Collusion Ship Updates & Postmortem
I'm happy to share some new developments with Millennium Blades Collusion. This will be the last weekly update for a while, so I hope that you'll take some time to read my thoughts on the project and share yours with us as well.
USA & Canada Remaining Pledges
We're almost there! Our fulfillment center managed to get about 80% of remaining pledges out this week. We've pushed tracking numbers to those that went out.
Everything is in motion and in stock to fulfill the last 40 or so remaining pledges in North America next week*, and we'll post your tracking numbers as soon as we have them.
If you encounter a damaged tray in your copy, the form here will remain open to you: https://forms.gle/G1zA9UhptxeSJjvR9
* As in past weeks, I am reporting the word of our fulfillment centers, who have not informed me of any reason they won't go out next week. If problems arise, we will deal with them promptly to get things back on track, as we have in previous weeks.
If you are outside of North America and you haven't heard from us via email about any missing items, now is time to reach out to us and let us know so that we can track things down for you.
If you're in the USA or Canada, we ask that you wait about 2 more weeks for the final pledges in these regions to go out.
Our factory has finished production of the cartons of 2600 sleeves, and those are now preparing to ship to us, where they will be dispatched to you.
Since the bulk of project fulfillment is finished up, and the final USA/Canada backers will hear from us directly with tracking information, I'm going to discontinue the weekly updates for fulfillment and instead post only when there's news relevant to the project delivery.
So you should hear from me again when we're ready to send out replacement trays and corrected dividers.
There have been a lot of lessons to learn from Millennium Blades Collusion. We attempted an incredibly ambitious project. Despite numerous setbacks that you have seen play out in these updates, we've managed to deliver what we set out to achieve—a huge expansion and collector's box for Millennium Blades.
I sincerely hope that you are enjoying your copy with friends and family, and that our games as a whole have made your 2020 and 2021 a little brighter.
I'm not the type to point fingers and cast blame when things go wrong. The root causes for issues are often complex, systemic, and rarely the fault of one person or even one company. So our goal when things go wrong is never to assign blame, but instead to understand and learn, so that we don't encounter these problems in the future.
Through this project and its predecessor, BattleCON: Unleashed, we learned a lot about weaknesses in our production, delivery chains, communication, proofing, and data management.
Some weaknesses were in the operations of our partners and others were in our own way of doing things. Still more were couched in the way we interfaced with partners to deliver instructions and carry out operations remotely.
In some cases, our zeal to create the biggest and most amazing game possible blinded us to the problems that would arise in producing and delivering that game.
Many of the problems we encountered had their roots back in the project's inception two years ago. Others were unforeseen difficulties that crept up on us at the last moment. In the case of each problem we encountered, we've plotted a solution, corrected course, and shared the developments of the project with you as they've occurred.
You've often seen delays upon delays upon delays crop up. This is the real bleeding edge of freight logistics and coordinating with partners worldwide. Messages can seem contradictory when they're delivered weekly, and when what we've been told to expect by partners diverges from what actually occurred.
The truth is that when dealing with global freight and large-scale fulfillment—especially in the midst of a pandemic—delays are the rule rather than the exception. As the world is recovering, industry is still feeling the aftershocks of last year's economic tide. The complexity and size of this project also amplified those difficulties and made solutions slower and more expensive.
But there's good news. Many of the lessons we've learned are already bearing fruit.
Bullet♥︎, which we launched just 9 months ago, has already been successfully fulfilled.
Sakura Arms, our most recent Kickstarter, is implementing better pledge management practices for a simpler fulfillment structure and to source everything from the same factory. It is also our most proof-read game ever.
Empyreal, which we are running now, is currently having its logistics and freight planned out in advance of even beginning production.
Despite the setbacks we faced here, we've continued to forge ahead. We've used these experiences and worked hard to make both our games and our projects better and better.
Thank you so much for joining us on this Millennium Blades journey. It has indeed been a project full of highs and lows, where the next card in the deck was never certain. Still, I'm glad to have been able to take it with you, and I look forward to sharing our next big thing with you.
Have a great weekend, and Happy Gaming,