PM:RE #42 – Production
How’s your summer been? Ours has been… stressful. You’ll know that we scheduled everything allowing for delays at various stages, for the revised edition. This was based on our experience of our previous Kickstarters, plus a bit extra, just in case. That flexibility allowed us to stay on track through spring, despite the mammoth task of producing the game in four different languages.
We arranged with our manufacturer to produce digital samples of various bits as they were ready and this seemed to be working OK but, sometime in May, it started to become difficult to get responses to our queries. We had a long, in-person, meeting with a representative from the company at UKGE, who sought to reassure us that our questions (based on what we had – and what we hadn’t – received from them) were being resolved. Then we heard nothing again. Eventually, we learned that our contact had left the company, which goes some way to explaining the communication issues. Their replacement shipped us the production sample as soon as they were appointed and we received it just 24 hours before the final deadline we’d set for signing everything off. So far, so good.
So, shipping in October remained the target. Earlier this week, we got the production samples. The printing quality is excellent, as you can see below. There are, however, one or two things we’re less happy with, that have changed from things we were shown previously, we’ll talk more about this in another update, next week. We’re currently working with our manufacturer to find a solution. Unfortunately, it means that we may now miss our October target, pushing shipping into November.
We have two dual language boxes. ENG/SPA and GER/ITA. Each box contains components for only one of those languages and this is reflected in the barcode. However, due to an oversight on our part, only the second language clearly states in words, next to the barcode, what’s in the box. If it doesn’t say anything it’s the primary language.
Missing October is very unfortunate. Not only are we very unhappy that we will not able to deliver the game to you in time, but Essen Spiel takes place in October. It’s important for us, as a company, to have product to sell at Essen. This is the biggest event of the year for direct sales as well as for brand exposure – having our flagship title available is, therefore, crucial for us. For this reason, we’re trying to ensure that we at least have some copies available there, which will likely mean flying them in. As we indicated above, we think the delay will only be a few weeks and so this might still be possible. We know this can sometimes be a source of controversy for a Kickstarter campaign and we agree that games should not normally be sold at retail or at conventions before all of the backers have received their copies. Under the circumstances though, we don’t feel like we have a choice but to do this on this occasion and we hope that you’ll understand and support us.You will, of course, still get your copy before any retailers.
We continue to learn a lot from our Kickstarter experiences and we’ll be less ambitious with regards to our translations in future but that did lead to a rewarding moment at BerlinCon. An elderly gentleman, a retired German teacher, sat down with our production copy, reading parts of the rulebook, some scenarios and the hero sheets. We felt like we were back at school. When eventually he’d read enough, he had nothing but good things to say about it!
Yes, we’re back on the road, again, and Tinsku is continuing to ‘blog about the Multamäki family’s travels. We’ll be at several more conventions in the build up to Essen and we’d love to show things off to you if you come along:
- Brussels Games Festival, 24th-26th August
- Jokos, Tarragona, 22nd-23rd September
- XIII Festival Internacional de Juegos Córdoba, on 11th-14th October
- Essen, 25th-28th October
If you follow us on social media (Twitter, Facebook) then you may have seen that we’ve borrowed an idea from some of our friends in the industry and we now have a publically visible production schedule so that you can see where we’re at and also know what we have in the pipeline. Something you may not know, is that Dwarf, which we’ll be crowdfunding on Kickstarter in February, will be the third game set in Zanziar (after Zanziar itself and Perdition’s Mouth: Abyssal Rift).
This is one of several titles that we hope to have playable demo’s of at Essen and we’d like to ask for your opinion as we prepare for the Kickstarter campaign – how much should we charge for the game? This isn’t a facetious question – how much we can charge affects how much we can spend, i.e. the component quality. We have a poll on BGG, now, that we’d really appreciate you taking the time to respond to.
Finally, we’ve heard several backers ask about the availability of Mogba’agh. We’ve always responded that we have no current plans to reprint this hero but we’re not deaf to your requests. So, we’ve created a second poll on BGG. If you answer this, you can let us know whether or not you’d be interested in backing a small Kickstarter campaign for reprinting Mogba’agh, maybe with some additional content like extra scenarios. Please note though that we anticipate this being a very small campaign – any extra content beyond simply reprinting Mogba’agh will be less than that for the Traitor Guard expansion, by way of comparison.
Thanks for your patience, hopefully the next update will bring better news.
Lee and the DDP team.