Posts Tagged ‘Kickstarter’

FAQ and Status Update

Posted: February 25, 2015 in News
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I’ve been getting a few questions about the buildings and availability, so I’ll give you some more details about where production stands and what still needs to happen.

I’m really honoured that people are so interested in buying my products – I hate to keep you waiting, but please rest assured that I’m working as quickly as I can to get them into your hands. I’m as eager to get this going as you are!

If you have any questions that this post doesn’t answer, please let me know! You can reach me by commenting on this post, or email me at info@wastelandgamestudio.com

How do I get buildings?

Short answer: they’re not available yet. The good news is that most of the work to make them available is done. Since things have been very good at taking longer than I think they will, I can’t give a specific date they’ll be ready but my current expectation is within the next couple of weeks.

Where can I find out when they’re available?

Right here. There will be an update on the Kickstarter page and I’ll be sending out a notice to people who have already emailed or messaged me, but this site is your go-to location for information on buildings.

What’s the holdup?

Here’s a rundown of where the project stands:

Currently Done:

The new wall molds are set up and casting. They’re working out really well and the cast quality is looking good. The fact that the molds are all fairly new is a factor, but the reject rate has been my lowest yet – less than 5%! I spent most of last week casting and I’ve built up most of the initial stock to sell.

Working on:

I’m waiting on a new shipment of corner pieces which should be arriving in the next couple days. There’s a few elements that still need to be transferred over to the new mold form, such as landing pads and vents – the good news is I still have a stock of these left over from the Kickstarter.

I’m currently short on roof pieces of most sizes – I haven’t figured out a new, better way to cast the small and medium roofs so right now I’m using the older mold designs – they’re turning out fine right now but they’re not a permanent solution. The parapet roofs need to be transferred to the new mold form.

Delayed:

Some of the building patterns offered during the Kickstarter required redesigning from the 3D print stage, including the upper levels and the High Gothic style buildings. I’m still waiting on the new prints so rather than delay the whole project for them, all the other patterns will go on sale first and I’ll add the redesigned buildings to the store as soon as they’re ready.

 

Thanks for your patience and thanks for reading!

Cheers,

-Chris

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State of the Wasteland

Posted: January 2, 2015 in News
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We’re kicking off the new year with a big post about all things tiny and building-shaped. First up:

Current Projects

The Kickstarter has been pretty well finished up and right now I’m gearing up to resume production for those who didn’t get their fill of resin during the campaign. Nearly all the molds are being redesigned to be smaller and more efficient, and I’m tweaking the designs of some of the pieces so they should have a lower miscast rate. A couple patterns need new 3D-printed master parts so they’ll take a little longer, but my goal is to have buildings available for sale by the end of this month. Plus, I’m working on a couple new designs and pieces – you can find some preview renders down by the bottom of this post.

Kickstarter Review

Time to take a look at the project and see how everything went. I could just blather on about it, but instead fancy infographics!

Right now you’re probably asking what I did with the thousands of dollars handed to me by strangers on the internet. Here’s a breakdown of where the money went and how I turned it into little buildings:

expenseschart2

The lion’s share went to equipment, casting materials and shipping – no surprises there. Fees ate up a bit more than I expected. This includes Kickstarter’s pound of flesh (5% right off the top), Kickstarter’s OTHER pound of flesh (payment processing fees) and a business license to avoid hassling by The Man. Filling my car with jugs of chemicals already feels a little sketchy and I have to assume they’ve watched Breaking Bad.

So what did I make with all that? Which little buildings won the war for love and affection?

patternpopularity

A pretty even split, at least for the Small and Tall buildings. Medium is more a mixed field, but that makes sense considering it had the greatest variety available. Industrial was the single most popular pattern, followed by Fortified (benefiting from being available in all three sizes). I guess it’s a good thing I added the Parapet Roof, too.

And now let’s get to the downside…

miscastchart

Actually, for what I was afraid it might be this isn’t that bad. The miscast rate exceeded my initial estimates, but those were really just a guess at something I’d never done before. This counts every piece that wasn’t good enough to send out to backers – there are tons of parts counted as “defective” which I can salvage quite easily for my own use. The problems are where I expected them to be (looking at you, Small Roof) and I was already planning on reworking how those parts are cast.

But I think this helps explain why the project took longer than it should, on top of the fact that I expected to make about 250 buildings and ended up with nearly 900 of the things. I made one key mistake when planning – I accounted for the cost of miscast pieces, but not the time it would take to replace them.

I had a plan to improve the success rate by thickening the wall pieces, but based on this data and some test molds I’ve made the math doesn’t actually work out. Making each piece just 1mm thicker increases its volume (and cost, and weight) by up to 80%. Even with the most fail-prone patterns, that’s just not worth it. It makes more sense (even counting the extra time this…time) to make thin, light pieces that turn out less often. Maybe I can grind the miscasts up and fill a beanbag chair or something.

