FSpaceRPG article

Status: Official

Hi all,

Gary a few months ago asked how much it was going to cost to get the project off the ground properly. As offset print is the only real way to take it forward big time. I thought I’d go and price it all out again. This is not pricing to make a business, just get a product produced and sent to distributors.

So for a 250 page book (main rules plus some scenarios) and a CD and registration card in a plastic pocket attached to the inner back cover I’ve worked out the following for shipping to the US. Please note this pricing includes very minimal margins (basically contingency only). The reason for minimal margins is because printing costs have increased since last quoted. Freight is the big thorny issue. Far cheaper freight options are available making this more economic, but you actually have to know the exact carton size, carton weight, number of cartons, when it’s shipping and the exact destination address before you can get a price. So it’s a big problem.

Anyway with little margins on them these figures are not what you’d need for a real investor because you’d need real value returning profit, and these figures go out the door. Note our retail target in the US is $25 US dollars.

Capital Required $NZ dollars
100 books - $10815.24 (production only $9503.55)
500 books - $20757.77 (production only $14199.30)
1000 books - $31502.25 (production only $18385.31)
3000 books - $72518.62 (production only $33167.81)
5000 books - $118544.62 (production only $52959.94)
10000 books - $218206.12 (production only $87036.75)

US Retails price range based on distributor/retailer margins and freight between them ($US dollars)
100 books
highest expected - $316.19
lowest expected - $158.10
500 books
highest expected - $166.06
lowest expected - $83.03
1000 books
highest expected - $126.01
lowest expected - $63.00
3000 books
highest expected - $96.69
lowest expected - $48.35
5000 books
highest expected - $94.84
lowest expected - $47.42
10000 books
highest expected - $87.28
lowest expected - $43.64


To be honest it looks like it can work at our target of over 3000 books. We could get the freight bill down and creep into the retail bracket we need to be in. Cutting a few corners on production quality and trying harder to get a cheaper price can all help.

However we are still talking really big money, and to be honest this is a single print run, nothing else. It’s not what’s required to run a viable business.

Our biggest problem is being in New Zealand. We are too far away from the big markets to make it economic, and even if we could print in a cheap place like China, or even in the market like the US, we still need to travel over to these places to manage the print run properly.

Like we concluded before the project will only work if I won lotto (as no one else is going to part with that kind of money).

We can’t get venture capital because it doesn’t make sense, and it’s a huge risk for what needs to be millions in to build a business for real.

The big differences for us since last costed is the increase in freight costs because of 911 and other factors since then, and of course the high New Zealand dollar which is not helping at all.

So I’ve honored the request to look at prices again, but I will never go through this exercise again. It is not fair on printers to ask them to quote things, and not give them the work afterwards. They expend effort on this, and I give them nothing in return. Not good.

If someone had a good sum of money and just wanted to print a few copies as souvenirs for the group and a few to put infront of every distributor in the world, then the small print run would be okay and wouldn’t break the wallet of someone rich. Then we’d see if we can secure interest with the real quality product infront of the buyers. Better to take appropriate steps then break the bank first time round.

I hope that helped clarify people’s memories and update on the changed negative environmental conditions that have arisen since the last quotations.


Categories: Development

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