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Explore a new Planet, exploit its resources and trade them in a 2-4 player game. But, beware of cataclysms, the Planet might be living!
Explore a new Planet, exploit its resources and trade them in a 2-4 player game. But, beware of cataclysms, the Planet might be living!
2,495 backers pledged €209,815 to help bring this project to life.

Production and delivery update

Posted by Jim Gaudin (Collaborator)
51 likes

Hello everybody, 

Here we are for the long awaited production update. We apologize for the time it took use to write this news, but as we were saying in the Comment section of this KS, we were waiting on some vital piece of information in order to have a solid timeframe to share. 

Let’s not beat around the bush any longer : despite our best efforts, the arrival of Living Planet to your loving home is now planned for this summer. Let’s see why. 

Originally, the delivery by Lumberjacks (the project’s creators) was scheduled for September 2018. When Ludically took over, it was clear to us that the product was not ready. We couldn’t deliver at this date without severely compromising its quality, wether for its components or its rules. We therefore aimed for a Christmas release, roughly 3 months of delay from the planned release. 

Two important events occurred then : 

• Firstly, Ludically’s ownership and structural functioning changed quite a bit. One of the associates left, and a new one (Hicham) came on board. We had to redefine our working process, rethink the company and do a bunch of paperwork that slowed down the game’s development.  

• Secondly, the SAGS, Scenario Auto Generating System, popped in Chris’ busy mind and he decided to include it, to give even more depth and replay value to the game while thanking the backers for their patience with an extra treat… Little we knew that it would add a few more months of delay, as this modular system took a long time to write and balance… But the result would be so good that Chris decided to go all-in on it. The goal was now a delivery by Q1 2019. 

While we were moving all steam ahead towards this date, a production detail threw a wrench in our gears : the metal dice, promised in the last stretch goal. To be completely honest with you, if it had been only up to us, we would have passed on it : metal dice are very complex to produce, they are expensive and it’s hard to meet the expected quality without sacrificing a lot of time and money. However we didn’t want to go back on what was promised to all of you, so we kept going. The samples we got didn’t meet our quality standards at all, and solving the issue took us a tremendous amount of time.

That’s when the Holidays period, and the Chinese New Year, hit us. The Dice problem was still pending. At this time of the year the factories take a break, and the months/weeks leading to it are packed with all the publishers trying to jam they projects in the factories’ schedules so they release on time. Cleary, this one is entirely on us ; we knew this was coming as Ludically is familiar with this production timeframe, but it still took us by surprise. 

Even if we do have the experience, we are a small team ; only 2 people and half (Jim’s help is ponctual), and we got swamped by a whole lot of other matters that prevented us to meet the deadline. We deeply apologize for this, as it should not have happened on our watch… But still did. 

We should have given you a heads up at that time, but we were waiting on the factories to open and answer to our last questions, so we could provide a decent planning to you (rather than « we’re late, it will take a few more months, we’ll keep you posted »). So we kept working and waiting, which was clearly a communication mistake that we won’t repeat.

So here we are, February 2019. Where does this leave us ? All the files are ready. 

• Start of production is planned for Mid-March. 

• Production takes 50 days. 

• End of April, we’ll have the pre-assembly copy for a last control. 

• Mid-May, the game is at the door of the factory.

Then onto shipping. Our backers in Asia should expect the game by June as they are closer, and it should be safe to say July/August for the rest of the world. We’d rather announce a looser delivery date and get it a bit early than be too enthusiast and backtrack, as it has been the case since the start of this KS. 

That sums up our current timeline. Of course unexpected issues can arise, but you’ll then be the first to know - we learned from our mistakes. We are all pained by this painful process that delayed the game for almost a year and sincerely apologize once more on this delay, and thank you all for your patience. We know that apologize doesn’t make it right, but we assume our failures and wanted to give you the keys to understand it. 

To summarize, delays were due to a gruesome cocktail of project complexity (switching from one publisher to another, restructuring Ludically), high quality standards from our part (SAGS, components quality, rules polishing), and the downsides of a very small team… But we have faith in the result, which we hope will meet your expectations. 

Besides delays, we know that our bigger caveat was communication : clearly from now on we will share information even if it is partial, rather than keep it for our self for a more « meaty » update (as we usually do in the boardgames industry). 

On a brighter side, our team got bigger :  after Jim joined us late 2018, it is now a production manager, Nicolas, that joined us at the beginning of this year. New procedures are being set up and we have a better team synergy. 

