Crafting Lexicube’s Brand & Visual Design System

Zack Davenport
Jan 6, 2019 · 4 min read
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Lexicube is an addictive three-dimensional word puzzle game that can make anyone feel like a wordsmith superhero. Players form words by spinning the Lexicube to find letter blocks. The longer the word, the larger the payoff and whoever has the most points at the end of three rounds wins.

Lexicube is currently available for free on Android.

A quick look at Lexicube’s gameplay
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I teamed up with Lexicube creator, Doug Kinnison, to craft the game’s visual design system and brand identity. Inspired by mid-century design, I combined the leisure and sophistication of the 1950’s with the energy and excitement of the modern era.

Here’s a closer look at the process.

Step 1: Research

We began the process by defining key personality traits that we wanted the Lexicube brand to embody. We determined that we wanted the game to be as energetic as Guy Smiley, as classy and edgy as Kid Gorgeous, and make you feel like a superhero, just like The Incredibles.

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I began gathering imagery that I believed visually represented these defined traits.

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I turned to mid-century design for inspiration as it’s minimal classic features embody the characteristics we were seeking. However, as this was a three- dimensional game of the 21st Century, I also took cues from modern techniques like forced perspective illustration and bright, bold coloring.

My findings eventually led to the final moodboard (below) which was a point of reference moving forward.

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Through the process I began to make connections between Lexicube and mid-century entertainment. Not unlike television in the 1950’s, Lexicube is a fun escape for those wanting a meditative break from their day-to-day. I decided to reference title cards of early entertainment through the mid-century when developing the Lexicube wordmark.

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Step 2: Exploration

Here’s a look at the first three directions pitched inspired by treatments of mid-century television titles.

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Step 3: Refinement

We decided to pursue the stacked second direction as it felt most cube-like. My only issue with this direction was that the form felt too static so I attempted to add more suggested motion into the logo.

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I also began finalizing the letterforms and corner radii. I referenced the underlying grid used for the Braun logo, which felt appropriate as it was designed in 1952.

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While refining on the wordmark, I was also applying learnings from the brand direction to the visual design of the game itself. I refined typography and color usage, and Referencing the 2.5D style of the wordmark, I incorporated forced perspective into the iconography, letter cubes, tiles and button styling.

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Step 4: Finalizing the system

Now that the foundation was in place, it was time to add some fun back into the game. An early version of Lexicube already had the functionality of color themes, allowing users to “reskin” their version of the app.

To tie the brand and visual design together, I thought it’d be fun to create a series of color themes based on the colorful interior design of the mid-century.

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Want to play? Lexicube is currently available for free on Android and will launch soon on iOS.

I love doing this type of work in my free time. If you have a game or other brand experience that needs a designer’s eye, get in touch.

View this project and many others on my website, mrdavenport.co.

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