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How I Designed The Rubberband Racing Logo

This is a quick description on how I designed the logo for Rubberband Racing.

Rubberband Racing Logo Title

Similar to the post where I describe the process of creating the Max Did It logo, this article is going to show the iterations this logo went through.

By now, I view my first game Satellite as pretty much a test run, something to get warmed up in terms of game development. With Satellite, my main goal was finishing a game at all, which is why I didn’t put as much time into polishing and art design.

That’s why the game doesn’t really have a logo, either. With Rubberband Racing on the other hand, I want to go all the way and put much more effort into the looks of the game. This includes creating a proper logo so people will recognize the game immediatly.

First Try

At first, there were two concepts I wanted the logo to communicate.

  • On the one hand, it’s a racing game, which means it is about speed and technology.
  • On the other hand, its core element is the eponymous rubber band with which you will control the cars in the game.

Also, since the game will feature toy cars, they will have a cartoonish look and feel, which should be reflected by the logo as well.

Getting the Fonts

Since I pictured the logo as a word mark, the first thing I did was to set out and find the fonts I wanted to use.

On the one hand I was looking for a bold, rectangular font that could be used well for italics. Using fonts like that in logos associated with cars and racing is pretty common, since that kind of typeface easily illustrates the technical and dynamic side of that business.

Whiskey Bravo Victor Font

I ended up using the font “Whiskey Bravo Victor” by Dan Zadorozny, which lends itself nicely to what I wanted to do.

Jelly Belly Font

On the other hand, I wanted to use a cartoonish, bubbly font to illustrate the toy car side and the way you drive your car. The font “Jelly Belly” by Jakob Fischer came very close to what I had in mind.

With these ingredients, and Inkscape as the vector graphics software, I set out to create the first version of the logo. Note how the game was initially called “Rubberband Racer”.

Rubberband Racer Logo Draft 1

This actually was pretty much how I had pictured the logo originally, and it would probably be the one I’m using now, If I hadn’t gathered feedback on the logo. And the feedback was: It looks too childish.

The Jelly Belly font made it look too cartoonish. With a brand like this, people might expect a racing game for small kids rather than for all ages, and that wasn’t my intention.

Further Inspiration

It was pointed out to me that even actual toy car companies and brands don’t use cartoonish imagery like that. Even though they are typically very bright and colorful, they use a lot of straight and dynamic lines to appeal to boys.

Matchbox Logo

Micro Machines Logo

So I changed my approach a little bit to go further into that direction. I looked at more logos that I felt gave off a lively and colorful impression, and now, looking back, there is probably one which influence is pretty obvious.

Back To The Future Logo

Cue the “Back To The Future” theme here.

Giving Things a Direction

So an idea struck me, that I felt pushed the logo in the right direction. It still incorporated the Whiskey Bravo Victor font I had used previously. I used OpenCanvas to create a rough sketch of what I had in mind.

Rubberband Racing Logo Draft 3

This sketch already incorporates all the elements that the final logo displays. The symmetry is there and the motif of the arrow indicating direction and velocity can be seen already.

Then, I went back to Inkscape to create the vector version that would be used for the final logo.

Rubberband Racer Logo Basic Vector

I find it a little sad how many designs lose a little bit of that dynamic impression and lively feeling that many initial sketches have. It’s hard to preserve that in the final, clean version of a design. Then again, I think the clean, vectorized version of the logo fits the genre well.

I had created several different versions of this vector with small variations in each but finally settled for this one.

Final Logo

From there, it was only a small step to the final result.

The first colored version of the logo already used the orange/red color scheme, but in a slightly different way.

Rubberband Racing Logo Colored First Version

I felt that making the inner outline white made the logo harder to read. It makes the logo seem blurry, since the contrast between the outlines and the highlights of the text is not clear enough. So I switched the colors of the outlines.

I also gave the logo something of a glossy/mirror effect via gradients. Finally, I made the arrow in the logo stand out more by giving the lower portion of the tip the same color as the one above it.

Which gives us the final result I have introduced a couple of days ago.

Rubberband Racer Logo

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