New Print-and-Play Kit!
about 1 year ago
– Sat, May 04, 2019 at 12:32:52 AM
Today we are releasing an updated print-and-play kit for Root: the Underworld Expansion. This kit contains an updated deck and updated versions of both of the new factions. The file is called PNP Kit 6 (Updated Moles, Crows, and Exiles).
The release of this kit marks the start of our final testing cycle for all Root: Underworld assets. Though we handle most of our testing in house and among our remote groups, we welcome the participation of anyone. If you'd like to join in, all you need to do is fill out this quick survey after you complete a game including any expansion elements. You can find that survey here.
In terms of changes, the new cards feature some adjusted costs, abilities, and a lot of art. The moles have a few quality-of-life improvements and a few balance adjustments. Note that none of the art on mole cards is final. We've got a nice surprise on that front that we're excited to share a little later.
The kit also includes revamped Corvid Conspiracy. Here the changes were much more significant. Basically, we moved to a system that really ramps up the bluffing elements and presents some tricky new challenges for the Corvid player and their opponents. In some respects, this version is truer to the intent of Patrick's original design. It's got lots of espionage and creates some lovely tension in the game. At the same time, we had to abandon some design concepts that we really liked to make them work. If you'd like to learn more about their development, I wrote about them at length on Board Game Geek.
To celebrate the release of the print-and-play kit, we'll be doing a livestream at the office 2pm (central US time). You can find that stream here.
Well, that's it for now. Everything is moving along quite well at the moment. Next week, we're hoping to spotlight the automated factions add-on, and give you all a window into that development process. We'll have a lot more art to share and, perhaps, a PNP for the new lake map.
A Little Development Update
about 1 year ago
– Fri, Apr 26, 2019 at 02:37:29 AM
Today we wanted to give you all a little update about the development of the expansion. A large part of the remaining work on the Underworld Expansion is logistical in nature. Over the past few weeks we've been busy scheduling playtests, arranging art lists for Kyle, and building the actual print files that we'll use to produce the game. Of course, we're doing a lot of playing and developing as well.
Because running a Kickstarter is so all-encompassing, we usually pause development on the game while the campaign is underway. That doesn't mean we really stop thinking about design. It just means that we give the marketing priority for a few weeks. During this time, we build up a backlog of thoughts about how the various elements of the game are working and try to take careful notes about how people are responding to them. Then, after the campaign is over, we gain the space we need to go through those notes. One of the first things we did when we got back to the office after our break was to do an exhaustive audit of all of the new Root material. We flagged anything that wasn't feeling quite right and where we might want to direct our attention going forward.
(Note Saboteurs doesn't yet have its icon in the top right, I'll get to that soon.)
In general, we were all quite happy with where the design was. However, the dozens of games played in March had revealed a few problems with the Corvids that needed addressing, and I also had some notes on some cards I wanted to tweak for the deck. With some objectives in mind, we rejiggered our testing schedule so that we could take the Corvids through another full development cycle. Now, after a lot of spirited discussion and a couple dozen plays, I can pretty confidently say that all primary development work on the expansion is done. From here on out, we'll be shifting gears to making sure all of the new content is exhaustively tested and ready for production. As with the Root campaign, we'll be doing our best to document this process and will be releasing a new set of print-and-play kits so you can all see what we've been up to.
The first of those new kits, containing at least the updated Corvids, should be posted next Friday. Before then I'm hoping to write a longer piece about the design and development of the faction. Though the Corvids are very much Patrick's faction (and were expertly developed by Nick), I got to observe the process first hand and thought the story of their creation might offer an interesting window into our process.
Alright, that's it for now. We'll have more to share about the development of the game in the coming weeks, as well as some exciting pictures!
Answering Pledge Manager FAQs and Confusion
about 1 year ago
– Sun, Apr 21, 2019 at 03:00:29 AM
At this point, everyone got sent their Backerkit surveys earlier than expected, so please have a look through this update to address some FAQs and concerns. If you haven't already, we also highly recommend reading Update 19 if you need help with add-ons and Update 18 for some basic pledge manager questions.
I Didn't Get My Survey Email Yet
If you haven't gotten your invite to access the pledge manager, please email us at email@example.com and we can check that we have your correct email address and re-send an invite to you
What Happened to Cheaper Shipping For Smaller Add-ons?
