About this project
überStax is a new twist on an old idea. For years table-top, card and token games have posed challenges for some players. We've all experienced Dominos with too many tiles. Children can struggle with the manual dexterity required to manipulate a hand of cards. Disabilities due to injury or illness can prevent some people from enjoying a simple game of cards.
We've heard from experienced card players, board game players, parents, RPG gamers, and combined that feedback with our own tabletop play experience.
überStax helps address these challenges and provides other benefits.
überStax is an injection molded (prototypes were 3D printed) Universal Game Piece Holder, with a difference. With ease, you can fit the überStax racks together to build the size and orientation needed for the game pieces in play.
Pieces are molded with pins and grooves to allow Stax to be built up taller and wider than a single rack providing ample space for cards, tiles, tokens or anything else you can make fit (Smartphone? Tablet? Score sheet?).
For small games, use just 2 plates to build a single plate rack. 3 plates, allow you to go two wide, and 6 plates to go two wide and two high.
We've play tested überStax with many popular games which will be familiar to any gaming enthusiast. Some of the games include:
- Ticket to Ride
- Settlers of Catan
- Apples to Apples
- Tile Rummy
- Phase 10
- Playing cards
- Kill Doctor Lucky
- ... and many more!
With over 20 years in engineering (and much more in game playing!) - our founder (David Papp) worked on having the initial CAD designs completed, getting many prototypes made using 3D printing, and play-testing each design iteration to arrive at the current design. This has been a long process for over 1 year and we are excited to now be ready for mass production by injection molding.
There are countless ways to configure überStax pieces. They can be built horizontally and stacked vertically to accomodate any gameplay scenario or purpose. The more pieces you have, the more elaborate your configurations can be. It all starts with a strong base, which needs to expand to provide stability as more pieces are added to the configuration.
We believe that tabletop game lovers can easily integrate überStax into most tabletop games that are tile or card based. In addition, the market for people (young and old) with compromised dexterity of the hands is significant. We've got a great start using 3D printing, but it is too slow and expensive to mass produce. We need to scale to production levels. This truly necessitates the move to injection molding, and that means paying for the creation of expensive moulds.
As a result - we're turning to you - the backers of Kickstarter!
1.With the assistance of backers, get moulds built.
2.Start production of the of units with initial quantity enough to satisfy all backer pledge fulfillment.
3.Utilize balance of funding (backer funds as well as extra & new orders) to hopefully create future retail production runs.
Building the moulds is truly the get-off-the-ground point for this project. We're working with several potential partners, and it is simply a matter of funding to develop the final 'go' on the project.
DESIGN CHALLENGE (SEPT 18)
Using 3D-printing we were able to achieve solid surfaces on every side of our prototypes. All photos and videos make use of our 3D-printed prototypes. These will not be the exact finalized UberStax pieces you will receive.
While finalizing the injection mould design, it was brought to our attention that the overall thickness of the plate (front to back) will cause deformation to occur, due to shrinkage during cooling.
Ultimately, this would have caused inconsistent quality in the UberStax pieces.
The solution is to make use of a ribbed design for the back (see image below). This will help increase overall consistency and quality of the UberStax game holder pieces. There will still be strength in the pins and holes. Unfortunately though, UberStax will no longer be able to be used as effectively to create miniature shelving which relied on a flat rear surface. Miniature shelving is still possible per above photos.
DESIGN UPDATE (SEPT 22)
Extra rib added in back of plate.
* All add-ons require base pledge at the $12 reward tier and above.
1) UBERSTAX ADD-ON
-=[ $8 per additional 6-pack.
By popular request, we have add-ons to pledges so you can get extra UberStax pieces.
Each multiple of $8 in additional pledge will provide you with an extra 6-pack of UberStax. This is a blended rate that includes the UberStax with incremental additional shipping. e.g. add $16 to your pledge and get 12 extra UberStax pieces added to your reward tier.
2) STORAGE BAG ADD-ON
-=[ $4 per storage bag
By request, we have sourced large storage bags (black in color). Bags are approximately 15cm x 20cm in size (6" x 8"). They will each hold at least 12 UberStax pieces.
Each multiple of $4 in additional pledge will provide you with a black storage bag. This is a blended rate that includes the storage bag with incremental additional shipping.
To add an add-on to your pledge, follow these steps:
1) Press the 'Manage Your Pledge' button above. If you have not pledged yet, it will say 'Back this Project'.
2) Increase your pledge in the 'Pledge Amount' box by the total of the add-ons you want to add. e.g. If you want 24 extra UberStax pieces, add $32 to the pledge amount (For 4 extra 6-packs resulting in 24 extra pieces, it is 4 times $8 extra required so add $32). To add a storage bag, increase pledge by $4 for each bag.
3) After the end of the Kickstarter campaign you will receive a survey that will ask you questions. There you will be able to select how you would like the add-on pledge amount assigned. This is where you will select the extra 6-packs of UberStax and/or storage bags, also choose from available colors for each 6-pack.
Stretch Goals are great - they are our way of saying "Thanks for funding this amazing project!". We've got a few things in mind to say thanks - and we'll update with more details along the way. The short list looks something like this:
Where does the money go? Truth of the matter is - we'll use what we secure.
We've already spent time and money to build prototypes and 3D print proof of concepts. We've engaged manufacturers, and are prepared to build moulds. Funding will assist with the payment of production moulds, and in production of actual units as well. Complete funding with stretch goals met will allow us to build several colors of stax, to provide a choice to our Uber-pledgers. If stretch goals are met, a survey will confirm your shipping address along with asking for color choices (in sets of 6).
Risks and challenges
Though not our first foray into crowdfunding, this is a completely new product built from the ground up.
Accountability is critical to us. Like many of you - we have funded projects before and felt burned, so here it is up front.
Funding for this project is in no small part responsible for creating the moulds necessary to produce überStax. We've got a boatload of 3D Printed prototypes, but the prototypes require a little refinement after production. If it was just for our home games, we'd print and enjoy - but that's not what this product is about. It's about improving your gaming environment and letting others make use of this gaming accessory.
We understand that to have a mould built, tested, approved, and begin production takes time and money. We're kickstarting to assist with that process. That is the reason for the funding goal. If we succeed in reaching that goal, then you will all get your stax!
The possibility of delay with the shipments does exist if there are any issues with the moulds. We will be monitoring this closely to keep things on track.
We will have transparency with our backers by sending frequent updates to be informed of our progress, including issues and resolutions to those issues until we begin shipping.
References to any registered mark are neither an endorsement by, nor warrant of suitability or compatibility implied on behalf of said registered owners.
Mention of depiction of these marks is in good faith, and is in no way intended to imply any form of association beyond the experiences of our developers and playtesters, or possible applications for überStax.
All trademarks and copyrights are property of their respective owners.
überStax is copyrighted by Microtek Corporation.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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