different fonts available for the name of the monsters in the book, such as one for space/sci-fi creatures like Aliens, Mythos, or Robots, another for classically evil creatures like Undead, Demons, Devils, and another for traditional monsters like Giants, Dragons, Magical Beasts, and the like.

 

For comparison, here is the front cover in the current style:

Mythic Monsters - Aliens (cover)

 

Here is also a sample treatment for the back cover.

Mythic Monsters Aliens (back cover)

So sound off, Legendary fans. What do you think?

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