We are now almost a month further down the road from the final days of our most recent Kickstarter; Grim Hollow: The Monster Grimoire and wow, how quickly time flies. We thought it fitting to give our community an update on the fulfilment process, some improvements that we are making and what this means for the backers and supporters of this most recent project of ours.
We are currently working through the production process and are happy to report that The Monster Grimoire has been perhaps the smoothest beginning to a project that we have had to date. Writing is well underway, as is Art. Product prototypes are in and our manufacturing is gearing up. We are pleased with our progress thus far, and are at this stage confident that we are able to meet the date estimates in our earlier updates.
In Grim Hollow: The Monster Grimoire we are offering the largest pledge tiers we have ever constructed in a Kickstarter to date (including Stibbles Codex of Companions and The Seeker’s Guide to Twisted Taverns). This is from both a volume of products, and a “weight” of products perspective. For context, our “Butcher of Beasts” tier is over 4KGs heavier than the previous max tier, for a total weight of around 10KG – huge! However, with plenty of improvements in the area we are pleased to announce that we have completed a heap of ground work and the result is a reduction in tier shipping costs! For the Butcher of Beasts, that means 4kgs more product, and less money per kilogram to get it to you – it really is a win-win, and one that we are proud of our team’s accomplishments to date. Over all the tiers, we have seen a decrease in average cost per kg across each and every pledge tier by $2.47USD! This represents the final outcomes of a range of process improvements that we at Ghostfire Gaming are committed to continually develop and improve. Before we dive into the details of those details though here’s a quick review of the schedule:
BackerKit Surveys (Shipping & Add Ons) – 21st June:
Next week! Get excited..
Playtests – est. July:
This is happening, and happening soon!
BackerKit Lock Orders – 12th July:
This is the date that we will be locking down all add-on orders and changes through BackerKit. Don’t worry, you can still change and update your addresses. After we have locked orders, we will be charging cards too!
BackerKit Lock Addresses – 10th Jan 2022:
This is the date that we will be locking down all address changes through BackerKit. So up until this date you’ll be able to log into BackerKit and change your address. Please note, we can’t ship to PO Boxes and Parcel Lockers. If this is the case, we will need to reach out to you to get a street address which will delay your order, so please ensure only street addresses are entered.
PDF Release of Grim Hollow: The Monster Grimoire – est. late December
Fulfilment – est. April – May 2022
If you’re interested in the Shipping & Fulfilment Process update that we posted for The Seeker’s Guide to Twisted Taverns, check that out here. In that blog we try to boil down as many of the steps and prices as we can to avoid any kind of confusion in manufacturing and shipping. We’re going to follow a similar structure to that, but don’t fret, we won’t be repeating ourselves!
So what’s new?
Grim Hollow: The Monster Grimoire is like all of our projects; brand new content. Designs, art, writing, all of it is new. Some products like the regular miniatures we now have experience in producing (thanks of course to the team that worked on Grim Hollow: The Player’s Guide) but there’s a few things that we’re doing that are new again to us, like the Card Binder, the Trinket Collection, Large and Gigantic Miniatures and even the Lairs Soft Cover Booklet. It’s exciting, however in comparison to products that we have done before they are entirely dissimilar and need to be considered as different.
Okay, this is where it gets exciting! Various internal process improvements that we committed to exploring after releasing the surveys for The Seeker’s Guide to Twisted Taverns are live, and it means that the sums for shipping in Grim Hollow: The Monster Grimoire are very positively impacted. We could explain this any number of ways, but the simplest is probably to share the comparison of price per kilogram as it’s really the only way to compare apples with apples.
The average cost per kilogram to deliver to all corners of the globe for The Seeker’s Guide to Twisted Taverns which has a large amount of volumetrically large items (the Stein, the Modular Tavern etc.) was $12.89/KG. Grim Hollow: The Players Guide, was an average of $9.05/KG.
This time, we have managed to get that number down to $6.61/KG globally, which as we said earlier is a saving of almost $2.5/KG compared to the Grim Hollow: The Players Guide. That means on 10KG of product, we are saving almost $25 on shipping and passing it straight to our backers, which is pretty cool.
When the surveys are sent out and the shipping prices revealed, you may find in some cases that they resemble The Seeker’s Guide to Twisted Taverns prices, but in other cases they are actually cheaper. Most importantly, where they are similar, you are getting far more in terms of weight than you might have been getting for your The Seeker’s Guide to Twisted Taverns pledge.
The details of how we have accomplished this are a little complex, but in short, the team here at Ghostfire Gaming were able to negotiate better rates with our shipping providers, pack things for Grim Hollow: The Monster Grimoire a little more efficiently (for example, packing all the miniature sprues into the one box instead of shipping you 10 boxes if you’ve gone for the Butcher of Beasts tier), and lean heavily on previous data.
Also just a quick note to avoid confusion, that we use BackerKit for shipping fees to avoid any such confusion, so your pledge amount does not include shipping. We do provide a graphic that estimates the cost for shipping for the first physical tier, but do not provide estimates for the higher tier levels in the Kickstarter because generally speaking, there are still far too many weights, dimensions, costs and packing arrangements to confirm.
Another improvement that we have made here is in terms of Add-Ons. We of course always like to give the option to grab products that you may have otherwise missed out on, but the unfortunate part about this for Grim Hollow: The Monster Grimoire, is that it alone creates over 100 different shipment combinations for around 15,000 backers. So we have improved the way we estimate the cost for these to ensure that we are cost neutral in all cases at best.
Finally, it feels obligatory to mention that COVID-19 is still messing with the shipping market. DHL Express worldwide has introduced an Emergency Services Levy on every kilogram that they ship globally for example, ranging from 50 cents per kilogram to $2.5 per kilogram depending on the destination. In all cases, we are absorbing this cost instead of passing it onto our backers.
If you would like more information on any of the above, write a comment below; we are happy to answer any questions you have as well as if you have any suggestions or feedback, we would love to hear it.