Explore The Galaxy, Use Your Keyboard

Promoting co-op action and reinforcing the style and humor of Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars launching this week, TT games has launched a side scrolling, multiplayer browser based adventure that allows anyone to jump in start saving the galaxy. Showcasing the characters, worlds, sounds and weapons from each film in the series, users can view trailer content, interact with other players, earn points, achievements and virtual rewards which unlock new characters, features and worlds to explore and discover.

Test Your Limitlessness

A destination URL built into part of the official website for the paranoia-fueled action thriller Limitless, try and test your ability to manage your limited resources of the powerful drug NZT and personal financial reserves and beat the stock market. Challenge friends on Facebook or start a global challenge against other players to earn more cash and pills. Make over $200,000 without running out of NZT and be entered to win a Motorola Xoom or film prize pack.

General Marketing Changing With Times

The results of the 2010 census is important not just for politicians, but also for advertisers. The results of the study shows that America is more ethnically diverse than ever before, and that has consequences for how advertising campaign are done.

The impact this will have on marketing is more complicated, writes Ola Mobolade. To say that the widely accepted multicultural marketing paradigm is outdated would be an understatement. In many cases, marketers are still employing the same ethnic strategies as the very first multicultural campaigns of the 1950s and 1960s — step 1: identify the largest ethnic segment(s); step 2: assume that they engage with your category/brand differently than whites do; step 3: use a multicultural specialist to convey a targeted message relying heavily on in-culture casting and language, with a sprinkling of cultural nuances and passion points; step 4: be disappointed by (lackluster) return on (minimal) investment.

Certain agencies have specialized in multicultural elements, and this might be a good sign for them in the short term as more top-level companies look to them. However, general-market agencies might align themselves as more “cross-cultural” as time goes on, and their resources might end up pushing more specialized agencies out of the market.

So, will traditional multicultural marketing eventually go extinct Probably, muses Mobolade. But it’s very likely that it will be replaced by a new multicultural marketing paradigm that’s even more relevant to contemporary consumer culture than today’s ‘general marketing.’ So the question should be, ‘Is the traditional ‘general-market’ paradigm dying ‘ I’ve got my money on yes.

Source: Ad Age

Heavy Rain Maker Next Title Might Be Fiv5

It’s widely known that Quantic Dream will not be working on a sequel to Heavy Rain, but what exactly their two nascent projects are hasn’t been revealed. However, the name Fiv5 has been found to be registered by Quantic Dream and trademarked by Sony Computer Entertainment.

For our next project we re going to build on what we have discovered with Heavy Rain. We own this genre of Interactive Drama and we want to show that Heavy Rain was not a coincidence; it is something that makes sense and we can build on it, said Quantic Dream founder David Cage to PlayStation Blog. At the same time, we will not make a sequel and I made that very clear from the beginning, regardless of whether the game was a success or a failure, because I wanted to show that this is a new genre that you can use to tell any kind of story, in any style. We re going to be exploring a different direction, which will still be very dark and still for adults, but completely different to Heavy Rain. Our challenge is to satisfy our fans, and also surprise them.

Source: twitter.com/supererogatory

Nintendo, Best Buy Team Up For 3DS Launch Events

Nintendo is launching the 3DS on March 27, and on the day before they’re having launch events at Best Buy stores around the country (more details at bestbuy.com/3DS). There will also be a special launch event at the Best Buy in Union Square in New York City starting March 26 at 9 PM local.

“Nintendo 3DS can play 3D video games and take 3D pictures, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg,” said Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime. “The 3D display is amazing in its own right, but just as compelling are the new forms of game play it delivers, and the groundbreaking ways it will connect players to new content and each other.”

Hitman ARG Not Silenced

The Hitman ARG keeps on rolling on and the fans have decoded a date: June 7, 2011, which just happens to mark the start of this year’s E3. However, with some prodding by an IO Interactive representative, they uncovered the URL for another image . . .

Agent 47 doing work Almost certainly.

