Fate Corps! The end is nigh!
The books are all at the shipping warehouse, and our shipping service is beginning their work. This means that over the course of the next three weeks, all the remaining Fate Core shipments should go out, including those with Fate System Toolkit, Fate Worlds: Worlds on Fire, Fate Worlds: Worlds in Shadow, Strange Tales of the Century, and Sally Slick and the Steel Syndicate.
If that's all you care about, great! Keep an eye out over the course of the next month-or-so for your stuff. What follows is some extra transparency and digging into the details, for those of you who like that sort of thing. :)
First up has been working through the data and making sure all the addresses make sense. (We found a couple where folks had put their street address as their name—easily corrected.) This is already done!
The next has been expense assessment and sign-off, which we've just concluded. With international shipping rates going insane like they are, the shipper is making sure to check with us on various package weight costs to get our sign-off.
We've got 1,801 domestic shipments that'll be going out in this round. These will be sent via Media Mail. At a guess, these might run us over $10,000 in total, even with media mail's low rates!
Then there are 821 international shipments. The killer division here is between things we can send out First Class Parcel International (FCI), and things which must be Priority Mail International. If a package goes over 4 pounds we're looking at Priority. Most packages with 3 or fewer books should be eligible for FCI, depending on the books (Strange Tales is a beast, and hardcovers weigh more than equivalent softcovers).
First Class can get us as low as about $18 for Canada, and somewhere in the $20s for everywhere else, topping out with Australia's $26-and-change. FCI is the only method that lands close to the $15 we charged international backers for one shipment. Thankfully we have plenty of margin on the books themselves that we can use to soak the overages!
Priority Mail is a bit of a jump. At 4 pounds, Canada is nearly $30, and Australia is over $40. At 6 pounds — the projected weight of about 200 of the international shipments — Canada is over $40 and Australia is over $60. So for those 200 folks we're expecting to pay more to ship than we're expecting to pay to ship to our 1800 domestic folks.
Then there's still the 600-or-so internationals on top of that with a mix of under and over 4 pound shipments.
It's going to be a big bill! We won't be surprised to see it go over $40,000 in all, if not well over that mark. But we've known that it's due to be a big bill for the past year. We can hack it!
After replacing a number of damaged copies in the first round shipping, we won't be cutting corners on this ship-out. Honestly, even if we could, it just plain doesn't make sense: with the first round of shipping we were able to use a lot of "one size fits all" packaging because there just wasn't as much variety in the contents. In this second shipping round, tho, we're looking at up to seven different titles in various combinations in the packages going out.
That variety is going to slow down the pack-out effort (the shippers can't just pack up a few thousand standard-issue Fate Core boxes and call it a day), and it utterly detonates any notion of a one-size-fits-all packaging. So we're letting the shippers use the various box sizes they have, which should mean a lot of extra room for damage-preventing packaging material. Apologies to those of you who hate packing peanuts: the shipper loves to use them!
So that's where things stand. If things progress like they did last time, half of you will have your packages already by the time we get around to emailing out tracking numbers, but we will send those out once we get them... it's just usually in the "post-shipping data phase" that we get them, well after many shipments have gone out. :)
We're super excited to be wrapping up the "second wave" of this Kickstarter, and the final physical-stuff-shipping portion of the campaign, well before the end of the year! Now begins the longer and slower "third wave" as we continue to develop and plan Young Centurions, Do: Fate of the Flying Temple, Shadow of the Century, and starting in 2014, Dresden Files Accelerated. We're also working on other Fate games that were not a part of this Kickstarter: the Atomic Robo RPG (coming early next year) and the War of Ashes RPG.
2013 was the most exciting year for Fate ever due to your help, and 2014 is looking just as good. Thanks everyone for making it possible!