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According to a Gen Con seminar back in 2014, bg are typically sold such that the manufacturing price ends up being 1/3 to 1/5 of that cost.
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/blogpost/33412/gen-con-2014-sem...


With KS, I seem to get the vibe that those complaining about costs (and yes, I'll acknowledge that such complaints have been both legit, as well as just plain wrong) don't seem to factor in the work involved in getting the KS running without too much issue, designing the game, and other hurdles. Gamers have always been quick to defend a game that costs $60 should've only costed $40, but you're also paying for the design process, playtesting, and not to mention that a basic thing of profit is you generally would like to make positive net amount of $$. It's typically not worth it even if you end up only breaking even.


There are many factors I'm not covering, which I won't b/c they're too many of them (plus, I'm sure others will know far more than I would), so please point them out so we know such assumptions and alternative scenarios. Examples include but not limited to games' design already done, global factors like shipping strikes, or rise in costs, etc.
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There are pinned threads on the Game design forum that goes over all pitfalls and costs, etc.

Also http://www.jamesmathe.com/hitchhikers-guide-to-game-manufact...

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/forum/915012/kickstarter/genera...
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I think there are still many people (like me) out there that still believe kickstarter shouldn't be a store but a way to kick start designers.

I know I know, its my own fault for wanting application to be the same as theory.
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Are they obliged to care? I mean since when are people reasonable in their expectations?

People are willing to pay whatever they're willing to pay. Anyone running a kickstarter is going to have to contend with perceptions about what people are willing to pay for a board game and how much wiggle room they have given what it's going to cost them to produce that game.

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Pay the price? Are you kidding with those chances? You are doing them a favor to stoop to so low and easy a distribution method that mostly is a way to parcel out a game and charge more thereby simultaneously avoiding OLGS markdown land and early negative ratings or feedback on BGG.

Ah ha ha ha. A msrp retailer's dream.

More than that you are doing the designer a favor by still taking a chance on a game with the Kickstarter label, when the average quality of the gameplay of the board games you have received from Kickstarter in the past was so horrible. On Kickstarter try picking based on a project that looks cool, and ignore the name of the person that made it. I mean nice artwork and bad gameplay happens a lot.

I just got a Kickstarter game in trade. It was horrid. I rarely like Kickstarter released games. A black mark it is. I mean if it is good perhaps you could convince someone important to publish it?

The people that do get published through non kickstarter methods, on average, seem real good at designing games. If they are a first time designer then their first published design? Yeah, it is at least usually more impressive.

I like owning odd games but it is so expensive to go scrounging around, and so sure and cheap to just wait for whatever it is to reach the top 1000 bgg rankings with a voted user rating of over 7.0.

I don't want the Kickstarter extras. I want it reviewed and vetted for gameplay strictly and rigidly by people with real money to lose, not the people you gave free review copies to that will "be nice".

And for the "this is good" and yes "this part is pretty good" play through videos that the helpful people do, well it doesn't mean as much to me. I want it in relation to the range of games you have played in the past as in pegged with a number based on a rankings list. Compare. This is better than. This is worst than. This is in my top 20 now at this time. That matters to me. The rest is pandering and "being nice" and I do not find that descriptive. What exactly does the words "this is a good game" even mean nowadays when we have so many?
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I mean . . . backers are providing free loans to help get someone's dream off the ground.

How much are they supposed to care about how much profit is made off it?

Unless you're just talking basically preorders from existing companies.

Then how much are they supposed to care all the reasons you can't beat a sale at coolstuff if it's direct from the source?

*Shrugs*

The only thing I take into account is "is this pledge worth it to me?"

If it took them twice as much energy or time as they needed to make a good profit from whatever price point is worth it to me I don't really give a crap. Take a loan out on your house if your game is that awesome.
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Because manufacturer's can sell to retailers at more than 1/3 off, and still turn a profit. It foolish to pledge to a kickstarter when you can just wait, see how the game turns out, and still buy it cheaper.
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I think (myself included) that people expect something with only an online storefront to produce cheaper merchandise. Sure there are a lot of costs other than a sales location, but still. You didn't even have to pay to build and host a website yourself, it's already done for you.

I have the same issue with electronic books being the same cost as a printed book. You...you didn't have to pay to print it, why isn't it cheaper?

I've been tempted recently but, still staying away from Kickstarter.
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Except you are not taking this into consideration. The kickstarter backer is also taking a risk which isn't present when it is already published at retailers. They are investors in your project and as investors they expect a good entry point into the product as a result of the risks they are taking. I think that is a pretty reasonable expectation. I think most project backers do expect you to get a profit margin based on the production cost, but including your design hours as a separate cost are just out of the question. When you go retail, it has to be priced competitively which limits your mark-up and that's what you have to go by. You can't expect your kickstarter backers to incur risks, pay extra profit to you over what you would get on a retail mark-up and be happy funding that project. You are getting interest free money to cover the entire cost of the project if you plan and price it right which is huge. If the project is really good, then you will make your design time back on retail sales. But a lot of the retail sales on kickstarter projects are poor because most projects are mediocre, and there is so much competition out there for board game dollars that I'm sure it's hard to crack into it and do well. Add to that the fact that retailers are overwhelmed with inventory. Not total inventory, just so many individual games. They need to move the product, and get games out of their inventory to make more room so a lot of stuff goes on sale a month after it came out in a lot of cases. Heaven forbid you get a couple lukewarm reviews and your game is going on daily sale/ clearance just about immediately.

