Share this project


Share this project

Cooperative board game set in a nightmare-horror world. Fight for your life, scavenge, craft, and band together to survive.
Cooperative board game set in a nightmare-horror world. Fight for your life, scavenge, craft, and band together to survive.
5,410 backers pledged $2,049,721 to help bring this project to life.

Lantern Festival - Canceled

Posted by Kingdom Death (Creator)

As of this moment, I have canceled the Lantern Festival.



This was a very hard decision to make. It comes from a place of utmost respect and dedication to the brand... not common sense or practical business money-making logic.

Everyone is being issued a $45 refund (per pledged lantern festival) via paypal. We are covering the -11% kickstarter fees that we lost from funds collected during the 2012-2013 campaign. If you do not have a paypal account at that email address, you can easily set one up by following the instructions on your refund email from paypal.

WE DO NOT SUPPORT THE SALE OF PLEDGES. If you sold your pledge or bought a pledge from another individual, you must contact them. We can only send the refund to the official email address we have on file.

If you have any issues, need help, would prefer store credit or would simply like us to keep the money and waive your refund, please visit our support page at for more information and to contact us.

I was unsatisfied with the expansion. It failed to live up to the Kingdom Death standard. In the future, it is likely that I will create another product that uses the same miniatures but it will not be the Lantern Festival I pitched in the 2012 - 2013 kickstarter. I love Kingdom Death and the sad fact is that we are all stuck with a crazy creator!

There are a lot of reasons. Most importantly, it failed to live up to my expectations.

That’s not a good enough reason!
I agree. I’ll elaborate. It all ties back to the essential experiences that make up Kingdom Death: Monster. Overwhelming odds, tactical strategy, evolution, surprises, accessibility, hard developmental choices and building survivor miniatures. Lantern Festival had some, but NOT all of these things.

It was pitched to EXTEND the current timeline, meaning only the small fraction of players who completed the core game could enjoy it, killing its accessibility. Most of our player base has yet to finish playing all the current expansions, which makes extending the main campaign in the way the Lantern Festival was pitched, a less than ideal choice.

Since there were no armor sets (just the twilight cloak), it led to a significant lack of accomplishment and not much evolution. The game felt incomplete when you weren’t chasing a new armor set or making hard decisions about the best gear you could make from a hand of resources. It left Lantern Festival without that feeling of evolution.

KD:M is a series of hard-fought, uphill climbs and moments of respite to recover or push the development of your settlement. Imagine a titan’s staircase. Your gaming group is trying to tackle it. After a vertical climb, you get an easier horizontal walk to recovery and start to plan the next vertical challenge. Lantern Festival lacked those horizontal moments, wherein you made major developmental choices that would affect the overall outcome.

Without all those elements in concert, it could never be a proper encore to the spectacular performance of KD:M.

To be a proper encore It would need to be more like a new core set, with the focus of the settlement shifted to be more macro, dealing with a developing town instead of a small settlement. Since that is not what was pitched, nor is it what we worked toward on its first development cycle, I am refunding everyone instead of releasing content I can’t stand behind. The realization of what this particular part of the Kingdom Death world needed to be, was simply to large in scope for the funds that were raised to create it.

Lastly, it was also just plain crazy to write a game extension BEFORE the game and its tons of expansions were in the hands of players playing the game.

Call it vanity, creator responsibility (or lack thereof), or proof of my utmost respect for our fans and player base. This was a very hard (and very expensive) decision to make. I could have just put something “all-right” out and kept the money.

When playing it safe, pulling punches and putting out content that doesn’t make me pee a little with excitement becomes the norm. I’ll let you know to the tune of “Sellout” by Reel Big Fish, silly trumpets and all. I’ll “skank” my way over to the bank and slam dunk the deposit box!

Now onto the rest of it.

Card Pack
Last campaign, we kickstarted the plastic production of many single miniatures. Some of these were included in the Survival Level reward box and others, like the Messengers and crossover projects were pledged for separately. We created challenge scenarios and released a PDF collection of them with the promise that we'd later print a physical card pack of the final versions for their gear. The challenge scenarios ended up having little to do with the core KD:M experience and while many fans appreciate them, it was clear that future development should be steered in a different direction.

We started a new round of plastic production, re-introducing several of the models again, but this time with much more interesting and campaign involved rules. I promised that we would put together a card pack that contained these new assets, for fans that already have the miniatures from the first campaign.