All the Ludically Team thanks you once more from your support, we’ll be back soon for some news as Hicham just got the prototypes to show the game at the Cannes Games festival (biggest public show in France), where people will be able to play on our booth (04.15). We’re looking forward to show it to the crowd. 

Ludically yours, 

The team. 

----------------------------------

Bonjour à tous, 

Voici donc la news tant attendue au sujet de la livraison de Living Planet. Avant tout, nous nous excusons encore une fois pour le temps qu’il aura fallu avant d’écrire cet article, mais comme nous l’écrivions dans la section Commentaires, certains éléments cruciaux nous manquaient avant de pouvoir faire un planning concret. 

Ne tournons pas autour du pot plus longtemps : malgré nos plus grands efforts, il est désormais prévu que le jeu arrive chez vous cet été. Nous nous expliquons ci-dessous. 

Originellement, le projet avait été planifié par les créateurs du projet (Lumberjacks) pour une sortie en Septembre 2018. Lorsque l’équipe Ludically a récupéré la gestion du kickstarter, il nous paraissait clair qu’il ne pouvait pas paraître à cette date, a moins de ne bâcler la production tant au niveau du matériel que de la qualité des règles. A partir de là, nous avons visé Noël, soit trois mois de décalage par rapport à la première date annoncée. 

Deux évènements importants sont survenus : 

• D’une part, Ludically a modifié sa structure. Un associé est parti et un autre (Hicham) est arrivé, les habitudes de travail et interlocuteurs ont évolué. Des procédures administratives à la fois pour reprendre Living Planet et remettre en place le fonctionnement de Ludically ont ralenti le processus de développement du jeu. 

• D’autre part, le SAGS, Système Automatique de Génération de Scénario, a vu le jour dans l’esprit de Christophe, qu’il a souhaité intégrer pour rendre le jeu encore plus profond, et vous fournir une rejouabilité à toute épreuve. L’inconvénient d’un système aussi modulable est que son écriture et son équilibrage prend du temps, ce qui a ajouté un décalage supplémentaire de quelques mois. Le parti a été pris de repousser la date de sortie, aux alentours du premier trimestre 2019. Alors que nous foncions à toute vapeur vers cette date, ce qui semble être un détail de production a mis un beau bâton dans les roues : les dés en métal. Promis au moment du Kickstarter, nous ne voulions pas revenir dessus, mais c’est clairement un élément couteux, que ce soit du point de vue financier ou du temps de production. Les échantillons que nous avons reçu étaient de qualité insuffisante, et trouver le bon élément nous a pris beaucoup de temps… 

Ceci nous amène à la période des fêtes, avec un problème de dés toujours à régler, et le nouvel an chinois qui se profile au loin. Les usines se mettent en pause et sont inondées de requêtes, de tous les éditeurs qui veulent faire passer leur jeu avant la date butoir. A ce point, nous nous sommes malheureusement laissé surprendre. Bien que nous ayons l’expérience du processus éditorial, notre petite équipe (2 personnes « et demi », avec l’aide ponctuelle de Jim) est au four et au moulin, et laisse passer le coche… Ce délai supplémentaire est pour le coup intégralement dû à notre inadvertance, et nous nous en excusons. 

Il nous faut alors attendre que les fabricants ouvrent à nouveau leurs portes et répondent à nos questions avant d’envisager de décaler encore la sortie… A ce moment-là nous aurions déjà du revenir vers vous, mais nous voulions avoir un planning concret à vous proposer ; nous continuons donc de travailler de notre côté. Une erreur de communication que nous ne ferons plus. 

Nous voilà désormais en Février 2019. Ou en sommes-nous ? Tous les fichiers sont prêts.

• Le début de production est prévu mi-mars. 

• La production prend 50 jours. 

• Fin Avril, nous recevons la copie d’assemblage pour ultime vérification. 

• Mi-Mai, le jeu sort de l’usine. 

A partir de là, il embarque pour ses diverses destinations… Ce qui veut dire que nos backers situés en Asie l’auront surement d’ici Juin, mais pour les autres il est plus prudent d’annoncer un arrivage en Juillet/Aout. Nous préférons voir large pour affiner la date plus tard, plutôt que d’être trop enthousiastes en cas de contretemps, comme cela est arrivé tout du long de ce KS. 

