Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Manufacturing secrets

They may not be actual secrets, but it's very rare that someone is actually willing to show what happens before a game reaches the stores and after it gets funded on Kickstarter.

Let's discover the story of Exodus: Proxima Centauri and Exodus: Edge of Extinction and their route from Kickstarter success to delivery all over the world.

After the files are delivered to the printer, it's waiting time. Before anything is produced, we have to approve the preliminary printouts to be sure, that the final product is up to our and your expectations. From the rulebook and the box, to cards and punchboards, everything needs proper scrutiny and approval before it goes into production.

Punchboards setup
Right before checking out the punchboards - and don't worry, we're using a slightly thicker cardboard with the actual games.

While the litograph is not an essential part of the game, we want it to be the best it can be. And that means we need to color proof it as well.
Signing off the color proof for a lithograph
And here's another look at punchboards for approval - and with them, also player player boards. To put it shortly, everything needs to be carefully looked at.
Color proofs of player aids, punch board, player boards etc stacked over die cut samples
But cardboard is not everything. To assemble new copies of both Exodus: Proxima Centauri and the Exodus: Edge of Extinction expansion, we also need a whole bunch of plastic stuff.
Here's where the ships are made by a machine.
This is the machine responsible for creating the mighty fleets you will command in the vast space of the Exodus universe.
And here they are sorted by a man.
However, to finish the process a human touch is necessary. Separating ships from stray pieces of plastic, and getting rid of those unfortunate few that made it out damaged or incomplete is yet another step that brings the game closer to your door.

Almost a rainbow of dice as they arrive at our doorstep.
To make the games complete, we also need to add the dice. Once again they will go through and inspection to weed out the ones that are not up to par, before they are put into boxes.
Ships ready to form your fleets.
Finally, there is the matter of ships that arrived just like the dice, and are now ready to be added to each game. A long time of waiting (and some frantic work to proceed to next stages as fast as possible) we are now closer and closer to the moment the games are ready to be shipped to you.

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