Gaming Marketing Newsletter

Adidas and Messi soccerball boots score on AGame

16 April, 2014 by Venatus

The soccerball cup of the world starts this year and Adidas knows a thing or two about online ad branding. As part of a global campaign to celebrate the beautiful game Brazilian style, Adidas and Messi teamed up to design a rainbow boot that wouldn’t look at out of place shaking its football booty at a Rio carnival parade. The adizero F50 X-TRX SG Messi Boots are kicking their way over at the good people at Spil GamesAGame site: the go-to place for casual connect gamers. Just go to the internet and turn left.


Adidas Messi Boot from Venatus Media on Vimeo.

Elder Scrolls Online magics up digital wizardry on True Achievements

15 April, 2014 by Venatus

Elder Scrolls is a big deal in Role Playing Games (RPGs). Games developer and publisher Bethesda Softworks has given fans two decades of magic, blood lust and questing most epic. Now the company is releasing the franchise on the webternet for the first time with Elder Scrolls Online: a tongue-twisting Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG).

We helped with the launch campaign, brewing up a dynamic wraparound ad on True Achievements: the go to place for Xbox tracking communities. At nearly ten minutes, the original trailer is so long, we had to fade out after 30 seconds or use up all our Vimeo storage in one hit. Now that’s what I call epic.



Elder Scrolls Online on True Achievements from Venatus Media on Vimeo.

eSports gaming

11 April, 2014 by Venatus

How pro can you go?

If you’d told me 20 years ago it was possible to have a career as a professional gamer, I’d  laugh, then cry, then go full circle all the way back to laugh. “Gamers are an amateur collective of geeks. I should know – I am one,” I’d wax lyrical before adding facetiously to future you: “And no one’s invented broadband or mass adoption of the internet yet.”

Now pick up my hypothetical past self and throw me through a paradox rip in the space time continuum in 2014 where professional gaming is big bucks. Earlier this week, The Guardian reported that the Call of Duty World Championships, held in LA this year, had a jackpot of $1million split between the top 32 competing progamers.

Early this month, Valve, the most beloved games company on the planet, released a documentary called Free to Play on its Steam distribution network. Filmed in 2011, the film follows eSports progamers competing in a Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) called Dota 2 – for a pot of $1.6million. That cash went up to $2million in 2012.

But there is a global disparity in the cultural approval of progamers. And, thanks to its fetished love of all things tech, east trumps west when it comes to building professional infrastructures for gamers. In South Korea and China, progamer competitions are event broadcasts, watched by hundreds of millions. Teams have coaches, management and players come bedecked in global sponsorship branding. They live together so they can train as a team together, like virtual Olympic athletes – strategising over gameplay tactics 24/7. They play for six figure salaries and are worshiped like next-gen digital gods.

eSport Olympians

Despite playing catch up in the west, the game is achanging. While many European countries already have eSport governing bodies, it’s the Yanks who’ve gone one step further. Last year, not only did the US allow South Korean progamers to travel on a special visa usually reserved for athletes, but it was because of branding deals brokered by the bean counters at Coke and Red Bull. I’m loving it gives you wings?

Whatever country they’re from, whatever cash prizes they play for, there’s one common currency that unites all progamers: they were all born in the year PI (Post Internet). That means they were born with silver web connection in their mouths and are young enough to still have ninja-fast reflexes – a must for the cutthroat speed of competitive gaming where 25 is ancient and slow. So they know how to build themselves as brands through digital engagement, streaming  pro competitions on gaming channel Twitch, tweeting or building an audience by offering tips on You Tube. And when you have a digital footprint, big brand advertisers follow. How pro can you go? You can’t go more pro.

Domestos turbo blasts on Games Games

9 April, 2014 by Venatus

Domestos and gaming: never the twain shall meet? Games advertising offers brand coverage for companies looking beyond their traditional industries or ad channels. All it takes is a bit of creative campaign savvy and the right publisher to reach the right audience. That’s why we hooked up Domestos’ Turbo Fresh Dirt Blaster with the best platform for casual gamers at Games Games, run by our partners at Spil Games.


Domestos from Venatus Media on Vimeo.

Facebook and Oculus

28 March, 2014 by Venatus

A virtual Rift too far?

This week, Zuckerberg’s book of face stumped up an audacious $2 billion wedge to acquire a shiny new virtual reality (VR) company called Oculus Rift. Touted as VR 2.0 by me just now,  the VC seeded company has been praised to the hilt as the next big thing in the games industry after demos wowed the crowds at industry expos last year. Everyone, from Valve to well-known coding polymath John Carmack, offered R‘n’D or fiscal support for Palmer Luckey, the 21-year old who only last year built a contemporary prototype called Oculus Rift out of ancient VR-kit and chewing gum.

Oculus Rift

But after sticking my digital temperature gauge into the very bottom of the internet, the median reaction of the bloggerati hasn’t wavered a degree between tepid and lukewarm, leaving the corp buyout damned by faint praise at best. Facebook isn’t a dedicated gaming company and the worst reaction seems to be from indie developers – even Minecraft’s creator pulled his virtual plug after news of the acquisition.

Will Oculus Rift be eaten up and spat out by the Facebook machine? While I understand the stick it to the man mentality of some developers and publishers who have to jump through corporate hoops to get their intellectual properties signed off, I also think Zuckerberg has an overarching vision for VR way beyond gaming. That’s not to say Facebook doesn’t have a track record in gaming: the company wrote the book on reaching casual gamers with monetised content thanks to its partnership with Zynga.                             

And the deal means Rift will have more cash to spend on building a better, cheaper product while Facebook’s reach will give VR  traction beyond tech trade shows – like health, education and (this wild stab in the dark might melt your face right off) VR social-network user experiences.

What we need is for Facebook to be a magnanimous and hand off purse holder, leaving the Rift team to get on with developing VR – whatever application it’s used for. And I can’t wait to see what those clever engineering bods who only speak in code come up with next: VR advertising.

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