Unbroken: a solo game of survival and revenge

Created by Golden Bell Studios & Altema Games

Survive against all odds facing monsters and other perils in a dark fantasy tale. A quick (20-30 min), tense and unforgiving solo game. Test your survival skills in the dark fantasy world of Unbroken. You are the only one left alive after your group was ambushed by monsters - now you must avenge your friends and reclaim your freedom. Quick to learn, easy to set up and playable in a brief 20-30 minutes, the game will challenge you to make the right decisions or fall victim to the many dangers of the monster-infested caverns. Plan wisely and take calculated risks - you do not have much and must use every resource at your disposal to prevail. Each journey in the dark is unique as you play as one of four different characters and face a variety of monsters and encounters. Your character gets better with experience and so will you - Unbroken is a game that encourages and rewards repeated plays to refine your strategies.

Latest Updates from Our Project:

Unbroken Shipping Update, Acolyte Story, and Artem's GoFundMe!
about 1 month ago – Thu, Oct 10, 2019 at 03:29:01 AM

Hi to all you patient Unbroken backers!

We wanted to drop in to give you a quick update. Please note that this will be one of the shortest updates to be the most concise and have the most relevant information for everyone to scan through quickly!

#1 The United Kingdom

The U.K. Shipment is ON THE WAY! You can find the ship tracking here: https://www.vesselfinder.com/vessels/EVER-GOODS-IMO-9810991-MMSI-371308000

According to Spiral, we expect the boat to arrive on Oct 27 then take a couple of weeks to clear customs, get to Spiral Galaxy’s Warehouse and be prepped for shipping. U.K. Backers should plan to receive their games roughly by the end of November! We will be locking down UK addresses to provide the final address spreadsheet to Spiral by end of October – expect to get an e-mail for a final confirmation then. Please remember if you are U.K. Backer you can contribute to the optional shipping here which will aid us in speeding up the delivery of Unbroken to other regions. Please consider paying it forward at: https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-uk/

#2 The European Union

The E.U. First Wave of Shipping has seen an astounding number of people who want to be a part of this! We have well over 1,000 people that will be part of this wave (this will include all backers from Poland and those who provided the extra shipping). We want to have as many people as possible covered here, so we will be extending this opportunity until October 20 to give stragglers some time as now everyone can see that this is DEFINITELY happening. You can jump aboard this wave at: https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-eu-first-wave/ ($10 + $5 per additional copy, countries covered are Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain and Sweden) OR if you are in the Outer EU Countries here: https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-eu-first-wave-outer-countries/ ($15 + $10 per additional copy, countries covered are Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Romania, Slovakia, or Slovenia).

We heard concerns that Portugal was not included in our initial list of options for Wave 1 and worked with our European partners, Green Logistics Polska, to make sure it’s covered. Portuguese backers can join Wave 1 at the $15 level.

After the final list for Wave 1 is compiled following Oct 20 we will forward the final shipment information to our partners and will arrange freight to Poland, estimating receipt of games before the end of the year.

#3 Australia, Asia, and New Zealand

For Australia and Asia we’ve only had roughly 100 or so people but we will still be shipping these from SFC so there is no worries there. If you would like to be part of this first wave that goes out in the next couple weeks, here is the link for AUS/NZ: https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-aus-nz-first-wave/ ($15 + $10 per additional copy) or for ASIA https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-asia-first-wave/ ($10 + $10 per additional copy).

First wave backers for Australia and Asia should receive their games by end of November.

A reminder that if you need to update your address in Aus/NZ/Asia – please message Artem and he will make sure your information is up to date for when your order goes out.

A giant THANK YOU to all those who provided the extra funds for inclusion in wave 1. Your contribution helped move the project ahead and speed up delivery. We truly appreciate it.

#4 United States and Canada

A quick update on outstanding U.S. and Canadian Orders…the Unbroken restock will be coming in roughly in November. We are still awaiting this boat as this is one of the busiest times of years at the ports. As soon as it arrives, we’ll be sending out a reminder to the U.S. Backers who haven’t yet received their copies as well as forwarding Canadian re-stock to Artem so thank you once again for your patience.

As we get Wave 1 on the way, planning for shipping of the remaining copies will start (this will include the South American copies) and we will communicate the timing associated with those in upcoming updates. We realize those copies are extremely delayed but at this point we are just following all necessary steps to get all those out within the constraints the project finds itself in. Thank you for your patience during this process.

#5 GoFundMe

As promised, Artem has informed us he has launched a GoFundMe and we are happy to share it with all you awesome Unbroken Backers! Thank you once again for considering to help this project move past to the finish line and apologize for all the trouble that has been caused. Here is the donation link: https://gofundme.com/f/help-me-unbreak-unbroken-funding

Remain Unbroken!

Artem has already raised more than $3,000 to contribute towards completing the fulfillment – the campaign contains several unlockable perks to thank everyone for their generosity. One such perk is the latest character story for one of the newly released characters (reminder that both new characters are available here to download and use in your games).

Enjoy reading about the conflicted origins of the Acolyte:

Once again, thank you for your patience. We continue to work to ensure that all Unbroken backers receive their games.

Best Regards,

Golden Bell Studios

Unbroken Shipping Update with Timelines and TWO New Characters Released!
2 months ago – Thu, Sep 05, 2019 at 02:45:27 AM

Welcome to the Dark once again all you patient Unbroken Backers!

We first off wanted to apologize for the slight delay in posting the update. A string of mishaps and a desire for Artem to review the update prior to posting led some miscalculations on our end but the time is now so let’s look forward! This update was drafted by all of us here at Golden Bell Studios so we are happy to give you a “State of the Unbroken”.

United Kingdom Fulfillment Update

First up, the United Kingdom (we’ve been following the news of the Brexit turmoil and figured you need some good news). We have secured a deal with Spiral Galaxy to fulfill all the games for the British backers. You may read the Spiral staff confirmation on this BGG Thread.

We admit that we underestimated the time it would take to finalize this deal many months ago but after a meeting at GenCon we were able to solidify an agreement and are moving forward. We hope this news makes some of you backers as happy as we are! Now, while the costs did end up being higher than expected, we are still able to maintain the OPTIONAL nature of the top-up for all of the UK backers. We are asking for a $10 top up, whether this is before or after you receive your game, that is entirely up to you. It will not have any impact on you receiving the game. We have simplified the process for the top up and the U.K. backers can choose the amount they’d like to donate at this link here:

https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-uk/

United States and Canada Fulfillment Update

While vast majority of the US backers should have their copies by now – for a variety of reasons a small percentage (~3%) of US shipments did not make it to their intended recipients. We have the list of those customers and will be re-sending copies to them at no additional cost. At this point we are out of stock but we are awaiting a restock to arrive in the United States (which should be sometime in October); then once those are received, we’ll ship those out to the remaining U.S. backers who need their copy.

You do NOT need to email us about this issue, as we know who these people are and by the next update we’ll email all 274 US backers who are yet to receive the game and if you hadn’t gotten the game even after that confirmation email from Andy then it would then be an appropriate time to contact us.

The Canadian fulfillment is also mostly complete, though unfortunately we were short a small amount and about 60 backers still have not received their copy. , We will be sending Artem an extra 100 or so units once the restock arrives, but it may go into November due to the shipping transit times that we’ve seen happen during the ramp up to Holiday season. If you have any questions or concerns about your Canadian order (missing / damaged components for example) – please contact Artem at altema.games@gmail.com and he’ll help you sort it out.

On the topic of Canada, we wanted to specify that the amount requested in optional top-up donations was in Canadian Dollars and NOT US Dollars which I believe was cause for some initial confusion. Again, anyone is welcome to contribute ANY amount, you are not restricted to the amounts we are requesting. If you feel you’d still like to contribute but want to pay a specific amount that isn’t listed please email Support@PlayUnbroken.com with the amount and we shall invoice you on QuickBooks.

