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Key Market pre-orders and availability
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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This Geeklist is intended to provide up to date information on:

1. The position of pre-orders of Key Market,

2. The general availability of Key Market.

Background. R&D Games is a hobby outlet for me, Richard Breese. It is not a full time job. My sister Juliet does the drawings. Barbara Dauenhauer does the German translation. The ‘D’ is my wife Dawn. There is no one else involved. So if the quality or responses do not match up to those of a larger company I apologise, but I try to create a quality product and timely responses as far as I am able.

On the Saturday before Essen Dawn’s father died. He had however anticipated this and insisted I went to Essen. On the Sunday at Essen, I learned that Dawn’s mother had also died. I drove back overnight and we have been working on the joint funeral (29-Oct) arrangements since then. So I have not yet had chance to reply to all of the many e-mails I have received regarding the pre-orders and general availability. I will endeavour to do this early next week.

The production of Key Market has been a very frustrating experience. The files were delivered to the German manufacturers on time in July. In the hobby generally there appears to be a shortage of wooden piece manufacturers. As a consequence the wooden pieces were ordered by LudoFact from an East European producer that they had not used before. I wrote to LudoFact several weeks ago to confirm that delivery of these pieces would be on time and received assurances that this would be the case. I even two full sets of sample copies. However a few days before the show LudoFact advised me that they had only received part of the order.

I decided to order 1,000 copies of Key Market. My modus operandi is to try to match Essen demand, plus a few postal orders with production. Sell the games and then make the next game. As this is a hobby for me I am not really interested in getting involved distribution and the financial risk associated with larger runs. LudoFact are allowed a 10% tolerance on production. Disappointingly, for the second time (Reef Encounter was the first) they have (or at least have committed to) producing the minimum number of 900 copies. As a consequence all those pre-orders beginning with a ‘9’ have not (yet) been successful.

LudoFact have been pro-active in chasing their supplier. The quality of service and product under their control has otherwise been good (although there appears to be an unusually high number of missing or duplicated pieces reported). LudoFact were able to produce sufficient copies (in the last couple of days before Essen!) to fulfil the Essen collection pre-orders up to number 900. However, as of today (28 October) the remaining wooden pieces have not yet been delivered.

Regarding missing/incorrect pieces, please mail me at richard@qbreese.fsnet.co.uk with your postal address and I will aim to send you the required pieces as soon as possible free of charge, as I have tried to do with all the previous R&D Games.

The position regarding the postal orders is that, logistically, the wooden pieces need to be received by LudoFact, the games collated and then sent to me in the UK. When the games arrive I will contact those who have pre-ordered requesting payment. I will then pack the games in the UK and post them out to the individual pre-orderers, which I will do as soon as practical. Unfortunately, as of today I am unable to put a timescale on this.

I am confident that LudoFact will eventually produce the full 900 copies as agreed. I am pushing them to try to secure additional wooden pieces so that more than 900 copies can be produced. In these circumstances I will contact those people with an order number above 900 to see if they still wish to acquire their copy. Obviously this is in the interests of the wooden piece manufacturer, LudoFact, R&D and potential customers. I do not however anticipate getting sufficient games to fulfil any further orders so I regret that I will no longer be able to accept any further orders at this time.

If anyone wishes to cancel their order or obtains a copy through other channels please let me know so I can mark my records accordingly.

As and when I have additional news I will update this list. If you found this posting helpful then a thumbs up would be appreciated so that the list becomes visible to those visiting the Key Market page.

For future reference, R&D has to date only published games in October, in time for the Essen Spiel. The games are announced initially on Board Game Geek, Board Game News and Spielbox. I have recently taken a Dream Weaver course and, when time allows, hope to get an R&D website up and running, but there again, maybe I should/will use this time to produce the next game!

For information, the following suppliers ordered copies of Key Market. Several of these retailers collected their copies at Essen. Most of the others will be waiting for their copies in the same way that those who have pre-ordered their copies are doing. So if they are unable to fulfil their own orders immediately it is not their fault.

Suppliers:

Boards and Bits (US) - sold out,
BoardgameGuru (UK) - sold out,
Funagain Games (US) - sold out,
Heron Games (UK) - sold out,
Leisure Games (UK) - sold out,
New Games Order (Japan) - Japanese trade sales only,
Play Me (Germany) - sold out,
Shire Games (UK) - sold out.
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1. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 28-Oct-10 from manufacturers LudoFact: 'Regarding the remaining wooden pieces, we do now have a confirmed delivery on the 8th of November, a bit more than a weeks time. The supplier advised that he had 'a major breakdown of his machines'.