During the campaign, we talked about pledging at the $1 level if you were interested in getting smaller add-ons like the automated factions and upgrade pack. After talking to the shipping companies in all regions, we've unfortunately found that the weight of shipping 8 full player boards is preventing us from doing so without sacrificing shipping material quality.
We understand that this is frustrating for many of you and we as a team apologize for being a bit too confident in thinking the smaller size of the add-ons would've discounted our shipping rates, without considering the weight factor enough.
Because we're producing and selling the upgrade kit at almost a loss, we have absolutely no leeway to eat any shipping costs so that we could offer more affordable shipping. Our solution, instead, for those that don't want to pay the full price of the shipping cost, is that we've changed our distribution plans for the upgrade kit, and will give it a retail release. Our retailer backers will have access to purchasing these upgrade kits, and through distribution so that you can purchase them at your friendly local game store once available.
Please be reminded that you can also print the balance changes at home to affix to your boards here.
I Pledged $1, Why Is It Charging Me Shipping?
Backerkit is automatically adding shipping to these pledge levels since the assumption is if you're completing your survey, you're getting add-ons. Because we didn't make two separate pledge levels during the campaign for following the campaign vs committing to getting add-ons, the way this level is set up in Backerkit is a kind of hybrid that had to have shipping added to it due to the way the platform works.
**If you are not getting add-ons, please do not complete your survey since it's charging shipping. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can opt you out of Backerkit reminders and close your survey for you.**
I Don't Want Add-ons and I No Longer Want To Receive Updates
No problem. Please email us at email@example.com and we'll opt you out of updates so you no longer get Backerkit reminders.
1. What items exactly come in the Evergreen All-In Pledge Level?
If you backed at the "all-in" pledge level, you are getting the following items:
- Root Base Game
- Root: The Riverfolk Expansion
- Root: The Underworld Expansion (includes Exiles and Partisans Deck, Vagabond Pack, Resin Clearing Markers)
If you'd like the automated factions or the playmat for example, you can add them as additional items into your cart in Backerkit.
2. Do I need the upgrade kit if I'm getting the base game through this campaign?
No you will not. The base game printing we'll use to fulfill this campaign will be the fourth printing and contain all of the up to date changes to the player boards and rulebook
3. How come I don't see the Kickstarter extras listed in my cart on Backerkit?
In our last update, we mentioned that when you check out your cart in Backerkit, the Kickstarter extras (resin clearings, vagabond pack, exiles & partisans deck) would not be listed in your cart since they automatically come with every copy of the Underworld expansion from this Kickstarter campaign. Each copy of Underworld comes packed with all of the Kickstarter extras inside of the box. Rest assured, in our backend, we do see them listed in your pledge.
If you have any more questions that we haven't covered here, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please refrain from using the Kickstarter messaging system so we can better help you through better and easier to track means.
Backerkit Update, Smoke Test, How to Add Add-ons, And a Note to Brazil Backers
about 1 year ago
– Thu, Apr 18, 2019 at 12:37:08 AM
Please disregard this update if you are a retail backer.
If you haven't read our previous update on what Backerkit is, please do so here so you have a better understanding of what to expect with the surveys going out soon.
This update will answer when you can expect your survey invites and how to add items to your pledge.
Backerkit Invites and Smoke Test
Starting today, we'll start a smoke test where we'll send 5% of backers invites to their Backerkit surveys to make sure everything is set up correctly and for a chance for any missed things to be brought to our attention to fix before sending all surveys out. After testing, we'll expect full surveys to go out early next week most likely.
I Added Funds For [Blank] Add-On. How Do I See It / Get It?
The funds you paid and pledged for during our Kickstarter campaign will be given to you as a credit in Backerkit. With that credit, you'll be able to add the items you intend to purchase. Anything purchased beyond your credit will be charged at a later date.
How Can I Change My Pledge Level?
Whether you're in the Token $1 pledge level, or want to upgrade from one level to the Evergreen All-In, for example, you can change your pledge level when you first view your survey.
Quick Reiterated FAQs
We covered these questions in our previous update and if you'd like to read it in full, our update can be read here.
1. I missed the Kickstarter, can I still late pledge?
Yes! Once we send full invites to all of our backers, the Backerkit late pledges will be accessible via a "pre-order" button we'll have set up on the main Underworld Kickstarter page.
