Steve Jackson Games reported $5.3 million in revenue for 2018, a decline of $200,000 from the previous year, in the informal ‘Report to Stakeholders’ the company has been providing yearly online since 2003.
The company said, staff cuts, reducing print runs and focus on successful titles put them in a better than expected position at the end of the year. Revenues have been declining since its peak of $8.5 million in 2014. They ended the year with 30 full-time staff and contractors, down from the 41 they reported in 2017.
The company said it will be directing more energy to Kickstarter where they can judge demand for titles. Their efforts in 2018 generated $800,000 in revenue as they experimented with games, expansions, and even accessories. They have even opened a second Kickstarter account for products not intended for distribution.
Munchkin continued to be successful for the company, as was The Fantasy Trip, the first RPG designed by Steve Jackson. Self-described failures included the Munchkin Collectible Card Game.
“Despite the strong sales of the core game and the first expansion, the expense of creating the game was too great to justify taking the second core set (fully written, and paused before art and layout) to the finish line,” said CEO Phil Reed. “Additionally, we – I – made a serious blunder in listening to initial feedback and reprinting the game. Yet again, we transformed profits into inventory.”
Reed said, Munchkin Magical Mess suffered from an oversaturated market that caused distributors and retailers to under-order leaving them with unsold inventory.