About this project
Kings of Air and Steam is a pickup/deliver and route planning style game set in a steampunk setting. Players become one of 12 (14 with overfunding) characters piloting an airship to gather goods from factories and then delivering them to cities via their network of railroads.
Build up your business as a shipping magnate, and become the next King (or queen) of Air and Steam.
Why Use Kickstarter?
This is a project for funding better production values, not funding the game in and of itself. Imagine unique plastic models for each airship, more characters, and plastic crates for goods instead of basic cubes.
Thanks to our "Overfunding Goals", Kings of Air and Steam will be that much better. As more people pledge their support, your copy will be that much better. So make sure you let your friends know!
Our Pledge To You
We love and appreciate the fans of Tasty Minstrel Games. Learning from our prior experience and having some "growing pains", we promise you the following:
- Kickstarter and Retailer Preview Night copies will be released at least 1 month prior to any further release. Yes, this includes GenCon.
- No online discounts will be available on Kings of Air and Steam through June 2013, except through Kickstarter. We have contracts in place that specifically address this.
These 2 promises can be and will be kept regardless of what happens in the future. Over the past 12 months, Tasty Minstrel Games has gone on a transformative journey, join us for the transformation that will take place over the next 12 months.
After a narrow defeat in the War of 1812 America fell back under British rule. Industry grew quickly and clumsily. Dangerous factories churning out more smoke than product were isolated in the plains, far away from the overcrowded cities. The steam locomotive was invented and steel tracks webbed across the country.
It wasn’t until 1856 when Samuel Diamond, a basement tinkerer, developed the Diamond Engine and gave the world an alternative to the traditional steam drive – an alternative that sent airships screaming across the sky.
An entrepreneur named Lawrence Golding had a vision, and the Diamond Engine was his muse. He spent every last penny to build an airship with one of Samuel's prototypes. Factories continued to pop up seemingly out of nowhere, and Lawrence was the first one there to make their deliveries.
Before a railroad company could snake tracks to a new factory, Lawrence would already have an exclusive contract. The Golding Empire grew and grew, and the competition rusted in his wake.
The Diamond Engine made airships faster, but also more dangerous. Soon, airships were banned from city limits due to disastrous explosions. Golding saw this as a simple setback and learned to balance his fleet of airships with the existing railroad network.
Soon, it was an American rule: your shipments moved by Golding, or they didn’t move at all.
In 1870, the industrial world was shaken by Golding’s death. His eldest son, bitter and jealous, sold the entire business off piece by piece – shattering the mighty Golding Empire. With the very essence of how things moved around the country destroyed, the stage was set for the next candidate…
Full of ambition, every person who can get their hands on an airship has thrown their hat into the ring. The industry is instantly filled with people from all walks of life, some are:
- Flora and Bishop Kingston, shipping magnates from the Old World, cross the Atlantic to take a piece of the Empire.
- Aurelia Bayley and her automated pilot rely on the power of innovation to take their share.
- Corday McQuinn and Sebastian King, two men more familiar with clever cardplay and bluff than statemenship and business, plan to outwit the competition.
- Lawrence Golding’s own estranged son, Harvey, steps up to reclaim his father’s power.
Airships form the backbone of the industry. They go where railroads can’t, allowing factories to spring up anywhere in the country without concern for terrain or rail lines.
The skeletal frame of the old railways crisscross the land as if they were fossils of the rail barons themselves. However, the railroads are a necessary part of the industry, as the explosive Diamond Engine has been forever banned from the populous cities. Clever industrialists know that for the shipping industry to work, you need a reliable railway network to support your airships.
It’s a necessary evil, but in the end it’s only profit that matters.
General Game Flow
- Players simultaneously plan their airship movement
- In order of speed (based on distance moved and character) players execute their first move, then second move, and so on.
- After each individual move, players choose one action. Actions include (but are not limiting to) improving their airships, expanding their rail network, and route adjusting by one hexagon.
- After executing all movements and actions, the round ends after which factories produce again and prices for goods change. These are both controlled by market factors.
While the game is complete, the rules are constantly being edited and re-edited for clarity. The rulebook...
We would love to have unique plastic models for each airship, molded plastic crates instead of boring cubes, and to include some expansion material early. To print the game with these is cost prohibitive for us, so help us break through the overfunding goals below:
- 7th Team the "Mafia Guys" - $25,000
- Molded plastic airships (one type only) - $40,000
- Molded plastic thematic crates instead of boring cubes - $50,000
- Molded plastic airships (unique to each team) - $80,000
Thus, as you spread the word about this fabulous game, yours will be even cooler... So, start telling your friends.
