Hi, I have two games that I'm currently playtesting, so when that gets finalised I'd like to send my game to the printers, so to speak. We're only a small group (there are three of us) who have designed these games, and as such we don't have a mountain of money to spend.
We all have resigned to the fact that we won't make money off these, but I goal is to get as close to breaking even as possible, even if it's just to feel accomplished for selling our very own games!
I was wondering what you guys suggest. Is it better to go through a place that promises to "make your game" (that is everything from the board to the pieces, etc.) or do you suggest doing everything seperately (eg. printing your gameboard from a printing place, and then buying your pieces from another place, etc.)?
I don't know how many of you are from Australia, but that's where we are, so does anyone know who can offer a good price? I know American places offer great quality, but most often than not shipping makes the prices unreasonable. Does anyone know of any asian places that offer a high quality product?
Also, I know a lot of places won't touch your game unless you make large printing runs (sometimes minimum 1000!), but we'd obviously prefer a smaller number. What is your advice on this?
If you're interested in getting prototypes or small runs of your game printed, I'd recommend checking out a Print On Demand service like The Game Crafter (http://www.thegamecrafter.com) or Superior POD (http://www.superiorpod.com). Going print on demand means you don't have any upfront overheads to cover, and you get to distribute your game internationally without having to worry about sales, order fulfillment or shipping.
There are obviously some downsides to this. For one, your per unit cost will be pretty high, so you won't have much of a profit margin if you decide to sell the games through these services. Also you will generally be limited to the components the service has listed, so you might struggle to make your game if you want super customised pieces. Having said that, TGC has a pretty large range of components to choose from.
Lastly, shipping to Australia can be a bit of a pain: I've just recently ordered my first run of Halfling Heist for my local pre-orderers and the shipping came in at a bite under $200. Also watch out for the exchange rate - I didn't realise we had gone back below parity and ended up forking out a little more than I had budgeted.
Feel free to shoot me a message if you want to talk about getting your game done with POD from Australia, would be happy to provide pointers from the mistakes I've made so far.
If you are looking for a cost effective solution for artwork-print production for your board game, we can be of help. We are based in India, specialise in all sorts of book/paper related publishing but now seriously getting into customised assignments like board games. Would you like to try us out ? I think we can provide great quality and finish at very reasonable rates. Also, short print runs (starting at 500 sets) are possible for us, so quantity may not be that much of an issue.
So, if you are interested, mail me details of the game on my email - email@example.com and we can take it forward.
I'm in QLD. I've had a game made in China successfully and would be more than happy to help you out. We had custom dice, dice bag, rules and boxes printed - we're waiting on a run of 10,000 next month but we did start with 1000.
Keep up the Aussie boardgame push!