Funded! This project was successfully funded on December 2.

Update #5

You asked for PR, so we got you PR

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I’d say good afternoon, but time is relative, and we haven’t figured out how to calculate time in The Mandate just yet!

This update is going to be about one very important thing: PR and marketing. We are going to be as honest, open, and candid as possible with you, our backers and community. A quick note about two pieces of content before we start: The Character Prologue Creator is ready, and is being launched next week. Brush off your boots and prepare for court martial! Secondly, we have added a presentation on the first four factions that will be featured in The Mandate. You can read about them here.

Many of you are looking at Kicktraq on a daily basis, and panicking. That’s understandable, but things need to be taken in context. Kickstarter attention is notably lower on the weekends. If you look at Kicktraq today, you’ll probably be worried because it will indicate that we are just going to fall below $480,000. If you looked at it a couple of days ago, it would have said anything between $550,000 and $600,000. During peak times, Kicktraq will show great results, and during off-peak times, it will show upsetting results. (Although I’m sure you’re not monitoring it as closely as our producer!)

Kicktraq is a great tool, but it isn’t something we base our decisions off of, although we do very much understand that good Kicktraq statistics are important to the community and prospective backers.

If this were a 30 day campaign, we’d be on t-21 days, with 72k already in the bank. We have 50 days of hard work ahead of us, but we have the right teams working to get this done, and a great, mature community to back us up!

What are we doing on the PR front?

Before you jump the gun, we are not saying that this is an easy ride. We’re working 24 hours a day, non stop, monitoring the situation. A lot of you have started saying “look, guys, you need to get the PR to back up the concept right now.” Although we haven’t talked about this yet, we have been looking into our options since day 1 of the campaign.

In short, it isn’t much use spending resources on press release distribution for day 1 of the campaign. The press have Kickstarter apathy. They aren’t interested in a project that hasn’t got any funding, or any backers. When you are asking for $500,000, if there isn’t any indication that anyone is interested, the press will not discuss your project regardless of who sends out the press release.

One week later, we absolutely have the statistics, community, concept, content, ideas, people, and smarts to start pushing the PR card hard. Now is the time to launch the PR campaign, and that’s why last week was spent in meetings with various top PR companies. Every conversation we had was about you, and how any PR and marketing strategy will affect you. “Do you understand our demographic?” we repeated regularly.

Who we picked, and why

Remember, Perihelion Interactive is comprised of developers in gainful employment. As a development house, we’re not indie because we have to be. We’re indie because that’s the way we want to be. The publication route is a very real possibility for us, but we do not want compromise. We want to make the game you guys want, because we know it’s a dream shared by many.

So we need a PR company who knows how to handle big ideas, and an organized team of passionate developers. We don’t want to adopt a corporate voice, we simply want our voice amplified. That’s exactly what we’ve done.

Starting from Tuesday, we are working with Dead Good Media (but we’re still in talks with other people), a UK based PR company who specializes in some of the more niche titles. We’ve been grinding their agent through and through; testing his knowledge on games like Mount & Blade (a game that some PR companies had never even heard of!), and ensuring he knows the right sites to hit, and the right regions.

Some PR companies would point us towards the US demographic, demanding changes in our approach to make the game more appealing to the US. We simply said “we are not making a game for a nation, we’re making a game for a generation.”

It has been a rather difficult road finding the right PR guys for the job, but Dead Good Media know we’re a Euro-centric developer, and they’ve got a good handle on the European and US markets. We want US players, and we love hearing from US players, but we really don’t think altering the game to maximise exposure in US markets is the right creative decision, when the European markets have so warmly greeted us with open arms. “Are you alienating the US markets?!” some PR people reading this might cry. No, we’re simply saying: “If you want to play The Mandate, come and play it. Welcome to the community.” It’s an RPG. It has influences from major American television shows. We do not feel as though US gamers will feel alienated.

However, some of the lore and historical references in The Mandate predate the founding of the US, or draws inspiration from another continent… Rather that is incorrect, Alaska was part of Imperial Russia until 1867 - two years after the end of the American Civil War.

