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The Settlers of Catan board we've all been waiting for. Portable, affordable, and true to Catan craftsmanship.
The Settlers of Catan board we've all been waiting for. Portable, affordable, and true to Catan craftsmanship.
5,331 backers pledged $361,030 to help bring this project to life.

Recent updates

Photos

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BackerKit

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Hi everyone,

We're having an issue with the BackerKit software where people who pledged additional money for international shipping are viewed by BackerKit as having that much money to receive additional items, rather than as being international backers. We can't send it out until we fix this issue, but I'll keep everyone updated daily until we do. Thanks. 

Good news update

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Hi everyone,

First, some important news:

http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2016/01/asmodee-becomes-board-gamings-new-monster-acquires-english-rights-to-catan/

For a quick synopsis, Mayfair Games no longer owns the rights to Catan. Asmodee now owns the English rights to Catan.

Last week I met with the US Director of Catan, whom I still have a great relationship with, and had a really positive conversation over lunch. It was very nice to regroup and reconnect with him after all the negativity with Mayfair. We both felt relieved to be able to just start right back up where we left off. I'm so glad that our team encouraged me not to go public with the details surrounding last year's issues out of respect for Catan and their team. It allowed us to start over from scratch and leave the past in the past.

It will be a bit of time for the transition from Mayfair to Asmodee to occur, so it will be some time before we obtain a licensing deal with Catan but I'm hopeful that we'll be able to work with their new team to create cool new products and improve the distribution of our current products. It still kills me when I get emails from fans in Australia and the UK who want to purchase our products and can't because international shipping is so expensive. Hopefully in the future that won't be an issue.

Production Update

Our wooden Collector's Series production has been abysmally slow for the month of January. Some progress has been made, but compared to the previous rate it feels like virtually nothing has happened. There were several delays in meeting with him and after meeting with the manufacturer on Thursday, I sat down with him and had a frank conversation regarding the slowness and the source of it. He was pretty honest and said that he got discouraged late last year and basically lost all motivation to manufacture. After a productive conversation he asked me to let the backers know that he apologizes for allowing himself to be discouraged and that he will be working every day to complete the fulfillment. I will be driving in to meet with him every other day or so to hold him accountable and ensure production is moving forward.

All other Kickstarter Production

All other Kickstarter production will begin after we complete our BackerKit process. Seafarers production will actually begin before we complete it, since we're finishing up our core business production for Amazon next week. We will be using BackerKit to formally unite both of our Kickstarters and make our fulfillment process simpler and more efficient.

During the BackerKit process everyone will be able to do the following:

1. Update your shipping address

2. Add-on additional pledge rewards. We'll have the following products available as add-ons:

Resource card banks Seafarers Catan Board Catan Board Gaming Bag Knight of Catan T-Shirt Important Note: We will not have any of the Collector's Series products available for sale again until we have a firm deliverable deadline from our manufacturer and are confident that delivery will be on time.

3. During the BackerKit process, you'll see what products you have coming your way. Those backers who pledged greater than $100 during the first Kickstarter have one resource card bank set coming. We've postponed this shipment until after the BackerKit is complete for simplicity.

However, any backers of the first Kickstarter at greater than $100 levels who are international backers will receive a $10 refund because the cheapest international shipping available for the card banks is $15, so it doesn't make sense for us to do that. If you are an international backer at the $100 Complete level itself, you'll still receive the card bank set because it will be included in your Seafarers Board Box.

4. The BackerKit will be sent out February 8th and will last one week. This will allow us to streamline that process, and begin production as soon as possible.

I should also note that I no longer read Kickstarter comments, as they've become a place to feed on negativity and I don't have time for negativity. Thanks for understanding.

Core Business Update

We've decided to transition to an Amazon-only fulfillment, which we're very excited about. What this means is that all of our products will eventually be available on Amazon Prime. This is good for a lot of reasons.

1. Free 2-Day Shipping!!

2. Amazon simply provides a superior customer experience. Amazon has fulfillment and customer service absolutely dialed in, far better than we ever could. During this past Christmas, our fulfillment provider Shipwire experienced order turn-around delays of up to 9. Days. During Christmas! This was of course completely unacceptable. We were able to meet every Christmas Eve deadline for those orders which we promised Christmas Delivery but sometimes it required manually shipping extra boards overnight in order to make sure they had a board during Christmas.

3. Much simpler business processes. We'll now only need to ship to Amazon warehouses. Amazon's inbound shipment processes are extraordinarily simple and streamlined, so this will ensure our inventory levels are matched to demand more effectively.