Voilà pour ce qui est de l’actuelle timeline. Bien évidemment il peut toujours y avoir des imprévus, mais vous en serez immédiatement avertis. Encore une fois, croyez bien que nous sommes désolés de ce retard, et nous vous remercions immensément pour votre patience.

L’historique relativement complexe du projet (passer d’un éditeur à un autre, la restructuration de Ludically), notre volonté de ne pas compromettre la qualité de la production (SAGS, visuels et qualité du matériel, justesse des règles) et les inconvénients liés à une petite taille d’équipe font de Living Planet un Kickstarter au déroulement compliqué… 

Nous savons que nous excuser n’améliore en rien les choses et ne justifie pas nos erreurs. Nous assumons pleinement ce développement douloureux, et vous apportons les clefs pour le comprendre. Mais nous avons foi dans le résultat, qui, nous espérons, répondrons à vos espérances autant qu’aux nôtres. 

Au-delà des problèmes de délais, nous savons que la communication avec vous en a beaucoup pâti. Encore une fois nous nous en excusons platement, et c’est un point sur lequel nous serons désormais bien plus vigilant… Plutôt que d’attendre une information qui mettrais trop de temps à nous parvenir, nous n’hésiterons plus à faire des news plus brèves mais qui vous garderons au courant de nos réflexions du moment. 

Notre équipe est désormais renforcée, car après Jim qui nous a rejoint fin 2018, c’est un responsable fabrication dédié, Nicolas, qui nous épaule depuis ce début d’année. Des procédures se mettent en place et nous prenons nos marques.

Toute l’équipe Ludically vous remercie encore de votre soutien et nous revenons rapidement avec des nouvelles, car nous venons de recevoir des prototypes pour le Festival International des Jeux de Cannes, où le public pourra venir essayer le jeu sur notre stand (04.15). Nous avons hâte de vous les montrer et faire jouer le public !

Ludicalement, 

La Team Ludically. 

Philippe PETIT, Marc LAFON, and 49 more people like this update.

Comments

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    1. Dirkjan82 on

      Like some other people, I wouldn't mind if the metal dice were replaced for easier, beautiful dice. But I can imagine some people do want the metal dice so I'm fine either way.

      The delay isn't fun, nearly 1 year after the original date if we get it by August. But then again, it's Kickstarter and if it leads to a better game I'm fine with it. Got plenty of other fun games to play in the meantime. I really should play so more Archipelago as well!

      To everyone at Ludically: good luck and have fun with the rest of the process to get this game into the world!

    2. Olivier Bezombes on

      Bravo pour ce mea culpa et merci pour ces explications. Amateur des réalisations de Christophe et confiant dans le soin et le sérieux qu'il investit dans ses projets, je préfère attendre pour avoir une version peaufinée des règles et un SAGS (idée géniale et super cadeau) équilibré et huilé. Dès metal ou pas, quelque soit la raison, peu importe ce retard : un bon jeu se mérite, je préfère en profiter pleinement pendant des années, que de l'avoir 2 mois avant sa date de sortie à maturité. Archipelago est toujours dans mon top 5, je me réjouis de pouvoir jouer Living Planet. Courage à toute l'équipe, prenez le temps de nous faire une perle ludique !!

    3. Missing avatar

      Anders on

      I understand that you did mistakes which caused delays. This is a kickstarter. You are not professionals. But I saw the delivery date sinking when there was the change in the company. Poor decision. Also spending time on an extra we didn´t backed. Also loosing time on dices for an non-dice game is silly as f+´. We backed a game like it was announced in the campaign and you messed it up with extras which nobody asked for. Also as a non professional you should recognize that you should do what you are able to and what you intentional planned. Ther is this one sentence from Antoine de Saint-Exupery: “Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” POINT

    4. Jim Gaudin Collaborator on

      @Petr yes, we wanted to focus on the news in itself rather than the new shinies we got :) With the big Cannes Festival coming next week, we'll gather pics and more for updates :)

    5. Missing avatar

      Daniel on

      Delay is not more important if cuality is not afected. If I can sugest something...a spanish pdf rulebook would be great. Maybe in that waiting time, some volunter can do it, thanks.

    6. Petr K.
      Superbacker
      on

      Personally, I do not mind any delay that leads to a good game. The warding of this KS campaign was bad and led to many delays ... many people lost their trust.

      Personally, I look forward to metal cubes. I like the style of the game. In addition, dice are not used for throwing, but just marking ... it's a purely cosmetic accessory and one of the SGs that convinced me in the Deluxe version :-)

      On the other hand, it is still a long text ... I would like to see some processes of producing the game, some pictures of samples ... new tiles or something.

