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:
Pledge Manager Extended to December 31st!
about 2 years ago
– Thu, Nov 01, 2018 at 01:29:49 AM
Hello all! We survived Essen. Whew!
And we're back with (for the first time ever) a very short, single-topic update: we'll be extending the pledge manager to December 31st. This will allow us time to attempt to get more local pick-up options and also to answer all of your unanswered questions. (Please be aware that we are swamped in messages on all platforms and we are answering them as fast as we can but we are also hunting for a customer support panda to join our growing team.)
Regarding Essen, we'll be sharing some highlights from the event in our next update. Though, we should say, that some of you may have already heard through the grapevine or here in the comments that we received new manufacturer samples. In fact, more samples arrived to our Berlin HQ today. We're going to take a few days over here, recovering from the event and going through the samples to get feedback to our manufacturer, and then we'll be documenting them and sharing them in an update with you all.
Thanks for your patience and special thanks to anyone who came by the booth(s) at Essen!
Talk soon. :)
Art 100% Done, New Samples & Essen SPIEL
over 2 years ago
– Sat, Oct 20, 2018 at 02:40:09 AM
As promised we’ve stuck to our new schedule and we've completed all the artwork for the game earlier this week (on Monday). Actually, let’s be honest – our amazing artist, Mario, completed all the artwork. We want to express how proud and thankful of him we are for the last two years of work. And we’re wishing him well as he goes into his eyeball surgery to activate his telescopic laser night vision. You know, just a routine operation for a true Quality Beast!
To honor Mario’s work, let’s dig through some previews together!
If you want to see the finished card art we’re sharing it piece-by-piece on a geeklist posted by Dylan on BGG. We’d love to share it all at once but it takes time to put up images and we need to balance that with finishing up the pre-production for the game. That, and we’d like to also share some notes with each image! Now we're trying to share at least one or two images every other day or so, but give us some time to get ramped up (things are a bit hectic leading up to SPIEL). We hope to see you subscribe to the geeklist and help us share it. We’re eager to hear what you think of the cards!
Our graphic designer, Pietro, will be working with Dylan and Galen (our new usability designer at Quality Beast) to finalize the functional parts of the player boards but meanwhile we’d love to share the different café artwork with y'all.
We'll definitely share these again in our BGG-hosted art previews and give some more details and background when we do, but for now we hope you've enjoyed the sneak peek!
A while ago we had a vote. The “woodtisch” design of the play mat won by a landslide. However, while working with samples, both Mario and Dylan fell in love with the “tablecloth” version. So, we’ve discussed with our manufacturer and gotten approval to do two different prints. We realize that people have already ordered the play mat, and they may be expecting the “woodtisch” version. What we’ve done is loaded up two variants into BackerKit and automatically moved everyone over to the “woodtisch” version. If you’d like the tablecloth version, please jump back into the pledge manager to update your order!
These samples are on their way to us now and with good timing we should be able to show them off at SPIEL18. (Please keep in mind the photos from the factory have not been color corrected and may have been taken under bad or misleading lighting. Once we receive them we'll take better photos and send out another update with a detailed look at them explaining what the different sections are and how they're used in play.)
We're going to repeat that important part from above: if you bought a play mat in our pledge manager please return to the pledge manager to select your choice between the two (and remove the current play mat from your cart). If you don't, you'll still receive one, but it will be a random one based on available quantities (very likely "woodtisch").
While there is some graphic design work to flesh out on the rule books (and we'll have solo book text to share after SPIEL) the main artwork is done. We are very happy to unveil a sneak peek with you all now. (Don't mind the chunky border visible in all of these images... it's simply some extra bleed used for the manufacturing process.)
That's the rule book preview for now. We'll share more with you once Dylan and Pietro start filling out the pages!
Our manufacturer has continued to push on the more complicated parts of the game. We want to share a few quick photos from the factory with you here. First lets look at the resource and player bags. (Keep in mind, these are made in a way where they'll hold their structure once they have pieces in them, so standing empty they may look a bit strange.)
One thing we should note is that we can't fully give feedback on these until we receive them in-person but we can already tell from the photos that the print or embroidery overlaps a bit with the drawstring stitching. We'll certainly be working with our manufacturer to address this as it could be done in a cleaner way.
Next, let's take a look at the new resin samples. While we don't have a picture of the painted samples, we do have an image from the factory of the new sculpts, which look much much better:
These should be available at Essen SPIEL if shipping treats us well. And, from what we hear, they could be painted by then too.
