Exclusive: Finalists Revealed For Game Connection Marketing Awards

In an exclusive for [a]list daily, Game Connection organizers have revealed nominees for their first-ever Marketing Awards.

Coming from an event best known for pairing independent game developers with publishing partners, Game Connection’s inaugural awards show is keeping to its roots. Major publishers, big game IP and a couple of global marketing agencies will vie for wins alongside indies and unknowns in PR and marketing categories. One winner will be chosen from among all finalists as the ‘Best Videogame Marketing Team 2012’.

A few things stood out when Game Connection announced the awards earlier this year. The contest can fill the gap left open now that PromaxBDA’s Mi6 Game Marketing Awards are on hiatus. Unlike Mi6, Game Connection’s awards don’t have hefty submission fees that can discourage cash-strapped game makers. They’re also focused on about a half dozen key categories. For anyone familiar with agency-centric awards, it’s instantly apparent this isn’t the place to get recognition for every department, format and execution known to ad men.

Game Connection also revealed advisory board members behind the first Marketing Awards. Senior executives from EA, Namco Bandai, Innogames, Ubisoft, Wargaming and Eurogamer were among those who helped get the effort off the ground.

Winners for the Game Connection Marketing Awards will be announced at Game Connection Europe 2012 with the ceremony starting at 4:40pm on November 28th at Porte de Versailles Expo in Paris. Those interested in attending can contact marketing manager Giulia Palmieri.


The nominees are as follows:


Best Digital Campaign

• 4T2 Multimedia – branded advergame for Hero Factory (Lego)

• NC SOFT / Target Media – branded online campaign for Guild Wars 2 (NC SOFT)

• MediaMonks – online game for House of Anubis (Nickelodeon)


Best Experiential Marketing

• GOG.com – booth design and execution at Penny Arcade Expo Prime 2011 (GOG.com)

• TBWA\Brussels – train station football stadium for PS Vita (Sony Computer Entertainment)

• Ideactif – European bus tour for Rocksmith (Ubisoft)


Best Mobile Campaign

• Crispin Porter + Bogusky – “Autodance” smartphone app for Just Dance 3 (Ubisoft)

• Panache PR – global PR campaign for Smash Cops (Hutch Games)

• Fishlabs Entertainment – “Sports Car Challenge” mobile app (Volkswagen Group China)


Best PR Campaign

• Wargaming.net – western Europe campaign for World of Warplanes (Wargaming.net)

• Bethesda – France campaign for Dishonored (Bethesda)

• Marchsreiter Communications – GSA campaign for Dark Souls (Namco Bandai Partners)


Best Print Campaign

• CD Projekt RED – EU and NA campaign for The Witcher 2 on Xbox 360 (CD Projekt RED)

• NC SOFT – European campaign for Guild Wars 2 (NC SOFT)

• Bethesda – France campaign for Dishonored (Bethesda)


Best Broadcast Campaign

• ichi – “Enter the Metro” global online trailer for Metro: Last Light (THQ)

• Sid Lee Paris – “Rise” European trailer for Assassin’s Creed 3 (Ubisoft)

• [a]list games – EU and NA launch trailer for APB Reloaded (GamersFirst)


Best Social Media Strategy

• neoco – European graffiti campaign for Borderlands 2 (2K Games)

• Amplitude Studios – US, EMEA, Russia community campaign for Endless Space / GAMES2GETHER (Amplitude Studios)

• CD Projekt RED – EU and NA campaign for The Witcher 2 on Xbox 360 (CD Projekt RED)

Star Citizen Raises Over $6 Million

The crowdfunding round for Chris Roberts’ Star Citizen has concluded, raising a record $6.2 million. The Kickstarter reached $2,134,374 spread across 34,397 backers, while the drive on the official site Rocket Space Industries had $4,104,189 with 55,270 backers.

“I am absolutely elated by the incredible outpouring of support for this project,” said Roberts. “It’s clear that space sim fans have just been waiting for a game like ours to come along and rekindle some of the excitement that’s been missing from PC games and the space sim genre. With the resources that our fans have provided, it means the team will be able to provide more features in Star Citizen and deliver an even better game.”

“I’ve been looking for an opportunity to jump back into gaming,” he added. “With all the tools and tech currently available, I can now make a game that really provides gamers with cutting-edge visuals, a highly detailed, immersive world and visceral, heart-pounding combat that only the PC can provide. In fact, PC gamers don’t need to take a back seat to any other platform. With Star Citizen, I want them to be able to stand up, be counted and completely enjoy all that their PC can deliver.”