    7. Missing avatar

      Boelinger Christophe Collaborator on

      Ja vais pas rentrer trop dans le débat...
      Désolé, faute de frappe.

    8. Missing avatar

      Boelinger Christophe Collaborator on

      En français,
      Je vais rentrer trop dans le débat, mais je voulais juste préciser uen chose qu'apparement personne n'a mentionné... Dans Living Planet on ne lance jamais les dés !
      Donc métal ou pas, sur ce point, cela ne change pas grand chose ;)
      Les seules fois où on lance les dés c'est lors de la création de la planète et des paramètres de jeu pour le générateur de scénarios. C'est donc particulier et juste en tout début de partie.
      Maintenant je ne dis pas qu'il faut ou pas avoir des dés en métal, je donne juste les faits en terme de gameplay et comment ils sont utilisés.
      Oh et il y a aussi un scénario, un peu plus grand public je dirais, où vous lancez les dés. Désolé.

    9. Missing avatar

      Boelinger Christophe Collaborator on

      Hello everybody,
      I won't enter or disturb too much your conversation, but I just wanted to mention one thing that nobody realized maybe... In living planet we never roll the dice! So metal or not, for that fact, won't change anything ;)
      The only time we roll the dice is during the Scenario Generator when we create the planet and conditions, and that's particular and just at the very beginning of the game.
      Now, I'm not saying we should or shouldn't do the dice I'm just stating the facts about gameplay and how the dice are used.

      Oh yeah, there is also one particular scenario, more family type, where you roll the dice. Sorry.

    10. Yann Cardon
      Superbacker
      on

      Faute avouée est à moitié pardonnée :)
      Merci pour la mise à jour. J’ai pleinement confiance dans la qualité finale du produit, le jeu en vaut la chandelle !

    11. Justin Boehm
      Superbacker
      on

      Good update, thanks for the transparency. I enjoy metal dice since I use a leather dice tray there's no issue with damage or noise, and I do like the weight for sure. Now, had the campaign not ended with them, I still would have backed, but as of now, it wouldn't be a good idea to go back on that, and I'm glad to see that you agree and that the metal dice will be included as unlocked.

    12. Jim Gaudin Collaborator on

      @DrFeelgood : as we said, it is not something we would have done. We took it is as it was, already managed and funded by the campaign creators. We now have to fulfill the promises made.

    13. Missing avatar

      Dr Feelgood on

      Are you kidding me!?! "...metal dice are very complex to produce, they are expensive and it’s hard to meet the expected quality..."
      How can offer any stretch goals without checking in advance if implementation is possible?

    14. Missing avatar

      Ryan F on

      Thanks for the update. I'm personally not at all interested in the metal dice and will not be using them (I just don't like how they look/feel), but still looking forward to the game later this year. Thanks again!

    15. Jesús Cepeda Cid on

      Don't worry people. I've backed other projects that have delivered late. It is not bad, I prefer to wait (even if it a significable amount of time)to have a well done product that having a game that would have a 2.0 version in shops with all the fails solved. keep on the good work

    16. Alhuxis on

      Merci!!!
      Pour votre sincérité : Merci !!!
      Pour votre dévouement : Merci !!!
      Pour vos choix qualitatifs : Merci !!!
      Parce que vous réagissez humainement : Merci !!!
      Je vous renouvelle ici toute ma confiance et vous souhaite plein d’autres projets aussi prometteur que celui ci.
      Avec impatience
      Alhuxis

    17. Missing avatar

      Kevin
      Superbacker
      on

      Thanks for the update. I always prefer a delay than a compromised quality of the final product.

      Keep going on and keep us informed regularly. It will be your greatest challenge for the next months : a good communication.

      Bises les gars.

      Kévin

    18. Missing avatar

      Ismail Ahmed on

      Merci pour les nouvelles
      Bon courage et je suis certain que nous allons avoir un grand jeu

    19. Missing avatar

      Carl Sho'nuff Fritzen
      Superbacker
      on

      Thanks for the much needed update! It explained a lot. I look forward to playing it. :)

    20. Missing avatar

      Jesper Klyve on

      While I personaly am not that invested in the metal dice I don't think you should/could go back on the promise.
      I'm very disappointed by the delays and the lack of information, but as you own up to the mistakes I have full confidence in you! Looking forward to the game even a year late.