China, Rest of Asia, Australia, and New Zealand Fulfillment

In the past, we have detailed the issues surrounding the negotiations from Australia, and the truth of the matter is that our contact, had agreed to a deal with us VIA email. We were in negotiations for weeks that turned to months. The moment we asked for a contract to be signed, a simple one pager that said (we are paying you $X, you will ship the games within 90 days or return the product to us), we were met with that a vacation all of a sudden happened for nearly a month. The new people that were dealing with the case had no idea of the deal that we struck (which is why contracts are so important) and that resulted in further delays until Lucene returned. At that point, we were informed that they don’t sign contracts and we had to immediately withdraw further negotiations as it would be far too risky to entrust a distributor that we’ve never met or done business with in the past with your games.

Thus, that has led us to where we are now and due to the numerous hardships that had occurred with Australian and New Zealand’s shipment, we have now decided to consolidate Asia and Australia’s backers into one distributor, Send From China.

As we noted – the available funds we have are limited and we will need to send those games out in waves. Wave 1 will go out shortly and will include all backers from China as well as all backers who are able to provide a shipping top-up. Subsequent waves will deliver games to all backers regardless of their ability to provide the extra funds, but we want to get the process going as early as possible. If you live in Asia, you can follow the link below to opt-in to the first wave of Asian shipping for an additional $10. If you choose not to do so, your games will still arrive, albeit at a slighter later date as we continue to accrue sales in the regions that have already been fulfilled and use those profits to ship the games to backers overseas.

https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-asia-first-wave/

We will also allow this first wave apply to Australia and New Zealand. With a clear path forward, if you opt-in to the OPTIONAL shipping sur-charge to get your games earlier than everyone else you can follow the link below which will come down to an additional $15 for shipping charges.

https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-aus-nz-first-wave/

Last but certainly not least, it’s time for Europe!

Poland and Rest of Europe Fulfillment Update

It brings all of us great joy to FINALLY bring some good news for Europe! Of all the backers, the majority of you have been the most patient, understanding, and supporting fans we could have ever wished for. While others are understandable frustrated with the given situation, we wanted to apologize to everyone as a whole for the unacceptable delay that Europe has incurred while we search for feasible deliverables in the region. And with that, we’d like to announce that we’ve chosen Green Logistics Polksa, the very same distributor that works with Awaken Realms on their European fulfillment!

We’ve decided that we need to ensure the highest probability of success to get all games out to Europe at the most affordable cost and we believe this is going to be the best way to do so. Thus, since Green Logistics is located in Poland, we will be shipping to ALL Poland backers by the end of the year, roughly in November is when we expect the freight to land.

Other European backers have the opportunity to be included in this Wave 1 shipment if they are able to provide an additional shipping top up.

Backers from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain and Sweden can be included with the extra payment of $10. Please provide the top-up through this link:

https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-eu-first-wave/

Backers from Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Romania, Slovakia, or Slovenia can be included with the extra payment of $15.

https://goldenbelldirect.com/unbroken-shipping-for-eu-first-wave-outer-countries/

All backers who are not able or not willing to provide the extra funds will still receive their games, though at a later time as we generate additional funds through sales in fulfilled regions.

NOTE: This link will only apply to FIRST Wave shipping for 30 days and then any additional payments will be catalogued for the Second wave of European shipping.

Please Note: These will be shipping no matter what and since we’re working with established distributors around the world there’s no issue or doubt in our minds that everyone will eventually get their games.

Please also note: Anyone that has already donated the optional amount will be INCLUDED in the first wave at no additional charge so nothing to worry about there. This only applies to the specific donations and not to the optional box charge nor the tracking & insurance that was offered earlier in the campaign.

Artem’s GoFundMe Update

As another vehicle to raise additional funds for completing the shipping, Artem’s GoFundMe campaign should be starting by next update so that is exciting as well for those that want to participate in some fun Unbroken shenanigans!

Delays, Behind the Scenes, Apologies, and a path forward!

You might have seen that we’ve had to reorganize how we receive funds, going through our Golden Bell Direct web store rather than PayPal. We are happy to explain why. There are a number of backers that have raised concerns that the marc@goldenbellstudios.com was a PERSONAL PayPal account, which is not the case. All PayPal accounts are tied to email addresses, and the company PayPal account is managed by Marc. The account was tied to an Employer Identification Number and was used for Company purposes ONLY. Regardless, with these concerns in mind we wanted to provide another way for backers to transfer funds where there will no longer be any question of what the funds are being used for and who they’re going to.

We had also faced an issue where several backers attempted to compromise our abilities to operate VIA PayPal, but that issue has since been rectified. On top of that, we had several of our emails compromised which had forced us to migrate emails. Thus, going forward if anyone is looking to contact us about Unbroken, you must email Support@PlayUnbroken.com or your email won’t be able to be answered as those old emails are no longer operating.

Your emails will be addressed mostly by Andy, Golden Bell’s Director of Sales. Artem’s role at this stage is primarily Game Design and he is hard at work on the first extension to Unbroken which you can follow along in the Unbroken Facebook Group! 

We want to stress that the continued interference we are getting like the above-mentioned PayPal and e-mail issues forces us to spend dozens of hours addressing these problems. Those are the hours that we would much rather work on delivering the games, so please understand that doing these things only ends up hurting the backers who still don’t have their copies. Our priority is delivering these games to you no matter what anyone says or may think otherwise.

We also wanted to stress that our team has decided on no longer participating in the comments section to avoid unproductive confrontation, misunderstood jokes, and a regurgitation of the same information that is posted in these very updates. We’ve instructed our associates to monitor the comments for any pressing issues, questions, comments, or concerns that should be posted in the monthly updates. Admittedly, we’ve allowed some of our employees to have some spits and spats with backers which may or may not have been in good taste, but the past is in the past, and we’re looking forward to correct any misperceptions of our business and of Unbroken.

Furthermore, we want everyone to understand that reading comments that may be far and few in between, but they still exist, they’re read, and they hurt, that people wish some of us to die, Marc has received calls and emails that people wish Rachel had died in her surgery and hope she dies of Cancer, when we read these emails, understand we are humans on the other end. No one here has decided to retire, runaway, and get rich off of Unbroken that much we can assure and promise all of you. It is extremely demotivating for anyone to read such hurtful and hate filled comments on a near daily basis, so please if you are one of these people, try to refrain from acting out in such a harsh and crude manner, we’re sorry that you feel we’ve slighted you in some way, and whether you believe or understand that mistakes happen, we believe that everyone deserves some compassion, empathy, and human decency in all correspondences going forward here. Let’s look at this opportunity for all of us to turn over a new leaf and get back to basics of why we're all here, for the love of gaming, the passions we all have for fantasy, and of course for Unbroken.

Two New Free Characters!

Speaking of Unbroken! As an apology to all backers for the various missteps that we’ve all taken here, we wanted to offer everyone two extra FREE Characters that are fully play-tested by our main man Artem and are ready to be downloaded! We know it stinks that some of you don’t have the game yet, but once again we’re taking as many steps to get you your games as humanly possible. For those that have already entered the Dark, you can revisit it with a few new characters! You can download them right here:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ae7cTUnvOJd7d-hSTMS24zoef1U6NDKn

Art by Golden Bell's Rachel Korsen
Art by Golden Bell's Rachel Korsen

Poll: We wanted to ask everyone what they thought of the Altema Fox Plush we’ve designed!