Oh, and while our favorite little buddy won’t be making it en-mass to the fair she’ll be turning up in small numbers at least! We've been told by our manufacturer that we can expect a couple of pre-production plushie samples at our booth. Let's take a look at how she's turning out:
Speaking of Essen, are you going to SPIEL? We’d love to see you there! Please come catch us at one of our booths:
Hall 4, Booth 4F107 = current board game releases (Seize the Bean and free coffee!)
That’s it for our mid-month update. We know we’ve said monthly updates for now but we were just too excited to wait! See you next month and thank you, as always, for the support and trust!
Timeline Update, Art Preview & First Store Pick-Ups
over 2 years ago
– Tue, Oct 02, 2018 at 01:59:44 AM
Bad news gang, we absolutely hate to do this but we’re nothing if not transparent: we have to announce another production delay. This is really hard for us to say, as we really do not want to let you all down. So we’ll start this update with some whys and wherefores, before hitting on some more positive news.
It appears that a safe delivery date of Seize the Bean is now going to be mid-July, 2019. We can imagine how annoying and worrisome that can be to read. We are neither proud nor pleased with this at all but we promise that we are working to the best of our abilities to deliver you this game! The next few sections below will explain the delays.
The biggest issue we’ve been facing, despite our extremely detailed calculation and Mario’s unbreakable work ethic, is our optimism. Getting hundreds of unique, high quality and fun card illustrations is just taking longer than we planned. We won’t be done with art until October 15th. And this is 1.5 months later than our calculated date of September 1st. (We waited to announce this until we were able to align with our manufacturer over the last two weeks.) What we can promise is that every single piece of art, every single work day is planned out right now so we are confident there is no miscalculation this time. Here’s the schedule for this last month of art:
Week 1, Sept. 17th - 21st: Finishing the last Style Upgrade cards (this is done!)
Weekend 3, Oct. 6th - 7th: Final play mat artwork, non-art cards (player aids, etc) & tokens
Week 4, Oct. 8th - 12th: Completion of player boards & rulebook style guide
Weekend 4, Oct. 13th - 14th: Completion of box art for base game and expansion
There will be a one-day buffer on Monday, October 15th but after that Mario will head into the hospital for eyeball surgery (unrelated to the demands of Seize the Bean art creation!). This means that we have to be done with art by then. So far, he has been pouring every bit of energy into the game and it shows in the artwork. As of today we can say we’re on schedule to begin design verification on October 15th.
Besides general art delays, we were about 1 month late on delivering our new spec sheet. Unfortunately, due to the bandwidth of our team, there was no way to handle this and make sure the rest of our tasks were completed, so we had to prioritize our work directly on the game over this. It was a hard decision but not one we regret, as we need to get the spec sheet right to ensure the resin components come out as we’ve been planning. And if you recall our manufacturer's previous attempt at mirroring our 3D printer sugar cubes, you can see the pay-off of taking our time with the factory snapshot below:
As you can see above, the fruits of our labor are really starting to show and we are very excited to get new samples in the mail! Despite the cool news of the sugar cubes, this late spec sheet changes our manufacturer’s initial estimate of an 8 week mass production time to a 12 week mass production time. And thus, adds another 1 month to our timeline.
The good news here is that the spec sheet is in (as noted in our last update) and our manufacturer is busy at work on the next round of resin pieces, barista meeples, burlap sacks and play mat samples. We do not have an exact delivery date from them but we should be receiving these by the end of October.
Because of these changes in our timeline, it makes it impossible to avoid Chinese New Year, and puts us into manufacturing limbo for a month as factories won’t be running for most of February. We were well aware of this holiday, but our plan had been to see manufacturing away before the holiday. We need to eat our own words in response to backer Kawarazu, who in a comment on Update #21 pointed out the dangers of running into Chinese New Year. It’s a big shame that this overlap exists, but it does, and we just need to deal with it, as it adds another month onto our timeline.
Wrapping all of those delays into one summary, here is our new timeline for you to visually consume:
While all the delays are a drag (to put it lightly), we want to keep everyone’s spirits up and to show that – while we’re not doing everything right – we are making progress, and the game is going to look amazing when you do get it! Therefore, we’d like to begin sharing, day-by-day, bits and pieces of Mario’s fantastic artwork. We think this will help to keep us connected, to let you know we haven’t gone anywhere, and also to share with you the vast amount of work and love being poured into this game. (And it may help you all to better understand the time it takes to finish a game of this size.)
