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District Noir by Pandasaurus Games Coming Soon

Pandasaurus has announced a new 2 player set collection game District Noir is coming this summer. Preorders will start on May 19th with retail release planned for July 19th. District Noir was originally published in Japanese by Taikikennai Games in 2016 as Throne and Grail. It was then published in 2019 as Chocolate Factory by Nasza Księgarnia in Polish. The current art and theme was published last year in French by Spiral Éditions. When the time is right, gain control! At the head of the city’s largest criminal organizations, men and women fight to control territories and gain support by trying every means possible to grow their influence. Control of the District Noir, a central and highly contested area, remains the major issue that will make all the difference in dominating the city. There are two paths to victory: win over District Noir's various supports, or directly control the city’s three strategic locations. Before players can claim these, they must be played to the center

How to Re-size Digital Comics in ComicRack for use with Tablets

For those of you who don't know ComicRack is a utility to not only organize your physical copies but also any comics you have in .CBR, .CBZ, .PDF, .CB7, DjVu, .CBT, and a few others.

"ComicRack is the best eComic reader and manager for Windows computers. It is an all-in-one solution to read and manage your eComic library. It is actively maintained, has a strong user base and is FREE."

One feature that I found to be very helpful when transferring your comics from your PC to a Tablet is the custom Export. Basically it allows you to re-size or compress the files based on the criteria you set and can even change the format based on what your device supports. You might ask yourself why would I want to re-size or compress the comics on when my device says it supports 1920x1280 resolution wouldn't I be getting distortion? The answer is No.

Let me explain. First your Tablet is not actually using 1980 resolution when you have it in portrait mode, it's actually only 1280. If you have ever downloaded a wallpaper for it you will notice to fill all 5 screens when you swipe back and forth you need a 1920x1280 wallpaper, so that's 1920 pixels wide by 1280 pixels high. Most HD digital comic files are way over this resolution so for a Tablet it's going to be excess and in some cases it can cause your device to freeze, and will have to reset the unit frequently to clear out the cached memory (I know after 5-8 full size 50Mb issues I occasionally had to reboot mine).

The main problem I had with most of the files I had were either their size 10Mb-50Mb .CBR or .CBZ files, or the fact that my Nook Color's native support is for .CBZ. So I wanted to find a way that would reduce the file size while still providing a clean readable comic with minimal distortion even when zooming. So when I discovered the advanced features of the Export Books I was ecstatic. I could re-size my comics to prevent caching issues and fit more of them on the device before having to upload again. On top of that I could format them to .CBZ at the same time.

When I eventually upgraded to the Nook HD+ with a larger resolution, I found that the settings I had been using for my Nook Color looked just as great. I did double check several resolutions starting with the 1980px and going down to my favored resolution of 1440px. I noticed little difference between the two, both allowed me to zoom in and read smaller word bubbles (or double pages on the HD). The only real difference is the larger 1980px required me to reboot my Nook due to freezing.

How to do it

Step 1: Download and install ComicRack from http://comicrack.cyolito.com/

Step 2: Open ComicRack and navigate to the directory you have your comics stored. (There is also your Library, but since I really don't use it I can't explain it's functionality, I believe Export Books is available there as well)

Step 3: Right Click any comic and go to Export Books > Export Books or (Ctrl+Shift+E)

This will bring up the Export Books option screen

Step 4: This is where we change our settings. (I will show you my settings which I have received feedback look great on everything from the Nook Color & HD to an iPad.)
  1. Select a Folder (I use Same folder as original Book, but you can Select a Folder or, if you use the Library feature use the Same Folder and replace in Library) 
  2. Overwrite Existing File (this is optional, I use this to save space on my PC)
  3. Delete original Book after successful Export (again optional, files are sent to your Recycle Bin)
    • Note: When testing different export settings you should use a different folder, and disable Overwrite and Delete
  4. File Format .CBZ (it is the Nook's native format, use your preferred or supported format)
  5. Compression - Strong
  6. Page Format - JPEG (Quality is default 77, but if you notice compression artifacts change to 85)
  7. Re-size Pages - Set Height - 1440px (I have found this to be an optimal setting)

Step 5: Save your Export Profile
Step 6: Select each of the books you need to export, hold Ctrl to select individual issues, hold Shift to select multiple issues in a row or use Ctrl+A to select all of the Books in the folder.
Step 7: Right click on any comic and go to Export Books and choose your saved profile.
Step 8: Sit back and wait.

That's all there is to it. You can experiment and try the settings that work best for you. I have found using my settings most books are reduced to a 5Mb-8Mb comic. Occasionally you will get larger due to page count or complexity of the images inside the .CBR or .CBZ. Another option is when you are selecting your folder for exporting, if your Tablet mounts as a disk drive you can choose that folder instead.

If you have any questions, or suggestions leave me a comment below, and let me know what your settings are and if this helps you. Happy Reading.


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