Source: Kickstarter

Take A Turtle Trek

SeaWorld has launched its first mobile game: SeaWorld Presents Turtle Trek!

Turtle Trek is an endless side-scroller that features an adorable sea turtle named “Patch” who explores the open ocean, meets friends (like Shamu), while dodging sea dangers and natural predators. It’s a fun, family game that seamlessly incorporates animal and environmental education.

To play Turtle Trek, please visit iTunes.com.

GTA V For Wii U A Possibility

Right now, Grand Theft Auto V is only planned for an initial release on the PS3 and Xbox 360, with a PC release likely to come later. While there are no plans to bring the game to bring the game to Wii U, Rockstar vice president Dan Houser indicates that such a possibility is not off the table.

“Everything else is up for consideration,” said Houser. “That’s all I can give you. We are a third-party publisher. We’re not Nintendo, we’re not Sony, we’re not Microsoft. We love all of them in different ways. But, we can do what we want wherever there’s the appropriate business opportunity and chance to find a market. If that’s on Apple, we put something on Apple. Wherever it might be. I think that’s the fun in what we do. We see ourselves as a content company that uses technology. We don’t make it; we use it to make the most fun stuff.”

Source: IGN

Mobile Holiday Sales Are Expected To Jump 110 Percent

For this holiday buying season, consumer confidence is expected to trump concerns about a global recession. The National Retail Federation estimates that total holiday sales this season will rise 4.1 percent, above the 3.5 percent average for the previous 10 years.

Accenture says that over half of Americans will increase their spending this year by $250 or more, with consumers on the whole spending an average of $582. 53 percent say they will go out and shop on Black Friday, up from 44 percent last year.

Shop.org estimates that November and December sales will grow 12 percent using data from the Commerce Department, the Conference Board and the NRF. Adobe, looking at e-commerce data from 500 retailers using its content and marketing data, estimates that sales between Thanksgiving and Christmas will grow between 7 percent and 10 percent.

Adobe expects Cyber Monday sales to rise 18 percent this year to $2 billion, while the second busiest online-shopping day is expected to be Black Friday, which will see a 12 percent bump in sales. Shopping on mobile devices will be a much larger part of that, as such devices will account for 24 percent of visits to e-commerce sites.

Mobile sales are expected to rise 110 percent overall, and account for 21 percent of all online sales, according to Adobe. Two-thirds of those mobile sales will come through tablets, while the other third through smartphones.

Some retailers are using text messages and push notifications to offer discounts to loyal customers, while others are enlisting them to be brand ambassadors for social sites like Pinterest. “Mobile is helping retailers have better relationships with people,” says Brad Rencher, vice president of digital marketing at Adobe.

Source: Fortune.CNN.com

Apple And Google Considering Mobile Patent Arbitration

Apple and Google are reportedly looking at arbitration for their mobile patent conflicts. The companies are considering trading proposals on a licensing agreement over essential smartphone technologies.

“We have long sought a path to resolving patent issues and we welcome the chance to build on the constructive dialogue between our companies,” Google General Counsel Kent Walker said in a filed letter to Apple. “While we prefer to seek a framework for a global (rather than piecemeal) resolution that addresses all of our patent disputes, we are committed to reaching agreement on a license for our respective standard-essential patents.”

“Apple’s goal has always been to find a mutual and transparent process to resolve this dispute on terms that are fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory without the threat or taint of exclusionary remedies,” Apple General Counsel Bruce Sewell said in a letter to Google.

Source: Bloomberg

PS3 At 70 Million Sold Worldwide

Sony Computer Entertainment announced that it has sold 70 million PS3 units into retailers as of November 4, 2012. The company also announced that the Move motion controller surpassed 15 million units sold as of November 11.

SCE noted that PSN operates in 59 countries and regions around the world. “PS3 owners can access 170,000 downloadable digital content including 57,000 game content worldwide from PlayStation Network. In October 2012, SCE redesigned PlayStation Store for PS3, offering a more streamlined and accessible store experience, including a stunning new user interface, simple search, and powerful content discovery,” said the company in a release. “The new store is now available in Europe and North and Latin America with more countries and regions to follow.”