After LudoFact get delivery, they will need to make up the games and then ship them to me in the UK. I will then contact everyone who has an outstanding pre-order within the number of games produced to confirm that they still wish to obtain the game and to request payment.
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2. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 02-Nov-10. I have now responded to all my outstanding e-mails regarding Key Market's availability. If you have not received a response it is because I have not received your e-mail. If you have any queries that are not covered by this Geek List please contact me on richard@qbreese.fsnet.co.uk (which is also my PayPal address).

I have now got details of the total cost, including postage, packing and fees, which is as follows:

UK: Game GBP 32.50, postage, GBP 5.90, packing box GBP 0.89 and PayPal fees (4.3%) GBP 1.69 = GBP 40.98.

Europe: Game GBP 32.50, postage, GBP 9.70, packing box GBP 0.89 and PayPal fees (4.3%) GBP 1.85 = GBP 44.94.

Rest of the World: Game GBP 32.50, postage, GBP 19.19, packing box GBP 0.89 and PayPal fees (4.3%) GBP 2.26 = GBP 54.84.

Clearly I shall have to start making games with fewer pieces in them! If anyone finds that the total cost is to much, just drop me a note to the above-mail address and I will cancel their order - which will make someone else happy.

Once the games arrive in the UK I will make an announcement and also mail customers directly requesting payment and the mailing address. There is no need to send funds until that point.

Thank you for your patience.

Picture left: Thursday (day one) at the R&D stand at the Essen Spiel 2010, when we still had a few games left to hand out. In white from left, Andreas Frank, Tony Ross and Richard Breese. In the front game developer Rüdiger Beyer (left) and his wife Barbara Dauenhauer (right), who does the translations for the R&D Games.
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3. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 08-Nov-10. Manufacturers LudoFact advised today that 'the wooden pieces were supposed to be delivered today, so far they have not arrived.' I wish I was surprised!

A reminder. Once the wooden pieces arrive. LudoFact will collate the remaining copies and ship to me in the UK (or direct to remaining retailers) and I will then mail worldwide from UK. LudoFact are doing what they can and know that we have not much time to meet Christmas deadlines.

I will continue to post news as I get it.

In the picture, left, stand assistant Tony Ross explains Key Market on the Friday at Essen 2010.
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4. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
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Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 10-Nov-10. LudoFact have responded today that 'The [wooden] parts did not arrive so far, we are trying to contact our supplier however our contact person in Germany is unable to reach the responsible people in Poland. For the moment we are still trying, our head of purchasing is dealing with this case himself.'

Not hugely encouraging, but I know that LudoFact are doing their best to retrieve the position. Hopefully more news to report shortly.

Picture left, aspiring games developer Richard Breese (me - left), with the master craftsman Bernd Brunnhofer (Hans im Glück - centre) and Tom Hilgert (HiG assistant and playtester for Key Market) at Essen, 21-Oct-10. I first had dealings with Bernd in 1998 when I introduced him to Keydom, which subsequently became HiG's Morgenland (Aladdin's Dragons). You can see the card game version of Aladdin's Dragons on the table. (For copies of the card game drop me an e-mail.)
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5. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 12-Nov-10. Manufacturers LudoFact today reported some progress on the delivery of the wooden pieces we are waiting for:

'...we [LudoFact] have reached the polish supplier and he told our contact person that there would be only one colour missing of the pieces, he will have them ready by next week and drive them personally to Germany and post them there on Monday. So we [LudoFact] should get the pieces within the next week, if he keeps his promise this time.'

Once LudoFact receive the pieces, they will collate and ship the remaining games. This includes the copies that are being shipped to the UK and that I am posting out from the UK.

Thanks everyone for staying the course on this. I hope and think you will find the wait worthwhile.

Today's picture left. I first met Friedemann at Essen in 1992 when he published his excellent card game Wucherer (later reissued as Landlord, which sadly lacks the quirky charm of the original) and have had the pleasure of staying in touch since. This year however he had just become a dad and managed just one very busy day at Essen. Congratulations Friedemann.
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6. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 15-Nov-10. I had requested an update today as tomorrow I will be heading off to Counter.Con, a mini Gathering at Eastbourne on the South Coast of England, for four days of post-Essen gaming. Much needed as being a stall holder you sadly don't get to play many games at Spiel.

