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Build mechanical computers powered by marbles to solve logic puzzles. Escape planet Eniac and discover how computers work.
Build mechanical computers powered by marbles to solve logic puzzles. Escape planet Eniac and discover how computers work.
4,198 backers pledged $404,071 to help bring this project to life.

Turing Tumble Progress Update #3: The Post-Kickstarter Survey is Coming!

Posted by Paul Boswell (Creator)

Hello backers!

Today we will begin sending out the post-Kickstarter surveys. The survey is where you can enter your shipping information and answer other questions we have for you related to your reward level. You'll also be able to order add-ons or additional copies of the Kickstarter version of the game. 

If you thought our pricing system in the Kickstarter was tortured, when it got to setting up a system for add-ons and additional copies of the game, it got even more complicated. So today the survey will only go out to about 5% of backers. That way we can test whether things are a-ok and probably on Wednesday the surveys will go out to everyone else. Please check your inboxes for an invitation to take the survey.


As for progress, we've got a couple new things to show you. First off, it looks like we won't need to immediately fly out to China because LongPack (our manufacturer) is coming to GenCon this week in Indianapolis. I'm going to meet with them on Friday and go over the manufacturing plan in detail. They're also going to bring samples of various parts of the game/packaging so we can finalize the box design. 

I've been impressed with LongPack so far. I was a bit worried that, being based in China, communication would be difficult and things might move slowly. But they've communicated clearly and quickly, and they've gone the extra mile. This morning I woke up to an email about how they created their own 3D printed version of the game to get a feel for how it works before they build injection molds:

LongPack's 3D printed version of the game
LongPack's 3D printed version of the game

They're also going to bring a white-copy sample of the book so I can take a look at the quality and get its dimensions for the vac tray. It turns out the book is going to be spiral bound with wire instead of plastic. I guess plastic spirals are cheaper, but they take longer to install, so it will be less expensive to go with wire. Fine with me! Here's their picture of the white copy of the book:

White copy of the book
White copy of the book

The front and back covers will be made of thick card stock with a linen texture on both sides.

Box design

Here's what we have designed so far for the packaging (minus the box art):

How the box will be packed
How the box will be packed

We'll have the black, plastic tray on the bottom where all the parts will go. The book also fits in that tray. The holes for the parts are shaped accordingly, but they won't snap in. Instead, a chipboard separator will go over the tray to keep the parts secure in their places. And finally the board will lay on its back on top of the separator.

Also notice the underside of the lid. We're not sure yet whether this will be a possibility, but we're hoping to add pockets that will hold the board supports. You can see them better here, with the board supports slid out:

Under-lid pockets for the board supports
Under-lid pockets for the board supports

I like this way of doing it, but it might not be possible for LongPack to make the pockets with their manufacturing processes. So we might end up having a second plastic tray that would be glued to the chipboard separator to hold the board supports.

Once this issue gets sorted out, they're going to make a white copy of the entire box/packaging and send it to us for approval. Then we'll add art. We have a meeting with Mackey Creative where they show us their preliminary design ideas on Wednesday the 23rd. We're excited to see what their team came up with!

Board supports (version 999,999,999)

And yes, you might have noticed the board supports look different than in the last update. I found another error and spent a few days redesigning them one more time.

New board supports
New board supports


New board supports
New board supports

There's good news and bad news. The bad news is that I couldn't figure out a way to get multiple tilt angles to work - at least I couldn't get them to work well without a complete redesign of the board supports. It was a choice between having two tilt angles that were both a little rickety or having one tilt angle that held the board securely and felt solid. I'm sure it could be done with a more complicated support system, but it would delay things by at least a month and I also worry that a more complicated support system would be more likely to break. 

The good news is that the new supports are sturdier, they look cooler, they hold the board far more securely, and the rubber feet will now be glued in place instead of adhered in place. 

Sorry, backers! I thought that stretch goal was going to be an easy one. If it's any consolation, we found that multiple tilt angles didn't really add much to the experience, anyway. But we'll try and make it up to you. 


