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Cytress: Cyberpunk Board Game

Created by Sean Lee

A competitive 1 to 5 player game set in a cyberpunk fortress ruled by elites in three-dimensional floating cities.

Latest Updates from Our Project:

Exciting Progress Update: Print Files Finalization, Printing Timeline, and More! – Please Read to the End!
7 months ago – Wed, Aug 09, 2023 at 01:00:16 AM

Hi Cyberpunks!

We're excited to share that we've made substantial progress since our last update. The print files are now complete! This marks a major milestone as the visual aspects and overall presentation of the game have been finalized. Join us as we delve into the changes from the Kickstarter version to this final print edition. Additionally, we'll discuss the printing process, upcoming steps, and provide insights into when you can expect to receive the game. Thank you for your continued support!

Underbelly Faction Board

Kickstarter Version (Left) vs. Print Version (Right)

Let's take a closer look at the Underbelly board transformation. Notable changes include a complete reshaping of characters – a prime example being the removal of Stratos Board along with the 'netprowler', combining the two boards into one, making way for the introduction of renegades. These renegades are essentially former stratolites who have drifted from their origins and been ostracized from Stratos. The renegades now stand in place of the former 'netprowlers,' aiding the Rebels in their unlawful ascent to Stratos. The image of the Enforcer, formally Bounty Hunter, has also been added to the mix. Furthermore, the district of 'Cytress' has taken over the role of the previous 'underbelly,' as it accurately embodies the essence of the cyberpunk dystopian City's underbelly. This transition prompts the question: What fate has befallen the Stratolites?

Stratolites + Stratos

Kickstarter Version (Left) vs. Print Version (Right)

The Stratolites, as it turns out, have found their new home within Stratos. This decision holds significant thematic value, making it one of the most compelling adjustments we've implemented in the game. The rationale behind this move becomes clear when Rebels venture to the Stratolites' location. Interestingly, their transporters are met with restrictions upon entering Stratos. This intriguing twist mandates players to reposition their transporters from the "meet Stratos" platforms by the end of phase 3. This shift harmonizes seamlessly with the gameplay, as players essentially move their transporters away from the Stratos Tower.

Mission Cards 

Kickstarter Version (Left) vs. Print Version (Right)

We've rebranded these mission cards as Intel Cards, aligning them more closely with the cyberpunk theme. As players navigate through specific districts to procure these cards for their tableau, these cards represent crucial intel for their missions. Once your crew is positioned on the minimap, the 'mission' unfolds, emphasizing the moment of execution. This sequence maintains the mission concept, but now it's concentrated on the subsequent phase when your crew is deployed. Upon interacting with one of the four factions to acquire an intel card, the immediate consequence is the initiation of the mission detailed on the intel card.

Faction Districts  

Kickstarter Version (Left) vs. Print Version (Right)

We're thrilled to present this exciting update, which emerged from a valuable suggestion during a playtest session with one of our esteemed stratolite backers! As depicted on the left, the leaders were primarily intended for influence. However, in their new roles as Rebel leaders, their impact extends beyond mere influence; they can now actively shape the district, bestowing enhanced benefits during your crew placement phase (mission execution). To realize this concept, we've introduced an innovative mechanic known as "spying," enabling your crews to strategically secure resources by judiciously positioning themselves on the minimap subsequent to acquiring intel. This addition injects an extra layer of strategy into gameplay.

Solo Mode  

Updated Print Version (Front & Back)

In the previous iteration, we employed a structured system where the AI responded to specific player actions, creating a somewhat mechanical experience. However, we've now introduced a dynamic adaptation mechanism that responds to your choices, adding an element of unpredictability that's simultaneously intuitive for AI interactions. This adjustment strikes a balance, rendering the solo gameplay more challenging yet seamlessly enjoyable. Furthermore, to elevate the solo experience, we've introduced a tiered difficulty system with five distinct levels. This empowers players to embark on their solo journey at their preferred challenge level, though we recommend starting at level one when acquainting yourself with the game. This variety injects a fresh dimension of engagement into solo play, ensuring a rewarding and immersive experience.

