Funded! This project was successfully funded on November 1, 2011.

Update #46 - For backers only

An April Fools' Remedy

1 comment
3 likes

For backers only. If you're a backer of this project, please log in to read this post.


Update #45

Final Update: Following the Money

1 comment

I promised one final update with information about Bhaloidam's financials. And now, thanks to pressure from the US government to participate in something called "taxes" by an April 15th deadline, I have all the data I need to do so!

Most of what I have for you is in handy charts, starting with charts from our Kickstarter dashboard. Let's start with our funding graph.

See that sudden surge on October 25th? That Thursday morning Rachel and I woke up, looked at each other, and said, "We're not going to make it and that's okay." That's the morning that inspired my post, Every Kickstarter A Success. That's the morning that causes me to shake my head in disappointment when people abandon their Kickstarter projects with several weeks left to their deadline. Because that's the morning that the excitement began. That's the morning that turned everything around for us. Incredible.

Next up is a chart that will be of most interest to people running - or planning to run - their own Kickstarter project. The percentage of backers who came from external links rather than finding the project via Kickstarter itself.

As you can see - the vast majority of pledges came from external efforts. And although these charts were implemented after Bhaloidam's project was funded, I suspect those internal pledges mostly came about when we were the Project of the Day on Friday the 26th. The full version of this chart includes the referral links, which is very helpful information to have.

Next, some revealing information about project videos.

My video was 2 minutes and 42 seconds long and less than half of the viewers played it to completion. I'll let you extrapolate your own conclusions from that.

The final Kickstarter-provided chart is hardly surprising.

The most popular reward was the $45 Skein Pack. This was the target reward I referred to in my post, A Strategy for Kickstarter Rewards. All of my calculations for shipping costs, etc, were based around this reward.

And finally, here's the chart I created for how the money we brought in was spent.

The missing percentages there are Backer Reward Extras - 5.5% and Mailing Supplies - 1.6%. Backer fulfillment, by the way, means postage. We spent nearly 16% of our take mailing product to backers.

Our funding goal was $27,900. The amount pledged was 112.35% of that, or $31,346.00. The amount Kickstarter was actually able to collect was $31,203, or 111.84%.* That shortfall of $142.84 didn't harm us because we were careful about our math, but I have heard of projects where the shortfall caused them to bring in less than their original goal.

It should also be noted that we haven't spent about $235 of that Backer Reward Extras slice. There are still backers waiting on posters, a few replacement Weaver Thimbles that got crushed in the mail, and replacement custom pawns - all of which will cost us a bit more than $235. Replacing the pawns is my choice, however, as I didn't like how the first batch turned out. Regardless - if you're one of those backers, I appreciate your patience! I should be on track to get those all out to you in mid-April.

So there you have it. 50% careful planning and 50% good fortune means that every dime we collected has gone (will soon go) to fulfilling the Kickstarter promises. Any profit we make will come from the pallets of Bhaloidam that, thanks to the generosity and enthusiasm of our backers, we have in storage looking for homes.**

* Obviously, that's the total you should use if you want to figure out how much money those percentages represent.

** Speaking of which, if you'd like to see Bhaloidam on the shelves of your friendly local game store, tell them they can order skein packs at wholesale pricing from Indie Press Revolution!


Update #44

Happy New Year!

Comment

We're getting reports of Bhaloidam arriving in pretty much every continent to which we mailed it. We're assuming that means the majority - if not all - of our backers have received their rewards by the end of 2012. If that isn't true of you, please email us at bhaloidam [at] zakelro [dot] com and let us know.

If you have received your copy and have something you'd like to say about it, let us know! You can email us at the above address, or leave your thoughts on our Facebook Group or Google+ Community. Who knows, your comments may make it onto the site as one of our featured testimonials!

I promised you news about the future of Zakelro! and Bhaloidam and here it is, copy and pasted from my blog at Zakelro.com:

_____

2012 has been a landmark year for Zakelro! thanks to the arrival of our first in-house game, Bhaloidam. Over the last four years our focus has been increasingly on Bhaloidam and in mid 2011 through 2012 I stopped taking contract work in the videogame industry altogether in order to dedicate myself to it.

Our plan for 2013 and beyond was for Zakelro! to become a publisher of board and card games - starting with games of my design and potentially expanding our vision to helping other independent designers follow in our footsteps, utilizing the resources and channels we'd acquired. This approach would have featured Bhaloidam as our flagship product, but would have required figuring out how to monetize continued support for it, all while working on the new games as well. Knowing now how much time and energy it takes to bring a board game successfully to market, I began to wonder how I could pull it off and continue to do Bhaloidam justice.

