Hello Backers & Friends!
Here’s your monthly update on Illimat. We’ll share the important highlights and then more details in the Production Blog below.
Our game production process continued its slow but steady forward movement last month with the arrival of our digital proofs from our game manufacturer. With the help from SMOG design, we were able to review and return edits in just a few days. The hot news this morning was that our pre-production copy of the game & expansion will be completed by the end of next week and then flown to our hot hands and excited eyes to review.
In other production news, we also received the test pressing for the “How To Play Illimat” vinyl album and added a few design details to the jacket and insert we think you are going to love. Production on The Captain's Illimat deluxe editions will begin shortly as well as our pins, posters, and tote bags.
As we wait for the manufacturing process, we’re working on coordinating events for The Decemberists Travelers Rest festival in Missoula, an Indianapolis event that’s soon to be announced that coincides with GenCon, as well as events for DragonCon in Atlanta and PAX Unplugged in Philadelphia. Once we know our shipment dates we’ll be adding additional dates around the US on our launch road tour.
Continue reading if you would like to hear more details on production.
Jenn & Keith
In this month's production blog I’ll share some of the things we ran into on the digital proofs for the game, the vinyl How to Play Illimat record, and a change in scope we made with the packaging of our pins.
To deliver all of the rewards for this Kickstarter, we’re working with five different manufacturers. Each product/manufacturer has a different timeline and we’re working towards the goal of having all of the items in the warehouses around the same time to ship together. The game and expansion takes by far the longest and is the most paramount- so anytime an edit or request comes from them it’s a drop-everything-and-address-it moment. Thankfully, there were only a few things that required editing out of the many files we had to review. One of the edits was to change the wording on the player info cards. There are four of these cards in the deck and they provide an overview of the order of play. We had originally written “Draw a Card” as the final step, but we realized that it’s more accurate to say “ Draw back up to 4 cards”. Another edit was something I started calling “Stargate”, which was that the printer was seeing white boxes around the star symbols on all of the cards but it was not visible in Adobe Indesign, where the design is made. Glen at SMOG Design figured it out and made the updates. This fix & the whole speed of the digital approval process are a real testament to how important it is to hire an outside graphic designer when making a game. If your budget allows, hire one that works on projects full time. It feels like something you can do, but when it comes to the print process, best practices, and the final product it’s worth it. What you spend on a professional is worth it in the amount of time and delays you would have if you did it homegrown.
Record Test Press
Recently, Keith & I purchased our first vinyl record in twenty something years, Mental Illness by Aimee Mann. We were delighted about the design of the record jacket. Although we’re only making a few hundred copies of our “How to Play Illimat” record, we wanted to make sure you’d feel that same delight when opening it just as with the game. I don't want to give away all of the details we designed on this, but I can say is that it now includes an additional album sleeve and colored vinyl. We received the test press for our “How To Play Illimat” record last week and production should start soon.
We originally didn't plan to package our pins with cardboard backs. However, after seeing an illustration of the Society of Luminaries hierarchy that is included in the Variants & Apocrypha booklet it seemed like a good idea to give the packaging of the pins a little more polish and sense of place. We’ll plan on making other Society of Luminaries pins for other ranks in the future and as well identifying the different ways pins can be achieved or purchased.
In our next production blog, I’ll talk a little more about our US road tour we’re planning including game conventions. If you’d like to propose a stop or promotional event on our journey please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for supporting this project!