Rebel Boards 

Kickstarter Version (Left) vs. Print Version (Right)

Notably, these boards have undergone a thematic makeover, complete with immersive flavor text that adds depth to the gameplay narrative. In addition, we've taken a deliberate step to enhance usability – all icons have been magnified and textual information streamlined, ensuring a swift and intuitive grasp of the unfolding events. This thoughtful redesign ensures that players can effortlessly comprehend the dynamics at play, enhancing both immersion and accessibility.

Standees 

Kickstarter Version (Left) vs. Print Version (Right)

Behold the evolution of standees, including those for rebel leaders and transports, which now sport a distinct district-inspired aesthetic, adding an immersive touch to your gameplay. Yet, the most significant transformation lies in the introduction of crew tokens. This addition serves a crucial purpose – ensuring a clear distinction of ownership on the minimap. Drawing inspiration from the conventions seen in video games' traditional minimap displays, where characters' visages often take center stage, we've similarly embraced this approach. Hence, our minimap now prominently features characters' heads or faces, aligning seamlessly with the familiar and intuitive representation style. This innovative change enhances both visual clarity and the overall gaming experience.

A Final Look At The Final Print Files Altogether

Our utmost priority is to ensure that every component in the game boasts superior quality and durability, striking the perfect balance within the specified budget and production constraints. To achieve this, we've embraced an unconventional choice: the utilization of ultra-compressed black board card stock. This premium material, while rare in the gaming industry due to its cost, is imperative for the sturdiness and resilience of the Stratos tower. We're committed to safeguarding the tower's integrity, assuring it remains steadfast even through repeated assembly and disassembly.

When you open the Cytress box, our goal is for you to sense exceptional value and robustness in every detail. We've meticulously designed the game to exhibit durability where it truly matters and a subtle elegance where appropriate. Once you engage in gameplay, our meticulous decision-making process shines through. The intricate balance we've sought to strike among component quality, visual elements, and gameplay has been finely tuned. This delicate equilibrium is of paramount importance, as we recognize the significance of this singular opportunity. We're dedicated to getting every aspect right on this journey, as we understand that we have only one opportunity to achieve excellence.

Printing Timeline

Our current focus is on conducting thorough pre-printing assessments in collaboration with the printers. These crucial checks are essential to ensure that we have precisely the right materials for all the components. Anticipate this phase to encompass an estimated 4-6 weeks before the actual printing commences.

Once the printing process is initiated, please note that it will encompass a duration of approximately 14 weeks. Subsequent to the completion of the game's production, an additional 5-6 weeks will be allocated for sea freight. This segment encompasses the transportation of the games to their respective destinations.

Taking all factors into consideration, we anticipate that the game's delivery will be realized in the early months of the upcoming year. Your patience and enthusiasm are greatly appreciated as we diligently work to ensure a top-notch final product for your enjoyment.

Approaching the Finish Line

Your patience has been truly appreciated as we navigate through this concluding phase. I'd like to extend my sincere apologies once more for the unforeseen delay, a circumstance that didn't sit well with me either. Nevertheless, I am elated to convey that a multitude of enhancements have been meticulously implemented, rendering the delay a decision that, in hindsight, appears poised to yield substantial benefits. This assertion is particularly aligned with my initial goals for Cytress, which I previously shared with you. Rest assured, this extended timeline is dedicated to ensuring that I can present a game that I am genuinely proud of, a sentiment that holds paramount importance.

Thank you for your continued support and understanding as we endeavor to create a final product that lives up to our shared aspirations.

Best regards,

Sean and the Cytress team

Important Kickstarter Update: Rulebook Iteration Nearly Complete - Printing Prep Underway!
9 months ago – Tue, Jun 20, 2023 at 04:46:33 AM

Dear Cyberpunks,

We are excited to provide you with a long-awaited update on our game Cytress! We appreciate your patience during this process, and we are thrilled to inform you that we are now in the final stages of rulebook iteration.

It's been a while since our last update, and for good reason. We have been meticulously dedicating our time and efforts to fine-tuning the rulebook to ensure it meets our high standards. We are pleased to announce that we are now down to our last 15-20 hours of rulebook iteration. This signifies that once this phase is complete, we can proceed directly to the printing stage.

So, what have we been working on? The focus has been on the crucial aspect of the print files. We have been meticulously arranging and optimizing these files to ensure that they meet the highest standards of print quality. Our goal is to deliver a game that not only captures the essence of the game but also showcases the captivating visuals and artwork in their truest form.

