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Project: ELITE» Forums » General

Subject: Ratings rss

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Colin Nordstrom
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I hope all the people who are trashing the game's ratings because of the KS problems will play and enjoy the game and then re-rate the game. It's like poor Amazon product reviews based on shipping issues. All these 1 and 2 ratings are ridiculous.
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Mike
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If only I could get a copy to play it, then rate.
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Larry Rice
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evidence wrote:
I hope all the people who are trashing the game's ratings because of the KS problems will play and enjoy the game and then re-rate the game. It's like poor Amazon product reviews based on shipping issues. All these 1 and 2 ratings are ridiculous.


I'm sure some will and some won't. When one doesn't feel heard and communication is largely missing, there isn't much else that can be done to express unhappiness and frustration over not receiving what was paid for several years ago.
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Lance McMillan
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I won't rate the game until I actually play it. But to do that I first need to receive my copy. The game, just like the publisher and manufacturer, will have to stand on its own merits.

That said, in the meantime (while I'm waiting for the copy to show up), I will be assigning both Artipia and Drawlab ratings which I believe are entirely appropriate for the manner in which they've handled this KS campaign (i.e somewhere between "soiled toilet paper" and "rancid egg salad").
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Felix Brause
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To be fair maybe some of them are for real.
Disclaimer: I demoed the game with artipia the last two Spiel-fairs.
And one time there was a group of guys who told me they already knew a lot about the game and I was explaining everything and as soon as I arrived at the action phase they looked at me and asked "wait, how often can I reroll?"
"As often as you want. This phase is real time, i was under the expression you knew that..." i replied.
Two minutes later and a short and interesting discussion why they, as a game group don´t like real time games and that their minds can´t be changed by the lenghts or intensity of said real time phases they left.

So maybe the low ratings are by poor members of game groups that had to endure the newest kickstarter purchase of a friend
I know that I won´t be playing this game with some of my group, because they don´t like real time, but with others that are not total weirdos with no sense of good and fun game mechanics

tl,dr: "Real time" is a dividing issue is what i see.
 
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Colin Nordstrom
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I hate that this game gets lopped into the real time genre like Space Alert or Escape. We are talking about 2min per round, not the whole game. People need to put the real time of the game in context. A majority of the game is not real time. It's alien ability/movement, weapon/item selection, and group planning between rounds. That's what sets this game apart from the real time genre.
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Colin Nordstrom
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[/q]I'm sure some will and some won't. When one doesn't feel heard and communication is largely missing, there isn't much else that can be done to express unhappiness and frustration over not receiving what was paid for several years ago. [/q]

You have to be kidding? There isn't much else that can be done? It's called voting with your wallet. Will I support Draw Lab in the future? Hell no! I mean for God's sake have you seen the deplorable minis?

That said, I love this game. And rate this game on its merits, not on the ineptitude of Draw Lab. Artipia has been great throughout the whole process, and will always support them. There is blame to go around, but respectfully leave Artipia out of the conversation even though their name was on the campaign. Have you ever gotten into a relationship and been dragged down by the other person? Artipia probably had high hopes for the Draw Lab joint venture. But boy did it go bad. I hope Artipia runs a million miles away from Draw Lab in the future.
 
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Larry Rice
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evidence wrote:
You have to be kidding? There isn't much else that can be done? It's called voting with your wallet. Will I support Draw Lab in the future? Hell no! I mean for God's sake have you seen the deplorable minis?

That said, I love this game. And rate this game on its merits, not on the ineptitude of Draw Lab. Artipia has been great throughout the whole process, and will always support them. There is blame to go around, but respectfully leave Artipia out of the conversation even though their name was on the campaign. Have you ever gotten into a relationship and been dragged down by the other person? Artipia probably had high hopes for the Draw Lab joint venture. But boy did it go bad. I hope Artipia runs a million miles away from Draw Lab in the future.


Sure, there's obviously things you can do in the future in not supporting a company with your wallet and I will, but when one has paid $150 for the game and is still waiting, has communicated with both publishers via email, facebook and BGG, this feels like a tangible way to at least do something. There is no way I leave Artipia out of the conversation - their name is on the project and they are just as responsible. They made the choice to move ahead and co-publish this and host the KS. I hold them just as responsible for this debacle as I do DrawLabs. I won't be supporting either company via Kickstarter any time in the near future.

