Designer Edition - Some progress and a few cool pics!
Ten days ago we received our first complete set of miniatures for the Designer Edition.
Here's what a complete set looks like, once all laid out:
Initially, we wanted some of these minis painted; but we quickly ruled this out once we saw the first crappy results...
This was so far removed from the paint quality we wanted (the one on these $ 100 figures) that we opted to spend the money on producing the figures as high-quality possible instead: they will all be unpainted poly-resin minis, rather than poorly painted PVC plastic ones.
While they might be a bit more fragile as a result (i.e. if your dragon attempts to fly, try not to land it on its wings), the level of details poly-resin allows is something to behold!
Some of these started as 3D computer models
while others were first brought to life from putty patiently sculpted to match Miguel's illustrations
The final minis will all come spray-painted with a grey undercoat that truly brings the details out and should make life easier for those of you with the talent (or friends!) to paint them all.
All this hasn't been without its shares of issues, however. Once all the sculpts had been validated, we discovered that the combination of a slightly larger chamfer on the wood tokens (we'd switched to a different manufacturer to get two-passes heat printing to bring the colors alive) along with a tiny shrink of the production figures compared to the sculpts models made some fits a bit too tight for real play!
Nothing that can't be fixed, fortunately, but another cycle to go through.
The other components are finally coming together too. We recently received the Small World-stamped purses in which players will stash away their hard-won Metal coins.
These purses are made of micro-fiber, so no animals, not even this lamb, were harmed in the process!
We also received a complete set of wooden tokens in lots of plastic bags (the Army boxes will be printed somewhere else in Germany), some flocked vacuum trays and a turn marker sample.
Cyrille is busy putting the finishing touches to the Races and Special Banners, whose die cut needs to tweaked to match the larger scale of everything.
We're also in the process of pricing out nice wooden boxes from a variety of manufacturers, now that we've got a better handle on who will manufacture what, and how it will be packaged. Our current thinking is that this box will contain 4 trays:
- The heaviest one, at the bottom, will contain the purses and their metal coins, all the race and special power banners, some tokens that don't fit in Army boxes (Behemoths, Hordes of...), the turn marker and reinforcement die, the maps super-sized maps for all player combinations and the Pocket Encyclopedia.
- On top of this tray will be stacked two trays made of hard plastic with a transparent cover, each containing 2 x 7 Army boxes.
- Topping this off will be all 65 minis, in another tray of hard plastic with another transparent cover.
Each tray will be about 375 x 500 mm in size, which conditions the size of our wooden box, a very rough sketch of which shows it might open like this:
So where does this put us, delivery-wise? With final manufacturing not starting until June, it's still hard to pin down a precise date; our current best guess is late Q3/early Q4.
This is significantly later than the May target we'd originally promised; unfortunately both the work we've done internally (for the maps, the encyclopedia, etc.) and the iterations we've had to go through with manufacturers have taken way longer than we initially thought.
We're sorry for this, but hope you will find it worth the extra wait!
In the meantime, we will finally start shipping the Pocket Encyclopedias to all Orcs and Spiderine backers sometime next week (the container holding them is currently somewhere close to Indiana and due for delivery later this week to our main warehouse, from where copies will be sent to our South Dakota warehouse for shipping to backers).
And our digital team has been busy wrapping up a major update of the Small World software, version 2.5, which will go in beta on April 28.