Speaking of which, we have a question for you all: Besides the extra balls, we've been brainstorming ways to make the Kickstarter-exclusive edition of Turing Tumble extra special. One thing we plan to do is to individually number these games, like "543 of 4,198". We're also thinking of ways to make the box unique (e.g., gold foil lettering on the front?) and possibly even the plastic parts. 

What cool ideas do you have? Something where every time you have a friend over, you can bring out your Turing Tumble and make them insanely jealous of your first-run, Kickstarter-exclusive edition. I haven't asked LongPack about kittens, yet.

Thanks again! You made all this possible.

Paul and Alyssa

Brian Fortney, Shereen M. Page, and 33 more people like this update.


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    1. Martonic17 on

      I'm going back through all of the updates and I saw that there was supposed to be a survey, I don't believe I ever saw one come to my inbox. I'm assuming it's too late to get my name corrected for the booklet?

    2. Nata Di on

      Oh yes, please number these games! And the box looks so pretty! <3

    3. Missing avatar

      Robert Slazas on

      Paul & Alyssa,

      Nice work so far, Just successfully filled out the survey!

      A possible "Kickstarter Exclusive" feature could be to have the injection molder make a run of bits and gear bits with GLOW IN THE DARK plastic! Imagine solving a puzzle with bits in it, then turning off the lights to watch the (disembodied) bits flip back and forth as they float in the dark. I think it would be awesome.


    4. Paul Zagieboylo on

      Numbering the KS copies in binary is obviously the right answer for this project. I'm so glad to see this really happening! I'm teaching an AP CS class right now so whenever this shows up I'll bring it in just to show it off!

    5. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Rayner on

      Thanks for the confirmation. It's great to see such a wonderful idea turning into reality. Cheers.

    6. The 4th Jawa

      @Jeremy Rayner: Yes, that's the correct link

    7. Paul Boswell Creator on

      @Jeremy Rayner: Yup, that's right.

    8. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Rayner on

      Hi Paul, can you confirm that the link for the invite begins with as I'm cautious about any links in emails... Thanks!

    9. Kean

      Some of the extra balls in Kickstarter Green would be a nice touch

    10. Paul Boswell Creator on

      Er...I guess it takes a little while for them to all send. They should all be out within an hour or two.

    11. Paul Boswell Creator on

      The rest of the surveys are out!

    12. Missing avatar

      Sarah on

      I've never seen the point of box numbers or foil.

      I'm always a fan of extra puzzles. And I like the idea some others had about a wild card marble. Or even swirly plastic. I had swirly marbles when I was a kid. :-)

    13. Paul Boswell Creator on

      These are all great comments! Thanks so much! Definitely good ideas in there. And I can't tell you how much we appreciate the encouraging words.

      Good news - it seems the survey is running smoothly. We'll send out the rest of the surveys tomorrow morning.

    14. Kalman Perenyi

      I was really happy for the tilt option, and was a bit sad when it went away. (I always like to watch things slower when it's busy). However I also agree that if it would be poor quality, I'm happier with a sturdy version with one angle only... As @FredericLep mentioned, a little book will do the trick when I REALLY want to slow this down.
      As of ideas to make the KS edition special: I am not sure what the technology is called, but I saw it used usually in dice, when instead of one solid color, the plastic is a bit "cloudy", giving it a silkish / marblish effect. Since it is only the coloring of the plastic used, it would not require a design change, but could make all those little pieces look a wee bit cooler...
      And I also echo the comments below: extra puzzles are also cool!

    15. Kelvin Kwok on

      Perhaps the stand can be of a special colour (Kickstarter green?), or engraved with something special. Or maybe one or two of the parts can be of a special colour, or having a special design?

    16. Missing avatar

      David Cooper on

      I think an inexpensive way to make each Turing Tumble unique would be to include a single "wild card" marble - kinda like trading cards. Could be a 'marble of a different color' perhaps embossed with a scientist's name or a glyph one has to look up.

    17. Patient 0 on

      You could offer the board in 'Kickstarter Green' instead of white. That way all you would have to do is switch out the colour plastic used for the first run.

      Changing the colour of the marbles would mean changing the book to match so that is out.

      Numbering is going to cause extra work and really won't make much difference to my niece, only useful if I keep it sealed as a collectable but this one we are going to use.

