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Accessible Guide to RPG Layout
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Accessible Guide to RPG Layout


Why This Book Exists

Less than 10% of all printed material is available in an alternate format accessible to people with print disabilities. With the increasing dependence on digital tools for creating books and publishing digital formats, that simply isn't an acceptable number.

The good news is: if you're a publisher, you can be part of the solution. It's easier than you might think, and we've created this book to walk you through the process of creating clean, accessible, and gorgeous PDFs.

When your book is published, everyone will be able to enjoy it--regardless of their ability. Doesn't that sound good to you?

Accessible Guide to RPG Layout

In this guide, you’ll get an introduction to accessible layout techniques and best practices presented in a step-by-step, easy to read format. These tutorials take you through the process of preparing your manuscript for layout, the process of importing it, and creating PDFs with accessible features. We show you how to upload unwatermarked books to the leading RPG retail website, DriveThruRPG, and finish off with some additional layout and game design.

We present over a dozen tutorials and resources for you to learn everything you need to know to get started and to master some advanced techniques. From the basics of importing documents from Microsoft Word to the mind-blowing magical powers of GREP, this book offers something for every game designer and layout professional.

Topics include:

  • Styling Your Manuscript
  • Formatting DOs and DON’Ts
  • Using Markup for Formatting
  • How to Import a Manuscript to InDesign CS6
  • Importing with GREP and Markup
  • How to Apply GREP Quickly with InDesign Scripts
  • Making Magic Happen with GREP
  • A Few of My Favorite GREPs
  • Accommodating Others Is Your Best Investment
  • So What Does an Accessible PDF Look Like?
  • Layering Your PDFs Using Adobe InDesign CS6
  • Keeping the Text Flow Flowing
  • How to Bookmark and Tag a PDF 
  • Accessible PDFs with InDesign Alternatives
  • Uploading Unwatermarked PDFs to DTRPG
  • Free Resources
  • Paid Resources

We originally wrote these articles as a series of blog posts at the Accessible Games blog. As part of our mission to make games more accessible, we put together this series for designers to get an understanding of accessible layout habits and practices. This guide also provides tips for small press game designers who'd like help navigating the labyrinthine world of publishing.

Accessible Guide to RPG Layout takes you through the process of getting your book from manuscript to self-published product. If you're interested in learning more about other aspects of small press publishing, check out Game Publishing Lessons.

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Product Information
Publisher Stock #
File Size:
3.68 MB
Original electronic
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Last Updated:
December 29, 2015
This title was added to our catalog on December 29, 2015.