To make matters worse - doing our research - we weren't convinced that we could make enough money to justify my doing this full time at all. This is especially true if I were to continue with experimental narrative designs - the seeds of which are pretty much what my notebooks are full of. And the thought of Bhaloidam being just another product in our lineup wasn't sitting well with me either.

So this fall we made a difficult decision - we're not going to try and transition Zakelro! into a profitable business. This means Zakelro! will now formally be what's it's always pretty much been from the start - a games-as-art studio with a focus on story, play, and community - the interrelation of which lies at the foundation of Bhaloidam.

This difficult decision - along with some equally-difficult decisions about my involvement with the videogame industry that I'll talk about in another post - gave me a profound sense of freedom. Now I will be able to continue working on Bhaloidam with my community - not because I need to maintain profitability or in order to support it as a commercial product - but because it is a platform that I am passionate about and want to see grow.

So while I plan and pursue a new approach to my career - again, more about that soon - Bhaloidam will remain a major part of my focus. In fact all my planned projects revolve around it in one form or another.

So welcome to a new year and a new Zakelro! that isn't bogged down by pursuits of commercial success. I can't wait to see what we - meaning you, my community, and us - make of Bhaloidam in 2013!

____

Okay, one final Kickstarter update is in the works. In the next week or two, we should be ready to share our Kickstarter financials so you know where all the money went.

Have a safe and happy New Year's Eve. See you in 2013!


Update #43

Bhaloidam Rolling Out, Pictures Rolling In

Comment

Reports have been rolling in on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and here on Kickstarter that backers are receiving their rewards.* The feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, which makes us very happy we went with Panda GM for the manufacturing. They did an amazing job. We are loving all the pictures of people holding their Skein Packs - or miniCorvus figs - up for the camera. We even got to watch an unboxing video.

Our favorite reviews of the handbook so far have been, "A weird, appealing way to communicate a weird, appealing system," and, "Now only if I could pry the handbook out of my daughter's hands."

We've only had two shipping issues so far - one bad address and one mangled box - which is amazing. I'm not holding my breath that we're in the clear yet, but if there is a problem with your reward, please don't hesitate to send an email to bhaloidam@zakelro.com and let us know about it.

We've even sold our first retail copies of Bhaloidam! And if you find yourself needing extra Lifewheels, be sure to stop by the Bhaloidam storefront and order more. We'll be adding more merchandise slowly in the new year - some merely promotional, some gameplay enhancing (3d-printed, stackable tokens, anyone?).

Don't forget you can join the new Zakelro! communities on Facebook and Google+ to talk about your Bhaloidam experiences, ask us questions, and suggest variants. We're planning on publishing some digital supplements to the handbook dealing with Embellishments, so get your questions in now!

I like doing things in sets of nine, and that means two more Kickstarter updates before I leave you alone. We're preparing a full-disclosure financial report for the next update so that you know exactly where the money went (there will be charts, oh yes). The final post will talk about the future of Bhaloidam and Zakelro! This has been an incredible year and we foresee many more to come.

*As I write this, we just got our first overseas picture from Northern Ireland!


Update #42

Bhaloidam Roll Call!

6 comments

We're already getting reports that backers are receiving their copies of Bhaloidam! When you get yours, be sure to let us know. As part of our metamorphosis, we'll be closing down the formal Zakelro! accounts on Facebook, Google+, and Twitter in favor of more community-focused presences specifically around Bhaloidam.

So when your copy arrives, snap a picture and share it with the Bhaloidam Group on Facebook, or Tweet to @CorvusE about it with the #Bhaloidam hashtag. We'll be starting up a Google+ Community soon as well, but for now, you can toss a post at our Zakelro! page, or to me directly.

This still feels like a dream to me - thank you all so much!


578
Backers
$31,346
pledged of $27,900 goal
0
seconds to go
  • Pledge $9 or more
    You selected

    72 backers

    **E-BOOK** A PDF of the complete 72-page, full-color, comic-format Bhaloidam handbook, delivered within mere days of it being sent to the printer. (An early download of the PDF will also be available to everyone who purchases a printed copy.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $18 or more
    You selected

    28 backers

    **HANDBOOK** 1 printed copy of the 72-page, full-color, comic-format Bhaloidam handbook. (For each additional $9, add one of the following: international shipping, a LifeWheel & Token Set, or Bhaloidam poster.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $27 or more
    You selected

    10 backers

    **Child's Play** Donate Bhaloidam to hospitalized children today! 100% of every pledge that accompanies this reward will go towards providing copies of Bhaloidam Skein Packs, handbooks, and Lifewheels to the Child's Play charity.