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSckp707JFeKLRL7J9rzwtyprY0M6KxejXJxt4Xr3om5rrkoyA/viewform

Please note that this is a sample only that we are exploring as one of the tools for potential revenue generation to help speed up the rest of the fulfillment. No part of Unbroken project budget was spent on these.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Why did you run out of copies in North America? Unfortunately, due to an error on our end, we had printed roughly 500 labels twice and those labels were sent to backers who received two copies in error. This added to just the mountain of issues we’ve had and it is something that we wish we caught sooner, but we caught it in time as there were over 2,000 extra labels printed, and only 500 got through the gate. This required us to alphabetize all the remaining labels that were printed and search for the doubles. The ones that slipped through the cracks are extremely difficult to retrieve. As it would cost roughly $10 for us to pay a backer to ship it back to us then another $10 to ship it to its rightful owner. Therefore, rather than trying to coordinate 250+ backers with people who received doubles, we are waiting for a re-stock to re-send the missing copies.
  • How can I help support the Optional Shipping Charges if I’m in the U.S., Canada, or otherwise but don’t have PayPal or want an easier way to contribute? You can go here to our website and complete the transaction with your credit card or checkout with PayPal! https://goldenbelldirect.com/optional-unbroken-shipping 
  • Why don’t you issue refunds? We are working on delivering the games with a very limited budget. If we were to start issuing refunds at this time – it would quickly deplete our remaining budget and would significantly compromise our ability to fulfill the remaining regions. Getting games to backers remains our priority, so we are being very mindful of not compromising our ability to deliver.
  • Can’t you just sell my game to someone else and give me a refund? If it were that simple, we would. The age old saying of it’s easier said than done applies here. We don’t have the connections, distribution contacts, or longevity of business of companies such as Asmodee to be able to turn over inventory in a matter of weeks. It often can take us years to sell out of the inventory we purchase, sometimes resulting at a loss towards the end if the warehousing fees become to excessive. Please also remember, that many stores and distributors request Net 90 Payment Terms which means they pay us 90 days after receipt of the product, while others expect Consignment orders, which means they will only pay us if they can sell the product, that is a luxury we can’t afford to chance our inventory in the hands of strangers that may close up shop any day (which we’ve seen happen literally HUNDREDS of times, where their bills become uncollectable).
  • How long do I have to provide the optional shipping top-up to be a part of Wave 1? Lists for Wave 1 will be finalized on Oct 5. Any further shipping top-ups will be covered as part of Wave 2.
  • My order contains more than one copy. How much is my top-up payment? For multi-unit orders, we’re requesting +$5/unit for the shipping price PER Extra Copy. For example, if you got 1 Copy of Unbroken and the shipping surcharge would be $10, assume that two copies would be $15 and 3 copies would be $20, and so on. If your order contains a copy of Cauldron – it counts as two copies of Unbroken for purposes of extra shipping cost. (This applies only to Europe, and UK– if you are in Asia, Australia, or New Zealand this would be $15, then an additional $10 per unit). If your order contains 5+ games – get in touch with us via support@playunbroken.com for a custom quote. Multi-Unit orders will have to email support@playunbroken.com because you will have to be invoiced on QuickBooks since our webstore was designed for single unit orders.
  • Why did you use project budget to print extra copies that you are selling to stores? Golden Bell used their own finances to purchase additional inventory and that was not part of any of Unbroken’s finances. Everyone here has skin in the game so make no doubt of that!
  • Have you changed your address and not yet received your game? Please login to BackerKit and change your address there (you can message Artem to help access BackerKit). For Asia/Australia/NZ, if you are in Wave 1 and need an address update – please e-mail Artem at altema.games@gmail.com and he’ll make sure the fulfillment center has your correct info.
  • Why are you not starting the shipment to Europe right away? We are opening up European backers to have the ability to optionally chip in a donation for shipping and get your games earlier! We have realized that the most effective way to ship to some regions is to ship in “Waves”, much like how Dark Souls had done when they ran into some issues of their own. We’ve taken notes and learned some lessons from not only others but of ourselves and what we could do better. We believe that this route will be the best course of action for us to take that will result in everyone getting their games without being required to pay for any additional shipping. Thus, if you’d like to be part of the FIRST wave of European Shipping, you can follow this link right on over here and join the party:
  • Will you still get your game if you are unable or unwilling to contribute any additional optional money? YES! You absolutely will as we have made a pledge to make this amount optional. While this may be a slower process as described above in the E.U. section, you will in fact get your games delivered one way or another. All we ask for is your patience as we get these games out the door and into backers’ hands.

Expected Dates of Arrival:

United States has been delivered except for the couple hundred people mentioned above which will be gotten to in October!

Canada has been delivered except for the roughly 60 people mentioned above which will be gotten to in October/November. Rob and myself (Marc) drove up to visit Artem, we had an awesome launch party at Snakes and Lattes, then got to slaving away packing and labeling all day. That day we got roughly half of the Canadian units out the door, then Artem took it to his own hands to finish off Canada! If you have ANY issues RE: Canadian Fulfillment at this point please email altema.games@gmail.com but please keep in mind we are aware of the people who have NOT received the games and have you on our list to resend in the coming months.

Mexico has been fulfilled!

For U.K. (Spiral Galaxy Games) – Should arrive in UK sometime in October, and be delivered sometime in November. We are taking into account ports being clogged due to Brexit.

For E.U. (Poland + Opt-Ins for Wave 1) – The games should arrive sometime in November and get to you by Mid-December. This lapse in time is to allow 30 days for people to have a chance to opt-in to be a part of the Wave 1 of European shipping!

For Asia/Australia/NZ (China + Opt-Ins for Wave 1) – After the opt-in period wraps up on Oct 5 the games will be transported to the Chinese distributor facility in around a week or two and should get to backers by early November.

Rest of World – As we continue to find solutions for the biggest nations in relation to number of backers, we will continually update other regions such as South America as we have big checkmarks off this campaign!

Personal Plea and Reviews of Unbroken

Once again, I (Marc) wanted to personally apologize for the various issues that we’ve faced and hope that everyone can see a path forward that will include not only everyone getting their games but enjoying them as well. A favor that I ask of some of you, is to please judge the game on its merits. Whether you love us or hate us, please be objective in how you rate the game itself. Don’t give Unbroken a 10 on BGG because you see some other people giving it a 1. If you feel the game is a 5 give it a 5, if it actually isn’t your cup of tea, give it an honest 1. I do hope that once you receive your game you’ll give it that honest rating on Board Game Geek, and for those that review bombed the game a 1, we understand why you did it, feel your frustration, and can only hope that when you receive the game you are able to separate any negative experiences you’ve had and get to have an enjoyable play-through.

Thank you all once again for remaining patience throughout this entire ordeal…

…Remain Unbroken!

~ Marc, Rachel, Rob, Andy, Nikki, Jon, and Alex of Golden Bell Studios

Fulfillment successes & challenges
4 months ago – Tue, Jul 30, 2019 at 03:00:55 AM

 Hey, you awesome Unbroken backers,

A shorter update this time to bring you up on our fulfillment process to get Unbroken to everyone. At this point the campaign is about 50% fulfilled and it has been exceptional to hear the encouraging feedback from folks who have already gotten the game. We are thrilled people have been enjoying Unbroken (we encourage leaving your honest ratings of the game on BGG).

United States – All shipping is done as of Jul 23 and the games should arrive by Aug 4. If there are any issues with your order (damaged box, missing components, unsuccessful delivery) – please contact sales@goldenbellstudios.com and they will help you sort it out. 

If you received a double package – best way to return it is to drop it off at the Golden Bell Studios booth at GenCon (#1753). Otherwise – please set the extra shipment aside - there will be an e-mail with instructions on how to proceed.

For anyone that missed it, you can still voluntarily donate the excess shipping costs of $10-15 to Golden Bell’s company PayPal address, marc@goldenbellstudios.com if you are willing and able!

Canada – The games are here and about two thirds have been sent. We’ve heard lots of folks getting their games already – our favorite news to receive! Unfortunately, due to the way the orders were imported into the Canada Post shipping service, notification e-mails don’t seem to be generated for single-unit shipments, but if you’re eager to get info on your package – please message me (Artem) and I’ll respond with tracking if it’s available. 

I will be mailing the rest of the packages over the next two weeks or so and all Canadian backers should receive their games by end of August. Contact me via direct message if there are any issues with your shipment. Check out some photos of myself and Marc and Rob from Golden Bell working like mad men to send out almost 800 units in one day: 

We also had a wonderful launch event at Snakes & Lattes café in Toronto – more photos towards the end of the update.

Once majority of Canadian backers will receive their games – we will be sending the e-mails asking for the voluntary extra shipment help to make up the difference between actual shipping costs and what we charged, as described in Update #24.

Mexico and rest of North America – have all been sent in early July. If you have not received your copy at this point please contact sales@goldenbellstudios.com for assistance.