SO! We will be combining all of this stuff + the newly developed gear cards and assets from the miniatures that are still missing them (the messengers, etc) Into one larger card pack that will be available on our store as promised. Because I want to ensure all the content is meaningful, we were not able to complete them all in time for this update. But I expect to have it ready early next year. It is going to be printed by a more reliable printer so that the card sizes and weight remain consistent with the game cards.

This is the last outstanding part of our campaign. Although I admit I am mixed to classify it as such, since its all NEW development based on player feedback from the game and the expansions all being out in the wilds for some time. Ultimately making it more work, but better quality than it would have been. The price of the card pack will be our raw cost + shipping. We are not aiming to make a dime off of it.

They Await The King T-shirt


We created tshirts to commemorate the cancellation of the Lantern Festival! If you would prefer Kingdom Death to keep your $45 and put it towards future developments, please feel free to pick up a shirt or 2! We appreciate, how much you appreciate us and our dedication to quality without cutting any corners.

Art Book
Joe has put together a pretty fantastic 100 page digital art book for our $1+ pledge level! We decided to keep it focused on the core game and to show off assets that were cropped or printed on the smaller side of things. Download it here!


Kara Black Paiting Guide
Video Painted by Elizabeth Beckley and filmed by Eldritch Studios LLC, we present our “upgraded” Kara Black flesh tone painting guide as a video! 


Aya Painting Guide

 The Aya Painting Guide by Alberto Gil Lopez.

Flower Knight Painting Guide


The Flower Knight painting guide by Thomas David (the incredible talent who sculpted the miniature!).

Starting from that fated campaign launch day in 2012 this has been and continues to be one incredible journey. With the help of thousands of people, I made my humble dream into a reality. How many would-be creators get the chance to realize their (insane) ambition? To work, and work and work and work and work and struggle, struggle, struggle. Refusing to accept anything but the best that could be mustered! It was intense, incredible and soul wrenching all at the same time.

I used to imagine it was just me, on a desperate personal journey. Sword at my side and lantern in hand. There was an overwhelming enemy to defeat and I had no idea how to find it or how to beat it. Would it consume me, or would I somehow just barely, scrape by with a win.

As the campaign came to a close and the work really began, this image in my mind began to change. At my side were loyal companions, poor souls I had convinced to join me on this journey that would most likely end in madness or death (Anna, you are the fucking best).

It’s not often I get the chance to stop, take a breather and turn around. And here I am, doing it right now and again, that image in my mind has changed. It’s not just Anna and a select few at my side, there is an entire army at our backs. (That’s you guys, the backers and the fans!)

Sure there are dissenting voices and moments when I wondered if the entire thing was worth it. There are also those that have picked up my spirit, streamed endless game sessions online, painted their entire set better than i could dream of, created fan art, made online comics, written an in character diary, or greeted me at gencon in Kingdom Death cosplay, or shown me their White Lion tattoo! It’s way bigger than a humble creator such as myself could ever expect it to be.

And so I face ahead, the future of Kingdom Death, with thousands of eyes on my and our small teams back. The feeling of so many people watching our next move is intense. I can’t speak of confidence, whatever money could be earned or lost, or what place KD has or doesn't have in the gaming world at large. As of this moment, all I see is an open horizon of excitement filled with countless possibilities.

Thank you so much for the past 4 years. Thanks for playing my game. Thanks for making a huge line day 1 of gencon and getting me in trouble with convention security!


KD:M Kickstarter 2
On November 25th, Black Friday. We will be launching our 2nd Kingdom Death: Monster campaign. The focus of the campaign will start on a reprint of the sold out Kingdom Death: Monster core set with an 1.4 ruleset. (Current version of the game is 1.31). An upgrade pack with the rulebook and updated cards will be available for existing fans.

Beyond that my lips are sealed. Except for this tiny teaser of course.


Jules Halligan, Alex Herbert, and 97 more people like this update.


Only backers can post comments. Log In
    1. Salvador Bernadó Sala

      When I saw the title of this update my gaming spirit sunk a bit into darkness.
      I really was looking forward to the expansion.
      To see what other things awaited our settlements, to discover those big cities of legend, to fight new enemies...
      Alas! This won't happen but, at least I'm glad you preferred to cancel it than just make money of an expansion that didn't work.
      I hope we will see the Scribe, the King and the Great Game Hunters later on another expansion.
      Looking forward to see Kingdom Death 2 and what's new for both new and old players.
      May the lantern light shine on your settlement forever.