I've received my game for which I am thankful and I have removed my one ratings, but I felt like I had no other recourse to express my frustration with both companies and their lack of communication during the whole process outside of promising updates which never came to fruition.
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Max Maloney
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evidence wrote:
I hope all the people who are trashing the game's ratings because of the KS problems will play and enjoy the game and then re-rate the game. It's like poor Amazon product reviews based on shipping issues. All these 1 and 2 ratings are ridiculous.

How do the ratings of the game affect you?

"Validation of your tastes seek not in the opinions of others." - Grand Master Yoda
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Larry Rice
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evidence wrote:
I hate that this game gets lopped into the real time genre like Space Alert or Escape. We are talking about 2min per round, not the whole game. People need to put the real time of the game in context. A majority of the game is not real time. It's alien ability/movement, weapon/item selection, and group planning between rounds. That's what sets this game apart from the real time genre.


The meat of this game is real time. The rest of the stuff is present, but the interesting aspect of the game is real time. If people don't like real time, they won't enjoy this game!
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Colin Nordstrom
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Hmm, I hate real time and I love this game. This game lasts one hour. If you play 8 rounds, that is 16 min of real time, and 44 min of "chill" time. That to me is 25% real time. Not sure how you get meat out of this ratio. The meat and strategy is in the planning phase. It's utter chaos in the real time portion.

Agree to disagree.
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Konstantinos Kokkinis
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I would like to share a couple of perspectives on the topic.

1) The Publisher's perspective: Project: ELITE was and still is our biggest production, cost-wise, resource-wise etc. Even though I do not do it myself, I can understand why people rate 1 on a game they had a bad experience with. Do I think its fair? No, I do not, because ratings are supposed to reflect a player's gaming experience and not customer's experience. It would probably be better if BGG had a separate rating system for publishers and maybe players could rate a publisher on various things from customer support to production quality. Rating low because of a bad customer experience is very misleading as the rating will be interpreted by future players differently resulting in the game being considered as bad.

As a company, we have announced multiple times that this was a shared project in which we've done our part and we've done it right a long time ago. Everyone is welcome to believe or not believe that. The only thing that is 100% true and undeniable is that Artipia received an equal amount of hate and blame (if not more considering Artipia was the only one receiving complains in the first 3 months) for things entirely out of its control.

Everyone can rest assured that both companies (regardless of the amount of responsibility) have taken a huge amount of damage (in expenses, reputation and production schedule) and paid for expenses exceeding by far any amount that was gathered via KS. I am sharing this information to make it clear that any rating of 1 or any public announcement of not buying any more games from a company will have very little impact compared to what has already happened in order to finally deliver this project.

To sum up, I would personally suggest the "voting with your wallet" solution for people who had a bad experience. I believe this is a much more meaningful action and send a more powerful message. Rating low will result in misleading people that the game itself isn't good which is unfair, not just to the publisher, but to a whole lot of people who worked to make it a reality.


2) The designer's perspective: I also happen to be one of the designers of Project: ELITE and so I would also like to share that perspective with you as well. As a designer, I am really proud of Project: ELITE. Had (and still have) great expectations about its potential since the vast majority of comments on the gaming experience (before and after its publication) show that people really enjoy it. As you can imagine, my designer experience from all this is very bitter since I see a creation with so much potential getting a bad reputation for issues 100% unrelated to the actual game. From this position, seeing people rating low because of issues they have with the publisher can only make me sad.

In general, a publisher delaying a game or not delivering what they should, would make a customer feel they are being treated unfairly. At the same time, a customer rating with a 1 because of that, makes a designer feel he/she is being treated unfairly too. As you can see, there is no right or wrong. It is all a matter of perspective.

-------------------------------

Overall, what I can only say, is that we should try to treat others the way we want to be treated and try to analyze a few perspectives before acting. If we are not ready to give second chances, we should also be ready not to be given any.

Btw, I was the person closing every US/Canadian backer's package back in July-August. I personally hope that anyone still waiting for the game will receive it soon since it seems equally ridiculous to me that there are people who are still waiting for their game to arrive.

