Manitoba companies land $300,000 in new project support



New Media Manitoba is happy to announce that Zenfri and Project Whitecard have received almost $300k in new CMF Marketing funding for their projects Clandestine: Anomaly  and Starlite Astronaut Rescue!

We spoke to both Corey King of ZenFri and Don Fraser of Project Whitecard about their games and how they will use these funds to market their games

Starlite: Astronaut Rescue 

Starlite is due for release in 4th Quarter 2014 and has been in production for over 18 months. 

Starlite is set in an imagined near future Space Mission including Mars where the player constructs & improves a habitat, crafts tools, builds vehicles and uses advanced robots. Alone, or with the help of crewmates, players explore the solar system, striving to survive, prosper and advance their character.  Rather than the run-of-the-mill point and shoot game, Starlite contains hands-on science inquiry and problem-solving in mathematics, physics and engineering. The game awards official Mozilla Open Badges for the successful completion of missions.  Starlite gives players a chance to experience the future of space exploration using real NASA-­inspired science and engineering. Players will find the authentic vision of the future to be an awesome experience.

This funding will allow us to mount a player-centric marketing campaign. Starlight will benefit from a focussed marketing strategy, deeply involving players, visual and social tactics to build a robust, vibrant community.

Why did you choose to develop the game in Manitoba?

We love living in Manitoba, and there is a very substantial network of government and other organizations that support our industry.

Have you collaborated with any other Manitoba companies or freelancers and how did they contribute to the game?

We have partnered with many local companies and individuals on a number of aspects of this and other games.  There is a very talented interactive community here.

How has New Media Manitoba helped you and your company over the years?

New media Manitoba has been a source of support and communication over the years, binding and fostering the New Media community


Clandestine: Anomaly

Clandestine: Anomaly is a first-of-its-kind narrative-driven, tower-defense game that uses  location-based Augmented Reality to turn the player’s neighbourhood into a sci-fi epic. The Player is unexpectedly thrust into the center of a universe-spanning crisis that threatens the very fabric of reality. Armed with a hacked phone that is enhanced by alien technology, they defend their neighbourhood from an unseen threat using an armada of tower-like vessels they unlock and build.

Production formally has been going on for about 8 months, and we had 6 months of research and development prior to that. We have been lucky enough to collaborate with AAA professionals who have really brought the game up to a new level.

With a product this unique, you really can’t just slap together a template marketing plan. We’ve spoken to a lot of publishers and found that most of them have a way of doing things that’s been successful for them, but may not be tailored or best suited to sell this type of experience. This funding will help us bring our own cash to the table to ensure the game is marketed with the specific vision we have in mind.  

ZenFri is in a wide open field, with little in the way of direct competition; because of this we’re looking to prove the market exits. While there is some examples of mobile games that are working in this space, this type of experience has yet to root itself into the mainstream, which is what we’re hoping to see; that this type of storytelling can have a legitimate impact and mass appeal. 

Why did you choose to develop the game in Manitoba?

Serendipity seems to play a big role in my life.  I came here for love, and have built ZenFri with my wife, Danielle. So I didn’t choose it, so much as circumstance conspired to bring me here. However, now that I’m here I feel very fortunate that this is where I landed. We have an amazing community full of supportive people. We have an exceptional cost of living, competitive tax credits, and a whole lot of untapped passion and potential. 

Have you collaborated with any other Manitoba companies or freelancers and how did they contribute to the game?

We’ve collaborated with people from all across North America, and coast-to-coast across Canada, but the heart of the project is here in Winnipeg, and we’ve worked with some very talented local people. 

How has New Media Manitoba helped you and your company over the years?

New Media Manitoba has been pivotal to our success, from helping us track down key local talent, and navigating the tax credit programs, to giving us support to make the trip to GDC each year. It’s a frightening thought for me to consider what this community would be like without New Media Manitoba, they are not only a source of support and advice, but help all of us in this industry compete on a global scale. With New Media Manitoba’s help, ZenFri’s focused on long-term sustainability and have some very exciting projects in development that they’ve been key in opening the doors for.

For more information about Starlite or Clandestine: Anomaly visit starlitegame.com  and clandestineanomaly.com
Posted by on Aug 08, 2014