Black boxes blech!

Who came up with the idea of using black boxes full of white text as the universal character-sheet format? I just took a look at the new 4th Edition Dungeons and Dragons character sheet, and there they are again! It’s like these people have never heard of chartjunk, or, more significantly, inkjet printers that bleed.

The designer at least had the good sense to use nice thick fonts in the reversed-out sections, but its still a huge inkblot, and the layout of the key data is an assault on the senses. I’m also surprised that someone would go to the trouble of using Adobe InDesign to lay this out, and then not bother keeping the text grid consistent between columns.

There are sure to be third-party character sheets, some better, most worse, but if Wizards actually delivers their promised official online tools, and they don’t completely suck, almost everyone will use them, which means their official character sheet will dominate. Pity.