Klang's Tales from San Francisco

A week ago, Mundi and I finally got back from San Francisco after 14-hours of travelling. I'm not complaining, though, it was an awesome trip; I just hate flying. Watching The Martian during an 11-hour flight and being 33,000ft in the air isn't a good idea, trust me. Anyway, I digress...

We travelled to the good ol' US of A for business and pleasure. And lucky for us, business was also pleasure. Some things I can talk about, others I can't. But, here's a short tour diary of what Mundi and I got up to.

Day One:

We landed in San Francisco a bit blurry-eyed, greeted by a welcoming video from Obama himself, and a TSA agent who loved, yet hated his job very much. After jumping on the BART, we managed to find our hotel and dropped off our luggage. Then, STRAIGHT TO A BAR we went. I ate tater tots for the first time. I felt like Napoleon Dynamite. Mundi ate pizza. He felt like trash.

Day Two:

Tuesday morning we woke up at about 6 AM, and stupidly watched the horrors of Fox News. We made our way to Mel's Drive-In to console ourselves with bottomless coffee, eggs, and FREEDOM. 

Mundi and I were invited to the Zynga headquarters in the SoMA district to check out the building and say hi to the fam. All I can say is "CHRIST ON A BIKE" that building is insane; is like the UN. They had a huge TV, made up of about twenty TVs. I mean, that was not the only impressive thing about our visit, but it was certainly up there. We then went to drink a few beers and get out of the SF sun. This was around noon.

That evening, we met up with friends for beer and tacos...or should I say tacos, beer, then multiple gin and tonics. However, the switch in time zones was getting the better of me, so I had to flee back to the hotel. 

Day Three:

Wednesday started with omelettes and hash browns, with Mundi going for the all-American pancakes, eggs, and bacon. I realise that I've spoken a bunch about food, but, so what; if you want the good stuff, read some Shakespeare.

We spent the majority of the day doing business-type stuff, spreading the good word of ReRunners and Klang, until we had to check in to our second hotel of the trip.

Shout out to the Handlery Union Square Hotel for having the most beautiful hotel rooms. This is not a sponsored post, by the way.

In the evening, we met up with friends for more drinks and Mexican food (surprise, surprise). We were graced with the presence of Maria Essig, Google's Indie Dev guardian angel, and all-around wonderful person. It was great to meet up with her, discuss ReRunners, music, Belarus, and VR. Admittedly, I don't know jack about VR, I just watched Mundi and Maria get deep about it and I nodded occasionally.

I blame you for my blinding hangover, Maria.

Day Four:

Okay, so Thursday was TOP SECRET. I wish I could tell ya'll more, but I don't want to get into trouble. Thursday was make it or break it day. All I can say is that it was a great day, with some great people...and I was a bit too hungover. 

Day Five:

Friday was flight home day, but before that, we visited the Double Fine studio, hosted by the fabulous Anna Kipnis. Double Fine's studio was such an inspiration; we desperately need to upgrade the Klang studio and give it some more flair, Office Space-style.

We had the amazing opportunity to check out the post-E3 build of Psychonauts in the Rhombus of Ruin, which looks incredible. Plus, it was inspiring to watch the Double Fine guys and gals work, as well as see all the behind-the-scenes action. Oh, and thanks for the swag!

On that note, big thanks to Anna Kipnis, Maria Essig, Greg Essig, Flour + Water, Drew Smith, and the Tilting Point crew: David Hague, Jerome Sudan, Samir El Agili, Dan Sherman.

It was a mind-blowing trip, let's do it again sometime! 





Under the Influence: Tips from the Pros


It's a struggle building a following or starting the hype train for an indie game, but it's a worthwhile one. Going full steam ahead on the tracks of Social Media can drive you very loco, unless you have methods in place to blow off some steam. Sorry, I'll stop with the train analogies now as they're terrible.

Tilting Point's Senior PR Manager Sam Dalsimer has comprised a nice list of the best practices to expand your audience reach through influencer marketing and working with popular content creators.

#1. Influencer Marketing

Start from the bottom and grow a small but steady presence on video content and streaming networks like YouTube, Twitch and Mobcrush. Showcase your game and show off its best qualities.

#2. Reach Out to Known Influencers

Content creators and streamers are the new celebrities; however, it's good to start with contacting lower tier streamers. With that in mind, Sam states that it's important to match your game to the right influencer by watching their videos and reading their viewer comments.

#3. Know when to pursue organic or paid for content

Sometimes it's helpful, if you have the budget that is, to spend a little to get a little influence over the influencer. But, like Sam states, it's a two way street; you’re giving them content they can monetize, and they’re giving you the exposure you need.

#4. Mixture of performance and brand

Think influencer marketing as way to generate downloads, as well as a way to create a visual and emotional connection to a potential new audience, especially if their favourite YouTube streamer has been covering your game.

Sam notes that using a unique tracking URL in the video description is a good way to get some analytics on how many clicks are being generated. Plus, it's good to remember that YouTube is the second largest search engine online.

#5. It's a marathon, not a sprint

Influencer marketing is all about building relationships, getting to know content creators, and dedicating time and effort to it. Remember, successful influencers and streamers take time to build up their brand, your strategy should also reflect this!

Calling all Game Developers! We’re hiring

Are you a skilled Game Developer, but need more Klang in your life? Then you could be the one that we’re after…

Things are getting crazy (crazy in a good way) here at the Klang HQ in Berlin. We’re approaching the launch of ReRunners, and we’re super excited about partnering with Tilting Point, who will be working their publishing magic on the game.  

But, it’s always good to have as many hands available to get our wacky ideas into the game, which is why we’re hiring!

You may have already seen this vacancy via our Jobs page, but if you haven't, we’re after an amazingly talented Game Developer that has vast Unity3D experience. You must have experience in mobile development with a HUGE passion for gaming, especially for mobile gaming! Plus, it’s super important that you’re based in Berlin (or on your way to Berlin), as we need someone who can start right away.

Why should you want to work at Klang?

Well, we’re super cool and friendly people. I promise. We also like to have fun and create things that we think are amazing – see here. We also have some significant backing, including London Venture Partners (early investors in Supercell) - see here. Most importantly, we’re very passionate about what we do! 

So, could you be the next Klanger? Contact us if you think so!

The Klang Extended Family Gets Even Bigger

The Klang family has gotten even bigger with the inclusion of our brothers and sisters in Tilting Point, who will be offering a combination of funding, operational support, marketing, and live ops for ReRunners.

Tilting Point is the best in the game! Tilting Point has a super impressive gaming roster that includes Leo’s Fortune, Languinis, and Beat Sports, among others. So, we’re honored to be a part of Tilting Point’s ever-growing list.

What makes this partnership special for us is that we retain full intellectual property and creative control over the direction ReRunners runs towards, as Tilting Point understands and respects our vision.

If you see any of the Tilting Point team running around in the Overworld, say “HI!” to them. But, just don’t Race them; they’re pretty, pretty good at the game.

Long Live Tilting Klang! Long Live Klang Point!

You can find the full press release here.