Monthly Archives: June 2021

Standard Payment Structure and Lead Time

Standard Payment Structure for manufacturing

The payment structure for board and card games is straightforward and simple. Though it does slightly vary between manufacturers in different countries and between publishers, the standard payment structure in the board game manufacturing industry is to have three or four payment installations:

  • Payment and Lead Time of the Sample Stage:
  • Down Payment pre-production
  • Mass Production Lead Time and Balance Payment
  • Shipping (optional)
  • Fulfillment (optional)

Before deciding to move forward and mass-produce a game, most customers prefer making a prototype game to check the quality of the material they chose and the way all game components fit together. After they check the game, they might decide to make adjustments to the game, the artwork, and the pieces.

Generally speaking, this stage takes between 20-30 days until the sample is delivered. It depends a lot on how organized and properly made the files for print are, as well as how many different Manufacturing Processes are there in the game.

A) Average Cost of Sample Game:

Currently, the average cost for a single sample game from a factory ranges between $150 to $400 a game.

However, this cost is very high to accept for a single game, especially for first time creators.

In addition, many game creators and publishers might take this sample and send it to board game reviewers or to events such as PAX and Essen so they can market their games before receiving the mass-produced games

B) Hero Time Offer 1:

To answer this problem, Hero Time now offers a special package of up to 5 sample games for around 60% of the cost of a stand-alone sample. In short,

    1. A single copy of a game that is identical to the final game, costs between $150-$400.
    2. Five copies with some minor variants will cost 80-200$ a game

C) Hero Time Offer 2:

If you are sure you want to move forward with mass production within a month of making the sample, Hero Time also offers a free sample upon a deposit payment for the mass production order. In this way, you are getting your sample for free.

Following the authorization of the final version of the game, Hero Time will send an Invoice (PI) to the customer. In this invoice, all the production details will be agreed upon: game specification, production timeline, payment structure, and delivery status. The invoice is a binding document equivalent to a contract. In many cases, when publishers will need Hero Time to do the shipping, the invoice will also include the estimated shipping price.

The down payment is usually 50% of the invoice’s total. If you have repeating orders, the initial payment can also be 30% of the invoice’s total. You can also view our specific terms and conditions here Terms and Conditions Page

Once the Down Payment was made, the manufacturer will move forward with mass production of the game. Here the manufacturer should go over all the files and dimension once more, order the raw materials, and start the manufacturing process of the Board game or card game. The lead time for mass production varies between game components, manufacturers, and seasons. Some manufacturers will take up to 60 days to prepare the delivery of the game. At Hero Time we try to keep it under 35 days.

After production has been completed and before delivery, the game creator or publisher will need to pay the remaining balance of their order.

If the publisher acquires Hero Time’s Shipping services, the shipping cost will be calculated prior to the delivery and will be paid at this stage. If the publisher is using a separate shipping provider and the shipping terms agreed with the manufacturer are FOB or EXW, then the shipping payment should be made with the chosen forwarder.

For large publishers that clear the games themselves, the final payment can be made after the Bill of Lading is issued.

Shipping lead time depends a lot on the destination country and the shipping method that was chosen. The Lead time and price for them are as follows:

The below Shipping Table is specifically the offering of Hero Time, you should ask your manufacturer for his policies and time lines.

  Available Countries Price Lead Time Terms
Fast UPS Shipping US between 2.8-3.5USD a KG 30 Days Door to Door all Duty and VAT paid
Slow UPS Shipping US, Canada, EU, UK, AU,NZ between 2-2.6USD a KG 60-80 Days Door to Door all Duty and VAT paid
CBM / Container Shipping Worldwide 250-450USD per CBM
+400- 800USD fixed costs
40-70 Days US – Door to Door all paid
AU/NZ – Door to Door excluding GST
Rest of World – to the destination port
Shipping prices table

You can check our Shipping Terms article here for your reference.

The shipping payment will be made upon the completion of mass production, or if you are using a different shipper aside from your Board Game Manufacturer, you will need to pre-pay this amount before the pick up of your games.

Though this is an uncommon service amongst board game manufacturers, Customers can have Hero Time manage their fulfillment as well. The payment for the fulfillment should only be done once the warehouses in the destination countries get the games and calculate the exact fulfillment prices. This is to ensure game creators on crowdfunding platforms get the best prices possible and are not overcharged in advance.

Organizing all the deliveries and shipping from the warehouse to the backers can take anywhere between 10-30 days, depending on the location of the backer, and from which warehouse they were sent.


