Imperial Steam Update 22/10/2023

Imperial Steam Update 22/10/2023

22/10/2023 Update

Here is the locomotive set:

Imperial Steam Locomotive

Imperial Steam Locomotive

Imperial Steam Locomotives

Imperial Steam Locomotive

Imperial Steam Locomotive

Imperial Steam Organiser

15/10/2023 Update

We are in full swing with the production of this set, with several sets almost complete, we are in the process of painting, and adding little decals such as the game points onto the tiles. We do have some already committed to customers (and 1 for myself!) that will be getting the first stock. Our first customers (you know who you are) will expect the items to be ready next weekend. If you wish to join the queue let us know. We can't wait to bring this game back to the table with all these upgrades!

We will have the following product purchase options:

- 24 Locomotives with Engine Shed storage.
- Lots of Passenger and Freight Carriages with their own storage boxes (also comes with Shield tokens that transform your carriage into a box car).
- Resources (wood, coal, iron, stone load outs).
- Tracks, Stations, Tunnels, and Bridges.
- Full Organiser (minus the engine shed, as it comes with the locomotives).

Yes its epic, and the detail is incredible. And we have divided the products up like this due to the costs of these upgrades. There is heaps of effort and time put into making these sets and we want to make it available to everyone. So if you have a limited budget, you can just get what appeals to you... the trains..  or the tracks, stations tunnels and bridges I think these will be the most popular items. We will see.

I'm very excited in how this project has come out as I managed to get all my dreams for this upgrade. Its taken me almost 12 months!
I wanted
- A train set experience that brings the "PLAY TRAINS" feeling. With incredible detail, as good or better than my model trains (yes I have N Scale model trains as a childhood hobby).
- The unique trains to Austria, this was very difficult for me to find reference photos on some of these trains for accurate modelling.
- Load outs so you can really feel the Imperial Steam gameplay of the importance of train consists.
- Tracks, stations, tunnels and bridges - that makes it feel like you are really building a railway network
- An organiser that has a Money Tray, speed up the deployment of those factories for faster setup, and that can store my locomotive shed! Massive challenge but achieved.

Imperial Steam gameplay is not the faint hearted. Its a fairly heavy and challenging game. However if you like model trains, or euro style games that feature trains this is a must. It's not an 18XX game but it doesn't need to be, and I think that is the beauty of Imperial Steam. Well done Alexander Huemer! Once you've learnt how to play it, the replay ability of this game is excellent, and with these upgrades it will feel like you are the Railroad Tycoon!

23/08/2023 Update

Printing has brought more challenges with these highly detailed and intricate designs. We believe we have sorted these issues out now, and I'm starting to populate some engine sheds for initial stock, slowly cleaning and removing supports on each locomotive. I hope to have stock available to purchase in October. Unfortunately there is considerable work involved in each set, due to the vast number of supports, number and variety of tokens, and painting requirements. You will be blown away by the detail in each locomotive, and soon we will be playing trainsets :-)

07/06/2023 Update

The solution worked. We now have a beautiful modelled locomotive shed that fits all 24 locomotives, retaining the doors, brickwork and windows - and this is just the container for the organiser! This mistake has turned out for the better, as it has reduced the number of boxes to remove when setting up the game. We believe it is a better solution to have all locomotives in the one container.

We have now expanded our production capability, so our larger designs can be printed, such as Boon Lake and Imperial Steam. These upgrades take up significant room on the resin beds due to the number of tokens and the size of each one, and this would not have been feasible with our existing printers. Previously it would have taken us several days just to print one set! Our mini factory is now 10 printers! Thankyou for all your support.

Imperial Steam Locomotive Storage Shed

27/05/2023 Update

I did a big mistake! I missed an entire loco shed, that's 4 locomotives that I still need room for. Never give up. After kicking myself several times, I started moving things around. Still couldn't find a solution without massive compromise. No matter what I'm going to need that extra space and it's now unlikely I'll be able to support all sleeved cards throughout the entire box. I needed to save a couple millimetres on each loco shed width if I was going to have any chance in getting this to fit. Except I didn't want to sacrifice on the hinged doors, and its the combined minimum width of the hinge and the locomotive tile, and spacing inside so locomotives don't touch, that meant there was no room to save. I had already made them as slim as possible. And then this morning Wendy gave me an idea! If I join the locomotive sheds together into one shed, I should be able to share a single hinge between each shed to be able to retain those nice double hinged doors. A minor set back may end up being an opportunity to improve.. I think I would actually prefer them in one container.

