Spirits of Christmas

A light cooperative strategy card game in which players act as the Ghosts of Christmases Past, Present, and Future from the beloved story A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. You must work together to take Ebenezer Scrooge on a journey through the past, present, and future, showing Scrooge the consequences of his actions in the hope that he will see the error of his ways before his time is up! Gameplay involves taking actions on a simple rondel and playing sets of cards to accomplish objectives.

Launching on Kickstarter on February 28, 2023.

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Spirits of Christmas: How to Play

Spirits of Christmas Game Design Log

Listed in order from newest to oldest entries.

1/18/2023

The game and artwork are all complete! The blind play-testing phase was a great success. We had 5 different groups blind-playtesting the game from many different locations, and we had a great time reporting our plays and discussing ways to make Spirits of Christmas even better. We have improved specific details that enhance gameplay, a few graphic design adjustments to make it easier intuitively, and even added some different gameplay variants, including different options for how to communicate with each other during play. The “Haunted” communication variant and the “Story” gameplay variant are most exciting.

We have gotten manufacturing quotes for the project, and I have so far been impressed with how Panda GM has worked so well with us. We have also been talking with fulfillment partners, and Fulfillrite was especially helpful. We have not made final decisions on manufacturing and fulfillment partners just yet, but we are confident that we will partner with just the right folks to help us bring SoC to your tables with high quality and efficiency well before the 2023 holidays.

Next we will be researching to find the best pledge manager that fits us and the project.

We have a major game reviewer that has agreed to do a professional preview video of SoC, which will go live on launch day. We are excited to have this excellent reviewer be a part of the Spirits of Christmas campaign journey.

Who is it? You’ll find out on February 28…

1/4/2023

Happy New Year! And we hope Spirits of Christmas will make many people happy this year, especially around the holidays, with this delightful (at least I think so) strategy game, heavy on theme from A Christmas Carol. I have 5 different play-testing teams blind-testing the game, and we are getting great feedback. Only a few small issues really needed to be address to make this a really good game, but the play-testers are giving feedback that will make this a GREAT game, I believe. I love great collaborative teamwork!

So my big, honest thought right now - will it arrive to backers in time for Christmas…<nail-biting>. Well, after talking to the manufacturer, our plan is to go into pre-production (a few weeks) immediately at the close of the campaign, and then straight into mass production (2-3 months) immediately thereafter. So, by summertime, we should have a bunch of games ready to move by freight out of the manufacturing warehouses and out to the fulfillment centers worldwide. Give 1-2 months for freight/delivery to FC/packing, we have games shipping out to backers during September-October at the latest. That is the plan.

One thing that gives me peace about this process arriving on time is that there are no complicated custom aspects of the game - meaning, none of the components we are using will complicate the manufacturing process to the point of having delay risks (like, say, the fact that we have no plastic miniatures really will help this!). And as for stretch goals…well, let’s just say that adding physical components along the way that are not planned for will NOT be happening. That would really complicate this whole thing and slow us down. We may still have a few stretch goals for fun, but they won’t be anything like “50 new cards!” or “10 plastic miniatures!” Nope.

I do love my minis though…it would be fun to have them for the ghosts and Scrooge. But, maybe some other time.

12/4/2022

Emmie has finished the cover art, and it is wonderful to behold. I asked her for a traditional Christmas piece, in watercolor, where Scrooge and the four ghosts are all seen. I wanted Scrooge to be the focal point, with the eyes then pulled to Marley, then the Past, then Present, then the viewer notices the Future ghost last. She pulled this off well, at least for me. Artwork is being updated in our various channels and marketing is about to begin to prepare for the 1st quarter 2023 Kickstarter launch.

11/16/2022

Preparing details from manufacturers. New artwork for the rondel (it will be lovely) and all new cover art (it will also be lovely) is in process.

11/13/2022

We did indeed get great feedback from JeffCon. Playtesters expressed their disappointment that they couldn’t buy the game right away for this holiday season! As the artwork continues, we will begin getting the word out about crowdfunding in early spring 2023.

11/9/2022

The game design is complete, and I just received a proof copy of the prototype in order to use for public playtesting. The first major round of public playtesting will occur this weekend at JeffCon 2022 in Charlotte, NC (11/11-12/2022). Hoping for some great feedback, and really hoping to see gamers having a great time with it. It’s an especially good time to playtest for thematic draw-in, as the holidays are right before us. Harder to get into the theme in July. :o)

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