    18. Edwin Sauvé on

      If you'd go with a kickstarter numbered version, of course you have to go with binary numbering, so "543 of 4,198" would be "0000001000011111 of 0001000001100110" (or removing the leading 0's), "1000011111 of 1000001100110"

    19. Matthew Kelling

      I will echo other people's thoughts:

      1) I liked the idea of the tilt options, but if it wouldn't really change the game (and instead made it worse) then I don't mind it going away.

      2) Don't let anyone rush you! Take as much time as you need! Kickstarter is not a store, it is a passion project launcher. Put passion into your project and don't let deadlines get in your way!

      3) I like the idea that the other user had of a design on the board itself. Maybe include a large sticker that the user can put on themselves (if it is too expensive to do it at the factory).

    20. Missing avatar

      FredericLep on

      Oh, and the box looks awesome. Great design was needed to make place for all those pieces. Congratulations!

    21. Missing avatar

      FredericLep on

      In my humble opinion, no need to add anything to the product. It would only requires more time and/or money, two things in short supply when running such a project (well, any projects really).

      If you really insist, well, maybe you could add a little more puzzles or allows for people to post puzzles on the website when it comes online. ;) It is something that does not affect manufacturing delays and it adds replayability and longevity to any games.

      The "more angles" was a nice bonus, but not an essential one. If someone wants the balls to run at lower speed (for debugging maybe hehe), the stand only needs a small booklet under it to tilt the board just a bit.

    22. Missing avatar

      Alan on

      Agree with some of the sentiment that there's plenty included already. I view this as something for my children, and I don't expect them to care if their version is more special than the standard. I believe the game would benefit from a superb focus placed on the basic part mechanics and the puzzle book - making them smooth and educational, rather than other bells and whistles that don't affect the educational aspect or maintain the interest in playing again in the future.

    23. Michael D. Hensley

      The Kickstarter version of the "Exploding Kittens" game plays a "meow" sound when you open the box...

    24. Pascale McDuff on

      With all the kitten jokes, I would suggest a kitten image somewhere in the box... ;)

    25. Karl Hedstrom

      Thanks for the great update. I really like you box design and hope the board supports will fit in the lid. I wasn't concerned about the various board angles, because I didn't think it would change the speed to drastically. I like your idea of numbering the games and possibly using gold foil for the lettering, since I will be keeping the box to bring to parties to show my friends.

    26. John Rap

      Do NOT let anyone rush you. This is Kickstarter, not 7/11. Listen. Take all the time that you need to get it right. If you do this right, your product can be sold anywhere that astronaut ice cream and plasma globes are sold.

    27. Missing avatar

      Nathalie Beaudoin on

      Would be cool to have a add-on where we get extra puzzles
      Or to be part of a mailing list where you would send a puzzle every week without the answer and then everyone sends in their answers.. maybe a contest once in a while exclusive to us where we can win maybe your next project, or extra balls, etc...

    28. Missing avatar

      Andy Nogar on

      Would it be possible to do a printed background on the board? Like an abstract circuitry design or something? I'd rather have something simple but obvious if we're making the KS version special

    29. Nathan Morse

      Frankly, I never saw the point of the various slope options. I also think we're getting plenty of stuff. If you feel obligated to offer something, you could provide a few downloadable puzzles. This doesn't impact manufacturing [much: maybe add a QR code to the URL?], but it still says, "Oops! How about this instead?"

    30. Missing avatar

      Philip Knight

      I appreciate the sentiment, but my view is that anything extra you do just adds cost and, potentially, time. IMHO your project is already pretty complicated and I suspect you may have plenty of other issues to deal with between now and fulfilment. Leave it as it as is.

    31. Donald Byron Johnson

      This is a wild idea, but there might be a strange part that has some different effect, other than the standard ones. For example, it might release an extra ball when first triggered. Or do some other operation from the common ones.

    32. Oglik Naes

      Foil and or numbered boxes is always a nice touch.

    33. The 4th Jawa

      Hhhmmm... I would love to have game #4 ;)

    34. Missing avatar

      Shereen M. Page on

      What about a special poster of the character. Signed. Just a thought.