IRPG Tag is a project that was thought up by Matthew Phillips when he was at a Laser Tag arena one night with his daughter. He thought "wouldn't it be cool to use wands instead of guns, have the ability to heal teammates, and save hit data as experience points and gain levels like in an RPG?" His daughter said "Yeah, that would be cool." I asked her if I should attempt to make such a thing and she told me to "go for it."
We have spent a great deal of money and time developing this idea. Previously, we had a Kickstarter campaign to raise money for custom casing to increase the aesthetics of the design but that campaign failed. Now, we are trying a minimalist approach and keeping the design "raw." All the printed circuit boards have been designed, small samples were created, and tested to ensure this all works. We are not worried about aesthetics on this campaign but on functionality and getting this idea out to the public. This is a DIY project and we want it to reflect that. This is an awesome niche product that we know any fan of Laser tag and/or RPGs should enjoy.
What we need funds for is to order printed circuit boards in enough quantity to cut the cost down for everyone involved. Purchasing them in small batches at a time is prohibitively expensive because the manufacturers have setup fees. But by purchasing in volume, we only incur one setup fee for a batch of a given board. Also, other parts become cheaper by ordering in bulk.
Normally, it would cost almost $500 to make a 3 wand system. This is COST, not price. So this would be passed down to a consumer along with charges for profit, our time to assemble, etc. With the budget we have now, a successful campaign could cut our costs in HALF so we can now offer exclusive Kickstarter backers that same 3 wand system for $499 pledge which is what is COST right now for us in the current small batches.
There is nothing out here like this in this price point. Many commercial laser tag "gun/vest" combos are over $1,000 per unit and that doesn't include the software and hardware needed to run those systems. This campaign gives you a chance to own a complete, ready to setup and play system for under $500 for 3 wands or under $400 for a two wand setup.
So the initial goal is enough to build 50 systems that are 3 wands each.
Youtube vids that go more in depth:
Megan and Tori playing IRPG tag in the dark
Risks and challenges
The risks are minimal since this system has already been built and tested by us. But I imagine that supplier delays and large scale building can always be an issue. Matthew W. Phillips is currently a graduate student and, and such, has much free time on his hands when class isn't in session. This allows more time to get rewards out. He also has the help of many people who will contribute to the success of the project.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)