25/05/2023 Update

We did it! Super happy, and a big milestone complete. I have now done a prototype organiser for Imperial Steam that manages to fit all the locomotive miniatures in the base game box. It was a massive challenge on this game with all its components, and different sized boards. Every mm counts, nothing can be wasted. Board sits nice and flush with the top of the box, and we've managed to provide all these features:

  • Secure storage of our Locomotives in a unique Train Shed where trains are pushed and slid out (each train shed holds 4 locomotives, 2 upright, and 2 upside down, secured by their base, nothing touches the locomotive bodies).
  • Each player has a player box with all their components (so setup is easy, hand each player their railway box.
  • Full money tray! So you can easily change out the Austrian Gulden during play that supports Sleeved Cards.
  • Box dedicated to Investors (so just place it on the table for the Investor Pool).
  • Box and Lid dedicated to Shield Tokens and City markers, for those that don't want to purchase our resin custom carriages.
  • Box and Lid dedicated to the Crown, and special builders
  • Box dedicated to hold the City Keys.
  • City Tiles in separate sections for corresponding player counts.
  • Slide out Instant Industry setup container regardless of player count. Simply slide out the template and it keeps those tiles in place together, whilst still being able to read the contents underneath each location.
  • Easy access to pull out each set of boxes
  • Box with separate storage locations for each resource type (Coal, Iron, Wood, Stone), for those that don't want to purchase our resin resources for our custom carriages.
  • Additional card holder for other cards (Yet to test, but hoping this card holder in addition to using the money tray will hold all sleeved cards for those that like to protect your cards).
  • Carriage Tile Holder, for those that don't want to purchase our resin carriages.
  • Boxes have easy access to pull out each set of boxes, and you can store the boards on the bottom or the top of the box.

We are now preparing to get these produced for our customers. Thankyou to everyone that has purchased from us, and supported us. Due to your support we have been able to invest more into our printing equipment. We really needed new printers for this project, and for our Brass tokens. We hope to have these operational by next week, of which we can then start to print all those carriages, and locomotives to put on our website!

Here are some photos:

 Imperial Steam upgrade

Imperial Steam Upgrade

Imperial Steam Organiser Organizer

Imperial Steam Organiser

Imperial Steam Upgrade and Organiser

Imperial Steam Upgrade and Organiser

Imperial Steam Upgrade and Organiser

Imperial Steam Upgrade and Organiser

Imperial Steam Upgrade and Organiser

 

8/05/2023 Update

Thought I needed to do another update on Imperial Steam for those that are waiting. Our new paint has finally arrived, so we can finalise the colours of the locomotives. I need another weekend to get time to allocate to finish this project as its almost done. Be assured I'm just as eager to get my own set and get this game on the table, as those that are waiting for it! Last time with Brass Birmingham I didn't get a set for several weeks after it was released, as Wendy kept selling all the stock and we couldn't keep up. I was like. Hey! where is my copy? I ended up grabbing a set and running off with it, saying this one is Mine! don't touch. :-)

We are also going to print the train carriage boxes in black rather than grey, as this will match the Imperial Steam box colours.

I'll give another update when I have some pictures in the new paint livery of the locomotives. Once that is done we are on to printing all the tokens for stock.  

19/04/2023 Update

A little bit of progress and a few delays. Our supplier for paint has delayed our order, which has held us up a little bit on finalising the colours for each locomotive. As I've been printing these models, I've noticed a few minor improvements I can make that will increase the durability. Notably the freight carriages need some additional strengthening on the underside to the track, as I've had a couple recently break at the weakest point. For the organiser progress, I have now done the containers for the freight cars and passenger cars that will sit separate to the box. There will be two of these containers, one for freight cars and resources, the other box for passenger cars, shield (box car) tokens. As always here are some development photos:

 Imperial Steam Container

Imperial Steam ContainerImperial Steam Organiser

7/04/2023 Update

The amount of upgrades and prints for Imperial Steam is epic. All along I knew this was going to be a challenge. How do we make it affordable for all types of budgets?

We know the steam trains will be the biggest attraction. There will be 24 locomotives (4 of each type). As such this will likely be pack 1. If you only want a small investment, but still want something to stand out, you can use the 3d modelled trains, with the card board carriages.

The carriages, there are so many! The game comes with 70 tiles that are double sided (passenger and freight). To print 140 carriages is probably not going to be feasible and storage will be a problem. To make this work we need to figure out a good ratio of passenger cars to freight cars. If you have some good suggestions let us know. I'm thinking 50 freight cars and 20 passenger cars. This will likely be pack 2. The volume of tokens, support removal, painting and number of prints to achieve this will likely make this the most expensive pack. However with Pack 1 and 2 you can now play trainsets :-)

Next will be the cargo. The game has coal, iron, wood and shield tokens. I've designed the carriages and locomotives to be compatible with these original cubes, so you can place them in the locomotive tender, or freight car. However if you want the ultimate upgrade, I've come up with more designs to replicate these as real cargo types, that also create new carriages from the freight cars.

