The Phylo project is open for anyone (or any group) interested in making their own cards, their own expansion packs or their own playable decks. To facilitate with this process, this section of the website will aim to present resources and documents that provide detailed information and templates towards this goal. Roughly speaking, this “MAKE” page will be divided into 4 main sections: (1) Making Single Cards, (2) Making DIY Decks, (3) Making High Quality (HQ) Decks, and (4) a small section highlighting some prototype DIY decks.

Note that these materials are specifically related to Phylo games that adopt the ECOSYSTEM BUILDING mechanic. Materials for the HAND BUILDING mechanic game will be highlighted on this page at a later date (we’re working on it!).


In general, making cards relies on either using good old paper crafts, and or access to a number of different card generator options. However, in all cases, it’s good to know what type of information needs to exist on each card, whether they are SPECIES cards, or EVENT cards. Please see below for various resources that will help you “make” a card.

Phylo Card Worksheet (pdf – 288K)
Print/draw your own blank online format cards (pdf)
Print/draw your own blank HQ format cards (pdf)
Card back sheet (for 6 cards) (pdf)
Web based Card creator – code by Guillaume Ardaud (link | github)
Web based Card creator – code by Derik Kauffman (link)
Magic Set Editor Plugin (MSE download link | Phylo plugin zip | Link to 100 card set)

Making a deck takes a little more effort, especially if you want the deck to be “playable” as a stand alone game. Here, we have some documents that will give you some guidance on things to think about when contemplating a deck. As well, if you’re an educator, we can provide you with DIY card access on the website. This basically gives you and your students special privileges and gains you access to areas of the site where card generation, organization, and storage is much easier. This has been designed to work well with a classroom of students, ages 7 and up. If you’re interested in this option, we’re currently offering a limited number of beta accounts – you can get more information on this below.

READ ME FIRST document – includes Phylo Card Worksheet and blank card template (pdf – 500K)
Phylo Card Worksheet (pdf – 288K)
DIY accounts READ ME – instructions on how to use teacher DIY accounts (pdf – 1.6Mb)

These resources are for those who wish to take their DIY decks to the next level, whereby cards can be provided for professional printing and distributed in a high quality format. This includes options for general public purchasing and usually involves commissioning of high quality art. We strongly recommend compensating artists at an agreed upon and reasonable rate. In our view, obtaining art via competition formats or pro bono requests (except in special circumstances) will breach graphic design code of ethics (link) – in essence, artists should be treated as professionals, and as such should be compensated appropriately for their work.

Note depending on distribution options, smaller hosts may want to rely on real time game publishing options which whilst print decks at a higher overhead cost, provide purchasing options with little administrative oversight. Meanwhile, larger host organizations may prefer to rely on conventional printing options, which are cheaper (per deck), but usually require large orders and independent distribution methods (i.e. you have your own gift shop, online shop, or plan to just give away as swag, etc). Please be aware that options for real time publishing are usually geographically limiting, meaning that taxation nuances (if revenue is being collected) can be complicated (i.e. if you’re based in Canada and are using a US printing service, non-resident revenue claims can be high maintenance).

Finally, the project appreciates having a version of your deck freely accessible online (it doesn’t have to be in the HQ format), as outlined in our licenses section. This way, the project can continue to grow!

Game Crafter – US based online real time game publishing service (link | example)
HQ card template – keynote file (set to 825 x 1125) “Export to image (jpeg high)”HQcardPhyloTemplate
HQ card template – powerpoint file “Save as image” (will need to re-adjust to 825 x 1125)HQcardPhyloTemplate
Single card back png (825 x 1125 pixels) – cardback.png
Phylo Art Commission Contract Template – notes in red (doc | docx | pdf)

British Wildlife and Bee Biodiversity (Friends of the Earth – June 2012)
Card production of things seen at the UHill Elemenary Young Naturalist Club (on going – org link)
U-Hill Division 16 Penguins Deck (March 2012)
U-Hill Division 8 Deck (March 2012)
Manoah Steves Division 9 Richmond Dyke Deck (June 2011)
U Hill Division 12 and 14 Vancouver Aquarium Decks! (June 2011)
Manoah Steves Division 6 and 6 Burns Bog Deck! (June 2011)