I had planned to write this blog entry today regardless, but it becomes particularly appropriate because today the TECHNOLOGY NAMING RIGHTS reward tier became exhausted. One of the questions I’ve gotten repeatedly, and with vigor, has been “Why aren’t there more rewards above the $30 level?”
That’s actually quite simple — there are, they just haven’t been opened yet. I’m not going to enumerate everything I have in store. partially because I want to maintain some surprise, but also because not all of them have been settled as things that won’t cost me more than the pledge amount.
One place I don’t intend to go with rewards is physical rewards — actually shipping materials to backers. Shipping goods costs about $6 for light objects (like T-Shirts, USB keys, etc.) domestically, and considerably more internationally. That’s atop the production cost of the item itself (again, usually $5-10). The actual handling is an issue, too — the hours of my time, or somebody else’s time, spent organizing, packing, labeling, checking, and transporting the rewards to a shipping company. Finally, some component of that would have to go to the game’s development budget. All told, shipping a T-Shirt on top of any given reward tier would add about $11-20 to that tier, depending on how big an order of T-Shirts I placed. I feel like that’s not a great value for my backers, although some might disagree. (If there is strong dissent on my opinion, let me know, and I will reconsider my position.)
Today I’m introducing the first post-launch Rewards Tier: IN-GAME PORTRAIT. An expansion of NAMING RIGHTS, the backer can provide an image of a person to be converted into a waist-up portrait that will always be associated with that person’s name in-game. As always, name and portrait both are subject to editorial review for appropriateness.
Tomorrow, we start a two-part series on the Time-Delay mechanics. Tomorrow’s post will be about how it works under the hood, and Friday’s will be about how it looks and plays in-game.