    2. Missing avatar

      Dunadin777 on

      Love the new Survival of the Fittest card, and super hopeful that the Lantern Festival will make it into the next Kickstarter as an expansion for a sequel campaign--possibly an outcome where your settlement is large and prosperous enough to become one of the villages that manages to thrive amidst the horror.

      My $45 is going to wait eagerly for the next campaign, and probably a paycheck or two. I'm trying to brace myself for the new prices of expansions in this next campaign--as I'm certain we won't benefit from the same scope and quality creep we all got to cash in on this time!

    3. Rascarcapac on

      The cancelation of the lantern festival is a hard but respectful decision. I'm impatient to have the special character cards and all the new stuff that will be available during the next KS campaign.
      I love playing monster! So many things and items to discover!

    4. dan - Zero Presence on

      It's probably for the best. Though I am a little disappointed. Tough decision for Adam & co. but I believe what he says and the reasons given.

    5. Missing avatar

      J Durrant on

      Survival of the fittest protects you from the bone witch :) unless she is added by the heat event :(

    6. Raevyn Fletcher on

      As stated in the support submission, I fully support your decision of quality of product over quantity. I am saddened as this was one of the expansions I wasmost looking foward to(even held off doing any play of the game till it released). Looks like its time to start my campaign. I hope we may see this expansion in some form in the future.

      I also tried to apply for store credit rather than a refund(having cancelled the paypal account linked to the kickstarter awhile ago), i got back a weird bit of code back from the support page:

      Notice: Undefined index: lanternfestival-sub-support-group in /home5/kingdot1/public_html/support-kd/support.php on line 11

      As i dont want to flood the support with extra tickets ill await what is going on here.

    7. Ronald Wanders on

      I respect your decision Adam, it must not have been easy to make a choice like that.
      But if you feel that the expansion didn't live up to the expectations set by yourself and our experiences with the game itself, then that's probably for the best.
      I've grabbed a shirt for myself, so you get a chunk of the pledged amount back.

      I'm really looking forward to the new Kickstarter, as I'm really interested in what you've come up with in addition to helping to fund the reprint obviously (the updated rules will be nice).
      As for your tease... That is a really nice archer miniature, I'm curious what it will be related to.

    8. Brian Moran on

      Was looking forward to the Scribe :( But its understandable and I hope KS2 is a little more on time :P.

    9. Highlord Tamburlaine, Luxurious Reptile

      Hope we can still get a Watcher Cloak Armor set somehow.

    10. biggles on

      Who can I contact about the PayPal? Its all Chinese and when I go in says problem with the PayPal account....but I'm ok with the refund if I can get it...

    11. Neilzebub on

      Sucks that I'll have to wait to get The King into the game, but I can respect the decision to hold off for a better product. Thanks for refunding it, though. I'll be looking forward to giving that money back in the next KS.

    12. Thom on

      While a bit sad to see the Festival cancelled, I cannot fault your logic and desire to deliver a product-and I'd dare say an experience- to the community and player base for this. I have honestly not even been able to play the game, but it's something that a friend and I are always talking about when we are at work, and the game has kept interest stirring more than projects. So, I hope you'll one day be able to create the Festival to your standards =)
      If there is one thing I am disappointed in, it's actually the Art of Death, but I think it's because I was expecting and hoping it would contain art from the Core game as well as every expansion thus far, perhaps even with lore about the world. Still great work, but let me just say that I would absolutely love to see a Tome of KD art and lore bits =3 Seriously, I'd buy a 300+ page book of the art in a heart beat!

      If there is one thing I'm disappointed in it would have to be the amount presented in the Art of Death,

    13. Michael Salt on

      The King is dead, long live the King!

    14. Lawrence Long on

      Of course you will, Poots just gave you $45 back to spend on it.

    15. Solaris on

      I'll be back for KD2 campaign!

    16. Lawrence Long on

      Why is there no option to still receive the models? I suspect there is more to this than it not living up to your standards.

    17. Mark Handford on

      Sad we won't be seeing lantern festival soon, but glad you didn't push out a lackluster product. Very grateful you issued everyone a full refund, I'm hoping to see new expansions in the upcoming kickstarter hopefully including a revamped "lantern festival" which I'd happily back at a more appropriate cost.
      Until then, "they await the king" t-shirt shirt has been purchased, thanks so much for such an amazing game.

    18. GAv on

      Honestly have to say that I'm really bummed about this cancellation. I was really looking forward to those miniatures.

