1st half of February news for Twisty Little Passages
about 1 year ago
– Thu, Feb 20, 2020 at 08:36:47 PM
Just two quick bits of news to share in the latter half of the month for Twisty Little Passages.
TLP is in the BGG finals!
Twisty Little Passages has entered the Finals of Board Game Geeks' MOST ANTICIPATED BOARD GAMES OF 2020!
I encourage you to vote for TWISTY LITTLE PASSAGES in these two categories: Solitaire and Abstract
While being number 1 is a laudable aspiration, we at least need to get into the top 20 in these categories to receive final recognition, which is totally doable with a few more votes.
Proof version approved; production delay in China
The electronic version of the TLP proof has been approved for printing! Beyond managing expectations of backer and pre-order deliveries with our logistics partners, we are now mostly in a holding pattern, with eager anticipation of getting your copy of TLP to you asap. Work on the e-version and Italian translation will also proceed apace.
As you likely know, virus outbreak issues have led to government restrictions on factories operating in China this month. As a result, the printing factories that PrintNinja partners with remained closed following the Chinese new year. I have been given to understand that the factories have now reopened but are operating at reduced capacity for a while.
What this means is the TLP printing schedule has been pushed back by about a month, and we should now expect shipment and delivery of copies of TLP realistically to occur in May or June.
A totally unforeseen and unmanageable occurrence that is impacting many individuals and businesses a lot more than ours, but still you have my sincere apologies for the delay. Our good wishes go out to all that have been affected by the outbreak.
Will be providing another update on progress and schedule in March!
Twisty Little Passages - January Update
about 1 year ago
– Mon, Jan 27, 2020 at 12:56:03 AM
Hi! Hope 2020 is going well for you so far.
We had a lot of good activity focused on getting Twisty Little Passages ready for print this month. Without further ado, I'm going to dig right in to the meaty details.
Second round of edits
Playtesters and I have gone through another full round of edits on the latest version of the book. We found and addressed a few lingering issues. Our team is now satisfied that every issue we could find and think of has been addressed and the material is in a ready state to publish. The book feels quite solid to me at this point. I consider it time well spent in order to provide TLP to you at a sterling level of quality.
Proof copy submitted for review
I submitted an initial PDF proof copy of TLP to PrintNinja. There were a couple weeks of delay on their end, primarily related to Chinese New Year schedules, in getting our project ready for print. Couldn't be helped, but they have now reviewed the contents, structure and layout of the manuscript document. They've delivered us an electronic proof with printer's annotations. Everything appears set up properly and looks as expected to me. In short, no surprises there, which is a good thing. It means no additional work needs to be done or time spent to get the overall book format ready for printing. Our attention to detail upfront has paid off.
While there was still time to action on it, I've been selectively sharing my initial physical prototype of the book to assess reactions and garner feedback. Thanks to these "ad-hoc review sessions", a few text edits have been made to fix and clarify very minor issues. Nothing glaring has been found. Feedback has been extremely positive. Here are some of the initial reactions I've received for the full book:
- "I love the art style!"
- "This way exceeds my expectations!"
- "There's more content in here than I had envisioned."
- "I am so impressed with the puzzle design."
- "That looks like it was a lot of work!"
(It definitely has been a lot of work, and it's also been a ton of fun along the way.)
As promised in comments from last month's update, prior to approving printing, I said I would share the full set of print configuration parameters with you, so you can see and verify that the print setup for the book is just as we had planned. Here's a Google Drive link to the print specs. If there are any questions or concerns about what's listed here, feel free to share them asap.
Illustration Sneak Peek
Some have expressed interest in seeing some more of the art from the print-ready full version of the book. Others have expressed a desire to not have content spoiled prior to getting the book in their hands. To manage both interests, I'm providing a link here to some representative pieces of art, which I hand-selected as being a few of my favorites. If you don't mind getting some content vaguely spoiled, feel free to click on the Google Drive link and take a look. It was hard to pick just a few selections to share. As you will see when you receive the book, there's so much in there, but I hope you like this sneak peek.