Let’s wrap this up in neat bullet form…

THE GOOD

  • The process and product are sound. Feedback has been positive.
  • Completed on budget.
  • Production is set to continue and new designs can be added without much trouble.
  • 0% of budget spent on potato salad or moving to Portland.

THE BAD

  • LATE. I really wanted to deliver on time (as so many Kickstarters fail to do) but it didn’t work out.
  • Didn’t plan enough for success – I ran out of prepared stretch goals and graphics in the first day and had to wing it from there.
  • Some pieces cast poorly and wasted time and materials. They’ll need to be improved before production resumes.

THE UGLY

  • ┬áNot having things done on time meant a massively unpleasant time crunch when my other commitments hit in early September.
  • Coffee consumption continues to spiral out of control.

 

This last infographic is the coolest, at least for me:

countries

This project has been an amazing experience – people who I’ve never met all over the world believed in this project and in what I created. That’s a fantastic feeling and I’d like to say thank you to everyone who backed the project, helped me along, or even just came here to read about my little corner of insanity. Thank you!

New Stuff

Lastly, here’s some work-in-progress renders of new stuff I’ve been tinkering with, which hopefully you’ll be able to add to your games in the near future.

Have a great new year and as always, thanks for reading!

-Chris

fieldcommand

structures

supportbay

supportbay3

wall_tower1a

 

 

Still Alive

Posted: November 20, 2014 in News
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Sorry, it’s been a bit of a… wasteland around here lately (puts on sunglasses).

The last couple months have been really busy, especially with the Kickstarter project, as well as personal stuff like school starting up. Cross-posting updates here was the easiest thing to leave behind, and I haven’t had time to work on anything else worth posting about. So here’s a quick recap of where things stand:

– The Kickstarter has unfortunately been running a bit behind schedule (which seems to be the way of such things) but production is nearly wrapped up. Shipping began last month and is now over 75% finished

– Production and shipping will (hopefully) be finished within the next two weeks.

– Once that’s done, I’ll have some breathing room over the winter break to reevaluate, work out any changes and begin producing product for regular sale. As I’ve mentioned before, soon after I will have an online store available here for anyone who’s looking for buildings

– The blog will still be here, and will return more to it’s original focus of my own weird hobby projects which I foolishly assume I will have tons of free time for

So for those out there still reading (I’m never sure how many of the visitors in the traffic counter are actually bots…), thanks for sticking with me! I’m confident that things are beginning to fall into place for the post-Kickstarter plan and at some point soon I’ll be able to pick up a paintbrush again.

Thanks for reading!

-Chris

Big shoutout to all my robot viewers.

 

Production Update #8

Posted: August 14, 2014 in News
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Tired of hearing about little resin buildings yet? >:D

Just wrapped up another count and it looks like the numbers are a bit better than I expected. The new small molds for the pieces I’ve been short on have definitely helped. Here’s the new production figures:

casting_aug13

I would have even more finished, but unfortunately I’ve been delayed by recent technical problems – one of my pressure pots began leaking. See if you can guess which one…my original El Cheapo hardware store one, or the shiny (and expensive) purpose-built one that I bought to last? Yeeeeaaaahh.

It started small, but it looks like the sealant around the air intake port had deteriorated. Over the last week it’s been out of commission while I’ve tried a few different fixes, without much luck. Finally yesterday I called the manufacturer and got their advice before I tried anything too drastic. I’ve replaced the entire fitting and slathered everything in thread sealant, and I think that should do the job. It should be back online as soon as the sealant has cured.

Even with that, progress seems solid. I’ve begun ironing out the last few details for packaging, so I’ll have another update soon with a peek at what will actually be landing in backer’s mailboxes.

Cheers,

-Chris

The wheel keeps on turning. It took me a while to tally up all the production from the last couple weeks, but I’m happy to announce that I’m now past the halfway point in casting!

The new molds are already helping to speed things up, and now that the count of finished pieces is done I know just where to focus my efforts. I’ve broken down what’s done building by building, which you can see on this convenient infographical device below:

casting_july22

Some quick notes about the chart, and what it means…

– After the problems I had with the master parts for Tall High Gothic, I finally have some cast and I’m now putting the production molds together. This bar should be growing quickly.

– For some buildings (like the Small Fortified and Tall Corporate Tek) I’m only being held back by a shortage of one part, usually the doors. I’m making up some smaller molds with just the pieces I’m short on so I can finish the nearly-complete buildings.

– The Tenements and Tenements Upper Level use the same mold, so I’ve been counting all those pieces as part of the regular Tenements buildings so far – hence no bar for the Upper Level yet.

– I now have two full sets of molds just for Small and Medium Roofs, and they’re already making up the numbers for those pieces.

– I just finished the first production mold for Parapet Roofs on Monday. It casts seven roof pieces at a time, so I’ll be able to make some rapid progress here.

So, still lots of work ahead but I’m proud of how far we’ve come. I’ll be pushing hard to complete casting as soon as possible, and I’ll keep you updated as the bars grow further towards me getting to take a break :D

Thanks!

-Chris