eCounters: Trading Card Gaming Evolved
eCounters: Trading Card Gaming Evolved
Nextgen digital displays & Avatars for trading card gaming.
Nextgen digital displays & Avatars for trading card gaming. Read more
What are eCounters & what is an eCounter Avatar?
eCounters are small digital LCD displays which allow you to keep stats & scores whilst playing your favourite trading card games. No more endless turning of dice to find the right values, dice being knocked over, etc. This handy little device is small enough to put on any card and has a big enough LCD display so everyone can easily see the values displayed. Additionally there’s a side light if you’re playing in a darker environment.
Right now we’re developing 2 types of eCounters, a single display (value range 00-99) and a dual display (00-99/00-99).
The eCounter Avatar is a statue onto which you can attach a single display eCounter. It is small enough to fit snugly into a standard size deck box so you can easily take it with you wherever you go.
Right now we’ve already designed the Dragon eCounter Avatar statue and we’ll be making more, but this is part of our Stretch Goal, so check our stretch goal section for more information.
So what is it exactly & what are the functions?
A great deal of effort has gone into making the eCounters as small as possible whilst still having a good size display to show stats or scores whilst still ensuring the production cost did not become too inflated.
The units consist of 2 button cell batteries, (which can easily be replaced), an internal side light, light activation button, and 4 buttons for increasing or decreasing the displayed score.
The single eCounter is extremely versatile and can be used as any kind of counter in the game, such as any type of charge counter on Artifacts, +1/+1 counters on Creatures, or as a counter on Token cards when you have multiple copies in the game.
The dual eCounter will be used most often to keep track of the power and toughness of creatures, but of course there are other situations in which they can come in handy. For example, when you have copies of Token cards coming into play every turn you can easily use the double counter to keep track of the number of copies in play with & without summoning sickness.
How does it work?
The picture above explains the functions of the eCounter. Remember that you can changes the sides of the counter if you want them to match the colour of your deck (or simply because you have a favourite colour). The sides are available in white, black, green, blue and red. A set of each of these colours is included in the Pro Rainbow set.
eCounter Avatar statues
We thought having 1 or 2 D20s wasn't as cool as having your own eCounter Avatar. Our primary objective was to make an appealing avatar statue detailed enough to look great whilst still being small enough to fit in a standard size deck box so you can easily take it with you wherever you're going to play.
The Red Dragon Avatar life statue will be a stocked item, but the Blue Dragon is exclusively available for our kickstarter backers and will not be sold after the Kickstarter campaign has ended.
These Avatar life statues are the first in many we plan to introduce and with the forum voting batch you have a voice in which ones we will develop next.
What is a forum voting badge?
Some of the reward Tiers include an item called forum voting badge. The voting badge gives you access to the section of our forum where backers can vote for future editions of our eCounter Avatar statues once the Kickstarter campaign has ended.
Stretch goal #1 - at £59.500
The eCounter console is our first stretch goal. The console stores and protects up to 6 eCounters and has a transparent lid. The size is similar to that of a standard size deck box.
For players who like maximum control the console can also be used as a display system to keep stats and scores. The image below shows how you can fit any configuration of up to 6 eCounters onto the console and use them during a match to keep track of many game elements, such as life, poison, commander damage, mana, the number of cards in all graveyards and so on. You can configure the console any way you like and use it instead of the traditional pen and paper.
We will include the console in our product portfolio as soon as we hit £59.500 and deliver the console free of charge to kickstarter backers from all tiers that include the Pro Rainbow Set.
Stretch goal #2 - at £69.500
We will open up a reward tier for a completely new eCounter Avatar statue. Keep your eyes on the Updates section where we will announce the various characters for which you can vote. Please note that the voting for this 2nd Stretch Goal will be open to everyone. Forum voting badges are valid for voting on subsequent eCounter Avatar development (after the Kickstarter campaign has finished).
Who are we?
Vincent van Diemen & Mike Horneman.
Mike has been in the video games industry since the early ‘90s and set up HD Publishing, a small independent games publishing company based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Additionally Mike has been producing games accessories in China since 2001 so he is familiar with developing product overseas.
Vincent worked in IT back in the 80s, until he decided to switch to the games industry. Since then he had his own business for seven years after which he worked for several publishing companies as a games producer. Vincent and Mike's business relationship started in 1994. Since 2000 they have been working together.
Unfortunately we haven’t won the lottery yet so we’d like to ask your help to realize this project. We’ve taken it as far as we can with the financial resources we have at our disposal and now we need your help so we can start production.
Additionally, we think Kickstarting this project is a great way to reach out to the community and fans of trading card games!
What is the current status of development?
We’ve already designed the eCounters and the eCounter Avatar Dragon statue. Additionally we’ve prototyped the IC and the dual eCounter. All we need now is your support so we can prototype the single eCounter and the eCounter Avatar statue and start production!
Risks and challenges
The biggest challenge we faced was ensuring the size of the counters stay as small as possible whilst still having a large enough LCD display to view the displayed numbers from a distance and at the same time use components which are affordable, readily available and of good quality allowing us to offer the eCounters at a competitive price to our backers.
We have not yet perfected the design as we are still not 100% happy with the viewing angle and would also like to raise the display with its enclosure to make it easier to view from sharper angles. Although we are aware of this issue and know how to adapt the product accordingly we have not yet implemented these changes. This tweaking process has been incorporated into our project plan.
The largest risks have already been overcome in that we have already prototyped the dual eCounter and programmed the IC. However, as with any manufacturing process, there can always be unforeseen challenges when we start physical production. We have allocated additional time within our current production plan to cover these.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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