Next Steps and Timeline
All of the above gives me confidence that we're ready to pull the trigger on getting the physical print proof made up this week for final review, and then starting mass-printing. I expect with next update, I'll be able to share a picture of me holding that print proof and sharing the good news that actual printing has begun. With the few minor delays here and there we've experienced in interacting with printers, I'm now expecting that it's likely that you will receive your copy of TLP in late April or May. I don't foresee any further slippage, and I will let you know if anything else changes in the schedule.
Getting to this point in a project makes me wax philosophical. Over many years of game design, I've learned that (as with practically any creation) there's always something more one could conceivably do to make the end product even better than it already is. There's a slippery slope one can follow, eternally iterating toward an ideal perfection, which may or may not actually exist. I try to find the right balance between the ideal and the practical. With the right focus, the time does come when your creation is everything you had dreamed it would be, you've shaken out the bugs, and now you need to let it live on its own. It's a bittersweet moment in some ways, and to me it's an indication that things have gone in the right direction.
Till next update!
Nov/Dec update for Twisty Little Passages
over 1 year ago
– Fri, Jan 03, 2020 at 01:26:25 AM
Happy new year!
Hope you had a great holiday season. This update covers a good amount of activity that has been happening for TLP behind the scenes.
First, as anticipated following our last update, content for Twisty Little Passages is 100% complete. Everything has come together very nicely. The the world map (stretch goal) is beautiful and engaging, and the metapuzzle (another stretch goal) is complete. For correctness and quality, we're performing multiple review passes over the complete set of material. Some individuals have completed a comprehensive playthrough and review of the finished draft. A couple others are close to completing their review and expect to be done in maybe a week. We've found some issues along the way, including uncovering a few slightly improved and very clever puzzle solutions, and I'm glad we're catching these details now. It's important to me that we deliver an error-free, high-quality product that you'll be satisfied with.
While this review process wraps up, I worked with a printer to produce a one-off physical test print of the book. This process took a few weeks longer than I had anticipated due to back-end technical issues. This prototype copy is not through PrintNinja, our mass-print manufacturer, but it provides a close approximation of the finished version. The final version will be even better. What's the initial verdict? I am feeling very satisfied with the look and feel! It felt great to get a copy of TLP in my hands. The puzzle maps and art pieces look gorgeous on the printed page. I couldn't help grinning as I flipped through the pages of the entire book for the first time. The puzzle visuals feature a good amount of variety in setting and content. I've never seen a book or puzzle game quite like this. Not to jinx the process, but I think you'll like what you see, and I hope you enjoy playing through it just as much. We'll be making some final tweaks here and there to optimize the printed version of various art assets, but I think the puzzles are ready to deliver and I'm feeling good about where we are today. By my estimation, TLP will deliver on everything we said it would.
Finally, I've paid the printer's fee to Print Ninja for the mass print run and for bulk shipping to our selected logistics hubs for backer distribution. I'm preparing a final manuscript to deliver to them. Once they have it, I will first receive an electronic proof from them for review, to confirm everything is set up and laid out properly for printing. Next, Print Ninja will send me a physical test print of selected pages to confirm the print quality is exactly what we want. It will take a few weeks to receive this physical proof from them. Finally, after any last modifications following that final-final review, we'll pull the trigger on beginning mass-printing. I hope to be able to declare by next month's update that we've reached that point. From there, it will be a couple of months till copies of TLP are delivered to our distributors for final shipping to your door. During production, I'll keep you updated on progress and any changes to the timeline.
That's it for now. Wishing you a wonderful new year!
Twisty Little Passages - October Update
over 1 year ago
– Tue, Nov 05, 2019 at 07:34:08 PM
Greetings! Steady progress on Twisty Little Passages has continued through October. The Chapter 5 content has been completed and finalized. I think it all turned out very well. With the exception of a handful of art assets, the Chapter 6 content is also complete. Completed drafts of the game ending and Hints & Solutions sections at the end of the book are in place. In just a week or two, I expect content to be 100% complete!
