Monday, November 23, 2020

Get Square Meal Today!


Square Meal is a quick, puzzle-solving race for 1-8 players. In the game, you will flip, rotate, and overlap your three ingredients cards until they form the pattern on your challenge card. When you complete a challenge card, you'll add it to your score pile and immediately begin working on a new one. To win, have the highest score when the deck runs out! NOW INCLUDES TWO EXPANSIONS!


Friday, November 13, 2020

The Honest Kickstarter Timeline

Now that my first Kickstarter is in the books, I wanted to compare my projected timeline to the actual timeline. I hope this look behind the curtains will help other creators plan and manage their campaigns. When setting up the campaign for Square Meal, I included a timeline for the project. Many other campaigns and creators do this, and it seems to help manage expectations. For the record, I added lots of buffer time (even more than normal, since the pandemic was in early days), and therefore was able to deliver the game ahead of schedule.

Here is the graphic I posted on the project page:

As you can see, I promised to deliver the game by December 2020. As of today, I am confident that 99% of the games have reached the backers. I am tracking no outstanding packages. Promising to deliver in December didn't really have a down side. You get your game by Christmas. Also, many other Kickstarters take loads of time to deliver--I didn't hear anyone complain about the projected wait. And the upside was getting to deliver "early."

So, here is how it all really went down. Feel free to ask questions in the comments.

Square Meal Kickstarter Timeline

 circa 2008           Designed a game called Square Off

7-4-19                  Decided to do a Kickstarter for a new version called Square Meal

7-18-19                Art completed

9-17-19                Initial graphic design completed

9-18-19                Ordered first prototype from The Gamecrafter

                              Testing and revisions

10-15-19              Ordered second prototype and sent several preview copies from The Gamecrafter

10-22-19              Started Mailchimp mailing list

                              Testing and development of expansion material

11-4-19                Ordered expansion material and color tests from The Gamecrafter

                              Manufacturing and shipping quotes

12-6-19                Began constructing Kickstarter page

                              Testing and development of additional expansion material

1-7-20                  First Kickstarter launches

2-1-20                  First Kickstarter ends unsuccessfully (270 backers pledged $4528)

2-17-20                Second Kickstarter launches

                              Additional manufacturing and shipping quotes

3-12-20                Square Meal is funded!

3-15-20                Second Kickstarter ends successfully (489 backers pledged $8,632)

3-17-20                Setup preorder landing page

                              Pandemic lockdown in US

3-29-20                Kickstarter funds received

4-14-20                Files uploaded to Gameland

4-16-20                Registered Phantasio Games LLC

5-8-20                  First payment wired to Gameland

5-27-20                Distribution deal reached

6-3-20                  Box size increased and file resubmitted

7-1-20                  Photos of production samples sent

                              Additional shipping quotes gathered

7-27-20                Overseas shipping of distributor copies arranged with OTX

7-29-20                Final physical production samples delivered

                              Payment for distributor copies received

7-31-20                Backer shipping info downloaded and surveys locked

8-5-20                  Backer copies supposedly sent to VFI Asia (the wrong project was sent)

                              Typhoon delays boat departure and VFI operations

8-6-20                  Second payment wired to Gameland

8-8-20                  Boat leaves the port in China

8-17-20                Correct backer copies arrive at VFI Asia

8-17-20                Shipping payment wired to VFI

8-24-20                Cargo reaches Los Angeles

8-27-20                Shipping notices sent out

                              Australian parcels stuck in China

9-3-20                  Cargo reaches Chicago

9-9-20                  Backers begin to receive their games

9-10-20                Cargo not loaded correctly

9-11-20                Cargo reaches Funagain warehouse in Indianapolis

9-13-20                Australian packages experience significant delays

9-15-20                OTX paid via credit card

9-17-20                Received 6 cases of Square Meal at my home

10-13-20              Australian games finally reach Sydney and are delivered