LATEST UPDATE - SEPT. 12, 2019
First, the important news: we are planning to do TWO Kickstarter campaigns! The first will be a beta release Kickstarter capped at about 50 units, and it will take place in October 2019. Due to the low quantities and their hand-built nature, the cost of these units will probably be about twice the cost of our eventual high-quantity price. But these units would be available about 9 months sooner, with delivery in about four months, around February. We’ll have a more definite price once we have more manufacturing quotes, but we want to see what sort of interest there is in these early beta units. The second Kickstarter, the big one we had been planning to do around now, will instead take place around March of 2020.
We’ve decided to do two Kickstarters for a few reasons. During testing we learned so many ways that our controller could be better that we just couldn’t stop going deeper. We’ve made such large changes to the design that we have to dial in a lot of new parts for mass-manufacturing at scale. Additionally, we’re not ready with our marketing materials which we really need in order to make a large Kickstarter successful. With both of these being the case, we have to fund development through the next several months while we refine the design, so the beta units will help fund this effort. And finally, the biggest reason that we’re not ready, somewhat self-evident from the pictures here; we have a new, much more compact design!
One of our lessons learned from testing was that past a certain threshold, more motion in a force sensitive controller’s handle doesn’t seem to translate to increased precision, and that we might be better served by reducing the amount of motion in the system. This gives us the chance to move to a new internal spring system that we’re working on, that fits the spring suspension system inside the handle, rather than on its sides. It’s a bit more conventional looking, but it reduces the overall footprint of the device to 5 in x 6 in. The height will be approximately 10 inches, depending on how much room we need for some of our control changes we’re working on. Right now we’re working on a demo prototype for the beta Kickstarter to show as soon as we can.
We’re excited to be getting so close on this project, and grateful to the community for spreading the excitement. More updates on the pre-orders soon!