Apologies for the large post cry

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Sotiris Tsantilas
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3pod wrote:


2) The designer's perspective: I also happen to be one of the designers of Project: ELITE and so I would also like to share that perspective with you as well. As a designer, I am really proud of Project: ELITE. Had (and still have) great expectations about its potential since the vast majority of comments on the gaming experience (before and after its publication) show that people really enjoy it. As you can imagine, my designer experience from all this is very bitter since I see a creation with so much potential getting a bad reputation for issues 100% unrelated to the actual game. From this position, seeing people rating low because of issues they have with the publisher can only make me sad.

In general, a publisher delaying a game or not delivering what they should, would make a customer feel they are being treated unfairly. At the same time, a customer rating with a 1 because of that, makes a designer feel he/she is being treated unfairly too. As you can see, there is no right or wrong. It is all a matter of perspective.



I totally agree with Konstantinos and being the other designer of the game, and not a publisher, I feel that the impact of things described above (in terms of unfairness) is doubled for me...
Just my 2 cents...
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Joe Price
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3pod wrote:
Btw, I was the person closing every US/Canadian backer's package back in July-August.


A little background for me:
* I still haven't tried the game - my wife has decided she doesn't like real-time from when I pledged to when I received the game.

* I haven't rated the game. I actually haven't rated any games here.

* I agree that BGG's scale isn't used correctly, but BGG's scale is arbitrary and subjective. Every game and publisher deals with this, so it's "comparable" to every other game and publisher, as far as any subjective scale can be. Until BGG changes it, it's what we have.

* I had dealt with Drawlab on a prior project, which is how I found this one. Unfortunately, it took me around a year of pestering to get the remainder of my pledge from the first project plus additional funds on my part. Blame who you will - Drawlab blamed me, blamed USPS, blamed the Greek Post, blamed everyone. And ignored it and them until for some random reason, someone decided to help me out.

* I have a packing slip in my box that says my ordered was placed on November 6, 2016. You obviously were not the last person to close my package.

So, on to the wall of text:

There is no such thing as "done" in a partnership. Someone else might be responsible for some piece, but in the end, your name is there too. If this were a traditional supplier agreement, you would have been entirely on the hook for everything - even if you weren't doing the work. A partnership doesn't really change that much. At the least, you could have been communicating about the problems and trying to get your backers more information, not standing by and watching Drawlab (and thus yourselves) crash and burn.

If you had stepped up when Drawlab failed on their communication promises, people would have loved you as the good side of the partnership. This "not my problem" attitude is part of what I dislike in addition to the total communication failures. This seems part of the Greek culture from what I understand, and while I try to be understanding of other cultures differences to my own, in this case it means not just avoiding your two companies, but all Greek companies.

Finally, there is obviously, with physical proof, some problem with the shipping. No only broken promises, but (at best) mis-information. Some would call them lies. Unless you planned on a massive shipping delay, you were obviously NOT the last person to seal my package. And since there is no information about this, most people assume the worst. Given the time delay and the packing slip, I have to assume that the shipping company did the packing and potentially with new product that was shipped - there was enough time. After all, packages were lost, err... miscounted.

All-in-all, I am very, very glad I am not one of those with missing or damaged piece. Getting that corrected - yeah, I never want to go through with that again with Drawlab and y'all now have the same taint due to this partnership.

If I can leave you with one last piece of advice. Well, two pieces:
* Communicate. A little goes a long way, especially if you keep your promises. News doesn't have to be good. Just under half of your backers were from the US and nearly three-quarters were from cultures similar to the US. You're dealing with that culture's expectations, not your own. Individuals may act differently, the mob doesn't.
* Be responsible. See the culture bit above. Assigning blame to another does not excuse you from responsibility. Even if it is out of your control, you still own it. In this project, you controlled the updates, which means you were singularly responsible for posting them. Drawlab may needed to provide content, but Artipia posts them. This goes back to the communication piece above.

I may purchase one of your games in the future, but it will never be directly from you. Even then, I am extremely leery about missing or damaged components. So...

Best of luck in your future endeavors. Your hate crowd currently seems dead set on actively making sure you need it. Hopefully y'all can learn and adapt from this as your mechanics do generally seem good! It's your publishing and customer management that sucks.
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Konstantinos Kokkinis
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@Joe Price:

I am not quoting any of your post to avoid flooding the thread with copies of the same content.