Here are some of the updates we have been implementing:

1. Typography Improvements: We have carefully reviewed and adjusted the typography throughout the game to ensure consistent and legible text. By refining font choices, sizes, and line spacing, we are enhancing the overall readability of the text.

2. Finessing Icons: Our team has been meticulously fine-tuning the icons used in the game. We understand the importance of intuitive visuals, and we want to make sure that every icon accurately represents its corresponding game mechanic, offering a seamless gameplay experience.

3. Print File Optimization: We have been rearranging our print files to achieve the highest quality outcome. By optimizing image resolutions, color profiles, and bleed settings, we are ensuring that the graphics and illustrations are displayed precisely, minimizing any potential print-related issues.

4. Streamlined Layout: We are reevaluating the overall layout of the rulebook to create a smoother and more intuitive reading experience. Clear sectioning and labeling, as well as visual cues such as color coding or borders, will help you easily navigate through different rule sections.

5. Graphic Enhancements: Our team is dedicated to enhancing any graphics, illustrations, or diagrams used in the rulebook. We want to ensure that they are visually appealing, informative, and accurately depict the game components and actions involved.

6. Proofreading and Editing: We are conducting a thorough proofreading and editing process to eliminate any typos, grammatical errors, or inconsistencies in the text. Our aim is to provide you with a rulebook that is error-free and polished.

7. Cross-Referencing: To enhance usability, we are implementing a system of cross-referencing within the rulebook. This will allow you to easily navigate between different sections, ensuring that you can quickly find the information you need.

8. Playtesting Revisions: We have been incorporating valuable feedback from playtesting sessions, making necessary revisions to the rulebook. By addressing any balancing issues, clarifying rules, and providing additional examples, we aim to provide you with a rulebook that is comprehensive and accurately reflects the latest version of the game.

9. Component Lists and Setup Guides: We are including comprehensive lists of game components, their descriptions, and clear setup instructions. These additions will help you quickly familiarize yourself with the game and set it up efficiently for a seamless gaming experience.

10. Visual Examples and Player Aid: We understand the importance of visual aids in understanding complex concepts. To assist you, we are incorporating visual examples, diagrams, and player aids in the rulebook. These visual elements will provide quick references and help clarify any intricate gameplay mechanics.

These updates are just a glimpse of the extensive work we are putting into refining the rulebook. We believe that these improvements will significantly enhance your overall gaming experience, making it more enjoyable and accessible to both new and seasoned players.

We want to express our sincere gratitude for your support throughout this journey. Your enthusiasm and encouragement have been invaluable to us. We will continue to keep you informed about our progress and any further updates.

As always, please feel free to reach out to us with any questions or suggestions you may have. Together, we are creating something truly special.

Thank you once again for your unwavering support.

Warmest regards,

Sean and the Cytress Team

Cytress Development Updates: Stratos Tower and End Game Scoring Mechanisms
10 months ago – Wed, May 10, 2023 at 01:52:20 AM

Hey Cyberpunks,

We are thrilled to update you on the progress of our game since partnering with Good Games Publishing. We have made significant improvements and are getting close to print.

Today, we want to show you the specifics and the huge changes we have made since our debut on Kickstarter. Firstly, we would like to express our gratitude for your patience. We have made major changes to Stratos, Underbelly, and Skills, and we have seen awesome results. We promise you will love what we have created and are excited to share the incredible transformations that have taken place in the game.

The neon-soaked skyline of Stratos loomed above, the hub of the latest craze in the cybernetic world. The city was a sprawling metropolis, with towering buildings and busy streets teeming with those seeking their fortunes in the high-tech underworld. From the depths of the city, to the highest spires, Stratos was a place where anything could happen.

Our publishers saw the potential of the Stratos tower and suggested enhancing the gameplay around it, leading to where we are today. Previously, Stratos was merely a means of scoring points, with players wondering whether to build a 1, 2, or 3-level tower. However, we wanted to avoid the top level being the most popular choice and didn't want to force players to build all three levels. So, we made changes to the game to ensure that each level offers unique bonuses and that players have to strategize to determine which levels to prioritize.

As a result, our scoring system has become more intense and thought-provoking. We've transitioned from a standard scoring system that lacked nuance to a complex puzzle that rewards strategic planning. Even for experienced players of resource management or engine building games, such as Wingspan, Terraforming Mars, or Viticulture, they may generate the most resources, but victory is not guaranteed.