Of course, we want The Mandate to sell, but we want it to sell on its merits, without compromising on either vision or depth.

Wrapping it all up

Backers, we appreciate your support, and we sincerely mean that. However, we can assure you that we’re organized enough to get us to the $500,000 we’re asking for. Week one was a bit of a test, and everything we’ve achieved so far, we’ve achieved with barely any media attention. We’re gunning for that media attention now. If a single article on The Escapist can get us $6,000, then what about all the other sites? There’s a lake of untapped potential out there, and that’s what we’re heading towards. We are in safe hands. You are in safe hands.

Remain cautiously optimistic, and spread the world. The Mandate is getting made.  

"Perseverance, secret of all triumphs. " - Victor Hugo

Devil Khan, John McHugh, and 29 more people like this update.

Comments

    1. Parihelion_interactive_logo_smallest.small

      Creator Perihelion Interactive LLC on October 15, 2013

      @Ian Gale: Press Coverage links in the forums will still be appreciated. The PR team may not catch all articles and so feel free to keep posting. Thanks in advance.

    2. Mandate.medium.small

      Creator Ian Gale on October 15, 2013

      So is the Company for the PR is finalize yet? And do you still need Press Coverage links in the forums? It seems rather redundant since the PR team should cover that.

    3. Cton.small

      Creator Helena - Ordo Draconum on October 15, 2013

      I actually like the fact that the US isn't one of the main factions - makes it a bit different from the dozens of other US-centric space games out there.

      Regarding the $25 tier: I suggest you simply make a new one (you can have more than one at once) and mention in the tier description that everyone on the old tier will get the same rewards. Maybe the people in the old tier will eventually move over to the new one, and you'll be able to close it.

    4. Parihelion_interactive_logo_smallest.small

      Creator Perihelion Interactive LLC on October 14, 2013

      @Travis: The Mandate will feature extensive character customization. We will cover this in a later update.

    5. Travis'_red_sky_time.small

      Creator Travis Gaby on October 14, 2013

      I think people worry that they can't get color of skin, hair, race, ect, if you will for role playing sake. So I guess people want thier Captian (player) look like them or someone they know since Captian (representative them since player control captian from thier thought) So they might think Russia in game, meaning they can't design thier background and look to match they desire of design...afterall, it's based of role playing.

    6. Missing_small

      Creator Kelvin Baillie on October 14, 2013

      @ Michael Fischer. Why would you be bothered? This is a game based 1500 years in the future, things change. I am also for one tired of all the 'Pro-America' games out there that pander to the American public. I feel this limits the potential to games as it restricts game designers creative freedom and I am glad that The Mandate is not following suit and making the best game they can come up with, rather than the best game geared towards America they can make.

      Want a game with America in it? Theres plenty, throw a dart blindfolded and you will most likely find one. I say let the developers make the game they want to and see a new experience!

    7. Avatar.small

      Creator Kerbal Spaceman on October 13, 2013

      As a US citizen for 61 years, I also don't need a US faction either. It's a game 1500 years into the future. In 1500 years, a lot can change in the geo-political strata. Heck, economists and globalists will tell you that the Pax Americanus is in its twilight years; that China is the next power to dominate the globe economically and politically.

    8. Missing_small

      Creator ben brown on October 13, 2013

      As a us citizen - not too worried about a US faction - please make sure the English translations are good - then no worries.However - have you all looked at using some of the sources that RedProjekt uses - large Euro fan base there. Also - not sure if you all have any connections into Chris Roberts and Space citizen - if you could get him to make make a plug for you you would easily make up your funding (think they are at 22 mil)

    9. Missing_small

      Creator Michael Fischer on October 13, 2013

      I am from the United States and I would be a bit bothered if there is not a United States faction(its ok if in an altered form) I dont think in this early stage of the game it would be a big deal to add this faction. If you think its not going to cost you fans to leave the United States I think there is a disconnect.

    10. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator James on October 13, 2013

      Personally, I feel this is a wonderful project, and hope some PR will get many more backers onboard.

