December 29, 2015

Featured Project: Package Design for Guitar Hero

Guitar Hero PackingYou don’t need to be an expert on Guitar Hero to recognize that it’s been a top-selling game that is recognizable throughout the world.

GPA Global recently completed a project for the game’s packaging. The process started in our product development department, where our team came up with a creative concept process. We focused first on the structure, then tackled the material options, and finally handled the printing treatments.

Understanding the Design Structure

We wanted to come up with a design structure that was easy to open, yet secure enough for a retail environment. Structural engineering is critical in helping to optimize the sheet layout, while also creating a design that can be folded together quickly on the assembly lines to drive down costs.

Choosing Unique Materials & Processes

R&D pushed the envelope to come up with unique materials and processes. The Guitar Hero team wanted to avoid an inner-plastic tray to secure and protect the product in transit. They needed a material that was eco-friendly, but also premium, to help strengthen the perceived value of their blockbuster game.

GPA settled on a paper pulp material with a special coating that helps eliminate paper fiber that sometimes migrates onto the product during transit and packing. Since not all paper pulp materials are equal, we tested hundreds of samples. GPA developed a coating process in which we apply a coating to help eliminate any fiber transfer. The end result is a higher quality tray produced with a lower cost material.

Paper pulp CAD design is very important. In this case, we needed to design a structure that was strong enough to pass drop testing and also a structure that would remain intact when the product itself is pulled in and out. Plus, we wanted to use minimal material weight to keep the costs down.

Completing the Project

The last step of the project was determining what printing treatments could help the graphics really pop out on the shelf. GPA looked at the materials, inks, and after-press coating to achieve the customer’s desired graphic design elements. We always set high standards for QC/QA to control color variance throughout massive production runs.

Photos from the Final Project

Learn more about retail packaging.

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