Source: Hitman Forum

Rovio Mulling IPO

Rovio is considering grooming its business for an initial public offering. The maker of Angry Birds recently nailed down $42 million in funding and is estimated to be worth around $300 million.

We probably want to be in a marketplace that is as liquid as possible, which would probably mean NASDAQ is our stock exchange of choice, said Rovio CEO Mikael Hed. If we can do it in the next few years, that would be great.

We are working exactly according to plan, we re releasing a lot of new games, there s Rio coming out next week, that s going to be a big thing, he added. There s a lot of new development happening on the studio side and the business development side.

Source: Bloomberg

Zynga Opens Floodgate

Zynga has announced that it is acquiring Floodgate Entertainment; the independent game developer will be integrated into the staff for Zynga Boston. The studio developed the mobile titles Flowerz and Civ IV: War of Two Cities, as well as PC titles such as Dark Messiah of Might & Magic and Neverwinter Nights: Shadows of Undrentide. Many of the veterans of the studio worked for Looking Glass Technologies on games like Ultima Underworld, System Shock, and Thief: The Dark Project.

This addition showcases our commitment to working with top-notch talent that shares our passion for building innovative and fun social games. Industry veteran and Floodgate founder Paul Neurath will join Zynga Boston as Creative Director, reads the Zynga blog post. Paul brings over two decades of experience in game development to Zynga and is responsible for a number of acclaimed titles. In 1990 Paul founded Blue Sky Productions, which became LookingGlass in 1992.

Source: Zynga Blog

IPhone For T-Mobile Not Impending

The acquisition of T-Mobile by AT&T for $39 billion has raised a lot of questions, not the least of which is about an iPhone for T-Mobile customers. While it’s unlikely to happen immediately given certain compatibility issues, it should happen when the acquisition completes.

“T-Mobile USA remains an independent company,” a T-Mobile FAQ reads. “The acquisition is expected to be completed in approximately 12 months. We do not offer the iPhone. We offer cutting edge devices like the Samsung Galaxy S 4G and coming soon our new Sidekick 4G.”

Both parties assert that the merger will improve network quality and boost speeds. The merger will ensure the deployment of a robust 4G LTE network to 95 percent of the U.S. population, something neither company would achieve on its own,” reads the FAQ. “Also, because of our compatible networks and spectrum, the customers of T-Mobile USA and AT&T will experience improved voice and data service almost immediately after the networks are integrated.”

Source: Apple Insider

Heavy Rain Director ‘Fed Up With Space Marines’

David Cage, who is also the co-founder of Quantic Dream, challenged a lot of gaming conventions as director/writer/producer of Heavy Rain. He’s achieved success with the title, and he thinks that other developers are eager to explore more unconventional stories.

“Games always explore the same things, said Cage. They’re about being powerful, being the good guys against the bad guys that’s a very tiny part of what can be done. There are so many other stories to tell, so many other emotions to trigger this is a fantastic new medium, we can do much more than we currently do with it.”

“In Europe, we are not as easy to satisfy; being given a gun to hold is not necessarily enough in a game, added Cage. But it’s not just in Europe, I hear many developers in the U.S. saying the same thing ‘look, I’m 40, I’m fed up of writing games where you shoot at everyone. It was fun when I was twenty but now I want to do something else. I don’t watch the same movies as I did when I was 20, I don’t listen to the same music, but I’m still making the same games!’ Developers are fed up they want to talk about their families, politics, whatever why not in a game? Why not ! There is no reason.”

Cage was particularly flattered about the Bafta award for best story, saying, “It is the one I was dreaming of. I worked so hard on the story, and it’s the first I ever wrote that was based on something personal. It was not about space marines fighting aliens, it was about my relationship with my first son and how he changed my life and also about how loving someone without expecting anything in return was something totally new.”

“There should be more people trying this,” he continued. “Don’t write about being a rookie soldier in WWII, because you don’t have a clue what that’s like. Talk about yourself, your life, your emotions, the people around you, what you like, what you hate this is how the industry will make a huge step forwards. I’m fed up with space marines.”

Source: Guardian