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Card Count

If you’re trying to print a cost effective game then card count should be your biggest concern. Offset printing uses large parent sheets, as seen below. The more parent sheets you need for your project the higher your cost. A parent sheet can only hold a certain amount of cards, based on your card style/dimensions and the size of the parent sheet determined by your card stock.

Cut down on cost by creating a game that only requires the number of cards that can fit on one parent sheet. Of course, you shouldn’t lower your card count if it sacrifices playability. Below you’ll find the list of magic numbers to help you choose the optimal card count for your game.

Common and Uncommon Card Backs

In some cases your card backs can increase price significantly, although this is an uncommon method, games that require each card back to have a different image affect price. Cards that have different backs are called unique or uncommon backs. Cards that use the same back image, like traditional poker cards, are referred to as common backs.

This doesn’t affect price until your card count starts to rise over 110 cards. For example, a sheet of 55 poker cards that have common and unique backs will need 2 printing plates (the front and back). A 110-card count job with unique backs need 4 sets of plates (2 for the front and 2 for the back) while common backs will only need 3 plates (2 for the front and 1 for the back). Every time you add more cards to your unique back deck you need another parent sheet and another plate.

Optimal card count per parent sheet based on your card dimensions and stock choice:

280 gsm Blue Core

  • Poker fits 55 cards/sheet
  • Tarot fits 30 cards/sheet
  • Square fits 66 cards/sheet
  • Mini fits 96 cards/sheet

350 gsm Coreless

  • Poker fits 66 cards/sheet
  • Tarot fits 40 cards/sheet
  • Square fits 88 cards/sheet
  • Mini fits 128 cards/sheet

330 gsm Black Core

  • Poker fits 56 cards/sheet
  • Tarot fits 35 cards/sheet
  • Square fits 72 cards/sheet
  • Mini fits 108 cards/sheet


300 gsm Foil Stock

  • Poker fits 66 cards/sheet
  • Tarot fits 40 cards/sheet
  • Square fits 88 cards/sheet
  • Mini fits 128 cards/sheet

Clear Plastic PVC

  • Poker fits 66 cards/sheet
  • Tarot fits 40 cards/sheet
  • Square fits 88 cards/sheet
  • Mini fits 128 cards/sheet
Parent Sheet of Poker Cards
This is an example of 55 poker cards printed on a 300 gsm Blue Core parent sheet