Seize the Bean - A Light-Hearted Deck Builder about Berlin!

Created by Quality Beast

Thematic deck builder with brutal resource management, card drafting, set collection, engine building, modular setup & wild components!

Latest Updates from Our Project:

Still Printing, On Track, & No Delays!
4 days ago – Fri, Jan 15, 2021 at 09:26:35 PM

Hey everybody! Happy (belated) new year to you all. As they say, “no news is good news”, but we’ve learned that for our backers radio silence can be the worst, so let’s do an espresso update on Seize the Bean... 

As you probably expected (and as we outlined in the timeline from Update #53) we are still printing the game. We checked with the factory this week and they confirmed there are currently no delays in production. Hooray!

We’ll highlight a couple of important dates, but we urge you to go back and look at the timeline in Update #53 (because it is still accurate) if you want to dig up more details:

  •  March 15th, 2021 - A final copy of the game is sent to us to confirm.
  •  April 19th, 2021 - Games are done and can be put onto boats for shipping.
  •  July 5th, 2021 - Warehouses have games and can begin shipping to backers! 

The next update will be 4 weeks from now, on Friday, February 12th, 2021. Again, there will likely not be much to say, other than “games are still printing”, but we’d like to keep you informed regardless. If anything comes up in the meantime, we’ll send an impromptu update as needed. 

Before we sign off, we have a community-related topic to share. It seems thatSeize the Bean has been nominated as one of the most anticipated games for 2021 over on Board Game Geek! If you’re a Board Game Geek user, feel free to head over to their 20 Most Anticipated Games of 2021 where you can nominate and vote on your favorite games. Nominations end tomorrow, January 16th, and voting takes place between January 17th and January 23rd

Click the image to jump over to Board Game Geek and vote for Seize the Bean if you like! <3

Alright, we're out of here to grab a late-night cup of coffee. Stay safe, and happy gaming, everyone! <3

A Letter to Backers
24 days ago – Sat, Dec 26, 2020 at 11:16:50 PM

Dearest backers... Dylan here, lead designer of Seize the Bean and founder of Quality Beast. As noted in our last update, this update will be one from me personally.

Let me begin by saying: holy roasted coffee beans, what a year, huh? Seize the Bean aside, this year has been many things: strange, wild, scary, shocking, isolating, confusing, crushing... the list goes on and on. I certainly can’t balance that out with a runny blob of text, but I’ll try my hardest to at least bring peace where this coffee bean board game is concerned. 

First and foremost, I need to put this here at the top. Many of you are busy folks, or hate reading, or are sick of updates, or for any other reason might not make it past this top section. So let’s declare it loud and up front: we have fully approved all print files and the factory has begun the printing process!

If you are curious about our timeline, please feel free to refer to Update #53, as nothing significant has changed since then. :)

Now, onto my heartfelt ramblings... 

When I spoke to our Promotion Team about this update being a personal message from me, I had a few goals in mind.

  •  Goal 1: Share how relieved and happy I am that we’ve finished the game and printing can begin.
  •  Goal 2: Formally apologize for the mistakes I made which caused delays and disappointment.
  •  Goal 3: Thank you all for hanging in with us, believing in us, and helping us get to the finish line. 

I honestly don’t know where to begin. I know this update isn’t the proper format for a full deep dive into the entire creation history of Seize the Bean (though I do plan to do that at some point, as a post mortem). So, while I won’t tell the whole story, I do need to share that Seize the Bean is my baby. And during the process of bringing this baby into existence there were so many obstacles. Beginning with the design process that we spent 1.5 years on, things were already emotionally taxing. To get to the final version we had to redesign it three different times. Each time it was heartbreaking to completely discard all the work we’d done and rebuild it from scratch. And when we showed it at events, people were so excited about the idea, that there was great pressure to get it to Kickstarter. Ultimately, it’s my belief that we went to Kickstarter too early, and this was a major cause of stress.

Speaking of which, getting onto Kickstarter was absolutely nerve wracking. I always knew I wanted tons of modularity, I always knew I wanted resin pieces, but I never knew if we’d have the proper support to do that. It was already enough of a rollercoaster having finished the fourth (and final) version of the core game just before the campaign, but then building up to the first day of the campaign I felt excited and nervous like never before. I vividly remember the night before the launch, Rahdo (one of the bigger content creators who previewed the game) had sent us his review of it early and it was ravingly good. A flood of relief washed over me. And then the campaign launched. I was not at all ready for the reaction.

