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As the captain of a Mandate starship, you lead a crew through the galaxy where they will adapt and grow as they fight alongside you.
As the captain of a Mandate starship, you lead a crew through the galaxy where they will adapt and grow as they fight alongside you.
As the captain of a Mandate starship, you lead a crew through the galaxy where they will adapt and grow as they fight alongside you.
16,408 backers pledged $701,010 to help bring this project to life.



Hey backers,

This update contains some very important information so even if you do not usually read the updates please do read the Mandatory section below which is quite short and concerns all backers.

PS! There will be another update end of this week or early next week

Mandatory section

We are putting the final touches on our new community site and also setting up the new forums. The community site will be used for both in-depth updates, community chat (and sometimes scheduled developer chats!) as well as the new forums. For now only backers will be allowed to register (this may change later).

Next week we will do a mass import of all 17000 backers and create users as well as setup your posting rights (based on pledge tiers and digital add-ons) and assign Knighthood badges etc. It is important that you check BackerKit and verify that your email is correct so we can send you the login information for the new community site. 

We are sending out a reminder to all backers who have not yet logged into BackerKit so please check your spam folders if you never received a BackerKit invite. Also, if you plan to upgrade your current pledge tier or wish to purchase digital add-ons, doing it before 1st of April would be a good idea, since that is the time your card will be charged.

If you deleted your BackerKit invite go here:

Kickstarter backers: You can buy digital add-ons directly inside BackerKit. If you wish to upgrade your pledge tier you must first buy the equivalent sum in digital add-ons and then send us a message via Kickstarter so we can manually modify your pledge level by deleting your add-ons and changing your pledge tier (BackerKit does not support upgrading a pledge level automatically).

Paypal backers: If you wish to buy digital add-ons or upgrade your pledge level then visit our Paypal store and pick the variable Paypal donation button at the top (click picture below for direct link). This will take you to a new window where you can specify the total donation amount. Once your donation is confirmed, send us a message via Kickstarter or contact BackerKit. Tell us if you want credits for digital add-ons or to upgrade to a higher pledge tier or a combination. 

That concludes the mandatory section of this update. Thank you for your attention.

Next Garret, our art director, wanted to take some time to discuss style differences between factions and also how we approach the armour design process.

Hi backers, Garret here. The art team has been quite busy lately as we are experimenting with with different visual styles and doing tests to figure out what works and what doesn't. The best place for us to start is by setting up a bad guy vs good guy scenario. So here we've made the clear choice of Pirates vs Mandate simply because of the dichotomy between these two factions: The Mandate is efficient and rigid, where the Pirates are makeshift and animalistic. The way I like to approach visually designing the separate game elements is to put myself in the place of an engineer responsible for creating the ships, weapons and armor for each faction. What’s the psychology of each faction? What are their priorities and philosophies? For example, here are some excerpts from the style guide for two of our factions:

 “The Grand fleet is built by the Mandate to serve the military needs of their forces across all occupied systems. The fleet has a ridged style made from interlocking parts that were produced in mass to allow each sector admiral to adapt their forces based on the specific defense requirements of a given sector. As a result the ships may take on an ugly aesthetic as they are designed for function rather than flare. The Grand fleet ships would be considered the standard on how ships are constructed in the galaxy. So, although ships from other factions don't look identical, they do expand on the modular design approach first established with the Grand Fleet designs.”

 “The Pirate faction is an unorganized group that operates from all the dark corners of the galaxy. They are driven by fear, desperation, psychopathy, and motivated by greed. Their ships are built by galactic black market designers, and they focus on closing distance with their prey, making the kill whichever way they can. It's this or starve. The pirate fleet can steal some designs from other factions but are most notable for the menacing designs of the forecastle section. Pirates will either recycle prize ships or occasionally buy custom ship which focus on speed and maximizing the firepower of the forward batteries. When engaged in boarding operations and fighting in cramped corridors, pirates tend to prefer versatile weapons with a secondary melee capability.”

So, taking a similar approach for armors there's much more to consider than just whether or not it looks cool. During the Kickstarter campaign we were focusing on the visuals and less on the functional aspects. But now we are doing silhouette and shape tests to figure out what works best from an isometric perspective. We want flexibility and variation so we needed to rethink some of our initial designs.

