2,462 backers, $97,331 pledged, 4 days to go, standing at $42 more needed per backer. We’re going to address this directly in a bit, so stick around.
PROJECT BABY (already second one!)
First, some wonderful news! Our backer Christian Klass is a journalist on Golem.de - he’s helped us out immensely in reaching out to our friends in Germany. As of Saturday, he’s also the proud father of Constantin Klass, our second production baby. Congratulations!
OPEN FOR BUSINESS
Our store page is open! Visit us at http://store.digitilus.com and let us know what you think. This is a huge deal - we can now accept funding outside of Kickstarter, and that means we can reach out to gamers who can’t use Amazon Payments for whatever reason (we work with PayPal there now).
At the moment our store “products” are identical to the Kickstarter reward tiers, to avoid confusion (***except the CAPTAIN tier there. We replaced the poster in this tier, cause we found it's too costy. But everything remains untouched here on Kickstarter till the end of campaign! ***). Later on we’ll break them out into a more traditional store structure, and eventually (when we hit our closed beta, 2013 and beyond) prices on the game will increase - the Kickstarter price points have always been early bird specials!
The flipside of funding outside Kickstarter is, well, it’s outside Kickstarter. Anything we bring in through our storefront won’t count towards the 200k goal. Don’t get us wrong, we’d prefer to succeed through Kickstarter. Among other reasons, Kickstarter and Amazon together take a smaller cut than PayPal does for our store - so please don’t migrate your pledge just yet.
Next step: getting our forum up and running!
WORST CASE SCENARIO
As worst case scenarios go, this is pretty low-key; no earthquakes, no kidnappings, no deadly baking accidents. But we know you’re wondering: what happens if we don’t get funded?
RIGHT NOW: DON'T GIVE UP HOPE!
There are many success stories on Kickstarter where a project’s funding has rocketed up in the last few days, what we call the “Christmas miracle” effect. As a wise man once said, it ain’t over ‘til it’s over, so stick around.
IN GENERAL: Skyjacker existed before Kickstarter, and Skyjacker will continue to exist - we’re going to be finding alternative ways to fund the development cycle so we can bring you our dream. SKYJACKER WILL RISE.
IN DETAIL: On July 24th, IF we haven’t reached our goal, we’ll start asking for our backers to migrate their pledges to the storefront. That’s funding we can use immediately to start making progress.
PLAN B: We won’t be relaunching a new 200k campaign. While we do have more brand awareness now, we’ll also be “losing” pledges to the store, making it less likely we’d hit that finish line. Our tentative plan is to break out the development cycle into smaller stages.
An example: our first project could be to bring all our ships into an environment similar to the STARSHIP DISASSEMBLY app (for new backers - check our Update #5, if you didn't get a try), accompanied by setting details and developer commentary. We’d be giving our backers something for their money (who there prayed for Skyjacker in OUYA? Your dreams are not such unreal now :)) ), we’d be making progress (all the ships have to be moved into Unity anyway), we’d be able to sell the end product, and we’d be able to set a much lower goal since we’re not trying to headbutt the whole wall down. Then the next project might be to get those ships into a multiplayer arena, which would be a new game, a new app, a new set of functions developed, a new chunk of funding.
With this approach we’d reach that same 200k one step at a time, without asking so much so soon, and producing more content to drum up interest as we go. Furthermore, this will let us keep our presence in gaming press, continue reporting about our new steps and results.And second - our community will keep growing, while new backers will join us at every new round and stage. We’ll keep you in the loop about this as we flesh out the details, as we may pursue this development model anyway even if we hit our goal - it’s better than trying to get everything done at once.
SKYJACKER IN THE PRESS
Hardcoregamer - Our thanks to backer James, who surprised us out of left field with a heartfelt recommendation and a good question - why DON’T you love Skyjacker? :(
Spacesector - A grim, but accurate assessment of a number of Kickstarters. They bring up the data points of 21% funding on our first pass, 47% funding on our second pass - and while we hope for a Christmas miracle, we can also follow a trendline. Hence our Plan B!
RockPaperShotgun - “...proves it can still happen if you can rally backers to let gaming sites know, get some decent attention, even get a tweet out of a big name twitterer. Because the game looks great.” Then he takes us to task for our front page, which we’ve since cleaned up. Never let it be said we aren’t listening!
KICKING IT FORWARD
Fall of Eternity is an example of good intentions clashing with Kickstarter rules. The founder wanted to donate their personal take after completion to charity, and Kickstarter ended up blacklisting them (removed them from browser/search listings) because this runs against their “no charity” rules. So now they’re on indiegogo for a second, charity-driven run. It’s a unique RPG/FPS hybrid with a “backwards” levelling system, where you start powerful and must sacrifice powers and strength as you progress, and not only is a portion of the proceeds going to charity - the final game is going to be released for free. Please show Fall of Eternity some love!
OuterEdge is a good-looking open-world game, somewhat like Minecraft meets Centipede. Like ourselves, it has an alpha demo available for download and plenty of gameplay videos to show what the game is all about. With hours left on the clock and only 13% of their 20k goal met, they’re not likely to succeed, but keep them on your radar for the future - they show great promise.