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A card game with trade, exploration and combat in Marc Miller's classic RPG setting, The Third Imperium.
A card game with trade, exploration and combat in Marc Miller's classic RPG setting, The Third Imperium.
775 backers pledged $56,676 to help bring this project to life.

Fiddly Bits

Posted by Horizon Games (Creator)
23 likes

tl;dr:  There's good news and there's less good (though still not bad news).  We are still on track for delivery, but our buffer time is almost all exhausted.

Full Version:

Because our Project Manager has decades of experience shepherding projects from concept to development, he had the foresight to build a significant buffer into our production schedule.  That extra time has now almost been entirely exhausted.  But not for nothing.

In our last report, we were at the templating stage.  That's taking card art, putting it within the background, adding the card text and the icons, etc.  That process is complete for ~90% of cards, and the only reason the remaining 10% are not done is because they're being improved on an individual basis. 

   

Templated Card
Templated Card

All the cards are printable right now, but because we knew we had some lead time to spare, we've been spending a lot of effort on what are very small changes.  These modifications are sometimes game play/balance related, sometimes aesthetic, but generally minor.  On occasion we've decided to change the wording on a particular phrase that appears across several cards, and then we have to ensure the changes are identical.

These are not the sort of changes you'd hold the project up for, and so this part of the process has been more or less a luxury.  One that will be coming to an end soon.

Since we wanted to make these card changes, we ultimately did not have any sample decks printed earlier in the month.  Instead, we had some sample playmats printed.  These are going to be used in our VAT-free shipping test.  We have already identified, contacted, and arranged with three backers in the EU to serve as guinea pigs to ensure our fulfillment procedures will be VAT-free.  

While on the subject of the playmats, I've attached here a sample image of the Beowulf playmat.  Rather than simply displaying the ship art, we've taken the opportunity to add an "Icon Key" to it.  

We know all four ship playmats will have this legend, which should help facilitate the use of icons in play.

Beowulf Playmat -- Provisional Sample
Beowulf Playmat -- Provisional Sample

However, whether or not we use the template and icons on the non-ship mats hasn't been 100% decided yet.  Once players have become experienced, the need for the icon key is diminished.  Others may simply prefer the traditional playmat style, which tends towards a straightforward presentation of the art.  

If you have an opinion, feel free to chime in!

With border and icon key
With border and icon key

 

Without border and icon key
Without border and icon key

We're down to the last few tweaks to be done for the cards, playmats and related items.  The rulebook is in an advanced state as well, though formatting it for print layout is still at a more basic stage.  With the cards and playmats finishing, our graphic artist will be able to turn his attention to that process very soon.  

So, in conclusion, we are on track still. Our schedule had some slack, and most of that has been exhausted due to elective (but still useful) changes.  That process has almost entirely completed, and should wrap up very soon. 

David Peterson, John McGrath, and 21 more people like this update.

Comments

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    1. Thom Ryng on

      Definitely prefer the mats with the key.

    2. Mark B on

      I'm liking the way this is shaping up!

    3. Ric Van Dyke
      Superbacker
      on

      I like the icons and other stuff on the palymat. Personally I think it looks better then just the art by itself, adds a more tech look to the mats. It's like I'm looking thru some sort of viewer or screen type thing what ever the art of the mat is. "Beowulf, this is Captain Ric of the Sliver Fox, we have you in sight, ready to assist as need."

    4. Missing avatar

      Jacqui
      Superbacker
      on

      I'm torn. The full art is incredible and it's a shame to cover it. However, the icons are incredibly useful. I think I lean more on the side of "use the icon key".

    5. Horizon Games 2-time creator on

      @ William (Bill) Reger The playmats will not be the only source explaining icons. The full size rulebook (available in the Starter Set, Collector's Edition, and will be downloadable online) back cover will have an icon legend, and that page alone will also be available for download.

    6. Matthew Gorsky on

      I think I prefer the key.

    7. Missing avatar

      William (Bill) Reger
      Superbacker
      on

      I would vote to leave the Icons off but offer a "cheat sheet" as a downloadable option that a player can have next to his play mat. As they become familiar they can leave it off. The full picture is just such a treasure!

    8. Dennis Beebe on

      another vote here in favor of the icons, excellent idea ^_^

    9. Dan 'Grimmund' Long
      Superbacker
      on

      oooh, shiny. Thanks for the update. FWIW, I like the concept of putting the icon key on the playmat. That's a clever idea. The game logo in the upper left is OK. The border is OK, but not really needed. The art on the left edge is cool, as art. Unless that art on the left side is also functional, it could go and I would not miss it.

      My first thought was looking in the bottom left corner and thinking, "Oh, hey, some sort of card layout guide. Oh, no, just art."

      Yay for building in buffer time.