Welcome to an interview for the series Game Credits Who’s Who (#GameCreditsWW). Ever read the credits page of a game you enjoy and wonder about the various positions listed? Would you like to work in the game industry someday but are not sure how some of the positions work? This Monday series will take a personal look into those positions and introduce you to real people doing those very jobs in the game industry. This week, let me introduce you to Michal Cross, a graphic designer.
Tell us a little about yourself and what you do as a graphic designer.
My name is Michal (a Polish name pronounced “Me-how”) and my primary job is the lead graphic designer at Modiphius Entertainment. I am also part of the Mechanical Muse core team (graphic and game design) and have many freelance clients including Crafty Games, Chaosium and Mindjammer Press.
How did you become a graphic designer?
Since I was young, I’ve always had an interest towards art and graphics. But due to the way the UK education system works, I had to drop my art and design subjects so that I could study physiology at university. During my degree, I got involved with UKCORD — the Rackham miniatures official UK fan group — and soon became their primary design monkey. At the same time, I was getting a reputation amongst my physiology lecturers for making nice-looking diagrams and well-presented projects. After uni, I landed jobs as a health care assistant in intensive care and then radiation protection, where (after more comments about my graphical work) I finally realised I was in the wrong career. My ‘big’ breaks came in the same year when Crafty Games needed help with the Mistborn Adventure Game and a friend mentioned that Chris [Birch] was looking for help with the design and layout for the first Achtung! Cthulhu: Three Kings… And here I am!
Share with us some of your recent projects.
There are so many, I don’t know which ones to pick! Here’s a quick rundown of some highlights:
- Conan: Adventures In An Age Undreamed Of (Modiphius; RPG; Quickstart)
- Thunderbirds: The Co-operative Board Game (Modiphius; board game; base game and expansions)
- Airfix: Battles (Modiphius; board/war game)
- Mindjammer: 2nd Edition (Mindjammer Press; RPG; product line)
- Mistborn: Adventure Game (Crafty Games; RPG; product line)
- Call of Cthulhu (Chaosium; RPG; redesign for all 7th Edition supplemental books)
- Glorantha: The Coming Storm (Chaosium; RPG; campaign book; redesign of all Glorantha supplemental books)
- Nosh (Crafty Games; card game of my own design; coming later this year)
- Mistborn: House War (Crafty Games; board game; coming later this year)
What is your greatest frustration or pet peeve as a graphic designer?
Well, that’s a toss-up between not getting completely edited and proofed documents when going into layout (meaning the designer needs to scour the document for the requested textual in layout), and not being in the loop when artwork is ordered for covers, promos, etc. (meaning that often it’s not the right size, and logos, text, design elements, etc. cannot be easily placed — the whole design needs to be fudged as a result). Both of these are not only frustrating, but they delay the final product.
How can readers learn more about you or contact you?
I’m not the most social media savvy person, but I do have a website that I’m going to be updating… slowly. www.mehow.nl