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Darkest Dungeon: The Board Game – Shipping surcharge

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This topic contains 72 replies, has 17 voices, and was last updated by  limburger 9 months, 1 week ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 73 total)
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    Cult of Games Member

    It looks like Mythic Games and their Darkest Dungeon: The Board Game are the latest to fall to the “shipping is chaos, we need more money” or “give use more money if you want your stuff” trap, depending on which side of the comment gallery you’re sitting on:

    Dear Backers,
    This is a very important announcement, and we thank you for taking the time to read it thoroughly and to the end. Firstly, let us apologize for the late delivery of “Darkest Dungeon: The Board game”.

    IN SUMMARY: Due to the unsustainable increase in costs (delivery, shipping, manufacturing), we are asking for your help: we need an additional contribution, depending on the content of your order, to bring the Darkest Dungeon board game to life.

    Wave 1 ready to ship

    As you may have seen in the latest development news, Wave 1 is fully printed and ready to be shipped (see update #110). Wave 1 is ENGLISH language ONLY and will contain the Core Boxes, the Crimson Court expansion as well as the majority of the Pledge Manager add-ons.

    Wave 2, will include everything else, i.e. the remaining English expansions and add-ons as well as the foreign language versions of the complete game. Wave 2 file creation is currently being finalized and according to our schedules and the current schedules provided by the factory, we estimate that printing will start Q1 2023.

    Current conditions, soaring shipping costs, subsidies

    When we ended the Kickstarter campaign on November 6, 2020, the situation was nothing like it is today. COVID and then the war in Ukraine, led to a significant increase in costs not only of manufacturing but also, and especially, of shipping and delivery: The shipping costs have increased by an average of 600%. The costs of raw materials (paper, cardboard, plastic) have increased by at least 30%.

    The graph below plots the evolution of container prices that Mythic Games paid on each of its games. These prices include the rental of the containers, but also insurance, handling, transferring from the factory to the port of departure, and from the port of arrival in the hub. They do not include the cost of shipping from the hub to your mailbox, the so-called “last mile shipping”, which has also increased considerably.


    Up until our last project, Anastyr, Mythic Games fully funded the additional costs of shipping and manufacturing (what we call “subsidizing”), so that we didn’t pass them on to backers. Since 2020, we have subsidized over $1.2M. You can find the details in a recent Anastyr update.

    Several indicators predicted a return to a less expensive situation at the beginning of this year, but the events in Ukraine and cost inflation (raw materials, oil …) have reshuffled the cards, with a sharp increase in “last mile shipping” especially in the U.S. where these costs have doubled, but also in Europe and the rest of the world.

    Contribution for Darkest Dungeon

    Today, the shipping costs to get these games to you are $3.1M, which is $1.4M more than the $1.7 million paid by backers. On top of that, there was an additional $350,000 in manufacturing costs due to the increase in oil and raw materials. That’s a total of $1.75 million in additional costs to be paid.

    In order to ensure the sustainability of Mythic Games to deliver our outstanding games and to allow our teams to continue to develop games with passion and commitment, we have had to make the decision to no longer absorb all of the additional costs.

    In agreement with Red Hook, the video game creator and publisher, our partner on Darkest Dungeon: The Board Game, we are asking for your help in contributing to these additional costs. Of course, we can’t ask you such a thing without contributing a lot ourselves. So Red Hook and Mythic Games will cover 50% of the additional costs, with Red Hook generously contributing $100,000 and Mythic Games contributing $775,000. We ask for your help to cover the balance. So, we propose a flat amount contribution per item, regardless of the country of delivery.

    How will the contribution be administered?

    We will email and reopen the Gamefound accounts of those backers that selected any ENGLISH product being delivered in Wave 1, This reopening will allow backers to pay their contribution based on what your pledge contains. You will see a new balance to pay that corresponds to the contribution we are asking you to make.

    Here are the details of the additional costs for each item contribution amount and for each pledge level, AFTER subsidization from Mythic Games and Red Hook.


    For example, if you took the core boxes , your contribution for Wave 1 will be $18.

    If you took the core boxes, the Crimson Court expansion and the Darkest organizer, your contribution for the Wave 1 delivery will be $29.

