Our first Kickstarter campaign
Today I'm very excited to formally announce our first Kickstarter campaign, as trailed earlier on this blog. We will be launching Take The Kingdom on the morning (UK time) of Tuesday 21 August 2018. As this is our first campaign, we'll be keeping it relatively simple, with the base game, an expansion and an entry-level "community" pledge. Stretch goals (if we get that far) will be all about improving the component quality even further, and maybe adding a few exclusive bonus cards.
If you're not familiar with how Kickstarter works, see this link. A lot of today's board games start life on Kickstarter and there is a vibrant community there who have enabled many designers and small companies get started.
The idea for the game was hatched back in 2014 - I had been trying to come up with a board game based around building up and defending a kingdom while making sure your opponents don't get too powerful by controlling their fate. I developed a number of prototypes and kept having new ideas to add to the game play but I just seemed to be making the game more and more complicated, and a guiding principle I'd had from the start was that this should be a simple, accessible game, that you can learn very quickly and play with anyone - as the great engineer Antoine de Saint-Exupery said, "Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away".
But I still wanted there to be plenty of opportunity to stitch up your opponents, of course :-).
The breakthrough came when I thought one day "what if it didn't have a board?", and instead you lay out your kingdom using cards. Not a unique game mechanic by any means, but it suddenly meant that everything worked. Since then, I've been testing, tweaking, testing, adding and taking bits away to try and get TTK as good as it can possibly be.
If you think you've seen the game before, you may be right - we did make a small production run last year and this was briefly available for retail through this site, through Amazon in the UK and through www.thegamecrafter.com in the US. But I was never happy with the production quality - the box was too flimsy, the printed colours were not sharp enough and it all felt a bit "home-made". If you're one of the very few who bought the game at that time, then you're in a very exclusive group! If so, please get in touch - if you pledge at the £1 level when the Kickstarter campaign is up, we'll make sure you get a free upgrade to the improved and expanded game, with free shipping thrown in, as a thank you for supporting us in the very early days!
We've used the remaining original copies as promotional items for reviewers, board game cafes and the like. If you'd like to get your hands on one of these as a preview, click the Contact tab above and get in touch.
If we reach the planned funding level on KS, we've got a newly-designed rigid two-piece drawer box ready to go, with a bigger box for those picking up the new expansion pack as well. We're also completely re-writing the rulebook and getting some new publishing and design done for that. But we're keeping the best part of the game - the fabulous art from Luke Horsman.
There are lots of images of Take the Kingdom all over these pages, so feel free to browse and let us know if you have any questions. There's also a downloadable rulebook here in English and French.
I'll post more details of our campaign here over the coming weeks - see you on Kickstarter on 21 August!