In order to not spam everyone with super frequent or giant updates (as we know our updates are very long already!), we’ll be posting art every day or two on a series of BGG forum posts. Please click here to find out more!
Finally, we can start to supply some good news for you all! We’ve been incredibly slow to get there, but we’re happy to announce the first three (of hopefully many more) stores that have agreed to offer their location as a local pick-up. The following locations have already been added to BackerKit:
We realize this is not the update you wanted to read. And we know that due to this second and very-large delay some of you may become quite skeptical. Rest assured we are well aware that we have to prove ourselves to you all! We are dedicated to do this and we simply want to say thank you for any and all understanding you can give us. We are not perfect and as this is our first Kickstarter, we have made some mistakes. But we are learning from them and we are honored to have your support and your continued trust along the way. We hope you stick with us and stay excited, because when the games do arrive, we think you’ll be very happy!
Until next update, everyone!
Art Progress, New Spec Sheets & Store Pick-ups!
over 2 years ago
– Sat, Sep 01, 2018 at 01:51:54 AM
What an August! We hope everyone has had a great time during the Summer (it's been hot in Berlin!) – It’s always the busiest for us because of the dense event season it brings. And while we travel a lot, we don’t let that get in the way of our primary focus on making great games though, so we have some progress updates to share.
We are happy to report that currently we have:
85% of the Customer Card artwork completed (this hasn't changed because we’ve focused almost entirely on upgrade cards the last month)
100% of the Pantry Upgrade artwork completed
77% of the Style Upgrade artwork completed
In total we are approximately 88% done with all cards for the game!
Keep in mind that as we finish the artwork, it’s not only visuals that we’re completing, because each card’s art is inspired and directed by its flavor text. With all that flavor text completed, our translators can begin preparing the non-English language files for print as well. This is necessary for production (since all games are being made together, using what is called a "plate change") but as a bonus this will also help us to provide the final print and play files in multiple languages.
In our next update we’ll give a more updated view of the overall timeline in general, but it appears that our estimate on card art was quite accurate, perhaps off by a week or two at the most (our previous estimates did have some minor margins built in, so we'll be crunching the numbers again to see if they can swallow the art time as planned).
Many backers have been asking (quite urgently too, which we take as a generally good sign, though we also take very seriously, as we do not want to let any backers down!) for updated photos of the resin pieces and add-ons. It’s important to understand we’ve been more focused on making sure the art and text is completed for the next stages of file prep for production than we have been with getting updated spec sheets to our manufacturer. This in turn directly slows down the rate at which we get updated samples. This is not because we don’t deem samples and component progress important, it is simply a matter of resource delegation. As an independent publisher, this is very important to do, as the creation of this game is very much a marathon, not a sprint!
With that said, we’re very happy to share that we’ve completed the updated spec sheets for the base game. There are still a few minor tweaks, but the sizing and visual descriptions of all the base game pieces are vastly improved which should help us get a better second round of factory samples, and we'll be sending these off to our manufacturer over the weekend (yup, that's right, all of you backers are seeing the spec sheet updates even before our manufacturers).
For those wondering where the expansion and add-on spec sheets are, don’t fret! They are coming just around the corner. We estimate to have the components not pictured above (such as the snack pack, resources bags and player sacks) done and off to our manufacturer next week. Once we receive an estimate from them on the turn around time for the second round of samples we’ll let all of you know promptly (instead of waiting a month to drop another large update). Meanwhile, thank you for your patience and understanding, we know the wait is difficult, and we promise: we’re dying to see the end result just as much as the rest of you!
Yes, it’s true. We do have a confirmation from BackerKit that there is a way they can implement store pick-ups into the pledge manager. In short, their solution is that we can add a new “add-on item” to the pledge manager labeled something like “Pick-Up Option” which will have different “variants”, each of which provide the name and region of the pick-up location (these will generally be retail stores). What’s nice is that we can add stores in one-by-one, and send out short, brief updates informing everyone once a store (or set of stores) has been added. Please have patience with us as we begin to add stores! Now that the hardest part is done (getting things sorted with BackerKit) the rest should go quite smoothly.