You all know the rest of the story. Our team was overwhelmed not only by the project, but by the crowd who had funded it. We were simultaneously amazed and exhausted at nearly every step. My unwillingness to abandon my vision and my lack of experience in proper timeline planning collided in a disastrous way. And thus, my wonderful baby, Seize the Bean, was constantly under the threat of not being born.

But more scary was the fact that it had become your baby too, all 3,038 of you. This is the biggest reason I feel relief. Because I can now tell all of you, our supportive backers, that we are done and the game we promised you can finally go into print. Despite this moment of relief, I still have something very important to say to you all...

To all backers: I’m sorry for anyone that was or still is disappointed or frustrated by this project. I’m sorry for those that lost trust, lost patience, lost excitement. Believe it or not, I can relate a lot. I will not say I know exactly how you feel, but I do believe I know generally how you feel because I’ve had many moments where I’ve been let down by this project, disappointed by it, frustrated by it, and extremely stressed out by it. When I say “this project” what I really mean is myself. :(

For many of you, the above apology is likely nothing new. I’ve said that I’m sorry in a lot of emails, comments, and even past updates. I think at some point, even if the apologies stay authentic, they can begin to lose their meaning. That’s the last thing I want to happen. A backer suggested some months ago that we send out a formal apology. I thought it was a good idea but I also knew the timing would need to be right. With the game finished I felt it was an appropriate moment to address you all and formally apologize. It’s my hope that you can forgive me for my mistakes, and that we can move forward from here, leaving those mistakes behind us, as a remnant of 2020.

With that said, there is something else I need to say to you all as well...

Seriously. From the bottom of my exhausted heart. Thank you all so much.

This project has helped to change my life for the better. I’ve learned countless things about myself, my team, communicating to and connecting with others, and of course about running a board game design studio and publishing house.

And Seize the Bean has become what I always wanted it to be. Despite the delays and the mistakes, this project is a dream come true. I know many of you haven’t played it on Tabletop Simulator, or maybe haven’t even read the rulebook, but I feel confident that what will end up on your doorstep in 2021 is precisely the product I set out to make in 2016.

In fact, Seize the Bean has become more than what I wanted it to be. It became a co-creation with all of you. The game has so many things it wouldn’t have without its backers. I won’t do a full listing now, but from the resin components to the gameplay features, backers contributed majorly to its final form. We wouldn’t have brown sugar or chocolate milk without backers, the snack pack wouldn’t exist, no milk carton deck box. And there would be no 5-6 player mode, no solo mode, certainly no solo scenarios. This community has truly impacted this game, widening its audience and improving its accessibility. And for that I am extremely grateful. 

Now that we’re in print, the story is far from over. In fact, we have a long, quiet road ahead of us, simply waiting for mass production to finish, and then for the games to make their journey on boats and trucks to you all. I hope that this isn’t the end, but rather the beginning, and that we can stay connected to all of you through 2021, leading up to the delivery of the game, and afterwards, as you finally get to play it.

For those that simply can’t wait, I’d like to remind you that we stream weekly in both English and German. Unfortunately, tomorrow’s English stream won’t happen on Twitch, as I don’t have access to a streaming machine over the holidays. However, I’ll be online tomorrow on our Discord server throughout the day and definitely during our streaming time of 21:00 CEST / 12:00 PDT / 15:00 EDT. So, if anyone wants to chat or play a game of Seize the Bean, please do come find me! :) 

We’ll be back in your inbox on January 15th, 2021 with a short, new year check in. There likely won’t be much to say, but we’ll be sure to keep in touch so you aren’t left wondering what’s going on at the factory.

Until then: happy holidays and happy new year to everyone. I hope each and every one of you is safe, healthy, and happy, wherever you are. 

Sincerely,

-Dylan Howard Cromwell

We're Done!
about 1 month ago – Fri, Dec 11, 2020 at 11:42:40 PM

Hey everyone! The short version of this update is: We did it! The long version is not going to be too much longer, either, but there are a few more details below for your reading pleasure. ;)

We're going to skip the “print file progress” tables we usually include here, because they’re all just full green everywhere. All files have been submitted and approved! We did have to resubmit 2 out of the 86 files last minute, but thankfully it wasn't a problem for the manufacturer at all.

Speaking of our manufacturer: they really stepped up and were super quick in delivering digital proofs (which we explained in the last update). The final thing to do was for us to check everything. And thankfully, almost everything was perfect! We found 1 or 2 things, told the manufacturer, and now they're setting up to start printing.