Above you can see the Mandate light armor concept. It’s based on the design we showed during the Kickstarter campaign, but the new design trims off some of the fluff and focuses on the player experience. The art team could spend lots of time adding all sorts of wonderful details but the players will never be able to see these from the distance and camera angle we will use in The Mandate. Actually, too much details could result in muddy or “too busy” looking armors, so we are focusing more on the shape and big lines. For this reason I’ve set out to really define what the important visual identifiers will be between different factions and also between different “protection levels” (light, medium, heavy etc). This approach has worked well so far.

 One of our key goals with the armors (besides still looking cool) is to help the players easily identify the different units under their command as well as enemy threats just by eyeballing the scene. It’s pointless if the light and medium armors look good if you can't quickly find what you’re looking for on the screen.

When designing the pirate concepts below, I consider the psychology of black market engineers and what resources they have at their disposal. This makes scavenged and reused parts  important considerations in the design.

Visual identifiers and faction psychology are important when developing a cohesive design language to add clarity as well as focus on what the eye most effectively responds to. Are X, Y, Z, visual identifiers effective at distinguishing one figure from another? If yes then how can we exploit these to enhance visual identification? If no, then should we remove or relegate these visual identifier to an exclusive faction style instead?


That’s it from me, I thought I would round off with a render from the Mandate light armor based on one of the first concepts in this update. What are some of your favorite sketches? Feel free to share and discuss in the comments.

Your friends at Perihelion Interactive


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    1. Perihelion Interactive LLC Creator on April 1, 2014

      @Chris: Yes it should still work. Poke us if there are any problems.

    2. Chris Earl on April 1, 2014

      I never got an original invite email, nor any other reminder from backerkit until 25 minutes ago and now it's telling me the cutoff time has passed. Hopefuflly it works anyway.

    3. Amenomade on March 28, 2014

      Cool, thx for the answer.
      And thanks for the artist work, they are doing an amazing job.

    4. Perihelion Interactive LLC Creator on March 27, 2014

      @Amenomade: Initially these were included at no additional cost for backers from $200 and above. We had some mini-stretch goals which allowed backers at $100 and later $50 to also get these at no extra cost. Since you are at or above $50 these are unavailable in BackerKit (to avoid backers paying for something they are already getting). We also have one more stretch goal here, if we hit $750,000 then everybody who backed at $25 or above will also get these at no extra cost (so $25, $30, $40 etc). We are taking into account the TOTAL AMOUNT pledged (not individual tiers).

    5. Helena on March 27, 2014

      It's always interesting to get an insight into the design process. It's a shame the concept art armour had to be simplified, but I understand why you did it, and the end result looks pretty good anyway. I think scumbunny has a point about the lights, but if they only glow like that in the dark, I guess that wouldn't be so bad.

    6. Amenomade on March 27, 2014

      Concerning the backerkit : I've the 150 tier, on this page, Hight resolutions model & texture are at the the bottom for $15, where is it on backerkit ? because i'm lower than $200 and would love to add them.

    7. Missing avatar

      Jabberwok on March 27, 2014

      I really like the pirate armor concepts, especially the various helmets. The Mandate medium armor looks a lot like a Halo Spartan to me. As far as the ships, the Mandate destroyer and merchantman are my favorites. The destroyer looks like an angular submarine, and the boxy merchantman has a very unique silhouette which is appealingly suitable to its class. I like the pirate ship designs, but I would like to see more variation there, and also, they look surprisingly sensible for pirates.

      Personally, I'm not concerned about lights on armor being unrealistic, and that sort of thing, as they'll help the player identify them, as you mentioned in the update. And I like that the light armor looks very light and uniform-like, as these might be, say, security guards on a friendly ship, and not soldiers in a battlefield foxhole. Besides, who knows what advances in cloth technology have occurred between now and this future...

    8. Missing avatar

      scumbunny on March 27, 2014

      First of all, thanks for yet another fascinating update. It's great getting an inside view of how game elements are put together.

      I do have a few comments regarding the armor concept you showed:
      1. Glowy blue bits on armor. It's like the modern day equivalent of science fiction shoulder pads. All those lights make no sense for a military uniform. A glowing blue triangle on your chest just makes you a really nice target.

      2. The all around design for both the light and heavy suits looks like a cloth uniform with bits of armor plates over it, and a helmet. Even modern day soldiers (see: Americans in Iraq) wear better armor than that. I would imagine that a future armor would cover the entire body including the joints and the neck (like, say, Master Chief's armor), while a heavy armor would probably be a big chunky powered thing a la Starship Troopers. That will also not have glowy things.
      I mean, seriously.

