‘V’ Invading The Skies Over U.S.

US TV network ABC is reaching for the skies to promote its upcoming sci-fi series V, reports The Hollywood Reporter.  While not disclosing the exact locations, ABC will have skywriters brand the skies over 26 US landmarks.  The campaign will start October 24 and continue with repeated skywriting until the show s premiere on November 3.

The show is a remake of the 1983-1984 alien invasion miniseries of the same name.  The new V rolls out with four episodes setting up a possible series for ABC next year.

Read more at The Hollywood Reporter {link no longer active}.

Ubisoft Makes ‘Assassin’s Creed’ Short Films, And It Wants To Be In Pictures

Ubisoft is promoting its upcoming sequel Assassin’s Creed Lineage with a series of short films covering the game’s pre-story.  GameTrailers is featuring a video trailer for the shorts.  The short film series is scheduled to launch on October 27 on the front page of YouTube in eight countries, eventually rolling out three shorts totaling about 38 minutes.

Talking to John Gaudiosi at VentureBeat, Ubisoft’s Yannis Mallat says the production value in the shorts is the same as what they would have pursued for a full length feature based on the franchise.  The short films combine live actors with CG effects.  Ubisoft has enlisted Hybride Technologies, the effects house responsible for the live action and heavy CG combination in the film 300.   Mallat says the film shorts are part of Ubisoft exploring filmmaking, and it may someday position them to simultaneously create games and related films in-house.  Gaudiosi writes that the company plans to grow their film division to 500 people by 2013.

Watch the video trailer for the shorts at GameTrailers {link no longer active}.

Read Gaudiosi s article at VentureBeat {link no longer active}.

‘Borderlands’ Futuristic Western TV Spot

Publisher 2K Games has taken a tongue-in-cheek tone in marketing Gearbox Software’s sci-fi shooter Borderlands before.  They put out a video mimicking Christian Bale’s breakdown on the set of Terminator Salvation.   The TV spot for the game continues that tone in messaging and presentation, one that fits both its futuristic western-comedy positioning and quirky art style.  Even the spot’s marketing slates get the cheeky treatment, with one touting the game’s 87 bazillion guns.

One highlight in the spot is how it channels the opening credits in a Sergio Leone Western to stylishly present marketing bullet points while essentially forcing viewers to read them.  Another is the treatment of the game’s box art at the end, adding motion to the character on the box.  It really draws the eyes to the packaging.

Watch it at Shack News.

Pachter’s Podium At Industry Gamers

Wedbush Morgan Securities analyst Michael Pachter fields readers questions in his regular column for Industry Gamers.  Topics this go-around include price predictions and challenges for Sony and Microsoft’s motion controllers, PSP Go’s launch reception, potential acquisitions in the game industry, and Walmart’s entry into the used games business.

Read more at Industry Gamers {link no longer active}.

OP-ED: Gamasutra Sees Motion Controller Battle As Console War 2.0

Nintendo fired the shot with Wii, and now Sony and Microsoft are getting ready to man their guns in the game motion controller battle.  Writing an opinion piece for Gamasutra, Kris Graft asks if anyone would ve predicted this hardware skirmish between the real battles that come with console upgrades.  He covers how Microsoft and Sony differ in their approach with introducing their motion controllers, and he wonders how, or even if it will affect Wii’s stronghold.  Graft sees the move by both companies as trying to extend the life of PS3 and 360.

Read more at Gamasutra {link no longer active}.

Walmart Store Redesign Shrinks In-Store Promo Space

Walmart is in the midst of a five year project to reduce in store clutter but is meeting internal opposition to the project as it begins to impact in-store promotions.  Reported in Ad Age, the retail giant’s Project Impact is impacting more than it was intended to, as wider aisles and bigger space for specific categories is eating into promotional real-estate overall.  Despite rumors that Walmart might shelve the plan, the company has remained upbeat about the project and said it expects 500-600 stores to be remodeled under the project by its fiscal year end in January.

Read more at Ad Age {link no longer active}.

Has The Fan Funded Model Come To Games?

NIS America is asking fans of its recently released PSP title to help the company release the game on UMD by pre-ordering copies, reports 1up.  NIS strategy game Holy Invasion of Privacy, Badman! What Did I Do to Deserve This?  was released for PSP in July as a downloadable game.  NIS says that if it gets 1,000 pre-orders it will create a packaged UMD version of the game for sale at retail.  The company also said it may release the game without 1,000 pre-orders if it gets retailer support.

Read more at 1up {link no longer active}.

EA Launches ‘FIFA 10’ Global Leader Board

EA Sports is launching an online destination for players of FIFA 10 from around the world, reports Brand Republic.  The company’s fifa earth site is described as a data visualizer and networking platform gathering game data from hundreds of thousands of players.  The site also includes forums for game and general football discussion linked to Twitter.  EA is planning to use fifa earth data to rank countries as part of a worldwide FIFA 10 competition.

Read more at Brand Republic {link no longer active}.

Roger Corman’s Horror Miniseries For Netflix

Netflix is rolling out an online miniseries with legendary low-budget filmmaker Roger Corman, reports FastCompany.  The horror miniseries Splatter premieres October 29, and from there the story’s progression involving which characters live will be based on viewer voting.  Netflix claims its move into content creation is strictly as a branding vehicle, not a sign of a future in filmmaking for the company.

Read more at FastCompany {link no longer active}.