    19. Anton Kuchman on

      Sad to see the Festival go, but hope to see it in the future fully realized as you intend.
      I commend your conduct on the matter, the entire campaign and your amazing work that I have now completely engrossed two separate groups of friends in.
      Here is to another wild ride 19 days from now.

    20. katie on

      I understand where you are coming from a game play play/quality point of view. But as someone who bought this expansion mostly for the really cool minis I must admit to disappointment. I really really wanted that scribe. But thats life.

    21. MRiley on

      Aww :( But the game is great! My group just finished our first run through of it and adored it.

      Already got my refund I noticed, so thanks a lot! Love the game, love the product, and you'll be getting lots more of my business.

      I'll be watching for you on black friday!

    22. Adnapoleon Choudhaparte on

      Very disappointed that the festival is cancelled but I can't complain too much as yes, we too have failed to defeat the watcher so far. We haven't even tried dragon king. I want to complain that I've missed out on something but I wouldn't have actually experienced the content for another year so nothing to get upset about for me.

      Rest assured that $45 is going straight into KDM:Kickstarter2.
      Would have considered buying the T-shirt but only if it said "I ordered the Lantern Festival but all Poots gave me was this crappy T-Shirt"

      Seriously. I'd buy that shirt.

    23. Pop Fugitive

      Honest, sensible, and brilliant. The best Kickstarter I have ever backed and my already off the chart level of respect has only increased.

    24. Octavio Arango on

      Well, it's sad that the expansion isn't happening, but I'm happy with the refund. Now if I could only figure out a way to store all the miniatures, ESPECIALLY teh large ones like the phoenix and the dragon king... :V

    25. CashWiley on

      Wicked sad about the epic Lantern expansion! So much awesome I was hoping to get.

      On the other hand, looking forward to the new form those minis and the content takes in the future. And all the new amazing stuff coming up in a few weeks!


    26. Vhalantru on

      This Kickstarter has been such a journey. For the longest Kickstarter it has delivered with better results than anything else I've backed. Thanks for that Adam. Rest assured those $45 will be going right into KS2 with the full confidence in what you do. I'll be looking forward to seeing the king and scribe again in the future at some point and definitely getting a tshirt when they show up.

    27. Missing avatar

      Mathieu Perreault-Dorion on

      Sad to hear, but I think you've handled it well. I hope the miniatures will come back (especially the Watcher Cloak equipment) in some form in a future expansion.

    28. alendrel ~~Awaits the King~~ on

      As someone that back as much for the models as for the game elements, this is extraordinarily disappointing.

    29. Edward Farkhiev on

      This double sucks for me, I never got my Herald of Death items either =(

    30. Andrew Iverson

      Sad to see it go, but have to admit you handled it well. Had other kickstarters raise far over goal, then not deliver anything, and offer less in return.

    31. Teamski

      That really blows.

    32. SVR The Boy on

      In agreement with everyone else. Sad to see the festival go but totally understand. Will be here on the 25th at 12:01 to wait to see what craziness you have in store for us.

    33. Jordan Gledhill on

      Is there any way to put that money into different expansions at the original Kickstarter price? I wanted the Lantern Festival expansion for minis more than for the content. And having passed on some of the other expansions in favor of this one, I am now quite upset about the cancellation of this expansion. I've supported every decision you've made up to this point. The amount of work put into the game to make it as good as it is, regardless of the time, I was supportive of it. But I can't help but feel slightly cheated at this decision. If I could put the $45 back into the KD:M to get some of the other expansions at the price they were available at the time of the original campaign, I would feel a lot better about this.

    34. Missing avatar

      CDDW on

      There are a million ways this could have been handled, but this was the classiest. Thanks for the best KS ever, time to check "delivered" and get ready for 19 days from now!

    35. Xeno Pepper on

      Very sad that the Lantern Festival was cancelled, but the utmost respect for how you informed us and refunded everyone who pledged towards it. Thank you Adam, you are amazing and have made this my best Kickstarter experience to date!

    36. Tom D.B. on

      Sad to see this is over. No festival. But I understand this was always a labor of love. I'm more than happy with the content and quality of the game as it stands now. Hope the 2nd kickstarter will be as amazing as the first one was. Cya then!

    37. Missing avatar

      Chris Laine on

      Well, it's disappointing to not get the lantern festival but I'm happy that you have the integrity to put quality ahead of money. I look forward to seeing what new surprises you have in store for us with the new Kickstarter.

    38. Ramon Gomez on

      Hey look! Survival of the Fittest actually does something useful now. :)