The rest of the news on the shipping front are not so positive. I will preface this with saying that it is incredibly frustrating for us to be told that the games are on the cusp of being dispatched only to later be told “oh but there’s one more thing”. We get to tell you, the backers, about these extra delays and it is understandably not what you’d like to hear. Our goal continues to be sharing the most accurate information we have with you to keep you informed, so here we go.

ASIA/AUS/NZ – You might recall that there was a delay in this process due to staff changeover at the distributor we are working with. It turned out that the departing staff made a series of errors, particularly some that have affected the costing estimates for the biggest part of this shipment. As a result the new cost estimate we are looking at is 60% higher than the original we were given. We are working on a way to accommodate this increase, given our constraints and hope to get these copies moving as soon as we can. Our apologies for the fact that these were not dispatched in July as estimated in previous update – as soon as we have a solid estimate for getting those moving we will provide it.

UK – Another area where we were told that it is only the matter of finding a freight boat. It now turns out that the agreement there requires additional review before proceeding which is likely to increase the cost due to this review, so Marc from Golden Bell is working on settling all outstanding issues as quickly as possible to allow us to get these moving. Golden Bell will be having an in-person meeting at GenCon with Spiral to discuss this arrangement to see if they can finalize this process to get you your games.  

Europe –  This is another area where we will only be able to convey news once a solution is fully in place (mostly because we’ve seen some negotiations progress up to a point only to become unworkable and we don’t want to provide you information that we then have to backtrack on). At this point, despite several negotiations going on, a final solution is not in place yet. Admittedly, July has been a difficult month to make progress here because of several vacations and high time demands of fulfillment for other regions. But even with all those things in mind – these copies need to start moving. We are currently exploring a starting step solution that would get the games to the most affordable regions in Europe and would offer other European backers an opportunity to jump in on that shipment with a small additional payment.

South America + Rest of the World Will be shipped from China following the AUS/ASIA/NZ shipment, so the timing is contingent on that previous shipment leaving and no reliable estimate is possible at this time.

I think we can all agree that these delays have become unacceptable and all of us here deeply apologize for this. We understand the frustration, as we all share it here everyday. It is hard for us to read hurtful comments from frustrated backers day in and day out, and want you all to know that this is a top priority for us and we are aiming to have this done as quickly as possible. 

We cannot continue asking for your patience indefinitely – people worldwide need to receive their games, and we need to decide on Unbroken’s future. Of course, a lot of this comes down to the financial constraints that the project faces. After a discussion with Golden Bell we agreed that we need a solution in place that increases our ability to move things along, even if that means that potential additional charges will have to be asked for from backers, and not be stalled by every single obstacle we encounter.

We want to make sure we ask for a reasonable amount, so we’d like to collect data on what people would be comfortable with. Please answer this poll:

Golden Bell will lay out the exact plan regarding any potential extra shipping fees in the next update. We want to keep these as low as possible. We also want to be clear that we do not wish to place all the burden on backers and want a solution that everyone contributes to. 

Specifically: 

o Once the Canadian fulfillment is done, the e-mails asking for the extra shipping fees will be sent to Canadian backers. The funds generated this way will go towards driving down the amount that needs to be generated to ship the rest of the campaign.

o As the restock order for North America comes in the next 6 weeks and retail sales will start, Golden Bell will contribute the majority of funds generated through these sales to the shipping solution, covering the project’s shortfall.

o Once the Canadian fulfillment is done in August, Artem will run a personal GoFundMe campaign asking for donations – all money raised will go towards shipping the rest of the campaign and reducing required extra amount.

o Now that the U.S. Fulfillment is completed, we are awaiting any additional funds from backers that are donated which will be used to aid in completing the rest of the fulfillment of Unbroken.

In the August update, Golden Bell will be posting a comprehensive explanation on how we are going to overcome these challenges including specific expectations from all parties involved, solutions that will get games to backers, specific timelines and how we address any remaining obstacles. One of the reasons for this timeline is that some of the information shared will depend on meetings that will take place during GenCon this coming weekend. 

We invite you to ask questions that you’d like to see answered in that update so that we provide as much clarity as possible as we move forward to finally complete this project. Understandably there is a lot of frustration at this point from all sides. Our goal continues to be on getting games to backers and fulfilling this project.

Stretch Goals Report

A reminder that the Unbroken Narrative Video + Soundtrack is available on YouTube so that you can enhance your playing experience and immerse yourself into perilos depths of the Dark :

- The Strategy Guide for Unbroken can be downloaded here (there’s a text-only version here)

- The How to Play video is available here (work on an official video with animation and professional voiceover will begin once the Canadian fulfillment is done).

- Print and Play files in English, Spanish, French and German are available through the “Digital Downloads” section of BackerKit. If you are unsure how to access your BackerKit – shoot me a message and I’ll help you. The rules in all languages are available here.

- Digital Templates – NEW – you can now download a set of PDF templates for the blank cards so that you can create your own Monsters, Characters, Weapons, Encounters and Skills. These files are available through BackerKit's Digital Downloads section as well. Please share what you come up with – we’d love to feature fan submissions!

New Characters

We are pleased to release the teaser for our second new character, the Acolyte.

The printable version of the new characters (the Brigand will join the Acolyte there) will be distributed in mid-August to folks who have Advanced Access to Expansion Content as part of their pledge (including those who got it through pitching in extra for shipping). All European backers will also receive the files as a token of our appreciation for all their patience free of charge.

Some neat Unbroken photos

Very grateful to Unbroken backer @TevK who shared his photos of custom insert he made for Unbroken that keeps everything neatly in place :

Click on the image to see a full set of photos of the custom insert
Click on the image to see a full set of photos of the custom insert

Also – wanted to share a few photos from our get-together last week where local Canadian backers could stop by and pick up their game. It was great to have Marc and Rob join us as well as to have Alina, the lead graphic designer who gave Unbroken its stark, austere look be there to chat with backers. These conversations really leave us with a feeling of deep gratitude and appreciation for all the amazing people who made this game possible.

Thanks to everyone who made it to say hello!
Thanks to everyone who made it to say hello!

Finally - I simply must share this review  of Unbroken from Joel's Cardboard Corner. I am in love with the realistic portrayal of how crafting works that starts off the video. Thanks for creating it, Joel!

Next Steps

The only thing left with the North American fulfillment is following up on the few reports of issues with shipments. Now that the bulk of the work with NA fulfillment is done – the team’s attention turns entirely to getting Unbroken moving across the world. 

The process that we used so far has proven to result in too many delays so we are going to ensure we can move faster and get the games out to everyone. This comes down to generating additional funds so that we are not as constrained by budget restrictions. As mentioned above – the upcoming Golden Bell update will provide information on how we are going to move forward to ensure everyone gets their games in a timely fashion.

We look forward to making progress on all the currently stalled shipments and keeping everyone up to date in our monthly updates.

Look forward to hearing more stories of the experience with the game from folks who were able to play a few rounds! Challenge for August is to unlock the Slugger achievement by winning the game never upgrading your weapon. Think you’re up for it? Let us know how it goes.

Thank you for your ongoing support and patience,

- Artem and the Golden Bell Studios team.

Unbroken Soundtrack Premiere, US Fulfillment nearing completion, and overcoming challenges.
5 months ago – Fri, Jun 28, 2019 at 02:59:46 AM

Hey, you awesome Unbroken backers!

Another update to bring you up to date on our progress to get the game to our amazing supporters across the world.

   Before we dive in - we are having the soundtrack video premiere at 10:00PM EST in just about 30 minutes. Click on the image below to join us for a chat. 

Unbroken Soundtrack + Story Video!

We are proud to announce that after over a year of work, Golden Bell’s Jon Meller has completed the Unbroken musical score! You can tune into the premiere and chat with us here (Jon himself will be making a rare appearance).


Shipping / Fulfillment Update

Summary:

- US: Majority complete, all copies should arrive by end of July.

- Canada: Address lock Jul 8-12. To be shipped Jul 22-26, 5-10 days in transit, arrive by late Jul/early Aug

- Mexico and other North America: Shipped, arriving within two weeks.

- Australia/NZ/Asia – Lost time because of distributor staff turnover, on track for late Jul delivery

- UK – shipment ready to depart from China, waiting for ocean freight, rough delivery early Sep

- Europe – No concrete estimate/no news at this point, working to put arrangement in place. Sorry.

