Ready to Ship and the Big Ask
We have some good news as well as some challenges to report on.
First some shipping updates:
Canada is ready to go out, in fact the first three shipments were sent successfully and look like they were packaged well and safely, although the third receiver has not reported in yet.
Australia is 1- 2 days from being ready to ship out. Aetherworks says those can start going out on Monday once we update a couple addresses on the spreadsheet.
USA arrived in port today (hooray!) and we have already received our tariff and customs invoice. In two days it's scheduled to be picked up and taken to the Amazon warehouse in San Moreno Valley; the current estimated Amazon delivery date is January 16th. Based off of our experience with the Canadian Amazon it takes 24 to 48 hours before products can ship out after receiving, so we’re pretty close!
Asia and Hong Kong were waiting on the fixed weapon arms but Miles has set aside enough perfect sets and will be shipping them out direct from the factory.
UK AND EU. The last big shipment to the UK and from there to the EU was the one that was delayed due to some defects in the miniatures. They received new weapon arms, (the issues were all in the weapon arms), but when miles inspected the replacements arrived there were still some defects albeit less.
Miles traveled to Xiamen last week to discover what the issue was and found that there was a problem with the steel molds. A portion broke off around run #1700, (they are supposed to be good for 500,000 runs).
So they have been patching the molds so that they do not have to recast all new Weapon Arm molds right now, which would take some time. The first revised run is coming out tomorrow, and Miles is on hand to make sure they are good, then he will get them packed up by Monday or the 12th. So we are going to go ahead and order the pick up for the Europe shipment for Wednesday today so we have it booked. We are paying extra for a more expedited freight service and shipping to help make up for a little of the lost time.
THE BIG ASK
The last remaining big challenge is covering all of the increased Freight costs, customs fees, tariffs and the final manufacturing bill we received this week. As you know the cost to produce the game increased dramatically over the last two years eventually exceeding the Kickstarter prices we charged but we covered those increased costs from extra investment from Aaron and Chris. But the increased trade tariffs, myriad of freight charges as well as increased fulfillment fees is slightly out of our reach. (We also probably cut the shipping fees we charged last year a little too close.)
To give you an idea of what we are dealing with: the cost to export freight import and tax one Australian ultimate bundle was $47. That is before the cost to fulfill, pick / pack and ship. In hindsight it may have been cheaper to simply send Australian and possibly other countries shipments direct from China although it would have been a less reliable service with no tracking.
We currently have a deficit of approximately $21,000 from this point to fulfill every backer’s order, around the world, all in. To cover this deficit Colonel Brian Green, a new partner and owner of Bad Crow games (an original Mech Command backer) is loaning the company $10,000 and Brian Gabrielson is providing $2,500. From that point we would normally sell our way through the remaining $7,500 deficit but due to limited inventory of this first edition we cannot plan on covering very much of the remainder so we are only budgeting a thousand dollars from sales. The final difference is $6500.
The big ask is: we need to add a surcharge for each reward level to cover the deficit so we can ship everything out. We have added the following amounts to your CrowdOx accounts in the form of a shipping fee but note that it is not just to cover increased shipping costs but a list of other increased expenses as well.
The amounts are as follows with some slight variation according to region:
Core Set / Mercenary pledge
Cooperative bundle / Raven pledge
Ultimate bundle/ Everything bundle
We are very sorry that we require these extra funds. We want to assure you that we did everything possible to cover these increased expenses and that we have covered the majority of them. Aaron and Christopher combined put $18,000 + $15,000 from their own finances, or in the case of Chris, took out loans in his name to help see this project through. BCG took out a $8,500 credit line with Freightos as well. With the timely help of our new partner Colonel Green we need just a little more help from you.
As mentioned above, the surcharge will show up in your products account as an owed shipping fee. So log in to CrowdOx to verify it as well as your address since Canada, Australia and the USA are about ready to ship out. European backers are more than welcome to wait until the shipment is closer to the UK before paying the surcharge.
If you are unable to pay the surcharge then contact us directly through Kickstarter and we will work with you on a case-by-case basis to provide a credit.
This is the final hurdle to get the games into your hands. As a small compensation to our patient and supportive backers we will be providing contents of the upgrade package to you for free during the 1.5 Kickstarter, without any other pledge required. Basically, we will owe you. We plan to launch the 1.5 within the next 3 to 6 months at the latest, and have some really exciting plans to expand upon your copies.
Thank you all very much!
Bad Crow Games Team
Aaron, Chris, Brian, Bryan, Stacey & Brad