All Points Broadcast APB: Customization

This article is part of an ongoing series about All Points Bulletin, the MMORPG by Realtime Worlds. For an introduction to the game, please see my original article.

One of the fun options within APB is the ability to customize yourself, your clothes and your vehicles. Not only does this give you a unique look that people can recognise from afar but the Marketplace means you can also sell your designs, clothing and vehicle designs to others, either for APB$ (The default non-pay-for cash) or RWP (Real World Points, also known as the pay-for currency).

There are many different stations within the Social District, the area where all the design takes place. Each of them serves a different purpose and all of them have different interfaces that allow for deep customizing of everything your character owns.

In order, Vehicle/Music/Marketplace/Designer/Clothing/Persona

There are six stations in total:

  • Vehicle
  • Music
  • Marketplace
  • Designer
  • Clothing
  • Persona

All of the above stations work on the same principle with the exception of the Music Design station, which will be discussed in a future article. The other stations interact with the Designer Station. Although this station can actually be accessed from within any of the stations that use it, using the solo station reduces load times greatly. The Designer is the main focus of the customization, allowing you to make symbols with the many vinyls, decals, fonts and other graphics within the game.

Vinyls are basic shapes which you can use to make more complicated shapes. Different pages have different styles. Vinyls and other graphics are unlocked along-side Threat levels, as well as contact and organization standing. Vinyls are by far the most useful items, as you can make anything even with the basic shapes.

Decals are essentially preset images provided with the game. For the most part they have very little use but they can be useful if you just need a quick and easy gun/flame/other graphic. There are some really nice graphics in here, but be prepared to see some of them on other peoples stuff too. Your customization options are limited as you can only tint decals, not change their color outright.

Fonts let you, as the name implies, write on your design with letters of varying styles. These are fairly basic but useful none the less.

Symbols are similar to decals, in that they are a preset arrangement of vinyls, however, symbols, unlike decals, are ones you have made yourself or bought from the Marketplace.

Following are some design tips and tricks which you can use to give your character some flair as they start out.

Symmetry: Symmetry looks good and draws the eye. The APB Designer makes it easy. Just lay down your first graphic, get it where you like, then hit the handy “Duplicate” button at the bottom of the menu. Now select the Axis Movement button at the top, which will look like a set of arrows either vertical or diagonal. This means you can’t move the graphic outside of that one axis, and thus making it very easy to mirror your design!

Alignment: It can be hard to align two symbols, especially when you can’t simply duplicate when you want to line up two different graphics. However, you can use duplicate to help. What you should do is, duplicate the first graphic, drag the identical graphic to where you want the different graphic to be. Now click and drag your new graphic but instead of dropping it on the canvas, keep moving and drop it on the duplicated symbol. The duplicated symbol will turn into the one already there, and will have the same color and size properties as before you changed it. This is especially useful with Fonts, as misaligned text looks weird.

Styles: Most graphic sets have multiple pages and each page is dedicated to a different style. An easy option is to stick to one style, graphics within their own set always look good together. But if you enjoy designing, don’t be afraid to experiment with other styles to see what works and what doesn’t!

Layers: Layers are an integral part of designing, as they keep from looking messy and being hard to arrange. The Layers panel is on the right hand side of the screen, and every graphic you put onto the canvas will appear there. Items at the top will appear over items at the bottom of the list, and you can drop and drag to rearrange graphics so that they are in the right order.

That’s all for now, I will be back sometime soon with further techniques, design inspiration and a brief description of the Music Station.

While I was writing this article, I created a new image for testing which goes to show how quickly you can create a simple logo:

Posted by Conot on


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