Please allow me to reply on some of the things you mentioned.

1) The process I was informed of, included all US and Canadian backers' order being packed in Greece (without any labels on them) and being delivered to a US based fulfillment center which would (according to the information given to me), put delivery labels on them and forward them and ship them to the backers. I have no way of knowing why the packing slip on your box said "order placed on November 6, 2016" nor do I understand its meaning. In any case, i believe you received the same box that I personally sealed without any further interference from others except from the labels placed on it.

2) Communication. I would like to split this subject into two periods. a) The period before and during the miniatures remake and b)the period of delivery.

a) miniature remake period: I believe its clear by now that anything related to the miniature production for this game was not Artipia's responsibility. With that in mind, there were two options for Artipia at that time. 1) Explain the situation and offering nothing more than the promise of future delivery (since it wasn't Artipia who would be the one remaking the miniatures and so any information on the time needed or the result expected was simply someone else's estimations) or 2) unfortunately remain silent and give Drawlab enough time to begin showing results. You need to understand that anything options 1) as well as anything in between would simply shutter everyone's hope that this project would ever be delivered. As you said, our name was on that campaign and we had already failed on promises that weren't our own. We did want to do that again. It was crystal clear that silence would cost us but it was what we felt we had to do in order to prevent backers from thinking that those unfortunate events would result in the two companies getting into a public "fight" which would certainly reduce everyone's expectations for receiving the game to 0. We knew for sure that Drawlab's team would do whatever they could to fix it but we could not make specific promises on their account again. This is the reason why we chose to remain silent knowing that it would of course cost us.

b) delivery period: During the packing and delivery period, we assisted Drawlab and together we prepared the games for delivery. That took place after a long period of dates and estimation that were given to us to forward to the backers. Unfortunately for many reasons those estimations and dates of reproduction, recasting, shipping and delivery failed again and again and so we found ourselves in the middle of a situation where we were required to promise things that were someone else's responsibility to deliver. This reached a point where we almost knew for sure that any date we would announce would simply not be correct, so once more we chose to stop forwarding information that wasn't reliable, again knowing that people would complain for the lack of communication. I do not believe that the delivery information coming from Drawlab was intentionally false but still we were not the ones in contact with the fulfillment center. Drawlab can, at any point, explain on their own any problems and issues they encountered with the fulfillment center.

3) Responsibility: It goes without saying that we are equally responsible towards our backers for Project: ELITE and regardless of anyone's impression we never stopped pressing and working to see this project delivered. That said we've been doing everything in our control for the last 1.5 year to ensure that everyone who supported us would eventually enjoy the game they helped us create. Please understand that in many cases things were entirely out of our control. The reason why, is explained on the two announcements-updates Drawlab has made taking responsibility for certain things. What we knew from crisis-day 1 was that this game would get delivered no matter what. We didn't however know the "when" since there was a lot of work to be done by others to fix what needed to be fixed.

Overall this has been a big and expensive lesson for everyone involved and I hope it will help both companies improve.


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Joe Price
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All this is telling me is that you have no insight into what actually happened. The packing slip was INSIDE the box - so you weren't the last one to seal the box. Something happened and no one is saying. Y'all either majorly fubar'd your shipping or had it done to your shipping. But even that's not the issue. The issue is about your lack of communication for when the shipping problem happened.

For everything else, the miniature remake, the apparently good game, the commitment to finish (even if the project did go silent and pass out bad information about shipping), I give you guys a lot of respect. It's not easy. But your failure to communicate means that, as a business, I will never support you directly.

Silence in business is never good. And we were in business - backers fronted you money to produce something. If you would ignore your mortgage company, it's not like they would assume everything's fine - at a certain point they foreclose because you're not paying them.

And it's not like you need to make promises. You need to manage expectations and fulfill your promises (even if it's someone who has no right to make a promise - if they're associated with your company, they're speaking for your company because most people probably aren't going to know the difference whatever you want.

So best of luck in your future endeavors - you're probably going to need it for a while as your most ardent haters sound likely they're going to actively make things difficult.
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3pod wrote:
I am sharing this information to make it clear that any rating of 1 or any public announcement of not buying any more games from a company will have very little impact compared to what has already happened in order to finally deliver this project.