Level 3, despite being the most expensive at 18 supplies, offers a huge 15 prestige bonus. The unique feature of this level is the set collection mechanic, where players need to perform sets of different types of missions to maximize their points. This level requires a bit more strategy and planning, but can yield big rewards if executed correctly.

For instance, rather than simply building tubes to score points, you must now strategically choose which levels to prioritize for bonuses, resulting in a more tactical gameplay experience. Opting for higher levels will require sacrificing resources from other levels, so you must carefully consider if you have enough crews and control to handle the cost. Alternatively, lower levels may be easier to obtain, but the increased competition could lead to losing it all in the end.

The end game scoring mechanisms have been thoughtfully designed to accommodate different play styles, making it accessible and enjoyable for all types of players. Level 3 is ideal for players who enjoy set collection and for completionists who want to maximize their points. Level 2 caters to players who want to execute a specific strategy and go all in on one lifepath. Lastly, Level 1 is perfect for players who enjoy taking risks and want to go in early on the tubes to see how their numbers play out in the end.

Level 2, costing 11 supplies and giving a solid 10 prestige bonus, offers a stacking mechanic that allows players to perform multiple missions with the same faction in the underbelly. This can be a powerful way to build up points quickly, but also requires careful consideration to ensure the best procurement of missions for maximum benefit.

Each level caters to different player types, allowing you to choose your preferred lifepath and strategy. Whether you excel at engine builders, area control, or quick-witted tactical plays, there is a path for you. The game is no longer about finding a single way to win, as each level presents a unique puzzle for players to solve. For example, players may opt to ascend to level 2 if they believe it will yield more points, rather than simply aiming for the highest level. This approach transforms the end game scoring into a more nuanced and rewarding experience.

Winning all three levels is not easy, but with strategic planning, it's doable. The real masters in the game are working out which of the levels you want to win at and how you can score from those, and engineering everything else to be in the right place and have the right numbers at the right time. Of course, the challenge also depends on the players you play against, as their strategies and playstyles will affect your own gameplay decisions.

Finally, Level 1 is the cheapest at just 5 supplies and offers a 5 prestige bonus. The unique aspect of this level is the number of crews players can place on each stratos square. This level offers a simpler gameplay experience, but still requires players to carefully balance their choices to score the most points.

Full disclosure, since we have made these changes to enhance the gameplay around Stratos tower, there has been a trickling flow-on effect to all the other components, including the design styles, components, and the rewriting of the rulebook. We understand that it has taken longer than anticipated, but our publishers wanted to ensure that these changes were not just a quick fix but rather something that had to go through rigorous testing, which we have done heaps of. All the designs and components are now complete, and the only remaining tasks are finalizing the rulebook and redoing the back of the box cover to incorporate the new changes. By disclosing all the nitty-gritty information and providing more context for the changes, we hope to convey why it has taken much longer than anticipated, and we sincerely appreciate your understanding. 

Lastly, we want to reassure you that we are committed to delivering a high-quality game, and we will not compromise on that. We understand that you have placed your trust in us, and we take that responsibility seriously. We want to deliver a game that you will love and enjoy playing for years to come. We appreciate your continued support and patience as we work towards finalizing the game. Please note that the finalization of the rulebook typically takes 3-4  weeks and goes through 20-30 iterations during that timeframe. We are currently a third of the way through this process and will be ready for our sample print run once it's complete. We will keep you updated on the progress and any further developments. We look forward to sharing this exciting game with you soon.

Thank you again for your support.

Best regards,

Sean and the Cytress Team.

Updates on Hacking, Contracts, Content and MORE!
11 months ago – Sun, Mar 26, 2023 at 11:14:52 PM

Greetings fellow friends, family and cyberpunks! 

It's great to be back with you all. Today, I want to share with you a personal story of something that happened to me recently. Watch this!

So, about a month ago, I got hacked. Yeah, I know. It's not something you want to hear, especially when you're living in a world that's straight out of a cyberpunk novel. But it happened, and it kept me busy and away from my usual routine for a while.

I won't go into the technical details, but suffice it to say that they got access to my facebook, changed my profile picture, name, and the email that was used to login. It was like something out of a William Gibson novel. But Facebook was able to stop all hacker activities in time by blocking the account shortly after, and the good news is: The Cytress facebook group and page is still alive and well, and my media team still have full access to them. 

