A producer’s take on life at 22cans
As we are edging ever closer to the final two days of our campaign we will be ramping up our updates. This is the first update of today where we look at the production at 22cans.
A producer’s take on life at 22cans
22cans was set up back in March 2012 by a handful of industry veterans and in that short time, a team, still only in its infancy has been through the motions of a very strong forming stage. This is normal for any team, big or small, as a group of talented strangers become united towards a common goal: to make great games!
Our founders needed to ensure that they had the right disciplines set up and then fill them with amazing talent at different experience levels. Then they had to decide on a structure that would ultimately drive the culture we were looking for. It was important to have this outlined from the start in order to understand the best production processes that would work. At 22cans we benefit greatly from strong leadership by Peter and other industry veterans, but we devised a flat organisational structure of individuals, which is what underpins our friendly, family, ‘in this together’ culture. This is something we felt would lose traction in a complex structure, similar to ones we have worked in before.
In order to ensure that the work is completed to time, and of the highest quality, there are many production processes. Theories and methods need to be tested, tweaked and implemented so that the team remains high performing and professional. Here at 22cans we have already been through a handful of scenario’s that lend a huge advantage to the production of GODUS in 2013, and we constantly assess and learn from our experiences. Curiosity was something that was unique in development but not unique in terms of delivery to the market and there were processes the team went through like any app development, including iteration, scrumming, bug fixing, testing, updating and submissions. While the team continues to update and maintain Curiosity, just over 8 weeks ago it was time for attention to be put on Kickstarting Godus.
When I came to producing Godus for Kickstarter, this was something that was very new to the UK. Sam Van Tilburgh, Chief Discovery Officer, and I, spent 4 weeks researching the Kickstarter platform and planning how the campaign would run. We needed to be sure that everything we had planned was achievable during full production next year and more importantly, was what our fans wanted. We presented the idea to the team and made an agreement, as a team, that this was something we wanted to do together. We all agreed that laying the development process and 22cans team bare to the world was something exciting and challenging. The idea of making a game in the open and embracing what Kickstarter stands for, is something which we are really looking forward to. Here we are with a just a few days to go and that excitement is higher than ever.
Myself (left) with Peter (centre) and Sam (right) at the start of the Kickstarter campaign.
The campaign to this point has been a mixture of outward facing tasks and internal development. I have been organising the team between both producing a prototype of Godus and managing the campaign with Sam. A normal day at 22cans is packed full of production process and methods that ensure we deliver to the timescales set. Let me give you a look of what a typical day looks like for a producer at 22cans (see the image below). Busy huh?
The production set-up is typical of most studios; I set out high level milestones, which are then cut into sprints. At the end of each sprint is a goal for the team. In order to reach our goal sometimes we need to be re-active and add tasks to the baseline schedule. If this is case then I work with individuals on solutions that make sense for the projects interests. This is something that becomes easier as a producer with experience.
I feel extremely honoured to be part of such a talented team that can achieve so much in such short sprints. I believe that if we are granted the opportunity to develop Godus in front of a Kickstarter audience this is ground-breaking for the games industry. One of the challenges that faces the industry beyond the gaming community is people understanding how games are made and the seriousness of the roles we undertake as games developers. This would be a chance to show how a great game is made and what we do to make it happen.
Upon (hopefully) successful funding I look forward to sharing with our backers, the production cycles, key dates and production decisions made for Godus. There will be lots of shiny graphs and spread sheets, but it’s all part of the process as we start development on Godus.
