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Cost of Freelance Miniature Sculpts?

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Mortimer
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Sorry if this is the wrong place, I couldn't actually find a non-archive forum for production questions.

I am curious if anyone has had any experience hiring freelance miniature sculptors to produce game pieces for them? Is there a good guide to costs and time? At this point I just want to get a general idea of what my idea would cost.

ElKobold
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By sculpts, do you mean 3d

By sculpts, do you mean 3d models for consequent production, one-time 3d printing of prototypes, or mass produced 'final product'? Also, if you have KS in mind and it's your first, I would strongly advice against using miniatures.

Mortimer
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More for the mass produced

More for the mass produced final, tokens or substitute miniatures will do till than I reckon. Thanks for the warning, but still curious at the scope of costs and such.

ElKobold
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Mortimer wrote:More for the

Mortimer wrote:
More for the mass produced final, tokens or substitute miniatures will do till than I reckon. Thanks for the warning, but still curious at the scope of costs and such.

In this case I suggest to start with researching manufacturers first. Most of them have in-house 3d artists who will make the models, based on your concept arts. Some of the manufacturers will insist on using their artists because producing a 3d model suitable for molding requires specific experience. Manufacturer that we are currently working with, charges 500 eur for modeling. Freelance artist _might_ be slightly cheaper, but you risk the situation where a manufacturer will tell you that your models can't be produced, and you will be forced to pay twice. Not everything that you can model and 3d print, can be mass-produced with reasonable cost.
Also, do your research about further costs. Like the price for making tools etc. How many models do you have? And what kind of game?

Mortimer
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Well, this is my over

Well, this is my over ambitious initial plan, so I would trim back from there.

Fantasy dungeon crawler in the vain of Heroquest.

About 120 total pieces (74 figures, 27 furniture pieces, 18+ door pieces)
With 43-67 sculpts (24 figure sculpts plus 13 variants of these sculpts, 19 furniture and door pieces plus 11 possible variants on them).

The variants would preferably be minor changes, like different weapons, poses, etc.

So absurdly costly I guess. Well, it was just a ambitious first draft, there is part of me that is loath to just use card pieces/tokens but I suppose its the realistic option, it might just be an idea I have to ditch.

ElKobold
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Mortimer wrote:Well, this is

Mortimer wrote:
Well, this is my over ambitious initial plan, so I would trim back from there.

Fantasy dungeon crawler in the vain of Heroquest.

About 120 total pieces (74 figures, 27 furniture pieces, 18+ door pieces)
With 43-67 sculpts (24 figure sculpts plus 13 variants of these sculpts, 19 furniture and door pieces plus 11 possible variants on them).

The variants would preferably be minor changes, like different weapons, poses, etc.

So absurdly costly I guess. Well, it was just a ambitious first draft, there is part of me that is loath to just use card pieces/tokens but I suppose its the realistic option, it might just be an idea I have to ditch.

Ouch. Well, you're then looking at the very least at 100K+ EUR just for the models. And that's only the tool+modeling costs.

Now imagine production cost (starting around 80 eur, probably more). Add shipping. What will be the price of the box? How many backers will be willing to risk that amount on a 1st time project?

Friendly advise: start with standees. If the campaign goes extremely well, you can always consider minis as stretchgoals.

Mortimer
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Uh well, I considered

Uh well, I considered slashing it all the way back to 13 sculpts, but even thats quite expensive. I'll have to stick with print-out tokens I guess.

ElKobold
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Mortimer wrote:Uh well, I

Mortimer wrote:
Uh well, I considered slashing it all the way back to 13 sculpts, but even thats quite expensive. I'll have to stick with print-out tokens I guess.

13 is doable. Then again - you can always have those in stretchgoals.

Casamyr
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When I was looking at

When I was looking at developing a game one of the figures tossed around for 3d models is around $5-10k per sculpt which would have included molds and modeling work.

ElKobold
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Casamyr wrote:When I was

Casamyr wrote:
When I was looking at developing a game one of the figures tossed around for 3d models is around $5-10k per sculpt which would have included molds and modeling work.

Though the sum can vary, depending on the method and material, 5-10K is waay too high for a single sculpt. Sure, it's expensive, but not THAT expensive.

questccg
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FAQs

Casamyr wrote:
When I was looking at developing a game one of the figures tossed around for 3d models is around $5-10k per sculpt which would have included molds and modeling work.

Check out this thread:

http://www.bgdf.com/forum/game-creation/prototyping/creating-detailed-fi...

For more on minis - sculptures...

Soulfinger
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Alternately, build your game

Alternately, build your game around an existing line of figures, like Reaper's Bones miniatures. If I recall, they have supplied miniatures for at least one KS project in the past. Too many people are dead-set on unique sculpts, but it's really not very enticing for the consumer if you don't have an established IP, rock solid branding, and/or a really unique of kitschy aesthetic. For plenty of gamers, skeletons is skeletons. The price point is what matters.

As ElKobold implied in his excellent advice, you are far better off building a fan base and some brand recognition with a smaller project, like a 52-card deck game or a minimalist standee 'economy' version based in your IP, before you bankrupt yourself doing such a logistically complex project.

radioactivemouse
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I think...

I know people have already talked about this, but if you're thinking of doing something a detailed as 3d sculpts or miniatures, might as well put in the effort to make a game that's just as detailed.

There's always room to make better components, there's not always room to make a second impression with a bad game design.

Mortimer
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Joined: 11/13/2015
Point taken, mostly I was

Point taken, mostly I was going for abit of a feasibility study, so for the time being mini's are out of the question ... which is about of a let down, but I hope I can still make something interesting.

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