Max Mercer is a unique story Contact that any player can find during the game. In Frontiers, he would be a vignette Contact, about equal to a "Kickstarter Faction NPC" but Max Mercer is part of the overall game universe, not a Kickstarter exclusive.
The Digital Reward Code enables a checkbox that guarantees you meet him at the beginning of any game. The "Cyber-Tactician Ally" will function as a new game complication, like the "Horizon Cypher" Digital Reward, and is a Kickstarter Exclusive.
The strategy we're employing for Max Mercer lets him be a first class part of the world and game story. All of the game's players can enjoy Max Mercer but he also works as an fun exclusive Reward.