Two problems with this sentence. One, the order has not been delivered, at least not here yet. Second, backers in Canada are being forced to pay $72 to UPS to get their game. Can we send it back? Can we fight this? Did you not know this when we paid you shipping charges? It is more than I have paid for any game (so far have paid $0 for customs for Kingdom Builder Big Box, and 6 other kickstarter campaigns). Of course, I haven't paid $72, I don't have the game, haven't gotten any responses to my many messages, I have heard absolutely nothing since Sept. 30th. It seems the designer can talk here on BGG but they are not allowed to talk on kickstarter?

I am on the fence about rating the game a 1, I mean, the game I have is absolutely useless, it is just empty promises and very poor communication.

Sorry Artipia, it is your name when it is good and your name when it is bad - cuts both ways. Sorry designer ...
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3pod wrote:
b) delivery period: During the packing and delivery period, we assisted Drawlab and together we prepared the games for delivery. That took place after a long period of dates and estimation that were given to us to forward to the backers. Unfortunately for many reasons those estimations and dates of reproduction, recasting, shipping and delivery failed again and again and so we found ourselves in the middle of a situation where we were required to promise things that were someone else's responsibility to deliver. This reached a point where we almost knew for sure that any date we would announce would simply not be correct, so once more we chose to stop forwarding information that wasn't reliable, again knowing that people would complain for the lack of communication. I do not believe that the delivery information coming from Drawlab was intentionally false but still we were not the ones in contact with the fulfillment center. Drawlab can, at any point, explain on their own any problems and issues they encountered with the fulfillment center.


I appreciate your predicament, Konstantinos. You're trying to satisfy thousands increasingly frustrated (in some cases outright angry) customers on another continent, and are having to deal with all this through an intermediary (Drawlab) who doubtless isn't receiving reliable information from the fulfillment center. Providing regular and accurate status updates is probably unrealistic -- however, that's precisely what your customers expect.

Your silence, even if it's just to admit that you have no solid information about where things stand, is exacerbating the problem. Even just your brief post above has calmed me down to the point where I'm willing to be patient and give you and Drawlab more time. If you guys had been doing something similar every couple of weeks, or just on a monthly basis, a lot of the bad feelings would be mitigated.

If there's one lesson you should take away from all this, it's that communicating with your customers is essential to your future. More than anything else -- even mediocre designs or sub-standard components -- silence will absolutely kill your business.

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Konstantinos Kokkinis
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rpvt wrote:
All this is telling me is that you have no insight into what actually happened. The packing slip was INSIDE the box - so you weren't the last one to seal the box. Something happened and no one is saying. Y'all either majorly fubar'd your shipping or had it done to your shipping.


Joe,

Yes. This is the first I hear about this. Now I need to figure out if that happened just in your case or to others as well.

If anyone had a similar thing happen to their package, please post it.

rpvt wrote:

The issue is about your lack of communication for when the shipping problem happened.


I am 100% with you but Artipia has no part in the delivery process and communication with the fulfillment centers. You can rest assured that we will forward any information as soon as we receive it, always in the form of a Drawlab announcement since the information would be coming from them. I am optimistic that as soon as any problems are resolved and all games are delivered, they will send us some info on what happened.

 
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Konstantinos Kokkinis
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Ldayjones wrote:
3pod wrote:
I am sharing this information to make it clear that any rating of 1 or any public announcement of not buying any more games from a company will have very little impact compared to what has already happened in order to finally deliver this project.


Two problems with this sentence. One, the order has not been delivered, at least not here yet. Second, backers in Canada are being forced to pay $72 to UPS to get their game. Can we send it back? Can we fight this? Did you not know this when we paid you shipping charges? It is more than I have paid for any game (so far have paid $0 for customs for Kingdom Builder Big Box, and 6 other kickstarter campaigns). Of course, I haven't paid $72, I don't have the game, haven't gotten any responses to my many messages, I have heard absolutely nothing since Sept. 30th. It seems the designer can talk here on BGG but they are not allowed to talk on kickstarter?

I am on the fence about rating the game a 1, I mean, the game I have is absolutely useless, it is just empty promises and very poor communication.

Sorry Artipia, it is your name when it is good and your name when it is bad - cuts both ways. Sorry designer ...


