Adventures in Puzzle and Game Design. Part 4

Heading into Pre-Production

Holy moly… it’s been an intense few weeks but the two kids’ puzzles, two adult puzzles and one giant mindfulness activity card set are going to pre-production!

What does that mean?

After months of designing with a puzzle and game company, then fine-tuning the packaging and inserts together, we have¬†finally¬†all approved the designs. They’re DONE!

It was a lot of work with a lot of back and forth but I’m so happy that we are all committed to making them the best products possible, despite the extra work and time. We are not just making puzzles and games, after all. We are creating fun resources and tools to help adults and kids reduce stress and anxiety. We are very passionate about making a positive¬†impact in the world!

What’s next?¬†

Now that the designs are finalized¬†they will be sent to the factory to make “pre-production samples”. As far as I understand, (since this is new to me), they make a few samples of each product so we can see what the final versions will look like. They should take around a month to prepare. If it all looks good, then we approve them and they¬†officially go into production!¬†

I’m especially excited because they’ll be sent to me, too! After over half a year of working on them I’ll finally be able to hold them in my hands… and show them to you!¬†

Oh wait – before production can start they will be sent to a lab for testing to ensure they’re totally safe. Wild, hey?

One more to make

Oh yah! We do still have to design the packaging for one more product! It’s another giant card set. I thought it was a ton of work to design 30 cards for the set¬†but the package design¬†is pretty intense, too, and I’m not even designing it!¬†We’re all involved and I do offer a lot of input and ideas – it’s a team effort.

Packaging is incredibly important. It sells the product to the big buyers, but also HAS to clearly be able to sell to customers in the stores. This is especially tricky when you need to quickly, clearly explain what it is and have it make sense across different cultures and languages. That’s our last product, though! Then, if they all sell well, we can hopefully make many more!

When can you buy them? 

Uh… yah. I don’t actually know. This is the weird part about all of this. They will mainly be sold through chain stores so it depends on which stores buy what, and if they ship to or are in Canada.

Typically, the national buyers want to see physical products by January and make decisions by March. Ours still aren’t physical, so any interested stores are taking a risk by committing to purchase at this point. We do have some interest, so please cross your fingers and toes for us that they’ll sell decently this year and they’ll be available to purchase in Canada!

Our main focus is to have them ready when the big buyers start looking in the fall, to purchase for the fall of 2022.

Man. I’m so used to coming up with an idea, making it, manufacturing it, selling it and sending it to you all within a week or two. Waiting for two YEARS is quite the lesson in patience!! It’s such a different beast!¬†¬†

Thank you¬†again to those who offered to take the survey to help us design the packaging. Your feedback was enormously helpful! We made some great changes, thanks to you. Plus, it was fun to give you a sneak peek at what we’re making!¬†

After months of keeping it top secret, I can FINALLY share updates on a big, exciting project I’m working on! Did you miss the announcement and updates? To catch up on the adventure…

I'd love to hear from you!