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New board game (with electronic feature device)

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Colfy
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Joined: 11/21/2017

I'm looking for a bit of assistance in direction for my board game prototype.

The game is complete. The rules, playing pieces, game cards etc. are all made.

The only thing which isn't (and I dare say, won't be) operational is the main device. I have a device that does the same job, but the final device will be something more relevant to the game.

It's a board-game concept that, apart from the the board arrangement, is not used on any other game. I've applied for a patent on the device (as a way of doing a patent search) which showed only variations of my device and not at all in a capacity that could be used for a game.

The game has been played many times by family and friends, and is more popular than our standard board games, although, I realise family & friends are less than ideal.

I've seen Hasbro use White Castle as an agent for assessing the idea. Their assessment fees are very reasonable, but they take around 40%. Is this normal for agents?

questccg
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Not sure ... but just wanted to point out...

Typically when dealing with PROFIT SHARING, a Game Designer can expect up to 25%. This is after everything is said and done. Some games don't make any money - because of expenses being higher than average. Things like artwork, graphic design, miniatures and moulds, etc.

40% Gross or Net???

If it's Gross - I say "Forget That!" ... It's way too expensive.

If it's Net - I still say "Forget That!" ... You get the picture.

Perhaps 25% Net profits might be reasonable. That would make you a partner with Hasbro taking 50% of the Net profit.

James Mathe says to beware of "PROFIT SHARING" since you may not see any money once all is said and done. They can use their own Graphic Designers and PAY them... all this is additional EXPENSES they will DEDUCT BEFORE there is any profit. Same thing with the illustrators and artists. And all of that can cost a pretty penny - especially when you are not the one making the decisions... Hasbro is as the majority holder of 50%.

See what other designers have to say. I have my own perspective and experience. Other designers have "similar" experiences but different outcomes. So wait and see who responds.

Cheers.

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Hmm... How it "could" work

The only way I see it working is if the Agent get 40% of WHATEVER YOU GET.

Then that's OKAY. If you make $10,000 you get $6,000 and they get $4,000.

Now that makes sense... Anything else IMHO is bullsh!t.

Cheers!

Note: This would be a really good arrangement because it would FORCE the Agent to get you MORE money. Why? Because in turn, they make more money also... Sorta way to keep them honest.

Colfy
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Joined: 11/21/2017
Game Design

Thanks lads, much appreciated.
I've been looking at a company called White Castle, who are contracted (as I undertstand it) to act as agents for Hasbro. Only games assessed as worthy by them will make it to a pitch to Hasbro. There have been a few scams with so-called 'agencies', so I just wonder if anyone has heard of or experienced them, and if they are indeed 'ligit'?

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Don't be paranoid

Colfy wrote:
Only games assessed as worthy by them will make it to a pitch to Hasbro.

Don't worry, they aren't going to steal your "amazing" game idea. And the effort to "re-create" a game that is "mediocre" would be simply a waste of their time. If your game is GOOD, indeed, I'm pretty certain they will present it to Hasbro.

Colfy wrote:
There have been a few scams with so-called 'agencies', so I just wonder if anyone has heard of or experienced them, and if they are indeed 'ligit'?

Haven't heard any scams... But the reality is that MARGINS are tight with any game design efforts. If a game get 5,000 for any initial print run, that is HIGH. Most games don't do re-prints to reach 10,000 copies. From there you can do your own math and figure out Game Design is done mostly for the "passion" (or love) of designing.

As I mentioned in my previous comment, making certain that a Broker makes a percentage of YOUR OWN profits is reasonable. You said 40% and that makes total sense: $5,000 60/40 = $3,000/$2,000 ... reasonable.

But probably not as appealing as you expect or anticipate them to be...

Best of luck(?!) dealing with your agent.

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Here is some more MATH for you

Say your game retails for $50 USD. The Retailer's Markup is 50%. That means $25 USD is the price paid to the distributor. The Distributor's Markup is 60% or $20 USD which is the wholesale price. Now you've got to factor manufacturing costs to retail ratio which is 5x. So $50 USD / 5 = $10 to manufacture (and freight)...

All that leaves the Publisher with $10 USD. Included in that amount is the price to pay artists, graphic designers and creative writers (if there is any writing to do)... and the overhead of the Publisher.

Generally speaking you'll be lucky to make $1.00 - $2.00 per game. Wholesale percentage of revenues is between 5% - 8%. 8% of $20 USD = $1.60 USD somewhere in the middle...

All this should put everything into perspective and make you feel more comfortable that making ONE (1) Game is far from making a real dent in this business. Do the math yourself and you'll feel better and more confident that nobody is going to screw you over...

Review the MATH and you'll better understand how things work.

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
But you could get some Street Cred...

If your game sold 10,000 copies at $50 USD per game, that's $500k of sales.

Now that's a real accomplishment - but realize that given the above breakdown - it's shared profitability through the different tiers involved in the production and sale of the game.

However saying that "your last game made about half a million dollars worth of sales..." is something you can be proud of knowing you help the economy along with your "great game".

So you'd have true "Street Cred" and probably some people will remember your game and maybe even your name.

But even with 10,000 copies, expect to make $10k - $20k at most. And if you have an Agent, and they take 40%, well it's $6k - $12k ...

But again, the idea is to do it because you enjoy "Game Design". If you think you're going to "get rich" with one game idea... I highly doubt it. However you don't have to agree with me. I'm just trying to explain the economics of "Game Design" and the probable percentages you can earn.

Cheers!

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