But more than just asking people to give us money, we figure it’s a good idea to tell you what we plan to do with the money we raise. We’ve got a lot of plans — not just things we hope or wish will happen — but goals and benchmarks we’ve legitimately sat down, thought about and mapped out.
We’re planners. Kind of meticulous, let’s get every detail set, have a Plan A, Plan B, Plan C .. all the way through Plan W planners. We’ve thought through how we can expand short-term, long-term, with an additional $20,000, with an additional $2 million. (If you’re interested in giving us $2 million, PLEASE contact us now and let’s talk!)
We don’t want to hit you with it all at once, so for today, he’s a look at our plans for the immediate (and relatively near) future.
Improve what we’ve got
We are looking to make our current version of the game flawless. In our beta testing, we are constantly finding ways to make our game better. Some of these fixes are technical. Other improvements involve tailoring our game to incorporate the feedback we’ve gotten from students and teachers.
Add more levels
Our current version of the game has seven completed levels. Our final market version will have 15-20 levels. Financing will go toward paying our designers, developers, content consultants and programmers to create those additional levels.
We are looking to raise $20,000 this spring through a crowdsourced fundraising campaign (Kickstarter). If we meet that goal by March 2013, it will enable us to complete the first 10 levels of the game by September 2013.
More funding will enable us to expand our pilot classrooms. As mentioned above, we have tested the game at one reservation school and are in the process of testing at second site. Our first study showed that students using our game had significant improved math scores than the students in the control group. We are currently conducting further testing and research. More money would help us get the game in more classrooms and help us pay more researchers to analyze the data more quickly.
We currently have 12 laptop computers that we bring into the classrooms as part of our beta testing. More funding would enable us to purchase more laptops, allowing us to get the game in more classrooms, speeding up the game development/refinement and effectiveness assessment processes.
We are currently looking at a December 2014 commercialization date. This date is when we expect to make “Spirit Lake: The Game” available for purchase by schools and/or school districts. For every additional $20,000 we receive beyond the initial crowdsourced $20,000, we can accelerate our production cycle by about a month.
We’ve received a fair bit of interest in our game so far, largely by word of mouth. However, we also realize that we’re going to need more than some good reviews to get our games into classrooms around the country. Additional funding would allow us to begin marketing the game, in advance of our commercialization date. We know that we can’t just launch the game and hope schools line up to purchase licenses. Our game has already generated some buzz, but we want to turn that into a roar.