Updated Group Banner



As for my personal account, it's still in the process of being retrieved, but I'm staying positive and hopeful that it will be resolved soon. In the meantime, I'm available to be contacted through my personal [email protected] email for any enquiries.

But here's the thing: even in the midst of all that chaos, we have been working behind the scenes to get the game to print. You see, I'm now part of a larger publishing team that's developing a crowdfunded game, in fact here’s the contract that we have. We've been working on it for months, and we're getting close to the print date. So rest assured we will be delivering the game to you no matter what it takes.

Publishing Contract

As I mentioned in my previous video below, we're in the process of working with a publisher to bring our crowdfunded game to a wider audience. And while it's been an exciting opportunity for us, it's also come with some delays. Working with a publisher means that there are more parties involved in the decision-making process, and it can take some time to iron out all the details and make sure everyone is on the same page.

The publishers are aware of our timeline and are doing their best to fit everything into the schedule. And trust me, I've been following up with them to remind them that we don't want to keep our fans waiting. We understand that you've been eagerly anticipating the release of our game, and we're grateful for your patience and support. I will give you a more concrete date once I hear back from them.

So, to find a way to balance everything. I spent a lot of time working with my team on social media channels, making content to keep you updated on Cytress and that everyone is aware of what was going on. It’s been a stressful time, but I'm proud to say that we didn't let it get in the way of our goal. It's been a cyberpunk adventure, to say the least.

So, to all of you out there who might be going through a tough time, remember this: no matter what happens, keep moving forward. Keep working towards your goals, and don't let anything or anyone stop you. You got this.

Thanks for reading, guys. Stay safe, and I'll see you in the next update.

Sean


P.S. I will have a print date for you in the next update!!

P.P.S I want to share with you the history of Cytress, not the design process  of how it was made, but rather the story of the cyberpunk city itself.  While I know most of you are eager to dive into the gameplay, the story  is worth reading. It will demonstrate that Cytress offers more than just  gameplay and has depth to it. I am passionate about this aspect of the  game and that's why I'm sharing it with you now.

The History of Cytress

Cytress was the brainchild of John Forsyth, a man who was considered ahead of his time by his peers because of his uncanny knack in discovering hidden technologies from the lesser-known factions throughout the planet. John Forsyth was a Netprowler scholar in cybertech engineering, sustainable energy, and cyberspace who had a desire to discover and build new things.

After learning from a rogue Rover that a certain desert town known as Fortress was home to several Rover clans that were using some unknown crystal to power their train/caravan-like vehicles known as Falaks, John Forsyth traveled there to learn more about this crystal. Upon arrival, he quickly assimilated himself and learned more of the ways of the Rovers and the strange crystal known as Glow because of its unnatural ability to illuminate when placed inside an energy extractor to determine its capacity. As he dedicated his time and energy in studying Glow, it took him days before he realized that this had the capacity to power an entire civilization. 

With this in mind, he began to rebuild the town with the help from some of his Netprowler team who considered John Forsyth as their expedition leader. While he received help from some of the Rover clans, particularly when it comes to access to the Glow, he, along with his fellow Netprowlers, remained outsiders on an unknown and extremely dangerous territory.

Nevertheless, the Rover clans that provided them with what they needed as massive strip of land had a bountiful amount of Glow underneath it. The Rovers also provided John Forsyth and his team with whatever they needed, like food, water, and protection from the harsh elements. 

While the Netprowlers conducted their studies on the Glow, they also traded  with the Rovers in an effort to build trust and rapport as a token of gratitude towards the nomadic faction. Among the things that the Netprowlers traded with were tech materials, such as weapons and other surplus spare parts. They also offered repair services for malfunctioning ancient tech. And this was the reason how John Forsyth came across the Rovers’ behemoth vehicles that skirted across Fortress’ massive desert wasteland, the Falak. 

Though most of the Rover clans had never given him access inside their Falaks because they viewed him as an outsider, all of this changed on the day a large group of Hooligangs attacked the town by surprise. Without hesitation, John Forsyth and his followers were quick to act and defended the place to the astonishment of the Rovers. For this reason, the Rovers cosidered John Forsyth and his followers as heroes. Their actions helped improve the Rovers’ attitude toward the Netprowlers and they became more open and hospitable toward the outsiders. 