1) Coal pile. Coal can go in the freight car and the locomotive. However the tender is almost always much smaller than the freight car. How do we make this look realistic. Solution, two different coal piles. There will be a long coal pile for freight cars, and a small coal pile for locomotives. 12 small coal piles will be reserved for when you need to place or move coal into the tender of the locomotive.
2) Iron ore pile. Iron can only go in the freight car, so it's a long iron ore pile.
3) Wood. This has been rendered as logs stacked on each other tied down. These can only go in the freight car.
4) Stone. A stack of stones, or pile of stones. These can only go in the freight car.
5) Shield. Well a shield is not realistic as real cargo... So I thought what could I do to represent a freight car committed to a contract and usuable to hold the resources above? The solution, an upper conversion piece, that changes the freight car to a box car. This not only prevents the use of the resources above to be used, but it also creates more variety on managing your consists. The inner railway tycoon will be sure to come out of you!
Here is a photo of our resources being used in the upgraded trains.
Imperial Steam Cargo Trains
Resources for Imperial Steam

So these resources will likely be Pack 3.

We then have tracks, tunnels and bridges. We have designed this so each player can have their tracks placed in a tunnel, or on a bridge, to minimise the number tunnels and bridges needed for the game. The Semmering pass will also be part of this pack. This will be Pack 4.

That leaves us with the upgraded Train Stations. I'm still thinking about what pack these should be in, and if we will do any other building upgrades.

Finally the storage solution. The carriages will definitely need to be in a separate box to the game box. I'm trying to work out fitment to see if we can get the locomotives into the game box too. Its think it will be possible - just... but I also need to ensure the organiser makes sense, and is easy to setup a game and pack away. I've started prototyping some containers. I also realise some people will want their cards sleeved. These take considerable more room. So I'm yet to come up with a solution that will offer what I think most people will want. For shipping internationally I'd strongly recommend the containers for the locomotives, as they will provide secure holders - so we may make this mandatory. After all we wouldn't want you to receive your models only to find rough handling in shipment has damaged them.

You might be wondering when will this project be done and available? So this project is getting close to being finished. Finalising the organiser, and Semmering viaduct pass, I think we might start production printing by the end of April. This month I plan to play test with all the components.

31/3/2023 - Update

Now that the trains are finished, I'm moving on to create some storage solutions that will keep the trains safe in transit, and in your game box. Lets set some expectations... There is absolutely no way we will be able to store 24 locomotives, 70 carriages, tunnels, bridges, stations and all the game components in the original box. I'm hoping I'll be able to come up with a solution to store all the original game components and the locomotives. Then separate storage boxes for the 70 carriages, tunnels and bridges.

I already completed the storage holders for the trains in the most efficient way, that keeps them safe. Each engine shed holds 4 locomotives, one upside down above the other, secured by their base without touching walls, or the other train.You simply open the doors, and slide out the trains. There is a hole in the back of the engine shed, so you can push the trains through as well.

Our prints on the locomotives have come out great. We are also experimenting with the colours for the locomotives. We want to make them true to the typical colours steam locomotives were painted, but we don't want them so dark that it hides all the detail. 

Here are our photo updates:

 Imperial Steam Locomotives

Imperial Steam Storage

Imperial Steam game storage organiser

18/3/2023 - Quick update.

We have two new locomotives and some minor adjustments to the previous ones, only one left to do. I've been very busy with Brass Lancashire, now that design work has finished in Brass I can spend time again on Imperial Steam! I have completed the 80 Locomotive, and 60 Locomotive.

Imperial Steam upgrade

For each locomotive I have scoured photos and museums for their original locomotives used in Austria. The biggest locomotive in the set:

Imperial Steam Train 80

The game locomotive doesn't have the cabin hood. I've decided to draw one in, as the original locomotive in my research had a hood just like this. Again I've gone crazy with detail, I think it's going to come out really nice in 8k resin. This huge red engine has everything bigger! 3 Head lamps, 4 Huge drive wheels and a massive boiler. It can pull 8 carriages in the game, and if you manage to be able to build it in your game, you'll also get three bonus points (yes need to fix that, its only 2 bonus points in my model on the tender whoops!), the black one 6 carriages, with 1 bonus point.

Imperial Steam Game Trains

 Now with 3D models I wonder if its going to change your strategy on the game? Are you going to be tempted to just build locomotives? Or build as many tunnels and bridges as you can! Are you going to be tempted to build that Semmering Pass? Model is coming! ;-)

28/2/2023 Update:

An update on Imperial Steam upgrades. Lots has been happening here. We have printed prototype steam trains, carriages, wagons, player train tracks, tunnels, viaducts, and little central stations pieces (similar size to the tombstone timber token). It is looking spectacular. We can't wait to fit out our game with these pieces. This is by far our most extravagant project to date! It is EPIC.

In my drawings I have included crazy amounts of detail. We have leather chesterfield seats inside the carriages, luggage racks, interior timber panelling, door handles. Our locomotives have printed perfectly, and with a spray of paint the detail just comes to life.

This project will take us a bit to complete, but we think it will be worth it.

Imperial Steam 3D printed train

Imperial Steam 3D Printed Locomotive

Imperial Steam 3d Printer player piecesImperial Steam 3d printed player pieces

Imperial Steam Train Station

Imperial Steam 3D Printed Steam Train

Our latest design - Train 6:

Steam Train 60 - Imperial Steam Board Game

Happy Gaming!

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