South America and Rest of the World – to be shipped from China once AUS/NZ/ASIA goes. Delivery in August.  


United States

June has been an incredibly busy month for Golden Bell team as they shipped more than 5,000 units, delivering these to our backers across the United States. It’s been a lot of hard work manually preparing and shipping these – thanks to Rob and Nikki who did most of this work — thankfully they’re still with us in the land of the living!

Because of all this work we’ve seen lots of these posts show up:

Dennis Beard, our resident Unbroken Meme Generator on Facebook!
Dennis Beard, our resident Unbroken Meme Generator on Facebook!
Aaron Vidal rocks all the Unbroken swag!
Aaron Vidal rocks all the Unbroken swag!

Here is how Martin Gonzalvez of Mostly Harmless describes the joy of knowing the game is coming :

The team is doing the best they can given the huge volume, but it’s not going as fast as we anticipated. There are still about 1,500-2,000 units (out of 7,500) remaining to ship. The ones with the labels already created are going to be shipped over the next several days and the rest will follow next week. All units should be delivered by next update in July. Here are some shots from the team’s work packing the orders with signed copies and extra dice:

If anyone wants to purchase extra dice - these are still for sale for $4/each + $2 Shipping if your package already came. These will be shipped after fulfillment. You can email andy@goldenbellstudios.com to be on the list for them and to set up and process a payment.

Please note that we had reports of a small number of packages being delivered marked “Postage Due”. In the unlikely event that this happens, the charge should be posted directly to Golden Bell and should not result in inconvenience for the recipient. If for any reason you did need to pay out of pocket – please retain the proof of payment and contact sales@goldenbellstudios.com for support. Our apologies for any inconvenience this causes.

However please be aware, that if these malicious threats against the project continue to escalate and there are thousands of postage due, it will not be feasible for us to continue operating this project so please keep this in mind when you threaten us with false allegations. We highly recommend that people cut the nonsense and false accusations immediately so that we can deliver this project. 

In fact any delivery issues (damage to report, extra postage due, component questions) –should be sent to Andy at sales@goldenbellstudios.com – we’ll make sure you have the support you need. Please expect any component replacements to happen after fulfillment is completed for North America which should be in a little over a month.


Golden Bell team has also provided expanded information regarding the US shipping

As we have described in Update #24, Unbroken considerably under-charged for the shipping portion of the project – a constraint that is really impacting our ability to do things quickly as we have to rely on doing things ourselves vs. outsourcing and spending time looking for most affordable solutions.

This is not just a small error, but one that could have been lethal to the project, rendering us unable to deliver. We obviously wouldn’t allow for that to happen so we had to get creative in how we could ensure delivery of Unbroken.

Please understand that overall the project is facing a shortfall of around $100,000 U.S. Dollars and we are doing whatever we can to not let that impact our ability to deliver. For those curious about the specific breakdown, it must be looked at from a Macro perspective. If you multiply a $10 shortfall PER PERSON (this $10 loss per person is a holistic account, and it was actually closer to $15 but we rounded down in order to get this done as quickly as possible with trying to remain as fair as we could) and multiply it by JUST the U.S. Backers, that's already $70,000. There are constant comments about us taking a little hit on our profit, but there is NO PROFIT, zero, zilch, none. That is the most important thing to understand that the project is entirely in the RED. We are doing the best that we can within the cost constraints that we are facing. We could have just shut everything down, but we chose to find a way to deliver. That way apparently has angered many people, but no one seems to be talking about the alternative; a complete failure of Unbroken, and is that something anyone actually wants?

We tried very hard to avoid introducing mandatory extra charges on the project, opting instead for voluntary donations (which, of course, only yields a fraction of extra funds). There have been other projects on Kickstarter, some that are much larger than us, that did require mandatory shipping extra charges – a route we wanted to avoid. Some have asked about why we wouldn’t offer refunds at this stage, that answer is simple — over 75% of each person’s pledge was already spent on manufacturing, logistics, etc. and all that’s left is shipping; this makes it impossible to be offering refunds because we have no guaranteed way of selling the units and they could sit in a warehouse for months). One of the ways that the Golden Bell was able to meet this goal was to come to an agreement with their USPS representative to use media mail to ship Unbroken, stressing the multi-media nature of the product. After watching the newly released Score and Narrative Video, we hope you understand that the soundtrack is a media-based primary component of the Unbroken experience. This was done in consultation and with approval of local USPS representatives, which allowed us to maintain the voluntary nature of shipping donations. 

Thousands of copies were sent and received in this manner without issue — until several people started trying to police us when they were unaware of the entire situation. Just because something may not be fully understood, does not mean it is illegal — thus, we ask that these accusations stop. In some cases, these accusations have been crossing the legal line, falling under Libel Per Se. These false accusations thrown against us have caused rumors to spread and formed a lynch mob. This must be stopped, because there is a difference between constructive criticism of our business and committing a crime such as libel.

Essentially, there are people that are actively sabotaging our ability to deliver the product. We don’t say this to ignite fury and rage, but to explain that there are backers waging a war against Golden Bell for reasons seemingly even unrelated to Unbroken but from past grievances that can’t be let go. Again, Golden Bell has delivered over 30+ Kickstarter campaigns in the past few years, there aren't many company’s out there that can say that much. While some have been big like Pretending to Grownup (6,000+ units), there have been small ones too that are only a few hundred backers. Regardless, what is important is the sheer volume of products that Golden Bell has continually gotten out. While Golden Games is their branch for Tabletop, their primary business is not gaming, they have a book publishing division, a stuffed animal division, and even an animation studio. Their activity in the comments section isn’t always possible when there are so many things happening — it should not be expected all Golden Bell does is Unbroken, especially when there has been ZERO money taken into their pockets, 

Many of our most prominent “well-wishers” have suggested they would like to see us go bankrupt. What do people think that would mean or spell for Unbroken? That would be failure, and failure to deliver, not failure of Golden Bell, and nobody wants either of those things. We will explain this so that this stops coming up again and again, Unbroken is it's own corporate entity, if Unbroken fails, that does NOT mean Golden Bell fails, they are separate company's with separate finances and operations, thus for those trying to destroy Golden Bell vis-a-vis Unbroken, you will have no success as they are sheltered away from each other, Unbroken is licensed to Golden Bell Studios to be manufactured, so let's save all of us the time, heartache, and misfortune so that we can continue to deliver Unbroken, because all that you are doing by trying to Bankrupt Golden Bell is attempt to sabotage Unbroken, and only Unbroken.

In some instances, these people find nothing better than to contact authorities with false claims about supposed criminal activity. While these accusations are false – they could lead to lengthy formal processes that, if initiated, would cripple our ability to deliver the project while the process is ongoing. For the sake of all the backers still waiting for a copy we hope that doesn’t happen and we are able to finish the work that we are doing, getting the copies out to everyone. That is all to say – please be patient, all packages will hopefully be sent out by the July update. Please wait until the next update before emailing asking about specific orders as this eats into the time we have to pack. You’ll see Lil' Lady Luna working hard printing those labels (yes, this is why it sometimes takes so long, the sheer volume takes a while to organize, pack, slap the labels on, all the while trying not to get too many paper cuts <those darn labels are SHARP!>. This little picture below is just a few hundred labels so imagine what 7,000+ are! 

Even if you got a shipping notification – it may be a little bit of time before your game ships, as we resolve this. We really regret this latest delay and hope we can move things along as soon as we can to get back to these photos from all our backers.

Ultimately – we at Golden Bell appreciate constructive criticism and this situation will lead to a more transparent approach to different shipping options (and associated costs) for backers on our future projects. No matter what people think, the reality is we aren’t a billion dollar entity, we aren’t Amazon, we aren't able to offer Free Shipping. A lot have asked how do other company’s do it? The answer is simple, they allow shipping to eat up their profit margin and often times charge more for the product and build in the shipping, unfortunately when a product has LOST money, it isn’t possible to offer free or cheap shipping options otherwise it would spell complete failure.