All shipping for supporters of this project is 100% free within the United States. Shipping costs are per package, not per copy. For other locations, see below:
- Canada = $25
- Non-Canada Non-USA = $50
Expected Delivery Time
Thanks to our experience Kickstarting and publishing Eminent Domain, we have firsthand knowledge of many of the unexpected delays that pop up during production and how to avoid them.
We have begun artwork creation, have an internal timeline with milestones to verify that we are on schedule, and fully expect to deliver Kickstarter copies by early July 2012.
Springboard Seal of Quality
The Springboard Seal of Quality is your assurance that a new game project is worth your time and attention. All titles approved for Springboard campaigns are vetted by the game professionals at Game Salute.
Retailer Preview Nights
Retailers will have a limited-time opportunity to participate in Preview Nights, where retailers demo and sell advanced copies to their customers. Delivery will be at the same time as Kickstarter copies.
If you are "on the fence" for pledging support, then get your retailer on board and try before you buy. Have your stores email firstname.lastname@example.org about this opportunity.
Select Store Exclusive
Kings of Air and Steam will be available through local retailers and the Tasty Minstrel Games website. It will not be available through any online discount retailers.
This is to support the local retailers that choose to support Kings of Air and Steam. Without this relationship the MSRP would need to be $59.95. This allows us to drop the MSRP to $49.95
This Kickstarter project will be the only place that you will be able to get an additional discount for a long time. So choose a reward, combine with friends, and make a pledge now.
While the game is complete, the rules are constantly being edited and re-edited for clarity. The http://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0079/2102/files/Kings_of_Air_and_Steam_-_Rules_-_V5.0.5.docx…...
"Kings of Air and Steam" is a Game Salute Select Store Exclusive. Which means that every retailer that buys it signs a contract that prohibits them from selling the game online (or mail order) at a discount.
After that, it is easy to control myself, at least in the absence of chocolate, licorice, and ice cream.
"Eminent Domain" took a long time to deliver, how do you plan to deliver "Kings of Air and Steam" by July of 2012?
When we started Eminent Domain on Kickstarter, there was no artwork started, and we scrambled to get together the artists after it funded. Additionally, we learned with our manufacturing partner, Panda Games Manufacturing, how to avoid the problems we have with Eminent Domain last time.
For "Kings of Air and Steam", we have mapped out delivery dates for molded plastic bits specs, wooden bits specs, and final artwork delivery. In addition to this, we have an artwork schedule mapped out with bi-weekly milestones to know that we are on track to deliver in time.
Each of these delivery dates provides a decent amount of cushion for potential delays. If we are falling behind, then we should know about it early and be able to hustle and catch up.
Is this really an FAQ? Probably not, but while you are reading this, you should totally sign up. All the cool kids are doing it...
For supporting "Kings of Air and Steam" on Kickstarter, you will be getting a discount that others will not get, you will get the game early (same time as preview night retailers), and you will get your name in the rulebook as a Kickstarter supporter.
As for getting bling, make sure the overfunding levels are achieved and all copies of "Kings of Air and Steam" could include an additional team to play (Mafia guys as we lovingly refer to them), unique custom plastic minis for each teams airships, and molded plastic crates instead of wooden cubes.
Preview Nights are your opportunity to get a free copy of "Kings of Air and Steam" (with purchase of 1 full case) at the same time that Kickstarter supporters get their copies. You will get the chance to run demos and solicit pre-orders for when the bulk of the remaining copies start shipping out.
Contact Game Salute to learn more about participation:
Of course, have you ever known a dragon to be without something as powerful as a name? This is a dragon, we are talking about. His name is "Dargon".
Dargon was thus named because when we had plush versions of him made, that is how the box was marked... Dargon...
Overfunding goals are thresholds that we have set, where once reached all copies of "Kings of Air and Steam" will permanently upgraded to a new level of awesome.
For example, this could be an additional team to play (Mafia guys as we lovingly refer to them), unique custom plastic minis for each teams airships, and molded plastic crates instead of wooden cubes.
At lower levels of funding and sales, it unfortunately does not make financial sense to deck out the game. The reason "Kings of Air and Steam" is on Kickstarter is so that we can hit these overfunding levels and make it the best possible game! So pledge early and pledge often, and tell your friends...
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