    11. Parihelion_interactive_logo_smallest.small

      Creator Perihelion Interactive LLC on October 12, 2013

      @Joshua: we have not revealed too much about the backstory yet. Only glimpses of it are in the introduction to the four factions (its just one paragraph from a much bigger document). That being said, feel free to hop over to forum.mandategame.com and share your ideas!

    12. 2011-12-20%2023-24-15.744_yay.small

      Creator Joshua Peachy on October 12, 2013

      You could just add Space America factions (formed from mixes of North and South American colony ships, and possibly from other continents), but if you did that then I have to also encourage Space Africa, and Space Asia mixes. Africa on average is going to hit a roughly West German (1980's) level of living around mid century, and by the end of the century it could be the next India or China. I wouldn't actually encourage the addition of these factions for the sake of gaining more people from those areas, but to make things more diverse.

      I couldn't stop myself from constantly reading the Europa faction as the Europe faction, and the description fits right into that. Although, it easily reads like Space France; even without reading the art references, the character looks very French, the same way the Dassault Rafale has the look of, "...that's probably French." Not a bad thing in any case. You also have Space England, Space Germany, and obviously Space Russia. Regardless, it seems you're not lifting too straight from the sources, so it should be great.

      I think the major thing you have to explain is why the colony ships left the solar system completely, instead of colonizing Earth's orbit, the asteroid belt, the Moon, and so on. It stands to reason the solar system was already quite colonized, as based on the ability of Earth bound nations to build interstellar ships from captured asteroids. It implies a well developed, heavy space industry and space technologies. That easily makes the reason the ships left the Sol system the fact that it was already widely populated, likely with established independent governments.

      That leads into the option of having a Sol faction of those left behind. The Sol faction could be built from the colonized solar system, and those rescued from Earth who weren't taken on the ships. It makes for a great source of resentment.

    13. 883659762.small

      Creator Zombra on October 12, 2013

      Worst case scenario, if those 42 people demand their $5 back ... you can just give them their $5 back. :)

    14. Cccccc.small

      Creator Justin L Smith on October 12, 2013

      It is way too early to determine anything yet about pledge levels. Though I don't search Kickstarter a lot for projects to support. I know it takes time for word to spread about any business or project. I personally think getting those few people to change their $25 pledge down to $20 has not much of a chance. Good luck with that though. Just make a tier with the smallest increment higher Kickstarter allows and move on. You would be surprised at the number of people who would not take advantage of a bargain because it would take an extra few minutes of their time. I have worked retail long enough to know just how true that is.

    15. Avatar.small

      Creator Kerbal Spaceman on October 12, 2013

      I don't think anybody was "panicking" about the Kicktraq numbers. Really don't expect PI to make any kind of decisions off those number this early in the campaign. Rather, the numbers are an interesting tracking device to quickly determine funding trends for those us who are numbers-oriented. Being an engineer by trade and disposition, I like to see numbers.

    16. Unnamed.small

      Creator Joshua Johnson on October 12, 2013

      100% support you, so many companies want to appeal to the broadest audience they can (hence the massive amount of first person shooters). the reason I back so many kickstarter projects is the new and innovative ideas they bring into the gaming industry...that and i really want to play the games of course heh

    17. Parihelion_interactive_logo_smallest.small

      Creator Perihelion Interactive LLC on October 12, 2013

      @Travis: Sadly we cannot get the overview of the $25 backers until Kickstarter releases the lists after the campaign is over. If they do not start switching to $20 or $30 in a few days time, we may send an email to Kickstarter and ask if it is possible for Kickstarter to somehow reach out to them or automatically downgrade them to $20.

    18. Travis'_red_sky_time.small

      Creator Travis Gaby on October 12, 2013

      Could you track or find a email to those who pledge $25 about this problem? I might got a feeling they might pledge but don't read all that, they might dump thier money in this and forgot about it...I'm not sure how kickstarter work or let you. This game is my first time to pledge, I'm new to this kickstarter for while.

    19. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Thomas Weatherell on October 12, 2013

      This game and this story has been something i've wanted to see for as long as i can remember. I am glad to hear you are unwilling to compromise your artistic vision for the possibility of appealing to 'a wider demographic' - That is what is so wrong with the Publisher model and this is what the crowdfunding is all about stopping!

