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Update #5

On Upcoming Updates, Communication Clarity and the Importance of Concept Art

3 comments

What's happening and what's coming?

Hey all!

So we're putting together another cool video for you to launch sometime next week. This one is going to focus more on the personal development side of the game. Learning new skills, training etc.

We are also spending a lot of time and effort trying to read internet reaction to our campaign and to figure out what we need to do to get it the attention it deserves. We're still emailing, tweeting and sharing the campaign link to people and we're still getting the odd response back, but nowhere near the rate we were anticipating.

If any of you lovely people out there are members of the games press, please get in touch and let us know what it was about our project that you found newsworthy when we first announced and what you think is lacking now. We have spent extreme amounts of effort to provide ample detail with regards to what we're trying to put together in our videos and project page. So it's really disheartening to see campaigns with a single image in place of a pitch video getting enough press coverage to reach twice what we're looking to raise in just a couple of days.

We really hope we can give this Kickstarter the fighting chance it deserves and for that to happen the project needs to reach enough people. So we'd really appreciate your help with that be that in the form of coverage, blogging, sharing and tweeting or simply feedback on our campaign and promotion strategy.

Is Kickstarter a glorified pre-order platform or marketing tool when it comes to games?

One of our favourite gaming news sites, Rock Paper Shotgun, covered Kung Fu Superstar in a recent post. We were delighted and flattered to see that, as we love RPS, although some of the coverage was a bit negative. In particular the RPS guys seemed to have been a bit confused as to what exactly we were looking to Kickstart through this campaign and they expressed their confusion through this article in a way that made some of their readers think we were trying to "pull a fast one" on people. We sent an email to RPS explaining that we didn't sacrifice our job security and stability because of some masterplan to rid people of their money on Kickstarter.

We sacrificed our financial stability because we have a dream.

A dream to build a fighting game franchise that aims to not just entertain people but also improve them through the positive benefits of practicing martial arts.

This is what we're looking to Kickstart through this campaign.

The RPS article seemed to confuse what we are looking to Kickstart with what we are offering as rewards. It went on to suggest that we should have had less text on our project page and should have titled our campaign Kung Fu Superstar: Origin (i.e. the work-in-progress codename we have given to the game one gets at the £15 reward tier).

We explained to RPS (over email) that actually KFS: Origin is just one of the rewards that we offer our backers. At the ADEPT (£40) tier you get both that and our next game (plus all sorts of other goodies). At the SWORDMASTER level you get a pair of wooden swords. Should we have named our campaign Kung Fu Superstar: Wooden Swords?

No, of course we shouldn't. Because we are not looking to kickstart rewards. We are looking to kickstart Kung Fu Superstar, the innovative fighting game franchise. And depending on a backer's contribution towards helping us realise that dream they get one game, two games, all our games ever, wooden swords, kung fu uniforms, trips to our studio and all sorts of other cool things in return.

We believe it's a fair, transparent and, we thought, well communicated system. However, the RPS article did make us realise that maybe we should clarify this even further.

So hopefuly this will benefit some of our backers (or backers to be) who were unsure about all this. If there's still confusion, please get in touch and we promise we will get back to you asap with answers to your questions, like we've been doing so far through this campaign (I am sure there's many of you out there who can attest to this).

Set your sights high

I was going to close this update with another cool image from the game and whilst browsing through our screenshots catalogue, I came across this really nice composition that someone had put together:

It made me think of the importance of concept art in the games development process and how it is the discipline that effectively kicks everything off (at least in the visual side of things).

It also made me think about the difference being comfortable with setting your sights high makes in the end result.

When Matt (the super talented concept artist who drew the top image) and I were discussing the Temple level, I was afraid my vision for it was a bit too ambitious. Then Matt came back with that amazing piece of concept art and when I saw it I was firstly blown away and secondly convinced that the design was ambitious :)

As you can see though from the bottom image our amazingly talented team of artists did a pretty good job of capturing the vision. If Matt or I thought "you know what? we don't have the resources or time to pull this off" we wouldn't have ended up with a level that the whole team is proud to have created.

As long as you aim high and have confidence in yourself and the people around you, no goal is too ambitious.

Till next time!

Kostas

Comments

    1. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Kostas on November 11, 2012

      Thanks Andrew! Like I said we did think we were pretty clear about what we are trying to build here, but RPS gave us a good reason to clarify even further so that's cool. Thank you for your supportive words too, we really appreciate it.

      Corellianrogue, thank you for continuously promoting the project! You rock!

    2. Missing_small

      Creator Andrew Casey on November 10, 2012

      It's a shame that RPS didn't spot that you were kickstarting a franchise. I read through the whole kickstarter page (devouring it, so excited!) and it became clear that this is going to be a great gaming dynasty.
      Stay strong guys, this idea is incredible and from what you've shown so far your execution is going to be just as awesome!

    3. Avatar-body_skype1.small

      Creator Corellianrogue on November 10, 2012

      Can't wait for the newest video, I'll post a new article when it comes out. Also it's funny you mentioned pre-ordering as although you're right that Kickstarter isn't "a glorified pre-order platform" I do think that angle can be a positive thing. For example since I like the look of this game and I'm 99% sure I would buy it anyway when it comes out since there isn't really anything like it out there I decided that it's worth essentially pre-ordering it very early by going for the "Adept" pledge. If other people who really want this game and often pre-order their games anyway would do the same thing then all it would take is 5000 "pre-orders" to meet your goal.

      I think I'll put those last 2 sentences in the next KFS article I do actually. :D (I did already briefly point out in a previous article that the Adept reward is basically pre-ordering both games for the price of 1 but I think it's worth pointing out to people how few "pre-orders" are actually needed for the goal to be met. Really high profile games can get well over 5000 pre-orders in just their first week of being available for pre-order for example.)

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