Greg's Design Blog

A collection of posts by game designer Gregory Carslaw, including mirrors of all of his blogs maintained for particular projects. A complete index of posts can be found here: https://boardgamegeek.com/blogpost/58777/index
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Stretch Goals

Greg
United Kingdom
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I'm getting more into setting up the kickstarter and am thinking about goals. It's looking like we could charge $40 for each game (including delivery to EU or US) with a goal of $14,000 which seems pretty reasonable. The economies of scale in producing larger numbers are also pretty good; if we doubled our goal then the cost to produce each unit drops by about 50%. So I've been turning my mind to stretch goals lately, so that in the event we overfund I'm ready to turn those extra savings into more awesome loot right away.



I've sent off to various people (manufacturer, shipper, artists) to find out what some options for improving will cost. I haven't heard back yet, but I thought I'd float these ideas here to gauge interest and to see if there are any extra suggestions for things that I can check out in advance.

Player Aids

This is the one that I most want to add. At the moment players stick their three actions down in a row in front of them. It'd be nice for each player to have an aid that they could place the cards on top of in a 1/2/3 position. I could also stick some handy rules reminders of it, since I've got collected numbers on how often each rule is looked up by first time players.

More art!

At the moment identical events have identical art, for instance all four of the meteors look the same. I'd love to have unique art for each card, just to add a bit of extra visual variety to the game.



Anomolies

I've written about these before and done some playtesting with them. Essentially they're random events that happen alongside the existing events and change play in some way. So for one turn it might be possible to pick up lots of items at once but not to drop them, or collisions might become impossible, or machines might automatically activate themselves. In testing some players liked them and others didn't, I couldn't refine the experience enough to make it a perfect part of the core game, but it'd work great as an optional expansion. Since the cards are already designed and refined through testing it's a relatively easy thing to add and players who didn't like them could simply not include them.

Chips

The game uses six core chips and works very well with them, but I've tested a wider variety than that. These are fairly easy to design, test and include, each one is just an extra card so until I end up over the limit on cards per sheet they're next to free to add. I'm contemplating adding the extra chips as rewards for likes on facebook and stuff like that.



Looking at that, there's also room for more art on the chips. Originally they had a picture of the model on the back, but we didn't have one to hand so there's a crop of the box art there at the moment. It'd be sweet if they could all have their own art too.

Flippy Map

Early on I had a few attempts at creating a modular board for this game, but they produced a pile of problems that hurt the game. A fixed layout has helped with arranging some things on the board, but it would be nice to have a bit of variety. I've run a few playtests with an alternate layout that works as well as the first (better in some ways, worse in others) so we could throw some money at artists and graphic designers to get a second board and print it on the back of the first one. That'd be nice to do.

Unique Models

As things stand the game will come with six robot models in different colours. These models are pretty damn cool, but it'd be nice to give each player their own unique figure. With the cost of 3DModelling this could get expensive quickly, but that cost would be divided by the number of backers so it might be economical as a later stretch goal.



Kickstarter Exclusive?

This is a tough one for me. My inclination is generally towards generosity, if I can afford to have extras added to every box in the print run my instinct is to do that and let everyone who ever gets their hands on the game get all of the things. On the other hand people who back on kickstarter are taking a risk that people who come in later aren't so it'd be good to reward that support with something awesome. On a practical level some folks won't back a kickstarter without exclusives, while others get annoyed when they see ones that have loads of exclusives. One option is to produce kickstarter exclusive art while keeping gameplay components general, but I've heard about people running into trouble with backers liking the original more. The whole thing is further complicated by the practicalities of production, because of minimum orders I might end up with loads of copies I have to throw into the sea.

What do you think?

What are the best stretch goals here? What should be added that's missing? How would you deal with the KS exclusives issue?
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Subscribe sub options Thu Jul 25, 2013 10:44 am
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