    Your game is printed, it’s yours, and it’s currently stored in China. If you are unable to pay this contribution immediately, we will store your game for as long as possible.

    So you have the following choice:

    1 – Pay your contribution by August 1st, and this contribution guarantees that your game will be on our first containers that leave the port in mid-August. To avoid soliciting those backers that have ENGLISH products ordered in Wave 2 a second time and requesting a second contribution for another small amount, we will be asking those backers to make their contribution for their Wave 2 content at the same time as the Wave 1 content.

    2 – You prefer to wait, in which case your games will be stored in our factory and will be added to containers as payments are made.

    When Darkest Dungeon Wave 1 is on its way, the English Wave 1 products will be available on our e-store, however, new buyers will only receive their e-store order after the Wave 1 backers pledges have been delivered. The e-store prices of the products will be higher than during the KS campaign, even including your additional contribution (see the FAQ).

    Argyris Poungouras, Nick Niotis, Babis Giannios, Christophe Madura, Stéphane Gantiez, Jean-Jérôme Loubet, Sandra Tessières, Edgar Skomorowski and Arnaud Boudoiron, Leni Scheider, Anne Vetillard and all the team worked for 2 years on this project with Red Hook, highly motivated as they love the video game and wanted to ensure that its unique universe was fully reflected in the board game. We think we did just that! The developers and play testers are very happy with the result. You totally feel immersed in the universe with its superbly illustrated boards, the fantastic illustrations of Chris Bourassa and of course the magnificent miniatures that give form to the game’s unique protagonists. The feedback from our many playtesters shows that this game is just what they wanted from such an adaptation, fun around the table (even if some will laugh at your expense!), a dark and intense atmosphere, great replayability and a very strong attachment to your heroes, who will have to work hard to free the mansion and its surroundings from the ungodly monsters that have taken up residence.

    We want to bring this game to you, and we are aware that what we are asking for is difficult, for you of course, but also for us, as we’ve been able to avoid asking for a contribution for over 2 years despite these substantial increases.

    The FUTURE

    This situation marks a turning point for Mythic Games. But we are already working to evolve and adapt to this new business landscape. We have started to research alternatives to our Kickstarter model by diversifying and offering retail versions of several of our games in stores.

    We are also currently preparing more condensed games, with different and new content , which will allow us to reduce their physical size ,their price but also any associated shipping costs. We look forward to showing you what’s coming.

    However, our primary goal is to deliver our remaining games and reduce the number of undelivered games before launching a new crowdfunding campaign.

    We believe that players will continue to want games that are out of the ordinary and that offer a more immersive experience than most traditional games.

    We thank you very much for your support over the years.

    Leonidas Vesperini, Benoit Vogt, and the rest of the Mythic Games team

    As for me, I don’t disagree with the shipping costs persay; that is a part of the risk of crowding (“never back with money you can’t afford to lose” ) but I feel the umbridge at the ransom like tone of “we have it and will hold it till you pay” when this is a second shopping fee on top of that already charged. I get what they are saying but they could have said it in a better way perhaps.

    • This topic was modified 10 months, 2 weeks ago by  warzan.

    Cult of Games Member

    Is mantic involved with this I thought its mythic games that did darkest dungeon  aswell as Solomon kane and reich busters


    Cult of Games Member

    This is exactly why I have stopped cruising ‘Kickstarter’ and refuse to buy into any new launches.

    Of course, there are a couple of companies that are still using Kickstarter that I trust, but they have never employed the ransomed scheme.  I really didn’t think Mythic would join the list of “f-the buyer we’re not losing our profit”

    This is also the reason why letting a game take two years to deliver is a bad idea.  Of course all prices will go up during that time!  So plan it in to your budget when setting your prices for the game your selling.  But they don’t want to ask for that much up front as they think people will say, “I’ll just wait till I see it on a shelf”.

    As far as the subject of “wait till I see it on a shelf”, some Kickstarters say, “this game will never go to the retail shelf”. So ask yourself, if it never goes to retail and you lose a piece of the game down the road, you are screwed!  Unless you get lucky and find it on eBay later.  But I digress.

    How much longer do you all think Kickstarter will survive?  It really is a much more risky prospect than ever before.  But remember, it has always been a “gamble with your hobby money” prospect.