    9. Missing avatar

      Jan Panek on March 27, 2014

      Oh, stupid me. Pls ignore my previous post, I have recieved the email on Decemner 14th and set up my account the same day. I just forgot about it :)

    10. Missing avatar

      Jan Panek on March 27, 2014

      I have not recieved any invitation to BackerKit. How do I log in?

    11. alcaray on March 27, 2014

      Thank you. It is done. (I think it's done anyway. There was no feedback at the end of the process to say it was complete. Was there supposed to be feedback?)

    12. Adam Taylor on March 27, 2014

      Honestly I'd love to see pirate ships that are similar to the designs from EVE Online for the Minmatar race. Essentially ships that look like they've been put together with scrap and duct tape. :p

    13. Perihelion Interactive LLC Creator on March 26, 2014

      @All: The questions have been disabled to resolve some problems

    14. Missing avatar

      Andrew Duryea on March 26, 2014

      To check your backerkit email:
      1. login to backerkit through the link (you may have to "recover password" first).
      2. click on "Your Account" at the top of the (desktop version) page
      3. If you have previously created a password for the site you should see your email.

      If have not previously "created an account" it will prompt you to create an account password, again by sending you an e-mail. Once that is done, return to step 1 and repeat.

      Please note, this is what I did but it seems much, much dumber than it should have been (seriously, I had to recover the account twice?) I offer this up solely with the intent to help, I hope it does so.

    15. Missing avatar

      Thomas King on March 26, 2014

      @Franklin I'm having the same issue.

    16. Missing avatar

      Franklin Hamilton
      on March 26, 2014

      I can't actually answer any of the questions. Any attempts to pull up the survey just immediately dump me to the add-ons page. Am I missing up something?

    17. Jon Uzel on March 26, 2014

      So I have a question for you.
      "Next week we will do a mass import of all 17000 backers and create users as well as setup your posting rights (based on pledge tiers and digital add-ons) and assign Knighthood badges etc. It is important that you check BackerKit and verify that your email is correct so we can send you the login information for the new community site. "
      First, I canceled my stand alone pledge during the KS when a friend of mine and I decided to get more bang for our buck, and backed at $150. It's bee stated that the extra copies come with the same rewards as the Cossack captain level, but I've not sen this exactly well documented. In fact, I had so little faith in getting a proper update on stuff I backed at the $1 level so I'd at least get updates (and rightly so as I've seen no requests for any mail or id's associated with the additional copies.) How are rewards that are associated with those going to be tracked, will that all just be funneled through the primary backer, and I'll need to go to him for all the rewards second hand?

    18. Zombra on March 26, 2014

      I cannot complete the survey. When I click "Edit Your Answers" it just takes me to the add-on page. :(

    19. alcaray on March 26, 2014

      Sorry guys, but I won't electronically LARP with you. Please remove the stupid questionnaire as a requirement for registration. Else I will not register. If not registering is a showstopper, then please give me my $30 back.

    20. Alek Pushka on March 26, 2014

      Solid work, but I wish you'd push the overall silhouette variety.
      Get some bold and interesting shapes going there, fellas.

    21. Missing avatar

      Remi Maloney on March 26, 2014

      @Perihelion, any generic idea as to when we will have the chance to create our Captain/Officers?

    22. Rand Chua TL on March 26, 2014

      We have 5000 AWOL Captain for mandate! That is sad news. :p

    23. Missing avatar

      Paul on March 26, 2014

      Look out guys I think you meant to say flair not flare :)

    24. Jason Garner on March 26, 2014

      Actually I thought I went quite nicely on him only finding him guilty under article two and not guilty on the other charges :-)

    25. Jason Garner on March 26, 2014

      Come on guys the courtmarshall questions on the backerkit site are the ones related to the trial that we were all talking about during the Kickstarter campaign regarding the guy who signed up for the biggest pledge tier and then backed out at the last moment don't tell me everyone has forgotten about it already?

      Personally the questions on backerkit totally absorbed me and I spent almost an hour deliberating my judgement on him.

    26. Riggo on March 26, 2014

      For example, I have backed 81 projects and know many backers that make that look like nothing. Chasing down and monitoring 80 forums is a little overwhelming.

    27. Riggo on March 26, 2014

      @Perihelion... I think the point Andrew was trying to make is that all major updates should be here. Those of us that have backed lots of KS projects do not want 50+ forums to sign up for. We backed on KS and that should be the source of major information.