For those that want to contribute on PayPal in advance to ensure Unbroken’s success and future, the company PayPal is marc@goldenbellstudios.com - for those that have asked, this is NOT a personal PayPal, but directly linked to the Company’s EIN number. 

In the meantime – those who did get the game – hope you are enjoying it! Please take a moment to rate the game on BGG and share your photos and impressions on the Unbroken Facebook page.

The game has been receiving a variety of feedback with some reviews glowing, some – generally positive and some apprehensive (which we appreciate all the same!).

There has been lots of tense conversations in the comments lately. Throughout this - Thanks to all those who stopped by at Origins Game Fair to pick up their copy! Hope you enjoyed meeting some of the team behind the game!

We know a lot of people think that these updates just take a few minutes to craft, but it does truly take Artem and the team at Golden Bell dozens of hours of back and forth, while we also rely on waiting information from our partner vendors and shippers for updates to get all this information to you and cohesively lay it out where it isn’t gibberish.

Thanks to our many backers for supporting messages we have received. These are truly appreciated and remind us that we have an amazing community around this project. Marc has gotten to speak with several dozen backers on the phone to gain perspective on the entire community, and while some have been truly hateful, there are a seemingly silent majority that want us to know you are out there, exist, and continue to support us — we hear you and want to thank you for hanging in there with us! We know how hard it must be to sit on the sidelines, feeling uncomfortable to even drop a comment amid the boiling confrontation, but know that we’re hanging in there! We do ask everyone to read below of some of the personal struggles we’ve been enduring and to try and throw in some show of support to show our collective team that there are still some people who care!


Canada

Canadian copies will be prepared and labeled right after the US portion is done (with the delays we have seen with the US it does mean that delay transfers a bit towards Canada).

- We will keep the Canadian addresses unlocked for longer to allow changes until we start printing labels. That should happen in second week of July or thereabouts.

- At this point we estimate that games will be brought into Canada on Jul 22-26 and shipped through Canada Post, taking another 5-10 days to reach backers.

- Local pickup is available in Etobicoke, ON. If you are interested in picking up your game in person in late July (after 24th) – please e-mail me at altema.games@gmail.com – we’ll take your address off the shipping list and I’ll have your game ready for you. I hope I get to personally thank many local backers via this pickup option.

- We will also arrange an Unbroken get-together at Snakes & Lattes (College location) in Toronto for a chance to meet the team, pick up your game, and get your copy signed. The date is set for Jul 23 (in case you want to block it off in your calendars), but we will confirm once more precise information is available. We hope to personally thank many of our Canadian backers there! IF you’re interested in the event – please message me and I’ll add your name to the list to keep informed.

Mexico and other North American countries:

These packages have been sent just in time for this update and should get to backers in the next couple of weeks.

Asia / Australia / NZ

We had a really frustrating setback on this part of the shipment. After last update we were told that everything is pretty much ready to go – we lost communication with our normally responsive contact at the distribution centre, Allie. After a lot of concerned follow-up, we finally got a message that Allie was no longer with the company and that we are being re-assigned to another representative, Lois. It took some time to get things back on track (for example chasing after the wire transfer we sent to pay for the deliveries and re-connecting it with our account), but it’s back to being almost set up now.

It should leave the factory shortly and arrive at the distribution centre shortly. We will confirm once the shipment arrives, but backers from this area should get their games towards the end of July.

Our apologies to backers from these regions – we fully expected this to be father along by now, but these latest challenges had set us back just a bit longer than we had hoped for.

United Kingdom

This shipment is all ready to go on a boat and we are just waiting for our UK partners, Spiral Galaxy Games to arrange the ocean freight. (We were hoping to get it on a boat by this update but no dice). As soon as it is loaded up – we will provide the vessel tracking info like we did for the North American portion. Games should be in backers’ hands 7-8 weeks after the ship departs, so the late Aug-September estimate should still hold. We’ll provide more precise info as we get it. This portion is moving along well and we’re excited to start these on their way!

Europe

While the EU shipment is not ready yet (need to get the UK first) – we continue to negotiate with European distributors (with several promising possibilities). Cost constraints do make it very difficult, but we are absolutely committed to seeing this through. As noted before – it is likely that this shipment might be broken down into several smaller ones (to allow us to take advantage of more affordable shipping within specific regions). This has been the most difficult region to settle for us, but the Golden Bell team is working hard as they can to get everything aligned (and the factory keeps reminding us that they’d like these units out soon — this isn’t free for them either but they are really helping us out in our time of need so we thank them for that!) so we will get these moving soon. Every step we conclude for other regions brings the European fulfillment closer.

Please remember that Unbroken is up on Tabletop Simulator, and translated into many different languages for you to play while you wait over the great big blue Atlantic! We again want to stress our joint apology as it is shameful of us to ask for continued patience, but something we do know is that it’s a game.

South America and all other regions

These copies will be sent directly from China following the distribution of the AUS/ASIA packages. 

The address lock for these regions will be coming in mid-July after the AUS/ASIA packages leave. We don’t want to further confuse our new Chinese distribution centre contact by making them fulfill too many regions at once.


Other kinds of Challenges

We’d like to share with you some important life challenges that we have faced here at Golden Bell. While we of course care about all the backers and our work, which is our livelihood and passion, there are some things that trump a game.

Over the past few months many of you may have noticed Golden Bell being somewhat less active. That is because Marc and Rachel have been traveling, and sadly not for anything good. Rachel, one of the founders of Golden Bell and lead artists on Unbroken, was diagnosed with a hand tumor. We are all hoping this is nothing more than a benign tumor, but there is still a mandatory surgery happening in the coming weeks, which is particularly stressful for Rachel as an artist who works with her hands.

It has been a very stressful and trying time, often leading to heated comments when we are blamed for being such bad people. We apologize for that, but we don’t feel the hate and vitriol being thrown our away is deserved. 

We share this personal information not to elicit sympathy, but to be as transparent of challenges that we’re facing.. Marc and Rachel are not only business partners, but they are life partners. They’ve been together 8 years just the other day which is such a huge milestone! Please let’s wish Rachel well and hope for a speedy recovery.

There can’t be all bad, though. Over the past summer our puppy Lucky had developed a lot of social anxiety since everyone was always so preoccupied and never left the house, so whenever they did go out he would have a really hard time. Lucky’s breeder and real mom had a second litter a year later, and so Lady was born and brought to the family. It’s been the first time Lucky has ever played with another dog, and he’s really part of the family here, so we wanted to share a picture with all of you of everyone together to remember something very important — we are people behind the keyboard. We aren’t some mega giant billion dollar giant corporation that can afford to hire tens of thousands of people. We are people just like you, with feelings, a passion for entertainment, and beating hearts. It has pained us to see how this campaign has devolved into people fighting, not only among each other, but with some of our partners. Please everyone let’s try to maintain a degree of respect for each other, and remember the important things in life don’t always come in a cardboard box in the mail… We recognize that we have a part to play in this and look forward to more respectful conversations from everyone on both sides of our respective keyboards.

Since the founders haven’t been manning the social media lately, one of Golden Bell’s core associates, Nikki Storme (artist on Unbroken), had taken over this work. 

A lot of people seemed to have appreciated her active involvement in the comments, however, some clearly were not a fan of her reciprocity to the barbed comments directed towards Golden Bell. She has always been protective of the team because she knows how hard everyone works and the challenges facing the team described above. 

The few hurtful comments directed at her escalated to the hundreds and it became too much for her. The comments escalated to harmful private messages on social media platforms, and it even gained Golden Bell a ban from BGG to never comment again since it seems many people can dish out comments, but can't take anything else in return when it's thrown back out at them. 

Due to this stress, on top of packing almost all of Unbroken nearly single-handedly (Rob gets partial credit here), Nikki had a traumatic mental breakdown. She was unable to complete her work for some time, because anytime she would get a notification or open her phone, or anything of that nature; (even something as being called a Dejected Child when she’s nearly the same age as the founders of Golden Bell was just too much), she couldn’t escape all the hate and derogatory comments. 

We share this with you because we feel that Mental Illness is something that is all too often not shared or discussed publicly and we take it very seriously, and always seek medical help and opinions when something like this arises.One of Golden Bell’s comics, Lunarbaboon, deals with the struggles of anxiety, depression, and more on a daily basis. 