I appreciate your patience as we prepare the final game material. It's been a lot of fun putting TLP together as a team and we hope you enjoy it.
Once content is 100% complete and we've performed a comprehensive internal review of the finished draft, we'll perform a one-off physical test print of the content for additional testing and review. Upon completion of this review, we'll deliver the manuscript to Print Ninja, our manufacturer, for printing. This part of the process will be primarily where we wait for the final product to be printed and delivered over the course of the next few months. We'll keep you up to date on the status of this process along the way.
Final BackerKit Survey Reminder
As scheduled, in preparation for printing, I'll be locking down BackerKit surveys at the end the month, which is less than four weeks away. As you may recall, shipping addresses need to be locked by the time we go to printing so I can communicate and coordinate the logistics for the copies that are to be sent to each hub region with the manufacturer. After that point, the final delivery and fulfillment process is largely out of my hands.
Speaking for a moment to our KS backers as a whole, about 95% of backers have completed their BackerKit survey and provided a shipping address. If you've completed your survey, again, thank you! If you backed a physical copy of TLP , expect to receive your copy by the campaign target delivery date of April 2020, and sooner with any luck.
A remaining 5% of backers have not yet completed their survey. Speaking to this 5%, if you don't provide me a shipping address by the time surveys are locked at the end of the month, I won't have your delivery information and won't be able to deliver your KS reward to you. This means your pledge, while much appreciated on our end in order to support production of Twisty Little Passages, ultimately can't be fulfilled by us. To be completely clear, if your survey is not complete at the end of the month, we won't be having a physical copy printed for you, because we have nowhere to send it. This would be a shame, because I'm confident the finished product will be beautiful and a lot of fun to experience!
I've been sending out weekly reminder emails to this 5% to get these outstanding BackerKit surveys completed. I'm unaware of anything more I can do to help all 100% of our physical backers receive their copy of TLP. Please receive this update as the final call to have your delivery address locked in so you can receive your copy. If you have any outstanding questions, please reach out asap, as these are the last weeks to have them resolved.
This last section may feel like a bit of a downer, but this is only the`case if your survey isn't completed by the end of the month. Otherwise, you can rejoice in the knowledge that your reward will be printed soon!
Wishing you a great month!
Twisty Little Passages - September Update
over 1 year ago
– Thu, Oct 03, 2019 at 12:26:14 AM
Hi! Hope things are going well for you and yours. Another month has flown by, and our team is continuing to make smooth and steady progress on Twisty Little Passages. About 3/4 of the book is finalized and it's looking great. This portion is being proofread for continuity and correctness and is being playtested in its draft form. We're getting near the end of the Chapter 5 content and starting in on Chapter 6, the final chapter. I expect we will have a complete draft ready for internal review and testing next month!
Upon completion of our internal review, we will be sending our final draft to the printer for manufacturing and shipping to our logistics hub partners. All together, I am told this phase is expected to take 2-3 months, during which time, I will mostly be waiting for copies to be printed and arrive at their respective hub destinations. Once copies reach our logistics partners, they will be shipped out directly to you. Though there is only so much I can do to control the reliability and timing of shipping and postal services (and as you might guess, this is admittedly not all that much), I'll do my best to coordinate worldwide delivery so backers everywhere receive their copies at about the same time.
BackerKit Survey Reminder
According to schedule and in preparation for manufacturing and shipping, I'll be locking down BackerKit surveys at the end of November, which is less than two months away. I'll need to have addresses locked down by the time we go to printing so I can communicate and coordinate the logistics for the copies that are to be sent to each hub region with the manufacturer.
Please fill out and submit your survey now if you haven't yet. If you don't have your survey submitted by the lock date, I won't be able to deliver your reward to you. Please remember that, even after survey submission, you can still update your shipping address at any time up till the point that I lock down shipping addresses. You will be charged for any shipping and add-ons at the time I lock down addresses. Meanwhile, if you have questions about the survey, please reach out to me or BackerKit immediately so we can work through them in a timely manner. Thanks for your patience and attention!
Till next month!