There are backers out there willing to pay quite a bit over retail to make a project happen, but I think most want a competitive price for the product in return for taking the risk and letting you use their money interest free for probably a year or so.

So it's probably true that when you put together all the hours you put in and the profit you made on the kickstarter and see that it isn't really worth it. That's because your retail sales were no good, and the game might not have been all that great either if the retail isn't that good. At least you made some money which is more than say a lot of studio artists make trying to sell paintings on ebay or something.

Try making a small business work. It's a ton of hours and very little return at first (if any). It takes years to build a good business. If you expect board game design to be any different you really need to adjust your expectations. You are entering one of the most competitive industries out there.

Everyone wants to make their little games real, and everyone wants to be an artist and a designer or a rock star. The truth is if you can get your game published and break even that's pretty darn good. If your game is received well, the next game you make if that's the direction you want to go, the profit might come easier.
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TheOneTrueZeke wrote:
Are they obliged to care? I mean since when are people reasonable in their expectations?

People are willing to pay whatever they're willing to pay. Anyone running a kickstarter is going to have to contend with perceptions about what people are willing to pay for a board game and how much wiggle room they have given what it's going to cost them to produce that game.




This is a very good point.

Consumers will never care about your own costs. Nor should they. It's not the consumer's job to make sure you stay in business. The consumer is merely trying to get the best product possible for the lowest price possible. If the price someone is willing to pay for your product is below what you can offer, than it wont' be worth it for the consumer and he'll go somewhere else with his money.

That's just the reality of how it works. Asking people to consider the situation from your viewpoint is pointless. Backers not being true investors, they don't really care if you go out of business. They just want the thing they paid for.
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ackmondual wrote:
When doing kickstarter, are backers not taking into account profit, time and energy, and other factors?

I take none of that into account. Why would I? When you buy a box of breakfast cereal, do you take into account the cost of watering the fields?

What I do take into account: what other games are likely to be as good or better for the same or cheaper price, based on available data. Which, in the case of Kickstarters, is usually a huge number of games. And those are the ones I buy. Although I have backed more than a few Kickstarters, they're usually extremely well-known, not "supporting the dream" type stuff of new designers/publishers.
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curtc wrote:
Although I have backed more than a few Kickstarters, they're usually extremely well-known, not "supporting the dream" type stuff of new designers/publishers.
Isn't that reinforcing the Catch-22 though? How can someone become extremely well-known if people aren't willing to "support the dream" in the first place? Meanwhile, if they are extremely well-known, then Kickstarter seems like an odd route to go down (except in the sense that it provides some good infrastructure.)
I mean yes, there are the traditional routes (which are probably tougher than ever now) but this does seem to be a case where there are solid arguments on both sides.
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Scurra wrote:
curtc wrote:
Although I have backed more than a few Kickstarters, they're usually extremely well-known, not "supporting the dream" type stuff of new designers/publishers.
Isn't that reinforcing the Catch-22 though? How can someone become extremely well-known if people aren't willing to "support the dream" in the first place?


Well, we do have our boardgame designer rock stars so not really a catch-22, just an affirmation that it is tough to make a big name in this industry.

The answer is, of course, to have a truly great idea, preferably serially, and market oneself. Then one is famous, in a good way.
 
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When people say a game is too expansive for what it comtains, they usually mention that with a point of comparison.

When you charge 100 bucks for a game with a map, 12 minis, 4 dices and a deck of cards...
People will remember Twilight Imperium 3, Starcraft the boardgame and Arcadia Quest, which all come with a gazillion miniatures, hundreds of tokens, several decks of cards and more... for the same price.

It's a simple "how much you get for the content included".
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Scurra wrote:
curtc wrote:
Although I have backed more than a few Kickstarters, they're usually extremely well-known, not "supporting the dream" type stuff of new designers/publishers.
Isn't that reinforcing the Catch-22 though?

I don't feel any moral obligation to break the Catch-22. My enjoyment of games began long before Kickstarter, and I'm quite confident that if Kickstarter were to disappear, my enjoyment of games would continue without the slightest hiccup.

Scurra wrote:
How can someone become extremely well-known if people aren't willing to "support the dream" in the first place?

Since when do dreams get "supported"? (Unless you're like terminally ill or handicapped or something.) It's called convince someone to publish your game if it's so great. There are plenty of publishers looking for the next great game. If no one's willing to publish it, that's telling. But most successful designers released various games that basically sucked, but they stuck with it. It turns out that designing a great game takes a fair amount of practice and experience. I in no way subscribe to the idea that the existence of crowdfunding platforms is an entitlement for every would-be game designer to fulfill their dream.