Thankfully Nikki got out of her downward spiral thanks to a break from work (in case you were wondering why some of the printed labels haven’t moved) and support from Marc and Rachel. It is important to remind ourselves of what a hurtful comment can do to someone who has devoted their time, love, and passion to a project that they aren’t even making money on (we know some people think we’re getting paid and rich off of Unbroken, but the reality is NO ONE HAS BEEN PAID AT ALL). 

Next time someone is thinking of dashing out an insult in the comments, or starting another thread of the same old rehashed vitriol, please realize there are people behind these keyboards. Words can harm people. People should remember that next time they try to trash someone, anyone, not just us, online or in person because it’s not physical violence that can just harm people, but words are sometimes even more powerful than anything else. Think of how just recently a famous YouTuber committed suicide for the VERY SAME THING that many “supporters” are doing. From this point on we will not engage with any offensive / hateful comments, you’ll essentially be ignored — however, if someone continues to post Libel about anyone involved in the project, you will be met with a swift boilerplate response approved by our legal team. The behavior we’ve witness is childish at best, but some of it is truly despicable and harmful. 

We know that we can do better ourselves and do intend to be more positive in the comments going forward, ignoring the more confrontational comments that try to just get a rise out of us, which truthfully is pretty pathetic that people would stoop that low. We have learned that we can all be better people, and with these constant adversities and challenges we are facing, it is up to us all to unite as people that were here from the beginning to not just fall in love with gaming, but to turn to your neighbor and say, “Remain Unbroken!.”

Stretch Goals Report

The art for the second new Character is on hold while the artist, Rachel (one of the Founder’s of Golden Bell) deals with the health issue detailed above, but we should finish these and distribute the printable Character sheets via e-mail in August.

- The Strategy Guide for Unbroken has been nicely laid out using the standard Unbroken style and can be downloaded here. (or if you want to be nice to your printer there’s a text-only version here)

- The How to Play video is available here (and we will begin work on a more official video as well voiced by the same voice actor who did the Unbroken campaign video).

- Print and Play files are available through the “Digital Downloads” section of BackerKit. If you are unsure how to access your BackerKit – shoot me a message and I’ll help you.

o English Print and Play / Rules is available since Jan 5.

o Spanish Print and Play / Rules are available since Feb 1.

o Italian Print and Play / Rules are available since Mar 15

o German Print and Play / Rules –are available since Apr 15.

o French Print and Play / Rules – are available since May 21.

- Next Stretch Goal we will release will be the digital templates to create your own Unbroken cards – monsters, encounters, weapons and characters!

 

Next Steps

Things are moving and by next update we hope to hit several major milestones, including wrapping up the US shipping, imminent Canadian shipping, getting the AUS/NZ/Asian copies out to backers and sending the UK games onto its ocean journey. We also look forward to being able to start providing more specific information on the EU front. We know the passionate backers across Europe are eager for more tangible news. It is not possible to move all parts of the project along equally fast, so we will make sure to put solutions in place region by region and ultimately ensure that everyone receives their game.

Another thing to note here – Artem will be on family vacation July 13-20 with very limited access to internet. So please lower your expectations of responsiveness during that time. 

It’s been quite a journey so far with lots of challenges to overcome and many lessons learned. So much so that we’ve decided that as the campaign nears its wrapping point, we are going to do a Podcast to help the community learn from our mistakes, invite people that were involved in all stages of development from the artists, editors, designers, all the way to factory representatives, freight brokers, and more! Backer perspective would also be invaluable to inform these reflections. We hope this lessons learned podcast will be shared and help prevent similar issues from happening to anyone else in the future. Thank you all for being a part of this journey, thank you for your patience and thank you for your excitement for this game. Unbroken is fortunate to benefit from a community as awesome as you.

Remain Unbroken,

- Artem and the Golden Bell Studios team

Fulfillment update (almost there!), the final translation (French) and new characters.
6 months ago – Wed, May 29, 2019 at 03:10:40 AM

Hey, you awesome Unbroken backers!

We are thrilled to see that the games started making their way to you – love seeing your photos and impressions of Unbroken! We are hard at work to ensure backers in all regions will get their games soon, this update will provide the most current information we have on our progress.

(we were asked by backers to include a short summary for each of our updates (I know they're a bit long but we try to be as detailed as we can), so here’s a handy table of contents / TL: DR version)

Shipping Update

o US copies shipping now. All units shipped by Jun 14, delivered by end of Jun.

o Canada up next, brought into Canada 1st week of Jul, delivered by mid-Jul

o AUS/NZ/ASIA – shipping starting any day now, delivered by end of Jun.

o UK – preparing shipment, freight departs in ~3 weeks, delivered by mid-Aug

o EU – one step closer, finalizing arrangements, timelines to be available after UK departs

o South America and Rest of the World - sent by end of Jun, delivery by end of Jul.

Shipping Cost Adjustment recap (as described in update #24)

Retail Availability Explanation

New Unbroken Characters (to be available to backers with Advanced Access to Expansion Content)

Stretch Goal Report (French translation now available, Soundtrack to be released next update)

How to Sleeve Unbroken + “Story Order” of the Encounter Deck


Shipping / Fulfillment Update

United States

The fulfillment is in full swing with the Golden Bell team shipping ~1,500 units per week. Here they are hard at work preparing a batch of packages to go out:

Lucky the Chief Puppy Officer doing some quality assurance
Lucky the Chief Puppy Officer doing some quality assurance

The process had to be paused for about 10 days in May as we found a way to add extra packaging to ensure maximum safety of your games by putting them into mailer envelopes at negligible cost. That additional packaging work is now complete, and we are back to generating shipping labels and sending the games off.

At this point around 2,500 games have been sent, so 5,000 games still need to be shipped. Reminder – you will get a shipping notification from USPS when your label is created, your game will be sent shortly thereafter (might be up to a week). BackerKit status is not an accurate indicator of your package being shipped, all that means is that your address has been locked and exported to our excel sheet.

A reminder that there is an option to pick up your game at Origins – if you’re interested in that – please e-mail Marc Goldner at marc@goldenbellstudios.com . Golden Bell will have presence in the Event Space and the Demo space locations at Origins so please stop by to say hi to the team. 

All US shipments should be sent out by Jun 14 prior to Origins. If you have not received a shipping notification by Jun 17 – please get in touch and we’ll sort it out. All US copies should be delivered by end of June.

Canada

Canadian copies will be packaged up right after Origins. The Golden Bell team will bring in the shipment into Canada first week of July and these will be sent out, due to be delivered about 5-10 days later. You should see your copies in early July.

- We will be locking the Canadian addresses on June 19. Please ensure you have the most up to date address on file.

- Local pickup is available in Etobicoke, ON. If you are interested in picking up your game in person in early July – please e-mail me at altema.games@gmail.com – we’ll take your address off the shipping list and I’ll have your game ready for you. I hope I get to personally thank many local backers via this pickup option. If you’re interested in having your game box signed when picking it up – I’ll be happy to oblige.

- We are considering a small get-together at a local game cafe, Snakes & Lattes to offer local pickup and get Toronto supporters to meet the Golden Bell team, myself and Alina, the lead graphic designer. But before we commit to it – we’re looking for a show of interest (if at least ~10 people are interested – we’ll make it happen). Please let us know in the comments if this is something you’d attend. It would be a weeknight first week of July.

Mexico and other North American countries:

These packages will be sent out in second half of June as well and should arrive in early July. The address lock for these regions will be coming on Jun 19 as well.

Asia / Australia / NZ

These games have been packaged, labeled and are en route to the distribution facility in China. They will be shipped in the next week (two at most) with the estimated delivery time of about a week across Asia and about 10 business days for Australia and NZ. Please contact me if you do not receive a shipping notification by Jun 21.

United Kingdom

We are happy to let you know that we have set up an agreement with Spiral Galaxy Games who will be delivering the games to our backers in the UK. Preparation of the shipment will begin next week (as the Australian/Asian copies clear the factory) and we will get to work arranging freight. Once the freight leaves the factory (which should happen within the next few weeks as an available container is located by the freight forwarder) - it will take about 7-8 weeks to get these into UK and out to backers. We’ll aim to provide a more precise timeframe and the ship tracking (if available) next update.