However, sod's law, I finally got the requested update from LudoFact '[my contact] was ill today but he should be in the office tomorrow.
Unfortunately I [his colleague] got no news from our purchase department [today]. We will send you an update tomorrow.'

If I receive this update before I leave for Eastbourne I will make another posting. If not I will update next on Sunday 21st.

Picture left: Hall Game's stand was next to my R&D stand at Essen 2010 and I had the pleasure of meeting the Guard and Luna. Clearly I have been affected by the Luna's charm spell. Just wish she could work some of her magic on our Polish carpenters!
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7. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 19-Nov-10. I received an update from LudoFact as follows:

'The pieces did not arrive this week; our contact person is driving to Poland now himself to find a solution with the supplier. I will let you know of any news as soon as I have them. I am sorry that I don’t have any better news so far.'

Well, the best I can say is that they are on the case. The games are now almost two months overdue. If the issue is not resolved shortly then LudoFact will need to get another supplier involved.

Picture left: A chance to meet designer Andreas Steding at Essen 2010 and to swap games. Andreas's Hansa Teutonica was probably my favourite board game from 2009 and I am looking forward to the expansion and to his follow up.
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8. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 22-Nov-10. I received an update from LudoFact today as follows:

'Our contact person spoke to our supplier again and got the confirmation that the goods [wooden pieces] will be sent to us by Thursday and should arrive by the beginning of next week [commencing 29-Nov-10].

Fingers crossed.

Just a reminder. Once LudoFact in Germany receive the wooden pieces from Poland they will make up the outstanding games and then ship these to me in the UK (or the relevant retailers) for onward posting worldwide.

Picture left: The offending wooden pieces!
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9. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 29-Nov-10. Well, as stated in the 22-Nov-10 update, LudoFact previously advised that 'Our contact person spoke to our supplier again and got the confirmation that the goods will be sent to us by Thursday and should arrive by the beginning of next week [i.e. today!].'

Today the advice was 'As expected the wooden pieces did not arrive. We are still looking for possibilities to get the [remaining] pieces. This turns out to be more complicated as expected as hardly any wood supplier will produce such small quantities, especially before Christmas.'

No great surprise. But very frustrating. LudoFact are aware of my thoughts on this issue and I hope to have some more positive news shortly.

A short note of thanks for everyone who has stuck with us during this process. One day I am sure there will be a happy ending, i.e. a game!

Picture left: 'Preparing for another busy day at the BoardGameGeek Booth - Essen Spiel 2010 and, yes, that's Derk hiding in the corner trying to look inconspicuous! You can see my preview of the game taken at the booth by clicking the link under videos on the Key Market BGG page.'
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10. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 30-Nov-10. After a further exchange of e-mails manufacturers LudoFact today advised that:

'... we are looking for an alternative [supplier] already, [but] shortly before Christmas it is hard to find a supplier who will manufacture [the remaining] pieces. We [LudoFact] will come to a final solution soon; I will let you know as soon as I have more information.'

Slightly unfortunate wording, but hopefully more news to report on the 'final solution' shortly.

Picture left: At 6'4" I'm used to being the tall guy. But I (right) certainly had to look up to Stefan Feld, designer of Luna, whose publisher Hall Games was my neighbour (as mentioned in item 6) at Essen 2010.
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11. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 02-Dec-10. LudoFact have confirmed, not unexpectedly,

'...that it is impossible to get only [a few] pieces from any supplier. Most suppliers have a minimum order of at least 2.000 pieces [of each type]; they won't start their production for lower quantities in this busy season.

Nevertheless we are still trying to get the pieces from the Polish supplier as well.'

So a pre-Christmas delivery is looking increasingly unlikely, but still a possibility.

Picture left: So proof that David Brain is no Harry Wu! David (left) and Paul Mansfield playtesting Key Market at our favourite meeting place on the fifth floor at the Royal Festival Hall, Southbank, London. This is a relaxed meeting place with plenty of room, free internet connection, nice cafe on the ground floor, Government subsidised and you can game all day. There are also fabulous views of the Thames, not visible on this particular picture, you can just see the bottom of the outdoor balcony. Worth making a note of if you are visiting London or need a meeting place there.
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12. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
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Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 12-Dec-10. LudoFact advised last week that:

'Our contact person has met with the Polish supplier again. They have agreed that the remaining parts will be send to us by the end of this week [10-Dec].'

I hope to post an update early next week (commencing 13-Dec) after I have heard from LudoFact.

Even if this is achieved logistically I think it is no longer possible for LudoFact to make up the games, ship them to the UK and for me to distribute ahead of Christmas.