    20. Parihelion_interactive_logo_smallest.small

      Creator Perihelion Interactive LLC on October 12, 2013

      @Tempered - That was genuinely lovely to read. We've shown the whole development team. Very humble, reasoned response. Thank you for being part of the team.

      @Ian - During week one, we decided to share content with you guys, but by week two we've learned that you don't just want content... you want strategy, direction, and to know the logistics of everything. That's great! And from this update forward, it's you guys, us, and Dead Good Media. We'll keep you involved every step of the way.

    21. Missing_small

      Creator Tempered on October 12, 2013

      I'm an American. I applaud your approach and wish that other developers would follow in your footsteps. The U.S. has been starving for cultural diversity in their entertainment and society. I am really looking forward to this story being told.

    22. Mandate.medium.small

      Creator Ian Gale on October 12, 2013

      Oh you could told us earlier about testing, could save lots of stress from initial panic. (Producer was already doomed to stress sadly)

    23. 388462_3961124764801_759276254_n.small

      Creator Vojta Růžek on October 12, 2013

      God help us all.

    24. 388462_3961124764801_759276254_n.small

      Creator Vojta Růžek on October 12, 2013

      This is what I needed to hear.

    25. Parihelion_interactive_logo_smallest.small

      Creator Perihelion Interactive LLC on October 12, 2013

      @Zombra we're still waiting for feedback on the $30 tier reward so please head to forum.mandategame.com to voice your view on the final reward.

    26. Parihelion_interactive_logo_smallest.small

      Creator Perihelion Interactive LLC on October 12, 2013

      @Zombra - We're working on that this second. The $30 tier will have beta access. We actually can't close down the $25 tier until people begin to migrate. Right now, we'd like people to migrate to $20 (they will be getting the same rewards, at a cheaper price) or to $30 when we put that up. We just didn't want people to feel as though they were being forced to INCREASE their pledge, so we asked them to DECREASE it prior to loading the $30 tier.

    27. 883659762.small

      Creator Zombra on October 12, 2013

      Sorry if this is off topic, but I'm still astonished that you guys closed down the $25 tier without putting up a new one. Low-mid tiers fund projects. Please get a $25 or $30 up as soon as possible.

    28. Travis'_red_sky_time.small

      Creator Travis Gaby on October 12, 2013

      While there is lot of space game, it's unique to create captian player desire and playing command, fight along with crew while command and fight ship vs ship, I know not game like that other than star trek bridge commander (for some reason, I do not enjoy that game due slowness and very hard)

    29. Mos.small

      Creator Cooper Lee on October 12, 2013

      The Mandate, is the power that kept me browse KS multiple times a day!

    30. Fry_coffee2.small

      Creator Simon Coudé on October 12, 2013

      If you keep working this hard on the project, then I am optimistic you will hit your target. If the projections are to be believed, you only need to gain a little more momentum to end up confortably on the "very likely" side!

    31. Curious_urban_explorer_cat.small

      Creator J.L. on October 12, 2013

      This game is to my knowledge unique, so I do hope to see it funded in the end! Over the top even, heh!

      Naturally it is a more comfortable ride once the goal is closer, or even achieved -- no doubt anyone who cares about this project is nervous about it falling short. We all just have to do our best to spread the word, and together we can make it happen! (c:

    32. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Lucas Seuren on October 12, 2013

      As part of the press myself, I'm going to have to disagree with the statement that press have Kickstarter apathy. Of course, it's impossible to cover everything. But I see websites big and small cover a lot of games that have only just been announced on KS, or follow them through the campaign.

      True, it's a lot less than a major project, but coverage of any indie project is minimal. Too much information and not enough people. One of my colleagues is well connected, which is good in a way, but it also means that we get an insane amount of review codes, we can't cover it all. And that's just for games that are on Steam. So we pick the games that we think are most interesting, most unique, most original.

      So if you have a good story, press will pay attention to you even if you are "just" on Kickstarter.

    33. Missing_small

      Creator Neo on October 12, 2013

      Thanks! I wish this project get funded because I love space games!

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