Merry Christmas to you all and I hope to be speaking to you again in 2013,
Best, Jemma Harris. Producer – 22cans
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BACKER- You get access to our exclusive backer forums. You also get the heartfelt thanks from the team at 22cans.Estimated delivery:
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STUDENT - You'll receive a beta key to test GODUS with us and will also get access to our exclusive student forums where you'll get feedback on your game design and any career advice you might need. This is perfect for any students who are currently studying game design and/or development. Everyone will also get access to an online masterclass session and we will look at some of our tools together The university with the highest number of students who pledged will also receive a guest lecture by Peter. This tier is only for students and you'll need to confirm your university after our campaign is finished but it can also be used as an add-on for any other reward tier.Estimated delivery:
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FOLLOWER - You get one digital downloadable copy of GODUS plus access to our exclusive backer forums. You also get the heartfelt thanks from the team at 22cans.Estimated delivery:
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SUPPORTER - You get one digital downloadable copy of GODUS plus access to the GODUS beta version (playable but unfinished) and also round-the-clock access to the 22cans development webcam once project GODUS is in full production (may be mildly and ironically NSFW). Plus an in-game achievement – a trophy only Kickstarters will ever receive, streaming access to the Making of GODUS documentaries and video updates and also a PDF of the GODUS design document. Plus everything a BACKER gets.Estimated delivery:
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BELIEVER - You get one digital downloadable copy of GODUS plus access to the GODUS beta version (playable but unfinished) and also round-the-clock access to the 22cans development webcam once project GODUS is in full production (may be mildly and ironically NSFW). Plus an in-game achievement – a trophy only Kickstarters will ever receive, streaming access to the Making of GODUS documentaries and video updates and also a PDF of the GODUS design document. Plus everything a BACKER gets.Estimated delivery:
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BENEFACTOR - You get an additional digital downloadable copy of GODUS plus access to the GODUS beta version (playable but unfinished) and your name will appear on the '22cans website roll call of thanks', you will be granted your own in-game pet or familiar (a mystical animal who’s unique to you) in GODUS. Plus everything else a SUPPORTER gets and @22cans will follow you avidly on Twitter.Estimated delivery:
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PATRON - You get TWO digital downloadable copies of GODUS plus TWO access keys to the beta version (playable but unfinished) and your name will appear on the '22cans website roll call of thanks', you will be granted TWO of your own in-game pet or familiar (a mystical animal who’s unique to you) in GODUS. Plus everything else a SUPPORTER gets and @22cans will follow you avidly on Twitter. All tiers above PATRON will also receive this additional copy and beta key.Estimated delivery:
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ACOLYTE - You get all the previous rewards (BENEFACTOR, SUPPORTER and BACKER), plus a third digital copy of the game (this TIER makes a good HOLIDAY SEASON GODUS GIFT, see details on our page). Your name will also appear on a Curiosity layer for the duration of a layer, assuming the experiment hasn’t concluded.Estimated delivery:
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ASSOCIATE - You get one special digital edition of GODUS, which includes a personalised title screen for your copy of GODUS and a non-digital but exclusive 22cans GODUS teeshirt. It also comes with an exclusive Kickstarter level and you get an unlock code for an exclusive GODUS god power. Plus you get everything an ACOLYTE gets (your special edition replaces the other three normal editions from the previous rewards).Estimated delivery:Add £10 to ship outside the UK
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PARTNER - You get two special digital GODUS editions. Your followers in your Homeworld will carve a statue of your image. You also get access to GODUS Alpha where you can download and test the game with the 22cans team (not onsite). You also get an in-game credit – your name will appear for all to see. Finally, your teeshirt will be signed by anyone or everyone at 22cans, including Peter Molyneux.Estimated delivery:Add £10 to ship outside the UK
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VALKYRIE - You get the three special digital GODUS editions that a PARTNER gets, with an exclusive Godus Wishing Well, inspired by the Temple in Dungeon Keeper, for your Homeworld. Sacrificing the right items will gain you bonuses! Plus you also get a GODUS design/art book signed by anyone or everyone at 22cans. And you get everything else a PARTNER gets. (Please note that any tier above VALKYRIE will also get the Wishing Well).Estimated delivery:Add £10 to ship outside the UK
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ELEMENTAL - You get the three special digital GODUS editions that a PARTNER gets plus a GODUS design/art book signed by anyone or everyone at 22cans, including Peter Molyneux. You also get a visually stunning and beautifully-framed print of GODUS artwork. This classy limited edition is numbered. Plus you get everything else a PARTNER gets.Estimated delivery:Add £10 to ship outside the UK
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IMMORTAL - You get four special digital GODUS editions (includes those a PARTNER gets), plus an in-game character will be named to whatever you wish (within reason), it will display a unique personality and look which you create with the team’s help. This character will appear in every person's Homeworld. You also get a unique physical figurine of your character. Worldwide shipping is included! Plus you get everything a PARTNER gets.Estimated delivery:
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DEITY - You get a real, exclusive piece of hand engraved GODUS Titanium jewellery, hand made and beset with one sparkling real diamond. Diamonds are forever (this TIER makes a lovely HOLIDAY SEASON GODUS GIFT, see details on our page). Plus you can help design GODUS and can name an in-game power to anything you wish (subject to legal and moral restrictions, of course). Plus you get everything a PARTNER gets.Estimated delivery:
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IDOL - You get everything a DEITY gets, plus a monthly Skype design meeting with the team during the development of Godus, a 22cans design workshop in Guildford, England with Peter Molyneux, who will help craft your design ideas. You’ll also be treated to a lively design session over dinner at Peter Molyneux’s house. Accommodation and flights are not included.Estimated delivery:
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GOD OF GODS - You’ll receive a once-in-a-lifetime chance to visit E3; The Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles in June 2013. You’ve arrive there as the guest of honour of Peter Molyneux and the 22cans team. You’ll be given a coveted VIP pass and will, should you wish, agree to be interviewed with Peter for G4 TV. E3 is the world’s leading electronics show. Chances like this to attend as a VIP with developers of the calibre of 22cans are of course extremely rare. Flights and accommodation are included. Plus you also get everything a DEITY gets (excluding the jewellery).Estimated delivery:
- (30 days)