Also, please beware: after selecting this soon-to-appear option, your cart may still show a shipping price, but BackerKit assures us there is a back-end “chore” (as they called it) that they can do to make sure all of the people who have selected the pick-up option won’t be charged (or will be refunded) the cost of their shipping. We'll supply more explicit details on this in the next update when we announce the first stores.
Don’t get too excited: Seize the Bean will definitely not be available for pick up at Essen. However, some items may be! Right now we are working out the logistics of this possibility with our amazing event manager, Kerstin (who was also a huge help on Seize the Bean when she was previously wearing the hat of a developer too!). If things seem not too complicated we’re inclined to allow those of you who attend Essen to pick-up whatever items we can provide you with there, and help lower your shipping by removing those items’ added shipping amount (if any) from your total. Even if your shipping isn't adjusted by these, you'd at least get to grab them earlier!
(Please note that this option has not fully been discussed with BackerKit yet, though we can’t see why it won’t be possible, as it's simply a variation of the store pick-up option they've already provided us. The main issue is that it just may be too much work to pull off. We'll report back as soon as we know for sure!)
As promised we’ve also been getting other tasks out of the way such as completing any production we can with our additional manufacturers. This includes the milk carton deck boxes and the Cubee plushie, both of which are in production now and we’re attempting to have delivered in time for SPIEL (though this is still yet to be 100% confirmed, due to how tight the shipping estimates are currently). Regardless, have a peek below at a preview of the final deck box samples, their packaging, and the current state of the plushie samples!
Hope you've enjoyed these images and they not only help you to rekindle some of your excitement but also share with you just how much work goes into this process and further assure you that we are indeed taking the entire production of all the items related to this campaign seriously.
That’s it for today! Thanks so much to you all for your continued trust in us and patience as push towards a high quality, and truly exceptional finished product.
PnP Update, German Vast & Berlin Con
over 2 years ago
– Thu, Jul 26, 2018 at 12:50:02 AM
Hello backers! August is almost upon us which means, with another month under our belt, we’re getting closer to the end of the art for Seize the Bean. Let’s go through some updates and catch you all up-to-speed.
Time and time again we have tried to hit bi-weekly updates and failed. While some backers suggest this isn’t a big deal we completely understand how it can let others down, send the wrong message or even just fizzle out excitement. We are big believers in learning from mistakes and also not fighting against the flow, so we’ve decided to follow a new schedule of monthly updates from now on. Hopefully this will set a more realistic expectation for everyone. (Also, for the few folks who were asking for less updates, this should strike a decent compromise.) In-between those updates we’ll keep posting in the comments area of the Kickstarter page for those of you who want more frequent interaction. (And of course, if we have urgent news to share, we’ll do so without waiting!)
We are happy to be releasing today an update to the print and play (PnP). Many have asked if we’ll update the PnP in segments (which was our original plan) and a time for that may come but due to lack of resources and also due to significant card changes (such as adding art to all the upgrades) we are releasing the whole PnP again.
The changes in v3.12.0 are:
Two new Customer Groups: Unemployed Expats and Starving Artists
Nearly full-art on all cards (only a handful missing)
Nearly final flavor text / card names
All card data (the effects and costs) final (with potential tweaks for balancing between now and production)
Give it a download and let us know what you think! And as for art, here’s where we’re at with cards:
Customer Cards = 85% done (boardgame media, quality beast and a few KS backers are missing)
Pantry Upgrade Cards = 77% done
Style Upgrade Cards = 50% done
It’s important to understand these percentages are based on the approved art. We are actually farther when it comes to sketches and even colored illustrations, but we’re not yet counting something into the “done” percentages if it hasn’t been fully approved.
(Note: Dylan misspoke in the video linked below and described both of the Upgrade card types being over 70% but Mario’s focus has been on Pantry cards first.)
It’s really important for us to note that without all of your support and positive energy we would never have been able to grow so much in such a short time. Because of that we want to extend a huge thank you to all you from everyone at the Quality Beast team!
Speaking of growth, we had the largest booth we’ve ever had this past weekend at the Berlin Brettspiel Con. It was approximately 57sqm and contained tables for showing 6 of our games (plus 1 secret one we were demoing for a friend designer of ours), an area for our growing RPG department (Necrotic Gnome) where we ran old school D&D sessions and a win-a-map contest, staffed a sales counter and even had left-over space for our Taiwanese partner, Citie Lo, to demo and sell his games from The Wood Games.