1. If I pay the first deposit, do I still need to pay for the sample?

No, if you pay the deposit, the sample is free of charge

2. If I got a sample once and I am not satisfied with it? Can I get a new sample?

Yes. Once you pay for a sample, you can get up to three sample runs

3. Is the prototype board game identical to the final game?

Samples are printed using a digital printer, while the mass-produced order is print by an offset printer. The digital print is slightly darker and starts to fade after 2 months or so. Aside from this, the sample will be the same as the final mass-produced game.

4. How can I be sure the game will come out as I want it?

Hero Time will record the production of your game, and will send you constant updates about it. Though digital content is not 100% the same as an actual game held in your hand, errors can still be spotted, and you can feel safe with your game.

5. If during production I found that the factory made a mistake. What then?

Though it rarely happens, if it did happen, let your correspondent in Hero Time know, and they will make sure the factory re-does the job, free of charge

6. If I started manufacturing and then decided to change the design, will HeroTime be able to change it?

Once the factory starts printing, you will need to bear the costs of a reprint. The cost will only be for those sheets you want to change. Not the whole order.

7. How can I ensure the game will be produced according to the agreed timeline?

HeroTime’s representatives will be in the factory and will make sure the factories stand according to the deadlines.

8. Will the factories ever deviate from the agreed timeline?

In some cases where Hero Time will approve the delay. For example, if it is raining hard, it is better not to transport or cut the board games as the air is very damp and can ruin the boards. in that and other similar cases Hero Time will recommend changing the deadline

10 Popular Strategies for Board Games

Board games players mostly rely on tactics and strategies throughout the game play. As a game designer you should strongly consider the strategies you want players to follow, and make sure they line up with the emotions you want players to get during play time. 

This article is written for game players and give a window for game designers to understand their players. As a player you need to remember that most board games allow multiple strategies/paths to victory. Whichever game you play whether a chess tournaments online, monopoly, or even exploding kittens you need to know which strategy to use and when.




each of these strategies will need different components for your game, you can check a list of all board game pieces and their specification and prices. It is important to not confuse the mechanics of the game with the strategy. In this article, we refer to strategy as the emotional triggers for players and the guides for their actions.

In the list below there are 10 popular strategies found in board games that will ensure great playtime.  


Strategy #1:- Focus on Synergy in Board Games


Synergy strategy is used when players build and combine as most resources as possible or when players play together in synergy and peace to achieve a common goal. This method is largely used in resource-building games, and it is not for everyone. 

As a player in the game, it is better to focus on building your own hand and points rather than focusing on the other players and how to stop them. Only if you feel like you are in the lead and have to stop others from winning then you should start stopping others from playing their best hands. 

Strategy #2:- Preparing for the Worst 


Numerous games have arbitrariness incorporated, especially in those games where players draw cards. You never know what you or your opponent will be getting. In these types of games, you really have to prepare for the worst outcome, make sure you protect yourself as best as you can, and sometimes even take an all-in bet with playing a certain card. 

There is an expertise in evaluating conceivable outcomes and moderating the risk while maximizing the reward. Learn the cards and always expect the worst-case scenario. 


Strategy #3:- Don’t Be Personal

While it may be very difficult to overcome the need to dominate other players in the game and ruin them especially after they have taken action against you, don’t allow the feeling to distract you from the gameplay and choices.


Instead of being personal and trying to destroy others, mark your objectives and try your best to reach them. Do what is best for your game and turn, not what your anger tells you. Focus on this turn and future turns and make sure you outline the path to victory. 


Strategy #4:- Control Your Opponents Choice making

While we preach not to be personal in the game and sometimes to play in synergy it doesn’t mean you leave your opponents alone. On the contrary, you always have to look at what the other players are building and working towards, so you can stop them from winning the game. 

If the game has a shared pool of resources or actions that could be taken, like in Ticket to Ride always try to figure out what the other players are building towards so you can block them and influence their decisions. 

Strategy #5:- Be Monopolistic


This strategy is similar to strategy four, but is taking a bit further into the extreme. In some games where you get paid according to the land owned such as in monopoly or Zaberias  You want to make sure you own as much as you can. As these resources are finite if you get most of them in your hand, other players will have to bend their wills to yours. 

Some negotiation tactics can be thrown in during gameplay to make sure you maximize your profits and points as much as possible. 


Strategy #6:- Know when the game ends


Knowing when a game ends and how it ends is essential for outlining your targets, goals, and actions you take during the turn. Many players simply forget when the game ends and get carried away with what they are doing, only to realize by the end of the game that they scored very little or did not do anything that will help them win. 