    21. Jim Gaudin Collaborator on

      And yes, we know the SAGS thing is pretty ironic. Damn Chris for wanting to give more replay value to a game already super deep ! :)
      We're really happy with the result and Chris swears by it though, so for us it is not a "useless" delay as it enhances even more the gaming experiencen and the quality of the project...
      regarding delays, the metal dice and our bad timing at handling the new year are more painful topics :(

    22. Missing avatar

      Lars Hobin
      Superbacker
      on

      Thank you for your sincere update! I do not mind the delays at all. The irony is that I am so looking forward to the game that I want it to be perfect, so I will happily wait two more years. So keep the metal dice, fine tune sags, everything! Do not listen to guys who tell you to hurry, because if they do not have anything to occupy themselves with while you create the game of their lives, then it is their problem.

    23. Jim Gaudin Collaborator on

      Hi everybody, thanks for your support ! It's always painful for us to have to announce such things.
      As we said, we're personally on the same boat than you towards metal dice. But we were not in charge at the time and a promise was made on this project, so we wanted/had to follow through : what has been promised during a KS campaign is binding....
      Concerning Brexit @Thanos and @Martin, we have to look into this. Hopefully it won't change anything, but this is a pretty unprecedented situation (as you know); we'll get back to you on this matter as soon as we have more insight about it.

    24. Missing avatar

      Jon B on

      The irony of the SAGS:
      "thanking the backers for their patience" . . . "add a few more months of delay"
      I'm not upset about the game quality control delays and will be excited when if finally arrives. But knowing I'm unlikely to play enough times to need the SAGS, it's a little disappointing to hear how much longer we've waited for it and some superfluous dice that didn't influence my decision to back.

    25. Victor de Jong
      Superbacker
      on

      It's the recurring Law of Kickstarter all over again:
      It always takes longer, even if you take the Law of Kickstarter into account.

    26. Heavy Breathing Gaming
      Superbacker
      on

      Also EU delivery after Brexit. What about that?

    27. Heavy Breathing Gaming
      Superbacker
      on

      Use this time to triple check iconography, spelling and grammar errors.

    28. Heavy Breathing Gaming
      Superbacker
      on

      I rather had a great insert than metal dice.

    29. Missing avatar

      Alexandre Tomé on

      I'm with the others that say ditch the metal dice. If that is what can help hurry the game release the better! Can't wait :)

    30. Michel Chaussé on

      As a couple of persons already mentionned, you should ditch the metal dice, i was worried when i saw them in the campain. Can't wait to get my hands on this game!

    31. Peter Vail on

      Thanks Jim. This is an update that clearly explains what's going on.

      I hope the rest of the year proceeds without hiccups for you.

    32. Missing avatar

      Martin Cubberley on

      This is fine and all, I can wait, no problem. But I'm in the UK. As of end of March we've decided to slit our own throats - if there are additional charges due because of this delay, will that be passed on to us?

    33. Frank Jaeger
      Superbacker
      on

      No worries. Come time, come Living Planet. But I agree with Kevin Kmox, I will probably never use the metal dice anyway. So if I get a vote: forget it. keep the money and use normal dice,

    34. Philippe PETIT
      Superbacker
      on

      Merci pour l'update. L' attente sera récompensée au bout du compte. Bon courage à vous 👍

    35. Missing avatar

      Julien Rombouts on

      Pour ma part déçu de cette update.

      Le système cadeau aura finalement eu raison de nous car il a causé plus de retard et de mal que de bien....

    36. Kevin Knox
      Superbacker
      on

      Personally, i would have been ok with passing on the metal dice. They are loud, they are heavy, and unless you put a crazy amount of math into how much metal you remove for each number, they are never weighted evenly.

    37. Missing avatar

      Ian-Elfinn Rosiu on

      Merci pour cette super update, cela dit, pour une arrivée cet été, est-il possible de changer l’adresse de livraison?

    38. Baahlar on

      Merci beaucoup pour cette communication. Personnelement je préfère que le projet ait du retard assumé (comme vous le faite) et avoir un jeu qualitatif lorsqu'il arrive chez moi.
      Merci en tout cas et bon courage !

    39. iplaydit.com
      Superbacker
      on

      just make a great game ;) i have enough unopened games to cry about the delay :)

    40. Gunther Schmidl on

      As always, I prefer delays for quality to a shoddy product and understand your considerations.