It’s important to make it clear that as of today, this does not change our delivery estimate at all. Our manufacturer has told us there is no change in their projection that we’ll be finishing production in time to get the games on boats by April 26th, 2021. If you’d like to review the timeline we’re currently on, please refer to Update #53, as nothing significant has changed since then. :)

We're incredibly relieved and excited to have finished our side of this mammoth project. Of course, we'll keep you updated throughout manufacturing, assembly, and shipping. We'll close out the year with a happy holidays update on December 23rd to confirm that our factory has indeed started printing. That update will actually come from Dylan, the lead designer of Seize the Bean and founder of Quality Beast, and include a more personal message from him looking back on this long project.

While we’re mentioning Dylan, you may have missed it but he stayed up late with some backers on Twitch Thursday night, streaming an unboxing of the pre-production copy of Seize the Bean, and replacing the sample components from our team's development copy with the final components we received from the factory recently. If you’d like to catch up on that video, you can check it out on our Twitch channel.

Click this video thumbnail to watch the VOD!

Keep in mind that if you're curious what's going on with Seize the Bean and looking for a more interactive way to engage with our team, you can always catch us on our weekly English stream, Thursdays at 21:00 CEST / 12:00 PDT / 15:00 EDT. We also have a weekly German stream on Fridays at 16:00 CEST / 07:00 PDT / 10:00 EDT.

As always, a huge thank you to all of you for your patience and belief in this project. Until the next update, take care, stay healthy, and happy gaming! <3

Timeline Check-In, Real Components & File Progress
about 2 months ago – Tue, Dec 01, 2020 at 04:18:51 PM

Hello everyone! This is a big one, so let's get right into it...

You may recall that we finally shared an updated delivery date back in Update #53. The most critical deadline in that new timeline is when we plan to approve Seize the Bean to start printing, which is December 7th. We gave ourselves a 3 week buffer and set a deadline to submit all print files by November 13th. Our team and our external translation partners have been working non-stop, but we were unfortunately unable to submit all of the files by that deadline.

However, the good news is that we did anticipate this and spoke to our manufacturer before the deadline. Our manufacturer told us the delivery date is still possible, even with some files being delayed, but the next 2 weeks will be pretty packed for both us and them to make this happen.

In summary: as it currently stands, we are planning to approve the files for print the week of December 7th - December 11th. This means we are giving ourselves an extra 4 days for the final approval process. If you’d like more in-depth details, please check the print file progress charts at the bottom of this update.

We’re announcing this “up here” because it’s often missed at the end of each update: the next update will come on Friday, December 11th. As that is our final week to look at and approve the digital proofs from the manufacturer, we don’t want to rush. We've chosen this day for an update to ensure there is nothing to distract us from looking over and approving the digital proofs, and by the end of the week we’ll definitely have a clear message for you all whether we’ve made it or not.

Some of you may not be aware, but all non-print components have been produced already. Normally, when a game isn’t so delayed, we would see and approve the final samples, and then the factory would immediately  start printing. Near the end of printing, they would send a “mass production copy” for us to have a last look at before packing and shipping the games. In order to save time, we cleared the factory to produce the non-print components a while ago, while we worked to get the print files done.

By now, a lot of time has passed since the factory made all of those non-print components, and as you all know, we cannot suffer anymore delays. Therefore, it would be terrible to wait until the end of the printing process to get a “mass production copy” and find out at that time if there was something wrong with the resin or fabric components.

Therefore, we asked the factory to send us a set of the finished components. This is an unusual request, so shout out to them for being extremely nice and doing this! And the good news is: the non-print components are perfect!

We wanted to share these all with you as a way to rekindle your excitement but also to give you some confidence. These are by far the hardest part of the production so to have these done and actually see that they are perfect is a great relief. Of course, we took high quality photos to share with you, along with some detailed notes about the component quality. As you look, please remember, these are not samples, these are the exact same pieces you will be getting!

(Disclaimer: we’ve done our best to represent all materials and colors as accurately as possible. We are not professional photographers and images will always look different on different screens. Just be aware of this as you look through the photos!)

