Post-campaign Update #27: Important Announcement Regarding Shipment and Future Organisation of the Project
This is Clockwork Publishing from Germany speaking, to give you some updates on the current state of the project and also to give you an important announcement. To start with the most important thing: The fulfillment of the Kickstarter is no longer being done in cooperation between Clockwork and Chronicle City in England.
We had some problems in communication with Chronicle City over the last year, but were for a long time positive that things could get sorted out. During the last months, we finally got to the conclusion, that we have to take everything completely into our own hands to get things moving again.
One of the reasons why printing has been taking so long, was that we can't store the books indefinitely at the printers and don't have a warehouse of our own – but we didn't know exactly where to ship them! That is being resolved right now without Chronicle City.
This whole situation is also the reason why we were not very active in the comments section of the Kickstarter project since about September/October. We just didn't have sufficient information regarding distribution to give out exact dates – and we also didn't want to give out false dates. Since we wanted to give Chronicle City a chance to sort everything out, we also couldn't tell you about the exact situation yet, in case Chronicle City would be able to finally fix the whole distribution issues and answer some questions to us about issues we were concerned about.
We at Clockwork are very sorry for the delay and the whole state of the project. We want to emphasize that Angus from Chronicle City is a good guy who we still like as a person and we don't want to blame all of the delays of the Kickstarter project on him. He is going through a rough time of life right now, and we are being as supportive as we can, but on a business level and to ensure you get the Kickstarter rewards we have had to step in and sort things out.
We definitely made our fair share of mistakes and miscalculations ourselves (especially in the initial stage) and this was the first project of this size that we did – especially for a foreign market, which we never did before. But the book is basically ready since middle of the year (you guys got the PDF, so you can see it for yourself).
But don't be afraid! The project itself is not in danger, we will still deliver the rulebook and all other stretch goals – and everybody will get all rewards pledged for. The rulebook is printed (see below for some pics).
What has to be done now is setting up a new distribution plan and getting all the information we need for distribution ourselves. Distribution should be no big issue, since we used the last two month to check for backup plans in case Chronicle City wouldn't get everything done – and this plan will take effect pretty much now. We will tell you more about this as soon as everything is finalized. Regarding the information we need, we will have to check with the project itself, with Kickstarter and with Backerkit, if they can give us all information we need (we already talked with Backerkit about this in the last couple of days and it should actually be no problem to get everything from them – we also already downloaded all address data from the project page, just so be sure). This includes things like who ordered which add-ons, who ordered how many shipments, and others.
Another problem right now are some of the adventures which were reached as stretch goals. Chronicle City was responsible for sorting everything out with the English speaking authors. So we didn't think there was any problem, until a couple of months ago we still hadn't heard from some of the authors at all (not even with a first outline), while others had sent their information pretty soon, but from those we never heard again regarding the comments of our editorial staff. So after we tried to get information from Chronicle City with no avail, we finally contacted the adventure authors ourselves – and found out that some of them never heard from Chronicle City again after the initial phase of production. Others wrote new drafts after our comments (which actually reached them), but these somehow never showed up at our side. To make it short: The situation with the adventures was a mess, quiet contrary for what we expected for a long time.
We have so far tried to contact all of the authors. One is already finished, others are now working on everything again. But some others have informed us, that they have planned to write the adventure way earlier, but since they never heard anything about it again till now, they just don't have the time to write them now. So some of the adventures will not be written as stated in the initial stretch goals. We are already talking to other authors right now to find out, who could write adventures instead – there will of course be the same number of adventures as promised in the project, but some will be from other authors. The people who will not be able to write their adventures are:
Sarah Newton: Godslathe Steve Kenson: Lost Romance on Venus
We want to emphasize, that this is not in any way the responsibility of the above-named authors – would they have gotten all information in time, as was planned, they would have been able to write their adventures. Dave Blewer (Sundered Skies) will jump in to write one adventure instead of those two. We don't know for certain right now, who will do the second “replacement adventure”, but are in talks with some people right now. As soon as we know for sure we will let you know.
As I said before, we are very sorry about how things have been going. We are hoping that the project will now finally come to a conclusion soon and everything will get sorted out, especially in distribution. We can't make any promises right now concerning shipping since a couple of questions have to be addressed first, as we elaborated above. But we are taking care of everything ourselves from this point on and hope that this will eliminate a lot of the problems we have encountered so far. We will also make sure you get regular updates about what is going on with both the adventures, fulfillment and shipping.
Since we are already writing a long update, we also wanted to give you some information about the current state of the physical and digital products:
The rulebook is printed. The other products of the first wave are either at the printers waiting for a “go!“, which they will get as soon as we sorted everything out for distribution (GM-screen, poster set, character sheet pad, soundtrack CD) or are already produced (miniatures).
The first adventure, The Strange Land by Gareth Hanrahan, is finished. Right now it is being proof-read and will be in layout afterwards (all illustrations and the cover are finished). As soon as the layout is done, the digital version will be sent to all backers of the appropriate levels. The physical product will be in wave two. The translation of the Venus sourcebook is still in progress, this will be part of the second wave, too. And again, as soon as the PDF is ready everybody will get the digital copy (of course cover and illustrations are long done, since the German book which this translation is based on was already published in October this year). The two booklets Wonders of the Martian Past by John Snead and Creatures of Mars by Dominic Hladek are both written. The Wonders are in proofreading right now, the Creatures have to be translated from German. Both is going on right now, as well as the first illustrations are in work. These will be in the second wave , too. Other adventures are being worked on (those not mentioned above), but due to the delays stated above, none are finished so far. We will keep you informed. The texts for the Mercury sourcebook will be finished in German around January/February. As soon as that is done, translation will start right away. Illustrations are currently being done and the cover is finished – so no big delays to be expected here once translation is finished. Dice: We still have to check some things for this first, but they too should be included in wave three, maybe two if things will get worked out fast for a change.
So this is pretty much the state of the project right now. We are working on getting everything done as soon as possible and will get back to you regularly with news and updates. Once again: We are so sorry for what has happened but are positive that, since everything is in our hands from now on, we can finally work on getting you these books you are waiting for.
Best regards, the team from Clockwork Publishing in Germany
Pictures of the printed rulebook:
P.S. If you have any questions to us directly please write an email to firstname.lastname@example.org - this is the safest way to reach us. Especially if you have moved since filling out the survey or Backerkit (and haven't gotten a confirmation from us, please write us an email.