May The Force Be On You

Adidas is revisiting Star Wars branded apparel with a second line of Adidas Originals drawing designs from the classic first three films in the sci-fi franchise. Fast Company says the line is a more inspired take than the company s first attempt. Adidas introduced Star Wars themed sports apparel in 2007 that amounted to slapping the Star Wars logo and color schemes on sneakers. This time, the company has created unique looking products with patterns lifted from some of the IP’s most recognizable production design elements. Check it out at Fast Company.

A Byte Of ‘TRON’

Spike TV’s Video Game Awards 2009 is giving audiences a first glimpse of Disney’s TRON game, said to be tied into the upcoming film sequel TRON Legacy. The show is scheduled to air December 12 and the network is promoting its exclusive with this teaser trailer. There is exactly five seconds of game footage in the fifteen second cut, and most of it distorted. Still for the hardcore set they re trying to get excited, they probably had them at the login screen.


Watch it at GameTrailers.

Flip For ‘Borderlands’ DLC

The video trailer released by 2K Games to promote a downloadable content pack for Borderlands may have snuck one past ESRB. While the trailer for the DLC pack Zombie Island of Dr. Ned highlights great extra content, the standout moment might be seeing Dr. Ned giving the finger at the end.


The video is age-gated, and that may be what kept the sequence in there. It also plays into the approach 2K and developer Gearbox have been taking with videos and TV spots promoting their new IP, with plenty of other tongue-in-cheek moments.


Watch it at Crave Online.

Report: Premium Game Prices Proving Resilient

Research firm EEDAR has released a report on game pricing that shows quality titles have managed to retain premium price points much longer on this generation of consoles. In reporting on EEDAR’s analysis, says the report shows that titles for Sony PS3 and Microsoft Xbox 360 have, on average, maintained their initial $59.99 price points for a year longer than games for the last generation of consoles.  EEDAR says that price resilience is even greater with high quality titles rated at 80 percent or higher in reviews.  The firm predicts that once Microsoft and Sony release motion controllers for their systems, it will introduce a lower introductory price category of $49.99 for the more casual fare developed for the peripherals.

EEDAR puts Nintendo Wii is in its own category based on the console s casual content and audience demographics, as well as Nintendo’s decision to retain last generation s premium price point. The report shows Wii game prices began falling last year, one year earlier than PS3 and Xbox 360. However EEDAR says new Wii titles will continue to debut at $49.99.


Download the full report at

Op-Ed: Nintendo’s Future Is In Social Games

Writing for Industry Gamers, James Brightman suggests that Nintendo’s next pioneering move just might be in social gaming. Brightman makes his case by citing two trends: the booming social game category and the growing risks of console development. He points to Nintendo’s track record in developing casual games that are exactly the type of fare pushing social games to becoming a billion dollar category in the game industry. Then there’s the company’s IP portfolio, without a doubt among the most powerful brands in games and with a built-in audience for casual fare. He suggests that by no means is Nintendo hurting to rush into social games just because of a dip in its console business, as perhaps EA did with its Playfish purchase. Instead, Brightman sees the move as possibly the next forward-looking step for a company that seems to stay stubborn about technological trends yet always manages to pioneer in other areas of gaming.

‘Assassin’s Creed II’ Targeting Hispanics

Ubisoft has partnered with Spanish-language media network Univision to promote Assassin’s Creed II to the Hispanic market, reports Radio Business Report. The publisher is launching TV ads, PR placement and other promotions through Univision properties and programming. The campaign includes TV spot rotation during Mexican League Soccer playoff games being broadcast on the network, as well as custom skin display ads overtaking both the soccer league and Univision Sports web sites. Univision’s entertainment TV program All Access will also feature an in-depth segment on the game.

Radio Business Report cites that more than 80 percent of Hispanic males 18-44 years old are gamers, and that they have proven to be more inclined to purchase action games over sports and strategy. Read more at Radio Business Report.

Survey Finds Wii Falling, PS3 Rising

Analyst firm Cowen and Company has conducted a survey that found demand for Nintendo Wii games falling while purchase intent is rising for Sony PS3, reports Edge-Online. The firm conducted a survey of 1,312 people and 1,013 gamers. It found falling demand for Wii games among both Wii and multi-console owners. For PS3, the survey found that 21 percent of those who don t own Sony’s system said they will buy one eventually. Software purchase intent was also high for PS3 and Microsoft Xbox 360, with respondents saying they planned on buying more games for those systems this holiday season. Read more at Edge-Online.

Disney Film promo ‘Crashes’ Google Maps

Disney has been running a multi-faceted campaign for Skyrunners, a teen-skewed sci-fi film being released under its Disney XD children s network banner.  As reported in Multichannel News, Disney has now teamed up with Google on a unique promotion through Google Maps Street View. The promotion lets people access Google Maps through the film’s web site to watch short animations of UFO’s crashing into any neighborhood they select. Disney’s campaign for the film has included other digital and viral efforts tied into the film’s UFO abduction premise. The company created a mock UFO crash site using illusionist sidewalk painting at Comic Con in San Diego this summer. Earlier this year it began releasing viral videos referencing UFO sightings and featuring the film’s actors in a press conference.

Zinged Zynga Hits A Milestone

Zynga has said that more than 100 million unique players a month now play its games, reports Industry Gamers. The social game maker announced the major milestone, marking ongoing growth even as it faces a class action lawsuit. The lawsuit alleges Zynga and Facebook, the platform delivering Zynga’s games, accepted misleading in-game ads that scammed consumers into giving personal information and charging them money for unwanted services.

In marking the milestone, Zynga founder Mark Pincus said the popularity of virtual goods more at Industry Gamers.

Baiting ‘Em With Heaven

EA is running a viral campaign for Dante’s Inferno revolving around a spoof prayer simulation game and an app to hand down divine judgment on Facebook friends.

The spoof game is Mass We Pray, with a video and micro-site designed to look like it s selling a church-themed game for Nintendo Wii. The Wii references come from cross-shaped motion-sensing remotes and a Wii Balance Board-like accessory for kneeling to pray. The video is fittingly campy, trying to channel the usual production value and tone viewers would expect from religious inspired content. Yet its obvious satire aside, it never exposes itself as pitching a fake game, nor does it link itself directly to Dante s Inferno.  It’s only once viewers try to query other information off of the Mass We Pray site, such as browsing screen shots, that a new trailer for Dante s Inferno launches to expose the gig.

The Mass We Pray video has by all accounts gone successfully viral, drawing more than 486,000 views on YouTube at the time of this post. EA is now trying to further engage that traffic with a Facebook campaign.  Once the Dante’s Inferno video is launched on the Mass We Pray site, viewers are encouraged to download a Facebook app that lets them banish friends or foes to hell.  EA is also getting ready to launch an iPhone version of the app.

You can check it all out starting at the campaign gateway at Mass We Pray.