Here are all the non-paper / non-cardboard components that come with the base game. We are happy to say they all came out as good (if not slightly better than) the samples we received!
The beans came out fantastic. They are perfectly sized and all realistically painted. They have a nice weight and feel to them.
Same as the roasted beans, the green beans came out perfect. If you still aren’t sure what these are for yet, dive into the Expansion Rulebook whenever you have time and look up the Health Nuts Customer Group...
The milk cartons came out so good. Very heavy to hold, great, clean paint job with very minimum variance. We are super pleased with these.
We know the sugar cubes are a sore spot for many backers due to how much we’ve talked about them so we’ll keep this short: they are perfect!
All of the barista meeples came out superb too. These aren’t really so complex, as wood and screenprinting are the bread and butter of board games, but still it’s nice to see the final version and know it’s top notch.
For those that bought the 5-6 Player Expansion, here is what you’ll receive in addition to the extra cards and player boards.
Close up of the extra meeples included in the 5-6 Player Expansion.
Many of you may have forgotten, but one of the free add-ons we included as a thank you to backers was a set of either the Bearista Cubee (left) or the OG Cubee (right) meeples. These are super fun and came out crisp and clean!
Another free add-on for all backers were these chunky resin first player (and next first player) tokens. These came out much better than the samples we received with cleaned up sculpts. The weight is still quite hefty and they feel terrific to pick up and move around while playing.
Here’s an above-view shot. It was hard to get the lighting great here but we wanted to show you a clear view of the inside paint job on the empty cup!
And lastly one more angle.
Speaking of resin, the Snack Pack is gorgeous. Many of these came out far better than the samples.
Let’s just start with the croissants. The paint job is unbelievable on these and the variance is so minimal it's astounding to us. Panda (our manufacturer) really shows their expertise when it comes to pieces like these. They are much better than the samples we got!
The soy beans, representing soy milk in the game, came out fantastic. They are pretty similar to the samples we got, so no surprise there.
The strong coffee bags have so much detail in them! Everything about them is spot on.
These moka pots were probably the most challenging for the factory to do, when it comes to the paint job, because getting the metallic effect and the “worn down” look correct requires layering the paint in the right order. They came out great and we’re really happy with them!
The pie is perfect too. Just like the samples.
Lastly, the donuts. These came out so good! We were really blown away that they maintained so much detail with so little variance. The only difference to the samples is that they are a bit more matte (and less glossy), but we actually like it quite a bit.
Moving on to fabric, these were an optional add-on for players to use to store their resources. Here’s a pic of one with resources in it, though usually during a game you aren’t filing them quite this high!
Here’s a close up so you can see the quality of the material. Remember: none of these photos are samples, these are all the actually objects you’ll get shipped to you!
Another detail shot to show the clasp and string used to keep the bags closed for storing game components (we typically like to put the first player tokens inside the player resource bags in our development copy of the game).
Now onto these amazing components, probably our favorite of all the components in the game. For those that don’t know, fabric is quite hard to work with. It’s not just hard to get the right material, thickness, color, etc, but it’s very hard to get it to work in certain shapes. Getting the bags to sit flat and keep their shape was always something we worried about. And for full transparency we can say that these bags come packed flat. However, once you fill them with resources they take shape within minutes. We are so pleased with how they came out! And for those of you who have sharp eyes, don’t be alarmed at the sugar bag being bigger than the other bags; this is intentional and we’ll explain it more below.
Let’s start by looking at the bean bag… we tried an actual burlap but it was really annoying to play with and close; far too stiff. So we ended up with a fake burlap that’s a lot more silky and lightweight. It makes it terrific for its use case!
Another view where you can see the embroidery a bit better. The quality of the embroidery (on this bag and the others) came out so good, we were really surprised!
Here’s exactly what it looks like when you’re playing the game. The beans shown inside are the same amount you’ll get in the base game. And that is of course the scoop which comes with the game. We are really happy that the bags are lightweight and flexible, yet sturdy enough to hold the scoop simply like this.
Quick shot looking down on the bag. Pretty neat!
The bag closes very tight to hold the beans. This makes the game actually quicker to pack up and setup, which is important, because the modularity of the card aspect of the game isn’t as fast.
Another shot to really show that the bag closes all the way, preventing even the small beans from falling out.
Let’s look at the milk bag next…
We went with a more velvety fabric for this bag and the sugar bag, and you can see that a bit in this close up (sorry for the odd focus, this is our first time doing “focal stacking” for those of you who know a bit about photography).
Here’s what the bag looks like with the base game milk in it. Very easy to reach across the table and grab cartons out of!
Above view shot just for fun. :)
As with the beans, here is what the milk bag is like closed, including the chocolate milk too. You can see that due to the type of fabric used, the bag doesn’t close precisely as tight, but it’s tight enough that the cartons don’t come out.
And another shot, which may look the same, but actually this is the bag closed with the base game milk AND the 5-6 player expansion milk in it (normal and chocolate milk). It was important for us to try to size the bags just right so that they wouldn’t feel too big for those of you with only a base game, but that they’d also have space for the extra milk (and sugar) for those of you with an expansion.
Lastly, the sugar bag. Same as the milk, it’s a softer, thicker fabric than the fake burlap of the bean bag.
You might have noticed in the shot of all 3 bags that the sugar bag was much bigger. Here you can see it’s pretty obvious when you have the base game sugar in it. The reason for this is that the sugar cubes require more space and thus the bag must be bigger to close properly, especially with the 5-6 player expansion sugar in it.
Sugar from above. :)
As with the milk and beans, here’s the sugar closed (including brown sugar). Works perfect!
And again, here it is closed with the base game AND the 5-6 player expansion sugar (once again, with white and brown sugar). We won’t lie, this is a tight fit. But we tested that during sampling and decided that if it works we didn’t want to go bigger because as you can see the sugar bag is already visibly bigger if you look closely. We are really happy with the decision we made in the end, as it’s just big enough and it works great.
And lastly, one more shot of all 3 bags again, this time closed, with all components in them from both boxes.
Here’s the “Wood Tisch” play mat. This came out perfect. It’s hard to capture such a large object well with photography but we hope you can get the idea. The fabric is great, stitching is good, and the print is pretty perfect.
Here’s a few close ups...
Also, the mat folds up nicely to fit into the box. At first this worried us a lot, that the mats would get creases, be hard to play on, not sit flat, etc. We’ve seen that in other games! But the fabric is silky and lightweight enough that this doesn’t really happen. Of course, we haven’t had much time with these real components, and we’re basing our experiences on the samples, but these feel pretty much identical to the samples, so we are confident that those of you who ordered these will enjoy playing with them and that they will add to your experience and not hinder it at all.
Here’s the other play mat variant. We really love them both and totally dig that we made the choice to give one rounded corners and the other square corners, even though it was a bit experimental.
And again a few close ups…
And finally, that one folded up too. Since they are the same fabric, both work equally great, so the difference is only aesthetic. Also, they are flat enough that you can fit both in the box!

