I guess you could say there is an update section on the campaign page but I wanted to provide updates on the blog as well in case people didn’t want to check their Kickstarter profile but wanted to follow along with the progress of the campaign.
First off, thank you to everyone that has supported the campaign. If that support was a pledge or a signal boost, the amount of encouragement we’ve received over the last 4 days (depending on when you read this) has been humbling and amazing. It really has been heart warming to see, hear and feel how much people want this game to fund as much as we do. There have been a few moments where things had slowed down and it was another supporter reaching out with encouragement that got me out of my own funk and focus on what needed to be done next.
Lessons when running a campaign
Speaking of which, there have been some early lessons from the campaign. Before I hit those lessons I want to mention. None of these lessons are new compared to what we hear from others who have run a campaign. The reason I want to share lessons you have probably already read about is to drive home the point that there is no substitute for experience. That experience can apply to making a prototype and getting it in front testers or starting a campaign. Anyway…..the lessons. Start telling people about your game AS SOON AS POSSIBLE!!!!!!! When you go live there should be two things that people say to you. “We are really glad to finally see this live and we are happy to support you” and “I’ve really enjoyed following along with the progress of the game, its great to see it live”. There should be no one in your circle of people that is surprised you are live on Kickstarter. I say this not for the reason that everyone in your circle should pledge, thats not for everyone. But everyone in your circle will want to encourage and support your efforts. You never know who they know that they think will like the game. And there will be times when you need people giving you a boost.
Speaking of which, lesson number 2. Take a break during the campaign. When I started researching how to run a campaign I ran into a lot of “Kickstarter is another job and you need to tend to the campaign 24/7”. I don’t doubt that a campaign takes up a lot of your time, what I worry about is your metal state. There will be times when there are no pledges for hours and coming off the high of the first 24 hours and lots of people providing encouragement that is a tough switch to make. I had to stop looking at my phone and tell myself to take a nap. The other lesson I learned the is closely related to taking a break is, when things slow down, only worry about the next pledge. It is not healthy to look at the funding goal and think “how the heck am I going get there?” Break it up into one pledge at a time and the micro goals of breaking the next 100s place will help you focus on the job at hand.
Finally, be flexible with your plan. When we launched the campaign, we did not want to offer a pledge level where people could purchase more than one game at a time. We did not want people to think they could get to games and have other colors or be able to play with more players. Then we started having success with the Galactic Magnate pledge level and it was obvious to us that there was an appetite for higher value pledge levels. We then had a discussion about what a multi copy pledge level would do for the campaign. We reach a conclusion and we changed our theory so we added a new pledge level.
A New Pledge Level!!!!!!
Speaking of which, we have a new Pledge level. The Souvenir from Mars pledge will be for two copies of the base game. The conclusion we reached was that when people play the game with friends or family, they will get hooked. We wanted to give original backers a way to evangelize the game in the form of a gift or having an extra copy for friends and family that liked the game. That made a lot of sense to us as it is important to consider the future health of the game and assuming we fund, we want to continue to spread the word on the awesome that is Mars 4:45. We also want to help our existing fans tell future fans about the game so creating this pledge made sense to us on a lot of levels.
Thats it for now, a really good first 4 days and we hope to carry this momentum onto the main funding goal and then on to the stretch goal. Thank again for all your support in all it’s forms!