Europe

We have been busy negotiating with multiple distributor / logistics partners across Europe and are close to finalizing our arrangements there. To meet the cost constraints the project is experiencing (as described in Update #24) – we might have to split the shipment into two regional ones to take advantage of favorable rates by country – that is being finalized. For now, we can say that one shipment will come from Germany and the location of the other is being settled. As soon as the UK shipment leaves, we will begin preparing the EU ones, so these should be ready to head out towards the second half of July. We will provide the more specific information as it becomes available both in the comments and in the next update when arrangements should be in place and specific timelines available.

We acknowledge that the shipment situation for UK and Europe has been far from optimal and we had to ask you for your patience far more than we would have liked. We are truly sorry for this inconvenience and understand how frustrating this must be. To thank our UK/EU backers for their patience – you will receive the two new printable characters for Unbroken regardless of whether you provide additional funds to cover the shipping discrepancy (more details on the new characters below). 

Do you have thoughts on other ways we can thank our EU/UK backers for their patience? We’d love to hear your ideas as we want to make up for the frustrations caused by delays. Let us know what kind of digital content you’d like to see as an extra thank you for your patience!

South America and all other regions

These copies will be sent directly from China following the distribution of the AUS/ASIA packages. 

The address lock for these regions will be coming on Jun 19 and they should be sent out by end of June (with delivery time varying by region).

Making arrangements for all these shipments has been a huge amount of work. My thanks to the Golden Bell team for their hours of work getting the US shipments packaged and sent and especially to Marc Goldner for setting up the arrangements for getting Unbroken across the world. 

Overall – as you can see, we are very close to getting the majority of copies delivered over the coming 6-8 weeks. We cannot wait for games to end up in backers’ hands regardless of where you live.

Shipping Cost Adjustment recap

As described in update #24, because of some poor initial estimates on my part, the project has undercharged for shipping and as a result we’re running at a considerable loss. To help mitigate it, we will be following up the delivery of the games with an e-mail letting backers know the actual cost of shipping and asking them to consider helping us cover the difference. For the US backers the difference is $10. The payment is optional, and the e-mail should only arrive after you receive the game.

Many backers have generously offered to provide the extra shipping cost before receiving the game – our sincere thanks to them. If you’d like to help at this time – please message me and I’ll provide the instructions on how to do it.

Folks who provide the extra $10 will unlock the Advanced Access to Expansion content reward, immediately getting access to two new printable Unbroken characters to enrich your playing experience. You will also receive a 20% off coupon for purchases made at the Golden Bell online store which has awesome games like my previous design, Cauldron: A Board Game of Competitive Alchemy -  a light-hearted highly interactive resource management game with potions and spells aplenty!

I also wanted to let you know that to minimize the effect of this on my personal family finances, I will be running a GoFundMe campaign later this summer to raise some additional funds for those interested in helping. Reaching funding goals for that campaign will unlock perks like me recording videos on Unbroken playthroughs, sharing my design process, doing silly photos posing as Unbroken characters and more. None of it will be exclusive or essential to the game, just having some fun to correct a very unpleasant situation. Details will be provided in the next update. (If you have suggestions for entertaining Unbroken-related ways for me to debase myself for fundraising - I'm all ears :).

Retail Availability Explanation

Over the past couple of weeks, we have heard reports that a few copies of Unbroken were spotted in Canadian outlets. This was troubling to us, as we are committed to keeping the game unavailable in retail until backers in any given region get their rewards.

We did some investigating and found out that a distributor who received a direct shipment from China has ignored our explicit instructions to hold sales to stores until at least September and as a result a very small batch of games made it into stores (~100 units). This was not meant to happen, and I apologize to all backers for this slip-up. Minor as it is, it undercuts an important principle for us. No more units will be available in US/Canadian retail until the fulfillment of the campaign to backers is complete.


New Unbroken Characters!

We are starting to roll out some new content that will eventually make its way to Unbroken extensions (provided we manage to course-correct the project’s finance enough to make it financially feasible). Meet the new characters that will be distributed to the Advanced Access to Expansion Content group!

The Brigand is a cutthroat outlaw who uses brutal force to overcome anything that stands between him and the riches he craves. 

Another new character, the Acolyte (her art is coming next update) braves the horrors of the Dark with her faith as her shield, defiant in the face of adversity and peril. These two characters will be distributed in a Print and Play format at first and can be used immediately to add to your Unbroken experience.

We always like to offer an opportunity for backers to be involved in the naming of our characters, and these two will not be an exception. We welcome backers’ suggestions on the naming of the Brigand! The Golden Bell team and I will review all suggestions we get, and we’ll pick the one that most fits our gruff greedy friend. 

Once the Acolyte portrait becomes available, we will announce a contest to determine who gets to name her. We considered making the naming rights available for a fee, but we’d rather get people involved in a fun and interactive way that makes you really feel like a part of the community around Unbroken.


Stretch Goals Report

- The Strategy Guide for Unbroken has been nicely laid out using the standard Unbroken style and can be downloaded here. (or if you want to be nice to your printer there’s a text-only version here)

- The How to Play video is available here (and we will begin work on a more concise official video shortly – I’m excited that it will feature the same voice actor who made the Unbroken Teaser trailer so awesome). 

- Print and Play files are available through the “Digital Downloads” section of BackerKit. If you are unsure how to access your BackerKit – shoot me a message and I’ll help you. Rules in all languages can be accessed publicly here.

o Updated English Print and Play / Rules is available since Jan 5.

o Spanish Print and Play / Rules are available since Feb 1.

o Italian Print and Play / Rules are available since Mar 15

o German Print and Play / Rules –are available since Apr 15.

o French Print and Play / Rules (NEW!) have been released on May 21. Huge thanks to Albin Chevrel a.k.a. Razoupaf for his work on the translation (check out his blog - lots of French solo game goodness!) and to Alina Marchewka (who did the graphic design for the overall game) for working on the graphics layout.

- This release concludes our list of intended translations. It’s been quite a journey, but we’re happy that we’re able to extend Unbroken’s reach through these files. Maybe I’ll do a Russian one sometime in the future :).

- The soundtrack has now been completed in all its orchestral glory. Golden Bell’s Jonathan Meller has done an exceptional job composing the score. We are preparing an equally awesome YouTube video to have it in public access and with best presentation possible. The soundtrack along with the video will be released by the next update, right in time for US, Asian, Australian and NZ backers to get their copies (and Canadian backers about to get these as well).


Other helpful resources

For the dedicated sleevers out there – I found this BGG thread extremely helpful in listing all applicable sleeves for different cards in Unbroken.

Chuck Onbass also did a helpful series of photos showing how the sleeved cards fit into the box:

(Facebook users may find more detailed instructions on his post)

One of the coolest things that Golden Bell writers added to the game is that the Encounter deck in its pre-packaged order actually tells a consistent story of what happens to a survivor in Unbroken’s premise. Try not shuffling the Encounter cards for your first game to go through the story the way it’s intended. Thanks to the work of Andrew Vogel you can now restore the order of the Encounter cards to enjoy that original story again if you’d like. Thanks for putting that list together, Andrew!  

Next Steps

The next several weeks will see the majority of Unbroken games make their way to backers in US, Canada, Ausrtalia, NZ, Asia and South America. The UK and EU shipments are finally being prepared and getting on their way from China. This is extremely exciting and rewarding for us and we are thrilled to get the games to you. This has been a long journey, but the finish line is in sight. Thank you for bearing with us through all the uncertainties and challenges.

Seeing this process roll towards completion is also very welcome, as it allows us to start thinking about the future of Unbroken and the new awesome things that will follow this campaign. But for now – let’s get these games to everyone so that you can roll those chunky dice and face the terrors of the Dark!

As always – thank you for your support and patience throughout this process. It hasn’t been all smooth sailing and it makes us appreciate our backers’ positive attitude even more.

- Artem and the Golden Bell Studios team