As we said above, we hope that by showing you these it not only helps to revitalize your excitement, but also to raise your confidence. We know the delays have been very frustrating and a big source of lost trust. As we near the end, it’s easy for any of us to imagine the worst, that mistakes or more delays could occur. At least now we can all rest assured that the more challenging components have come out perfect and you don’t have to wonder about the quality of what you’ll be receiving.

Speaking of which, if you’re still reading, that’s probably a better segue than any to talk about the print files...

Below you can find some detailed explanations with visual progress charts.

English: Fully submitted and approved.

German: Fully submitted and mostly approved. We expect a final approval from the factory this week.

Spanish: Mostly submitted and mostly approved. As you can see, the Spanish rulebooks have not been submitted yet. Our external Spanish partners have been reviewing them over the weekend. They are due to give us their final approval on Monday and we’ll submit them once we have their approval.

French: Mostly submitted and mostly approved. Our external French partners are finished but since we were late to share the rulebooks we need at least 1 day to implement the backer feedback that came in over the weekend. We plan to submit the remaining files on Tuesday.

Chinese: Mostly submitted and mostly approved. Similarly to Spanish, our Chinese partner is currently in the process of approving the final files. We plan to submit the remaining files on Wednesday.

Once everything is submitted, our manufacturer will provide us with “digital proofs”.  When we receive them, we give them a thorough check to make sure everything is being printed correctly (cards have the right backs, cut marks are correct, etc.) and if all is good we can green light the factory for printing!

Remember: the next update is schedule for December 11th. And when you hear from us then, it will hopefully be us telling you that Seize the Bean is approved for print!

Mini-Update w/ French Rulebooks
about 2 months ago – Mon, Nov 30, 2020 at 06:33:05 AM

Hey everyone! Finally we can share the French rulebooks with you now! If you find anything super wrong in them, feel free to email us about it at support@qualitybeast.com, but please do so by this Sunday, November 29th, 23:59 CET, if you want your edits to be accepted.

We’ll also be sending you a full update on Sunday around midnight (Berlin time), so if you’re wondering where we’re at, you’ll get all the info then.

See you on Sunday and have a great weekend!