    Just think about Kickstarter as a gamble, not a game retail shop.  After all, Kickstarter NEVER guaranteed that you’d ever receive anything that you have paid for.  That is not their business.  Their business is providing a store front for investment firms to shop from.  You are the investment firms!




    Tricky one to get the wording right on this.

    Should they have just said.

    Hi Everyone, wave one is ready. As you know shipping costs etc absolutely skyrocketed during the pandemic and war, well above any expectations we had. We have hoped things would return to normal but that hasn’t happened yet.

    So to keep us in business we are going to keep everything safely in storage for 6 months to see if costs return to some normal level (around where they were in 2020). We will then review it in 6 months and see if we can make the shipping work.

    In the mean time we have an option if you want to grab your stuff faster where you can pay basically the difference in shipping and we’ll get that sent out.



    Cult of Games Member

    I do feel that may have taken the edge off for a lot of people, yes.


    Cult of Games Member

    I paid for mine. I generally prefer to get everything in one shipment, but since they didn’t offer that as an option, then I guess they really need the money.



    The wording definitely makes it sound like a ransom note.

    Admittedly I didn’t read the entire text as I’m not a backer, but did they give anyone the option of a refund instead?

    In the last few years I have backed few ks because shipping was creeping up… now it’s insane what they are asking.

    The only projects I backed recently was Crooked Dice because it all made in the UK and prices for shipping are sensible.

    Covid was released onto the world by China and now they are extorting money from companies for shipping containers and production costs. Time the world decided to stop buying from them.


    Cult of Games Member

    No refund option as they’ve spent the money of production already apparently.

    I’ve seen some comments about people attempting to contact Mythic on an individual basis but not heard if anyone has been successful so far.



    they did say to contact them directly if you really needed a refund … but I suspect that chances are very slim.
    Heck, if too many people got a refund then Mythic could end up in a death spiral.

    While the wording could have been better I doubt it would have stopped the *beeps* in the kickstarter comments from screaming “scam” or “fraud”, which appears to be par for the course in kickstarters when things don’t go 100% perfect …

    This is one of the reasons I don’t trust kickstarters when their initial (pre-stretchgoal) target is too flippin’ low.
    It may look like they’re raking it in when they hit stretchgoal after stretchgoal and hit a few million in funding, but the cold hard reality is that a few million dollars are likely the bare minimum to actually pay the people and material needed to get things done. And that’s before the world wide disruption of logistics were a thing.

    I’d like to see a proper cost breakdown of a few kickstarters … I am sure a lot of them survived simply because they were funded above and beyond their initial target. I wonder if OTT can find companies willing to talk about that aspect of crowdfunding.

    From my point of view there’s no way any sane person could have predicted this for a project with a time to market as long as this one. Those who could may want to give me their predictions for the winning lottery numbers as well … 😀



    Caveat Emptor. No doubt the next Mythic KS will be a massive success because consumers are, on the whole it seems, a bunch of idiots.

    This is what you get by paying on a platform that offers almost zero consumer protection. The only people I trust with KS money is Free League.




    Free League delivered, but they fucked up the printing of One Ring with some entire pages of text being beta rules and totally wrong. And the printed the dice wrong.

    Once a company has your money they have no incentive to get it right.

    In the old days you would read a review of something before you bought it and avoid companies that made glaring mistakes.



    It does seem these days that some companies are spending a lot of money on marketing. They need to generate hype for the KS project, and there are no end of ‘Influencers’ who are more than happy to get product and money to shill. Holding games hostage (games that people have already paid for) is a pretty shitty move.

    I would want to see complete transparency from the company on where all the KS money went before sending them a dime. But for folks who have dropped $200+ on a game I suppose getting mugged for another $50+ seems like a small price to pay to get their mountain of plastic and mediocre game that will need rules updates (and another KS) to fix.



    I wonder if the backers of the other 4 games mythic have done since darkest dung have been sent ransom notes for their games too?



    And this is just Wave 1 of DD.

    If KS as a platform really cared about backers they would ban any company that pulled a stunt like this. But KS doesn’t care, they already got their cut.




    Got “their cut” makes it sound like the mugger paid the police off and has permission to take the money from their victims… I mean backers…

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