Make sure you know when the game ends, and that you count/average how many turns are left to make sure you maximize the output of each round. 


Strategy #7:- Don’t Cut Other Players Any Slack


This strategy is mostly used when you are playing against people your age and level. If you are playing with your kids and family, please cut them some slack so they don’t turn out hating games. 

If the point of the game is to win, don’t be shy to pursue a win. It is ok to win as long as you don’t rub it in other player’s faces. 


Strategy #8:- Play How You Wouldn’t Normally Play


We cannot stress this point enough; some players constantly take the same actions and always lose. Then they get angry at the game and feel like it wasn’t well designed. In the game always try to find alternative ways to play and actions to take, go out of your comfort zone and try to play differently each time. If you generally do what you’ve generally done, you’ll generally get what you’ve generally got.


Strategy #9:- Listen to Other Players’ Conversations


In every game there are always players that give advice and comment on other players actions. Instead of shutting them up, try to listen for once, even if they don’t make much sense, they might reveal their own strategy and you have one less player to worry about. 

Generally speaking, those that talk have something important to say and there is a lot to read between the lines. If you are the one commentating all the time and you lose, try for once to be quiet and keep your cards for yourself. 


Strategy #10:- Choose one strategy and go for it


Each board game, and every game played will turn out slightly different and will put you in a different position, try your best to observe your situation and adjust your strategy according to the specific game. 

Even if you end up losing the game, it will still get you familiar with other strategies and approaches for the game. It will be one of the possible approaches to triumph. It may not turn out for you in this game, yet you will get familiar with a great deal.

Summing Up!

If you play to win, don’t be shy and try to win. You need to stay observant, flexible, objective, ruthless (at times), and take advantages from anything you can get your hands on. 

If you want to make your own board game and need assistance with choosing board game pieces feel free to contact us at any time. 


Shipping Board Games FAQ’S

Hero Time offers board game creators shipping and fulfilling services for board games. If you have ran a KS campaign and you need to send your game to multiple locations, we will take care of each game and send it to its destination.  

Plus, if your customers are from around the world and you need warehousing at a global location that can send games anywhere across the world for a reasonable price, we are here for you. For only 10$ a month per CBM, we will store handle and ship your merchandise.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can HeroTime help me with shipping?

Shipping Board Games is a tricky part, but Yes. Defiantly. Hero Time believes in added service and will do anything to help game creators.

Shall I ship by air or by sea?

Though shipping by air is much faster (7 days rather than 30) the company charges by weight and the cost can come out up to 5 times higher.

How much is the average weight of a game?

It largely depends on your game and the number of components you have. A game like Amun – Ra or Zaberias is nearly 2 kilos, while smaller card games can be 0.6 Kilos. It is best you weigh your game or ask HeroTime to do it.

Are there any new tariffs on game imports?

Currently, in the US board games fall under HS Code 950490, and hence do not have any additional VAT charges.

In the UK, EU, and Canada the VAT is 20%. In AU and NZ the GST is 15%

How to calculate the CBM of my game?

Take your outer box then multiply the length x height x width, giving you the space of each game box. Multiply the total amount by 1.45, to accommodate for the shipping boxes, and then multiply that by the number of games you have, and you get the entire space they take. 

So length x height x width x 1.45 x number of games.

Will any of my games be damaged during shipping?

It depends on the shipping channel you use, if you are only printing up to 2000 games, we might choose UPS shipping which is not palletized, and then the damage rate can go up to 3%, if you palletize your games, damage rates will be less than 1%. However, keep in mind, that palletizing small quantities is not cost-effective at all.

How can I avoid my games being damaged?

One way to avoid damage is by packing the games on pallets. However, you should consider that pallets add an extra 30% for space and CBM. and cost an extra $25 per pallet.

Do I need a special license to import board games?

If you use Hero Time shipping channels you do not need to have a license, as Hero Time acts as the importer. We went out of the way and applied an import license in most countries so you do not need to worry about it. If you want to use other shipping channels it is also possible, but make sure you have a customs agent you can trust to handle everything, as prices can increase dramatically if there are any delays.

Shall I add anything special on the box?

Yes. You should have that it was made in China and by HeroTime. You can also add the HS or your own code. On each individual game, you should have safety for kids icons, the appropriate age of players, and the number of players the game is designed for.

Provide a few details and we'll reach out.

– Hersh (Founder of HeroTime)


Board Game Creators are the pillars of the board game industry. As a board game manufacturer, it is our duty to make sure you have everything you need throughout your journey.


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