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $27 or more
    You selected

    45 backers

    **SPINNER BUNDLE** 1 printed copy of the Bhaloidam handbook, 1 Lifewheel, set of 90 tokens, and 1 timing track pawn. (For each additional $9, add one of the following: international shipping, an extra LifeWheel & Token Set, or Bhaloidam poster.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $27 or more
    You selected

    4 backers

    **KIDS NEED TO GAME** Donate Bhaloidam to Students Today! 100% of every pledge that accompanies this reward will go towards sending Bhaloidam Skein Packs, handbooks, and Lifewheels to Kids Need to Game.

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $27 or more
    You selected

    10 backers

    **GIFT OPTION: SPINNER BUNDLE** 1 Holiday Card guaranteeing the delivery of: 1 printed copy of the Bhaloidam handbook, 1 Lifewheel, set of 90 tokens, and 1 timing track pawn. (For each additional $9, add one of the following: international shipping, an extra LifeWheel & Token Set, or Bhaloidam poster.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $45 or more
    You selected

    312 backers

    **SKEIN PACK** A boxed set containing 1 printed copy of the Bhaloidam handbook, 4 Lifewheels, set of 360 tokens, 4 timing track pawns, and a set of 3 custom dice. (For each additional $9, add one of the following: international shipping, an extra LifeWheel & Token Set, or Bhaloidam poster.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $45 or more
    You selected

    21 backers

    **GIFT OPTION: SKEIN PACK** 1 Holiday Card guaranteeing the delivery of: A boxed set containing 1 printed copy of the Bhaloidam handbook, 4 Lifewheels, set of 360 tokens, 4 timing track pawns, and a set of 3 custom dice. (For each additional $9, add one of the following: international shipping, an extra LifeWheel & Token Set, or Bhaloidam poster.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $90 or more
    You selected

    19 backers Limited (8 left of 27)

    **SPINNER PACK WITH LIMITED EDITION 3D PAWN** 1 printed copy of the Bhaloidam handbook, 1 Lifewheel, set of 90 tokens, and 1 limited edition 3d-printed Timing Track pawn printed in the likeness of Travis, Alex, or Jo--the handbook's 3 central characters. (For each additional $9 add one of the following: international shipping, an extra LifeWheel & Token Set, or Bhaloidam poster.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $180 or more
    You selected

    18 backers All gone!

    **SPINNER BUNDLE & HANDBOOK APPEARANCE** 1 printed copy of the Bhaloidam handbook, 1 Lifewheel, set of 90 tokens, a timing track pawn, and a guest appearance in 1 handbook panel as a hexaMini character modeled in your likeness. (For each additional $9 add one of the following: international shipping, an extra LifeWheel & Token Set, or Bhaloidam poster. Or add $18 to upgrade the Spinner Bundle to a Skein Pack.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $270 or more
    You selected

    5 backers Limited (4 left of 9)

    **SPINNER BUNDLE & HANDBOOK STARRING ROLE** 1 printed copy of the Bhaloidam handbook, 1 Lifewheel, set of 90 Token set, and a starring role in 3 handbook panels as a hexaMini character modeled in your likeness. (For each additional $9 add one of the following: international shipping, an extra LifeWheel & Token Set, or Bhaloidam poster. Or add $18 to upgrade the Spinner Bundle to a Skein Pack.)

    Estimated delivery:
  • Pledge $900 or more
    You selected

    3 backers All gone!

    **STORYTELLER SPECIAL** 1 printed copy of the Bhaloidam handbook, 1 Lifewheel, set of 90 tokens, a timing track pawn, and an opportunity to have Corvus create a 3-page gameplay example based on a work of your fiction. **The scene must be positive and respectful and cannot infringe on anyone else's copyrights or trademarks. You'll also need to sign an agreement that allows us to print the gameplay example in the handbook and online in exchange for an author credit for the source material and link of your choice that will appear everywhere the gameplay example is published. (For each additional $9 add one of the following: international shipping, an extra LifeWheel & Token Set, or Bhaloidam poster. Or add $18 to upgrade the Spinner Bundle to a Skein Pack.)

    Estimated delivery:
Funding period

- (45 days)