We're looking forward to 2016, it's set to be a great year. :-)

Holiday update

9 likes

Hi everyone,

We just shipped out the last shipments for Christmas earlier today, so I wanted to send out an update on the progress made thus far before I head out for the holidays.

The new Catan Bag sample is awesome, the requested changes were sewn spot on. Here are a few pictures of the changes.

The bag is 1" longer which makes the flap come up at a right angle and fit the boards perfectly.
The bag is 1" longer which makes the flap come up at a right angle and fit the boards perfectly.
The number token canister holster fits them all well now.
The number token canister holster fits them all well now.

 Here are a few images of the bag fully filled and ready for travel.

One other option for these pockets is to store each player's building cost card behind the velvet part bags.
One other option for these pockets is to store each player's building cost card behind the velvet part bags.
The hex layouts are on the top row: Base 3-4, SF 3-4, T & B, E & P 3-4, E & P 5-6. Second row is Base 5-6, SF 5-6
The hex layouts are on the top row: Base 3-4, SF 3-4, T & B, E & P 3-4, E & P 5-6. Second row is Base 5-6, SF 5-6
It rolls together nicely once it's all filled up
It rolls together nicely once it's all filled up
The new carry handle is much more centered over the CG of the bag and more convenient to carry
The new carry handle is much more centered over the CG of the bag and more convenient to carry

 Seafarers Mold

The Seafarers mold now works correctly, which is a huge relief. Here's a photo of the finish of some of the parts.

The production schedule for the Seafarers Boards will begin with fulfilling this Kickstarter first and then the second Kickstarter. Everyone gets back to the shop the first week in January, so we'll start back up around then.

Ultimate Boxes

Our manufacturer has made a bit of progress since our last update, but the rush of making bamboo boards for Christmas did put a dent in the speed. After the holidays he should be back up to normal speed on Kickstarter production. The lids are all lasered though, I like how they turned out.

As a small example of the details that go into making this box, above is a photo of the box right after it comes out of the press. The dovetails, look pretty good, I thought. However, our manufacturer fills and finish sands every box so that it looks like this:

There are also a few other details that are done to the track the lid slides through, which weren't on the prototype and the lid slide is super crispy now.

Whenever we make the new boxes for the Settlers Boxes, these will all have the new slick slides on them, so everyone will get the same goodness.

Work at this shop will also pick up in January.

Will update in the New Year. Hope everyone has a great holiday and time with their family.

Seafarers Mold Update

8 likes

Hi everyone,

I got an email yesterday that the mold was complete and ready to go. I setup a freight shipment for it today, but after double checking the photos he sent I'm a little concerned about their detail work on the small tri-corner detail walls.

They took the texture way down, it matches all our other board parts now (at least from what I can tell from the photos), and claim to have removed all of the undercuts so we'll just have to run test parts once the mold gets here and see how it goes.

I had coffee last week with one of the local Kickstarter creators, Elan TImmons. His first project the KeyZ is one of my favorite EDC products, and he's created another every-day carry gem called the PolyTool which complements it nicely.

It's just the right blend of functionality and unobtrusiveness. The main use I've found for it since is to make my keys easier to pull out of my pocket.

I wear fairly fitted pants usually, so it's nice to just pull up on the PolyTool instead of awkwardly digging around in my pants pocket.

(Note: Sometimes when I share Kickstarters which I think are cool, I get comments along the lines of "How dare you share other Kickstarters here, you spammy hack. I bet you got paid handsomely to shill this, no thank you, I'm not going to be fooled by your marketing trickery. *fetches pitchfork to throw at Bill"

l have NO financially affiliated role to the above Kickstarter nor to any Kickstarter I've ever shared. I have never received money for sharing Kickstarters I think are cool here. Ever. Ever, ever. I share them because I think they're awesome and because people who are creating and bringing new things into the world are deserving of support, and that's it. If I don't think it's awesome and worth supporting, I don't share it.)

Update

9 likes

Hi everyone,

We're redoing our warehouse right now. RCH shipments have been on pause for the past two weeks. If you pledged additional money for the RCH's at any level at any level below $100, or pledged a standard pledge above $100, your RCH's will be shipping soon.

The Seafarers mold is still in the process of being fixed by the polisher. They were willing to fix their error, which was nice.

I'm behind on our KS messages, so if you've messaged with shipment issues or anything, please have patience, we'll always make it right. We're redoing both our warehouse and our entire retail distribution network right now, so we have a lot on our plate.

Mayfair told our retail distributor for the US market not to buy from us, so now no one can purchase our boards at their local board game store. Not to worry, though, we're setting up a direct dealer network, so hopefully next year that will change and people will be able to walk down to their local store and get a board and some of our other gear more easily.

All for now, thanks.