Because of that incident, John Forsyth was able to realize his dream of establishing a technologically innovative haven. So, after receiving aid from numerous investors from the Netprowlers, John Forsyth began construction of Cytress in 2080.

Being a Netprowler himself, John Forsyth was fascinated by new innovative technologies that could help further their capabilities for industrial and military applications. Through John Forsyth, the Netprowler gained access to the Glow. As a result, the Netprowlers were the first faction (apart from the Rovers) to realize the potential of Glow and to harness its energy. As a result, his fellow Netprowlers called him the Tech Herald. 

On the other hand, another faction that vied for domination over Fortress, the Corpocrats, wanted to become part of the venture. However, John Forsyth was compelled to deny their assistance after learning that there would be a conflict of interest since several of the Rover clans were not on the best of terms with the Corpocrats. This was even though the Corpocrats were the main ruling faction in the Fortress. However, since they had no knowledge of Glow’s potentials, John Forsyth decided he would be better off if he sided with the Netprowlers instead, because they had shared goals and interests. This incident would result in a bitter rivalry between the Corpocrats and the two other factions, the Netprowlers and the Rovers. 

It did not take long before John Forsyth transformed what was once the town of Fortress into a technologically-oriented, hive-fortress that was powered by Glow. However, as weeks passed, the city gradually turned into a mining pit as the Netprowlers continued to extract Glow from underneath it. Since John Forsyth wanted to establish an egalitarian society within Cytress, he decided to name the districts based on their cardinal directions, i.e., Upper/Central/Lower Northwest, etc.)

As the mining process went on, the downtown and central districts were cleaned up within a few months. Over the next few years, the most devastated parts of the city were pacified, razed, and rebuilt. This marked the beginning of Netprowler reign.

Over the course of seven years, the Netprowlers managed to build the city from scratch, turning it from a playground for gangs and corporations into a massive trading center in the middle of the desert. They were able to calm the heat of the desert, almost kick out the Corpocrats, rebuild the city without government aid, avoid war with the Rovers, and turn Fortress back into a safe haven for all. Their achievements were impressive for such a young metropolis.

TO BE CONTINUED

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Last Chance

We want to remind you that there's still time to pre-order our product if you missed out on our crowdfunding campaign. In addition, if you like the story you just read, they are still available and we want to make sure that you have the chance to take advantage of them. These upgrades include additional lore content, deeper character development, and expanded storylines. 

If you're interested in adding these upgrades to your pre-order, please click here

Backerkit Store

Cytress Gets a Makeover: Partnership Revisions Brings New Improvements
about 1 year ago – Tue, Jan 31, 2023 at 12:01:44 AM

Hey Cyberpunks!

It's that time of the month again! As most of you are aware, we began working with a publisher a few weeks ago, and some changes were proposed that helped improve the game's quality. There have been some revisions to our game since our partnership, but rest assured that it is still the same Cytress we know and love. Here's a sneak peak at the Graphic Novel and Origin Novel.

Top: Graphic Novel, Bottom: Cytress Novel

There were only three main bits that had to go through the 'partnership revision,' which I'm still waiting on (since they are handling these changes) , and they are: the rulebook revision (they wanted certain images to explain the rules to a broader audience), graphical updates (they wanted icons and text to be bigger), and box revision (they wanted the back of box to be more retail friendly). 

Top: Rulebook, Mid: Visual Update, Bottom: Box Update

I'm as excited as you are to see these updates, and I can't wait for this to move on to the next stage of printing. In the meantime, we'll keep an eye on our discord, and if anyone wants to play the game, there's an updated version on the TTS mod, and we're also on facebook and twitter, which is now back on schedule and running. Aside from that, we hope you are well rested for the new year. Cytress is in for a fantastic year!

Left: Updated Stratos Tower, Right: Updated Resource Board

I understand that many of you are eagerly awaiting the release of the  game and I want you to know that I share the same excitement. I know it can  be frustrating to have to wait, but I want to strive my best to deliver  the best game possible. It's important to me that you have the best  experience possible. I assure you that we're working hard to get  everything ready as soon as we can, and I truly appreciate your patience  and understanding during this time. I promise it will be worth the  wait!

Thanks,

Sean