    28. Perihelion Interactive LLC Creator on March 26, 2014

      @Andrew: This is one of the goals with the new community site, to both host chat, forums and news updates in one place.
      @Brian: Did you try to insert your email at ?

    29. Missing avatar

      Andrew Ference on March 26, 2014

      @ Perihelion
      It was last week. Looking through old updates i see many references to you guys planning to use backerkit, but no invites/logins before last week.

      Please tell me that there will be a single news/announcement thread on the forums that i can subscribe to to get only important updates.
      I've backed a heap of different kickstarter campaigns and i'm getting tired of having to chase info across multiple different sources to figure out what's going on. Having all the big announcements (and only big announcements) in A single place would make things much easier!

    30. Missing avatar

      Brian on March 26, 2014

      I'm a Kickstarter backer and never received a BackerKit email. I've checked my GMail and spam folder and nada. So how do I get one?

    31. Missing avatar

      Espen Solheim on March 26, 2014

      BackerKit seems slightly broken.

      But at least this survey is a bit easier to bite into now. The first time the survey was sent out I set it aside for later. I can understand other people also complaining about the RP stuff. Next time, at least have some "out of character" information from the get go so people understand what they are answering.

      But regarding BackerKit. I clicked the link, answered the questions, clicked for add-ons, it timed out, I refreshed the page again, it went to add-ons, I added none, and then it locked my survey, but it says I haven't answered anything... Ohwell... I really does not bother me, but maybe look into it...

    32. Ryan Percival
      on March 26, 2014

      Ummm what are you wanting me to do with those questions exactly? I have no understanding of what I'm answering or why I would do so - how do these affect my pledge?

    33. Stavros Tsiakalos on March 26, 2014

      @David: there is nothing else in the survey other than the RP stuff. As they use backerkit and there are no physical rewards, everything is taken care of by linking to backerkit.

    34. Stavros Tsiakalos on March 26, 2014

      I got busy with real life and kinda lost sight of this project. Do we still need to finish the first design stage by Monday? :)

    35. David desJardins
      on March 26, 2014

      I thought the survey was going to ask me some actual questions about my pledge. Instead it started out with a bunch of nonsense role-playing questions that I've got no interest in. I gave up. If you want people to answer your survey, then you should lead with the actual information you need and make the rest optional.

    36. Perihelion Interactive LLC Creator on March 26, 2014

      @Hofi: Just checked BackerKit now, your invite is being processed and should arrive soon to your gmail. Since we initiated an invite to the 5000 backers who have not answered the survey, your invite may be pending and in the queue. If you have not received an invite by Friday, send us a private message via Kickstarter and we will sort it out. Also, if you are happy with using your current gmail account for login purposes, then you do not need to change anything.

    37. Hofi on March 26, 2014

      seems that in have an account there but no idea what my password is and its not sending me any reset links :/

    38. Perihelion Interactive LLC Creator on March 26, 2014

      @Andrew: When did you get this email, in December or just now? (We sent invites to 5000 backers who never logged in). The email that went out today should look different.

    39. Missing avatar

      Andrew Ference on March 26, 2014

      Found my backerkit email.
      I know now why i didn't respond to it, it just said:

      "Hello [email address]!

      Someone has requested to recover your account or create a new password for your BackerKit for The Mandate, which you can do thru the link below.

      Recover my account

      If you didn't request this, please ignore this email. Your password won't update until you access the link above and create a new one.


      The BackerKit team"

      Seeing as i had never heard of backerkit, i ignored it. Perhaps a little more information in the email would have been a good idea :)

    40. Perihelion Interactive LLC Creator on March 26, 2014

      @All: The post has been updated to include the link. There are still quite a few backers who never checked out BackerKit so we are resending invites to them
      @Richard: Thanks!

    41. Missing avatar

      Remi Maloney on March 26, 2014


    42. Richard McKeon on March 26, 2014

      The URL is (taken from an earlier update).

    43. Konstantin Koptev on March 26, 2014

      How, exactly, do I check BackerKit and verify my email is correct?

    44. Margot on March 26, 2014

      Hey, just letting you know I didn't get a BackerKit invite (I checked my spam folder, etc.). I don't know if that's just me or not, though.

    45. Missing avatar

      Jeff Croft on March 26, 2014

      Agree with Torben, I haven't seen anything about Backerkit before this.

    46. Torben S. on March 26, 2014

      "It is important that you check BackerKit and verify that your email is correct"

      how about a link to BackerKit? It's hard to check something without knowing where it is.