LudoFact are well aware of my views on this situation (which I won't put into print here). I have stressed that it is critical that they source the remaining pieces as soon as possible so that the games can be distributed in early January at the latest.

Thanks again for all those gamers who have stuck with R&D in this process! Hopefully we will have a happy end before too long.

Picture left: In the previous post I referred to the fabulous views of the Thames from from the fifth floor balcony at the Royal Festival Hall, South Bank, London. Part of the view showing Hungerford Bridge and the Thames is shown in the picture, taken at one of our March playtests.
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13. Board Game: Antics! [Average Rating:7.03 Overall Rank:1419]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 16-Dec-10. LudoFact advised yesterday that:

'We have got the information that the remaining [wooden] pieces have actually been sent out on the 11th via DHL, we also do have documents that confirm this. However we did not receive them yet. I will inform you as soon as they arrive here and prepare everything for a production as early as possible.'

Hopefully this will prove to be true. Watch this space!

Picture left: Setting up the stand at Essen. Gordon Lamont brings round real chocolate ants and mead to celebrate their new games Antics! Hopefully more celebrations to follow when the wooden pieces finally arrive!
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14. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 21-Dec-10.

On Friday 17th LudoFact advised that they had received 'the remaining wooden pieces [from Poland] today; however our quality control department checked the bags and realized that the amount of pieces is irregular. For example, one random picked bag contains 18 sheep, 15 fish, 16 wheat, 17 apples, etc. another bag again has a totally different amount of each motive. That is really frustrating and annoying as I thought I would have good news for a change.' But, at least we have some pieces at last. They really have arrived.

On Monday 20th my contact advised 'Just to let you know, I was helping out myself on the assembly line just to make this happen, as today was the very last day of production before the holidays. I am happy that finally we can deliver [to] you the outstanding amount and I really can understand why the game has been sold out already in advance to Essen, it is a great game!'

I'm now seeking clarification that the games are actually on there way from Germany. Once they arrive in the UK I will determine up to which order number we can fulfill and contact everyone with a successful number to check if they would still like to buy the game and to request payment.

Picture left: Celebrating at last the wooden pieces arriving in Germany! Well, actually I'm sipping the mead from Fragor at the Essen 2010 set up day, thanks Gordon (see picture on previous item).
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15. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 28-Dec-10.

On 22nd December LudoPackt (the distribution company that works alongside manufacturers LudoFact, advised that they 'will send them [the games] out [to the UK] today.'

After seeking further clarification from their freight forwarders this translates as 'they [the games] will go out to UK on 27th December - then they would be in UK at the end of week 52 and they will arrive at [my] address in week 1 between 3rd January and 7th January.

As mentioned previously, once the games arrive in the UK I will determine up to which order number we can fulfill and contact everyone with a successful number to check if they would still like to buy the game and to request payment. Not long to go at last!

Picture left: Heading across country - the original illustration of four of the linked country boards.
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16. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 05-Jan-11. Firstly, happy new year to those regular readers of this Geeklist, thanks for sticking with us. And at last some good news. The outstanding games that could not be delivered to Essen because of the shortfall in wooden pieces have finally arrived in Stratford (see picture left).

There should now be sufficient games to satisfy all order numbers up to order number 900. If you are someone who has an outstanding order numbered 1 to 900 then, if you would like to send me the correct payment (see item 2 above), preferably by PayPal I will arrange to post your copy of Key Market in the next few days. Unfortunately there are no savings for multiple copy orders which due to air mail weight restrictions will need to be sent separately. Please make sure you advise your order number and full postal address along with the payment, including the country name.

I will be away on business until 08-Jan. I will then endeavour to contact any gamers who have not sent their payment to me to see if they still require their copy. Once I have dealt with those I will contact in numerical order those people with an order number above 900 to see if they still require their copy. Anyone who has been following this story closely will know that all orders numbered above 900 were originally earmarked for collection at the Essen Spiel in October, so I think it is quite likely that some of these gamers will not take up the postal option. Once I have had a response from them, if there are any remaining games I will offer these to those gamers who are on the waiting list which I have recently started to cater for this possibility. However it may well be that there are not sufficient copies to go this far.

Thanks once again for everyone's patience in this matter.
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17. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 10-Jan-11. Thanks to all who sent money in response to the previous item. As at mid-day today I have responded to all of those e-mails and this afternoon posted all the games that had been paid for - which certainly caused a long queue behind me at the local Stratford post office!