Albert,

Both fulfillment centers that were used for delivery were chosen and paid for by Drawlab Entertainment. I have no information on how you can send the game back or fight this. I hope they can enter this discussion and hopefully offer solutions.
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Konstantinos Kokkinis
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Lancer4321 wrote:

I appreciate your predicament, Konstantinos. You're trying to satisfy thousands increasingly frustrated (in some cases outright angry) customers on another continent, and are having to deal with all this through an intermediary (Drawlab) who doubtless isn't receiving reliable information from the fulfillment center. Providing regular and accurate status updates is probably unrealistic -- however, that's precisely what your customers expect.

Your silence, even if it's just to admit that you have no solid information about where things stand, is exacerbating the problem. Even just your brief post above has calmed me down to the point where I'm willing to be patient and give you and Drawlab more time. If you guys had been doing something similar every couple of weeks, or just on a monthly basis, a lot of the bad feelings would be mitigated.

If there's one lesson you should take away from all this, it's that communicating with your customers is essential to your future. More than anything else -- even mediocre designs or sub-standard components -- silence will absolutely kill your business.


Lance,

The lesson you mentioned has already been learned and I am happy to report that in the two following campaigns we have done communication has vastly improved.

Maybe as you said, it would have been better to communicate more often. The problem I saw in that was that after a certain number of "sorry, no new info" updates or updates containing unreliable information, backers would simply think we (Artipia) are just lying to them. And if you think about it, if we continuously forwarded false info, we would be doing that AND would be equally responsible for it.
 
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I can't agree. On the Kickstarter, there is no update since Sept. 30, and that one says they are all coming soon. If you at least acknowledged you know they haven't arrived and are talking to drawlabs about it and/or some believable reason why since they were positively going to be delivered in September, it would go a long way to mitigating frustrations. Here on BGG I get news in hours, on Kickstarter I get news in literally months. Why should backers have to go hunting for news and updates. Put an update saying the truth, games are shipped or are not shipped, and tell people you are aware they don't have games and that you'll work to eventually get them to them. A

As for the extra charge, a commenter on the Kickstarter has explained how to self-clear through customs and only pay a fraction of the cost. Being in Toronto I can try that, but I would need tracking info., or the package to arrive (and then I have to refuse delivery and go though quite a process).

I spoke with Drawlabs, we'll see if the respond as quickly as Artipia has?
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Dan Licata
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I received a packing slip with a November date as well. It was inside the box so it was obviously either recently packed or resealed.
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Larry Rice
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3pod wrote:
rpvt wrote:
All this is telling me is that you have no insight into what actually happened. The packing slip was INSIDE the box - so you weren't the last one to seal the box. Something happened and no one is saying. Y'all either majorly fubar'd your shipping or had it done to your shipping.


Joe,

Yes. This is the first I hear about this. Now I need to figure out if that happened just in your case or to others as well.

If anyone had a similar thing happen to their package, please post it.

rpvt wrote:

The issue is about your lack of communication for when the shipping problem happened.


I am 100% with you but Artipia has no part in the delivery process and communication with the fulfillment centers. You can rest assured that we will forward any information as soon as we receive it, always in the form of a Drawlab announcement since the information would be coming from them. I am optimistic that as soon as any problems are resolved and all games are delivered, they will send us some info on what happened.



This is where I would say there could be vast improvement. There has been promise of Update 47 for over a month and a half which still has not occurred. Comments by DrawLabs in the KS comments give some information but are quickly removed from view by irate backer comments. From my understanding, DrawLabs can't post an update since Artipia is the organizer of the KS - only Artipia can post a KS update. Now I don't know if DrawLabs hasn't sent you anything to put in an update or if Artipia has failed to post an update that DrawLabs sent (neither do I really want to know or care) - but this is something that should be done. People want to know what Artipia and DrawLabs are doing about the shipping/warehouse issue - what steps are being taken, at what point will refunds be given for missing games, etc. But please avoid statements that cannot be guarenteed.

 
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Colin Nordstrom
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This thread has gone way off topic. If you guys want to start a pissing match thread, be my guest. I started the thread to have a conversation about the ratings for the game. I think that was addressed. A customer/publisher complaint thread would be warranted if people want to voice their displeasure.
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