2. When will late pledges be live?
After we send out our full survey invites to all of our backers. The smoke test will test 5% of invites this week, and full invites will most likely go out early next week if don't run into any bumps. We'll make late pledges live at the same time.
3. My card declined on Kickstarter, will I still get an invite to correct my pledge?
4. When will I be charged for items I didn't pay for yet?
Expected charge date is Sept 2019.
5. When will the pledge manager close?
Expected cut off date is Nov 2019.
A Quick Note About The Kickstarter Add-Ons
You might notice that we've put the Kickstarter extras (Vagabond Pack, Resin Clearing Markers, Exiles & Partisans Deck) for separate purchase on the Backerkit add-ons page. Please note that all three come for FREE with every copy of the Underworld expansion. These items are here for separate purchase if you are not purchasing the Underworld expansion or would like extra copies.
FYI, when finishing your order with the Underworld expansion in your cart, the Kickstarter extra items will not be listed in your cart since they come bundled in the Underworld box.
Our Brazil backers will be pleased to hear that we've added shipping to Brazil in our pledge manager so they can participate in our campaign. Please note that due to previous history with shipping to Brazil, customs and duties are hard to predict and have been quite expensive in the past. By participating in the late pledges, you accept any risk for any customs and duties charges. If any package gets refused due to the customs or duties charges and returned to us, we will not re-ship your order for you. Instead, we'll refund your order minus any shipping fees.
It's also absolutely imperative to make sure all of your address information is correct and up to date.
Other Questions or Concerns
As always, if there's anything we haven't covered here, please send us at email at email@example.com and we'll help you out there. Please refrain from sending us a Kickstarter message since they are hard to track and organize.
Backerkit Invites Next Week and Answering Some FAQS
over 1 year ago
– Wed, Apr 10, 2019 at 01:11:59 AM
Just giving an update on when to expect your pledge manager invites and answering some commonly asked questions.
Please note: if you are a retailer backer reading this, please disregard this update. Retailers will NOT be placing their orders in the pledge manager and instead will place their orders directly with our sales manager at firstname.lastname@example.org
Backerkit is the type of pledge manager we're using where you can enter your shipping details, manage your pledge, and add any extra products on top of your pledge level.
We're expecting to send the manager for review to Backerkit this week with a small smoke test to make sure everything goes well either this week or early next week before committing to sending invites to all backers. We're anticipating to be able to send wide invites some time next week and will post a new update on when to expect it, as well as a "how to" for upgrading your pledge and adding items.
How can I add add-ons to my pledge?
If you pledged more than your pledge level amount to accommodate the cost of the playmats or upgrade kits, for example, you'll get that extra pledged dollar amount as a credit in Backerkit that you can use toward the specific items you wish to add on top of your pledge. We'll post a how-to in another update next week with screencaps before sending wide invites to everyone.
If you did not add additional funds during the Kickstarter campaign period, you'll be able to still add additional items and get charged for them later.
I missed the Kickstarter--Can I still late pledge?
Yes! Late pledges will be entitled to the same Kickstarter extras as long as the Underworld expansion is part of your pledge.
Can I upgrade from the $1 pledge level (or another pledge level) to a higher one?
Yes! We'll post a how-to with screencaps next week on how you can upgrade your pledge to a higher level.
My card declined on Kickstarter, will I still get an invite to correct my pledge?
If your card had trouble registering with Kickstarter's payment platform, you'll still get an invite to the pledge manager where you can attempt to correct your payment method. Payment will not be charged until the pledge manager chargedate in September.
When will I be charged for items I didn't pay for yet?
Payment for any items you haven't paid for yet will be collected around 3 months before we expect fulfillment to begin. So currently, our close date is targeted for Sept 1, 2019. Beyond this date, your order will be locked and charged if you added anything beyond your Kickstarter pledge and we'll send another update to give reminder about the closing and chargedate.
When will the pledge manager close?
The targeted chargedate when cards will be charged for any additional items beyond what you paid for during the Kickstarter campaign, if you participated, is Sept 1, 2019. Orders are expected to cut off Nov 1, 2019.
Other questions, support, or concerns?
If you have any questions that we didn't cover here, please email us at email@example.com rather than use the Kickstarter messaging system. Emailing us ensures that we can organize your request better and not miss your message since we get an overwhelming amount of messages on Kickstarter daily.