I am away for a couple of days on business. Later in the week I will start to contact in numerical order all those with outstanding orders with a number below 900. I will allow a couple of weeks for these customers to respond and then report further on the position regarding the remaining games - if any.

Picture left: D would like to reclaim her living room ASAP!
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18. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 18-Jan-11. As mentioned in the previous post, all pre-orderers up to 900 have been contacted and already most have replied. A few have already acquired copies and a couple are no longer taking up their option.

So, next I will be contacting people with order numbers 900 to 1,000. I am not expecting a large take up of these as all these copies were originally for collection at Essen, and customers will not have factored postal costs into their purchasing decision or may have obtained copies from retailers. However I feel obliged to contact these gamers ahead of those on the waiting list with numbers above 1,000.

I am optimistic however there will be sufficient copies to meet current orders. I am also able to accept names to be added to the waiting/reserve list to allow for the possibility there will be sufficient copies to allocate accrodingly. If you want to be included please mail me at richard@qbreese.fsnet.co.uk Numbers are allocated in time/date order. If there are sufficient copies I will deal with these in strict numerical order.

Picture left: Detail from the Key Market seasons board - Winter turns into Spring. It feels a little like that today. The sun was shining in Stratford upon Avon today and there was a clear blue sky as I headed back from the post office with my trolly and empty packing boxes!
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19. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 29-Jan-11. Now we come to the happy ending of this list.

As of today I have dealt with all of the original pre-orders and have e-mailed everyone on the reserve list.

A large number of the gamers whose copies had been delayed due to the problems with the wooden pieces have confirmed that they had managed to secure copies from retailers. In addition the manufacturers LudoFact managed to produce a few extra copies from the wooden pieces eventually supplied.

I am therefore in the happy position to have been able to offer copies to everyone on the reserved copy list.

If you have a reservation number (pre-order or reserve list) and have not received or responded to an e-mail from me then please e-mail me on richard@qbreese.fsnet.co.uk to advise if you still require your copy. If I have not had a reply by 14 February I shall assume that any one with an outstanding order no longer requires their copy.

As a reminder (see item 2 above), if you still wish to purchase your copy the total cost per game, including postage, packing and fees, is as follows:

UK: Game GBP 32.50, postage, GBP 5.90, packing box GBP 0.89 and PayPal fees (4.3%) GBP 1.69 = GBP 40.98.
Europe: Game GBP 32.50, postage, GBP 9.70, packing box GBP 0.89 and PayPal fees (4.3%) GBP 1.85 = GBP 44.94.
Rest of the World: Game GBP 32.50, postage, GBP 19.19, packing box GBP 0.89 and PayPal fees (4.3%) GBP 2.26 = GBP 54.84.

The correct amount should be sent by PayPal to richard@qbreese.fsnet.co.uk and make sure you advise your order number and full postal address along with the payment, including the country name.

I anticipate a small number of unallocated copies which I will release on a first come fist served basis. Again please contact me on richard@qbreese.fsnet.co.uk if you would like one of these copies.

Picture left: The last hurdles - now overcome!

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20. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 07-Mar-11. All pre-orders are now dealt with. I have approximately 20 copies left. Currently selling at the rate of about 1 a day. No advertising - apart from this (and other) Geeklists. Mainly word of mouth. So if you are interested in a copy just drop me an e-mail at richard@qbreese.fsnet.co.uk and I will allocate you a copy and reservation number

Ordering details still as previous post (#19). However please be aware that parcels to the US are currently taking 5 to 6 weeks to arrive which I understand is due to a recent American government embargo on parcels being carried on passenger aircraft destined for the US. The rest of the world, apart from China which has a similar delay period, is a lot quicker, just a few days! To date I am not aware of any games that have not finally arrived.

Picture left (Posted by user Wes Sedlacek): The fun you can have playing a game of Key Market!
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21. Board Game: Key Market [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:895]
Richard Breese
United Kingdom
Stratford-upon-Avon
Warwickshire
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Update 23-Mar-11: SOLD OUT.

All of the copies of Key Market are now reserved and/or sold.

I have assumed that any unclaimed orders with an number of 1087 or below (placed a fortnight ago on 08-Mar-11) are no longer required and I have reallocated these copies.

There are currently no plans for a second edition. If the position changes I will add a post to the end of this list.

Thank you to everyone else who has expressed an interest in acquiring a copy of Key Market. I am sorry to have to disappoint you at the present time.

Picture: Key Party! Thanks Ted, now there's an idea!
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