Article #7-How to make a Budget!

You're here because you want to start a Kickstarter but you have no idea:
A) How much it'll cost, thus...
B) How much you'll need to raise, nor...
C) Where to even start.

Start here.

Let us begin with a bulleted list of everything you're going to need to pay for (EXPENSES / "Liabilities") along this journey, by major category; then discuss possible sources of income (ASSETS).  On the next page, Article #7.2, linked below, we'll break down each bullet point into greater detail and provide a budgeting spreadsheet that you can download (for free) to help itemize your own unique budget.

(As with the rest of our articles, this largely discusses game manufacturing, but most budget items are ubiquitous; simply replace any game term with your relevant item/term where necessary! : )


(Major categories arranged in relative order of size, by greatest, to least, cost.)


  1. Your Main Game's quote (from manufacturer)
  2. "Overbilling" (be prepared for this sneaky game changer)
  3. Your Add Ons
    · quote (from manufacturer) (optional)
    · independently ordered (for self-fulfillment) (optional)


  1. Freight shipping
  2. Fulfillment (3rd party-Amazon/Shipwire)
  3. Fulfilled (self-game, bonus items/add ons)


  1. Sculpts for minis (3d or physical)
  2. Box artSword Pencil
  3. Board
  4. Character art
  5. Card art
  6. Graphic frames & backgrounds
  7. Symbology
  8. Text & Numerics
  9. Promotional art
  10. Misc tokens
  11. Company Logo
  12. Lastly - Graphic Design (arranging all this into final products)


  1. Banner Adverts
  2. Networking
  3. Reviewers
  4. Conventions


  1. Sales tax
  2. Bar Codes
  3. Prototypes
  4. Business Cards
  5. Promotional Items (Flyers, Postcards, etc.)
  6. Software Upgrades (Photoshop, Movie Editors, etc.)
  7. Hardware Upgrades (Depends on the software upgrades)
  8. Incorporation Fees & State Franchise Taxation
  9. Hired help
  10. Yourself

FeesFee percent red

  1. Kickstarter & Amazon Fees
  2. Pledge Manager Fees (not part of initial budget, but seemed worthy of a mention).

Ok, now that we have the massive list of EXPENSES covered, let's talk ASSETS.


Sources of IncomeDollar Sign

  1. Your wallet
  2. Panhandling
  3. Asking your Father to sell half his property so you can have your inheritance early so you can squander it on a life of debauchery and board gaming.
  4. Kickstarter Funding

Since #s 2, & 3 aren't going to work out for you very well, and #1 is probably a lost cause or you wouldn't be on Kickstarter... you really only have #4 to go on.  Don't worry.  It's doable.  Trust me.

Let's pause for a chat....

First, if you don't have an answer (good or bad) to every one of the above items, you should NOT launch your Kickstarter yet.  You do your backers (and self) a great dis-service if you haven't figured out the above before you ask them for money.  Because if you haven't figured out the above, then you're guessing at the amount of money required based on other kickstarters you've seen, and that's a terrible idea that will let you down.

But don't worry - you CAN, and will, figure this out.  I'm going to help you.

Click here to be brought to part 2 of this Article, the "Detail by Detail" page with a downloadable Budget Spreadsheet that you can make your own.