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Subject: How to calculate optimal Kickstarter run? rss

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Hi, I was thinking about how I should calculate the optimal Kickstarter run:

- should I first talk to the factory who will produce the game, and see at how many copies will I get a good enough price, and arrange my Kickstarter to that?

- should I try to calculate an approximate of how many copies I can sell of my game, based on Facebook/Twitter/etc fans, and forum replies etc?

- or use both?

Thanks for the replies in advance!
 
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Jason Washburn
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your printer will quote you for so many units like 1000 units. Then base it off the lost level of printing. if you get more backers then the lowest given quote you should be fine as the unit cost goes down if you order more and your quote should include that.

Wingo will quote 1000 and 3000 (quote will include shipping to a US port)
Quality playing cards and games will quote 500, 1000, and 2000 no shipping cost included
Panda will quote 1000, 2000 and also give you the cost of shipping to a US port

these are examples and standards in the industry. head over to stonemier games he has a blog that is worth reading.

/cheers
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Thanks for the information. I am already reading stonemeier's blog, but it's so big, that it will take some time to read it all! Nonetheless, I promised myself, I won't even consider starting a Kickstarter, before reading everything on his Kickstarter howtos
 
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Kārlis Jēriņš
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ekr3peeK wrote:
I promised myself, I won't even consider starting a Kickstarter, before reading everything on his Kickstarter howtos


Isn't promising this to yourself already considering starting a Kickstarter?
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Michael Iachini
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Jason's advice is good - talk to the manufacturers you're considering and get quotes.

Once you have that, figure out how much money you'll need in order to make the minimum acceptable quality version of your game a reality. That's your Kickstarter goal (which you can lower even more if you're willing to invest more out of pocket).

Make sure you account for EVERYTHING money-wise, and build in a cushion, just in case.

For instance, let's say you have the following numbers:
- Manufacturing for 1,000 units: $5,000 ($5 apiece)
- Shipping / customs to get those units to you: $800
- Art: $1,000

At that point, you know you're going to need at least $6,800 to cover these fixed costs. However, you'll also have the variable cost of shipping each backer his or her reward, plus the Kickstarter / Amazon fees (which you should estimate at 10%).

Let's say that you'll have a single pledge level of $25 that will get a game shipped to a backer in the country, and that shipping will cost you $6 per game. Let's also assume that you charge international backers the appropriate extra amount so that you're pocketing the same amount of money after shipping.

Each pledge is $25, which will net you $16.50 (losing $2.50 for Kickstarter/Amazon fees and $6 for shipping).

If you do the math, you'll see that you need 412 backers to pledge $25 apiece in order for you to net the $6,800 that you'll need in order to produce the game (6800 / 16.5 = 412). That works out to a funding goal of $10,303, which you will probably be comfortable rounding down to $10,000.

Now, if you fund exactly (and I'm simplifying here, assuming that you only have a single pledge level, no add-ons, etc.) you'll cover your costs of producing 1,000 copies of your game and shipping 412 of them to your backers. This will leave you with 588 copies in inventory, which you can then try to sell via your web site or traditional hobby game distribution or whatever.

If this is a $25 MSRP game and it does well, then you can expect to sell to distribution for $10 per copy (40% of MSRP). This means that if you sell all of the rest of your games, you'll end up with a profit of $5,880 (before taxes and before shipping costs to your distributor). And if you're able to sell some of those copies directly at conventions or on your own web site or whatever, then that's extra money for you.

This ended up being a longer response than I intended, but the bottom line is:
- Figure out ALL of your costs
- Set your funding goal at the lowest possible level that will let you make the game at its minimum acceptable quality without losing money

Michael Iachini
Clay Crucible Games
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ChaosAndAlchemy wrote:


This ended up being a longer response than I intended, but the bottom line is:
- Figure out ALL of your costs
- Set your funding goal at the lowest possible level that will let you make the game at its minimum acceptable quality without losing money


Thanks for the great advices!

TheNameWasTaken wrote:

Isn't promising this to yourself already considering starting a Kickstarter?


My head hurts just by thinking of this
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William Tanner
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Wow!

There is some great info here and is certainly worth further study. I will be checking out Stonemaier Games blog!

Thanks all!
 
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Jason Washburn
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For those of us that have run kickstarters before you really have to do your homework so you do not screw yourself and the backer. If you have more funds you will be able to do more. Just remember customs is an ugly thing that can really jack you up if you do not account for it accordingly.

When you get the quote ask for them to include the shipping to a US port like San Diego or the East coast if you live near there. For me it is a huge headache out of the way. The prince of the unit has the customs from china and the shipping from china figured in. This is nice as then I only have to worry about picking up the shipment.

Different ports have different procedures as long as they fall under the government guidelines. Also it depends on the amount of shipping traffic as well. But I live in Arizona so driving to San Diego and getting my shipment in person and driving it home is a big saving and then I have a local shipping company that I work with.

this is the kind of foresight you have to have when you are the little guy publishing a game. Some projects make money and then the creators did not think of the customs fee or did not check if you need to have a UPC on an item to get it into certain countries, or what the customs process is for all the different counties in Europe. Some of them are different. also to, there are shipping and printing options where your product will ship from within Europe. I think Panda is doing this. I also know that Wingo will ship from their facility to your customers within Europe and this will save you at both ends as you are not paying to ship them to the US first cutting down on the weight you ship to the US. Just be smart about what you are doing and ask for help if you dont know. There are plenty of folks around that have done this before you and can help you out if they have the time.

good luck!

Jason Washburn
Talon Strikes Studios
 
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