Scurra wrote:
Meanwhile, if they are extremely well-known, then Kickstarter seems like an odd route to go down (except in the sense that it provides some good infrastructure.)

I'm not sure what's odd about getting paid for games before having to outlay the production costs. Sounds like a great deal to me if I'm a publisher.

Scurra wrote:
I mean yes, there are the traditional routes (which are probably tougher than ever now) but this does seem to be a case where there are solid arguments on both sides.

I don't even understand what the argument is, or what the "sides" are.
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I think some project creators are guilty of playing into the same schema of zero cost design/time/energy.

When you have projects that ask for low funding amounts and bring you an incredible percieved value, it makes the other indie designers look much less attractive.

My one request as a project creator who has done 3 Kickstarters, is that backers view each project on its own merits and refrain from unjust comparisons between different board game (self)publishers.

My one request as a backer of over 50 projects, is for creators to just be honest with goals/intentions/needs.

I'm not saying the onus is equal parts, just that there are a lot of two-way streets in Kickstarter City.
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Of course they don't take into account actual cost. We live in a consumerist society, that treat kickstarter like a store and do not understand time is our most valuable commodity.
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Horror Leader wrote:
My one request as a project creator who has done 3 Kickstarters, is that backers view each project on its own merits and refrain from unjust comparisons between different board game (self)publishers.

Wishful thinking. It's impossible to make (rational) purchase decisions without comparing what else you could spend the money on. Money has no intrinsic value.
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darthain wrote:
Of course they don't take into account actual cost. We live in a consumerist society, that treat kickstarter like a store and do not understand time is our most valuable commodity.


Were you going to follow that up with a post that didn't just have a bunch of buzzwords? Something that made actual sense?

Because taken literally: time being the most valuable commodity would probably make kickstarter the most worthless thing ever since you have to wait months or years for results.
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Most consumer products have a production cost in the same range as quoted in the OP.

Shit costs money, and production isn't the only cost. Boardgames are pretty cheap in the grand scheme of crap you want but don't need.
 
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Quote:
When you charge 100 bucks for a game with a map, 12 minis, 4 dices and a deck of cards...
People will remember Twilight Imperium 3, Starcraft the boardgame and Arcadia Quest, which all come with a gazillion miniatures, hundreds of tokens, several decks of cards and more... for the same price.

It's a simple "how much you get for the content included".


I think most people understand that people who don't have the ability to produce in bulk are of necessity going to charge more just to avoid selling at a loss. There are always a few unreasonable ones who don't understand why (in ANY field of life), entity X charges Y, which is an outrage even though it's actually pretty impressive that, say, gasoline is able to be extracted from the ground and carried across the ocean and put into your car for $2 a gallon. I see this occasionally in the computer service industry. There are a few people who expect highly skilled work done by someone driving out to their place for barely the cost of driving there and back, and feel gipped at having to pay 1/3rd of what the minimum cost would be at some other places. But most people aren't like that.
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Scurra wrote:
curtc wrote:
Although I have backed more than a few Kickstarters, they're usually extremely well-known, not "supporting the dream" type stuff of new designers/publishers.
Isn't that reinforcing the Catch-22 though? How can someone become extremely well-known if people aren't willing to "support the dream" in the first place? Meanwhile, if they are extremely well-known, then Kickstarter seems like an odd route to go down (except in the sense that it provides some good infrastructure.)
I mean yes, there are the traditional routes (which are probably tougher than ever now) but this does seem to be a case where there are solid arguments on both sides.


It's the person running the Kickstarter's job to convince people that despite not being well know and established their project is worth the risk of backing. It's not that no one will support an unknown designer on kickstarter, it's that people are much more cautious about doing it. Which they should be.
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scifiantihero wrote:
darthain wrote:
Of course they don't take into account actual cost. We live in a consumerist society, that treat kickstarter like a store and do not understand time is our most valuable commodity.


Were you going to follow that up with a post that didn't just have a bunch of buzzwords? Something that made actual sense?

Because taken literally: time being the most valuable commodity would probably make kickstarter the most worthless thing ever since you have to wait months or years for results.



If you sit there and wait doing nothing, then yes you'd be wasting a lot of time. I don't use kickstarter either way. My point was people discount the work of the people, which takes time among other things, and only look at the product cost. Expecting otherwise, because of how people view kickstarter, is no surprise. Clearer now?
 
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This is such a strange question.

Backers are only supposed to ever consider if the project is worth supporting, or if the designers are worth supporting. What do you mean other factors? If the project (or designers) are worth a support of a $100 they will get it, if they are only worth $30 that's what they will get. If they are asking more than they are worth, then they won't get anything.
 
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xiongie wrote:
Backers are only supposed to ever consider if the project is worth supporting, or if the designers are worth supporting.

Supporting a project because it's not worth supporting, but the designers are? How do we determine which designers are worth making charitable donations to? They're starving? They're nice guys? They might make a decent project next time? That's the oddest concept I've seen in this thread so far.
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