HTML 5 Is A New Frontier For Advertising

HTML 5 is quickly becoming the go-to platform for browser-based game development. More developers are beginning to invest in the platform for its ability to work cross platform between computer, and mobile devices. In addition to this, advertisers are beginning to recognize this movement from flash to HTML 5 and are taking notice. Advertisers haven’t all made the move yet, as it requires more skill to use the platform, but the jump between platforms is worth it.

A lot of advertising companies and game developers are realizing that the potential for cross-platform, mobile, touch, and online games that HTML 5 offers has enormous potential for advertisers. Video advertising is still a relatively Flash-dominated field, as sites like YouTube continue to use Flash to operate. The rest of the Flash-based world is beginning to move on. Though the barrier of entry into HTML 5 is high and will take time to surmount, the payout for cross-platform utility will be worth it.

One of the factors holding back widespread adoption of HTML 5 has been performance, but speedier mobile hardware and better HTML 5 tools has made that less of an issue. The increasing array of HTML 5 development tools is also making the process of creating HTML 5 content easier. Game makers and advertisers alike need to keep an eye on this technology as it continues to advance.

Source: VentureBeat

In-App Proposal’s A Winner

When Brett Little decided to propose to his girlfriend Alexandra Szava-Grundler, he wanted to find a way to propose that would stand out. “I decided I would find a more unique way that fit our personalities,” he said. “I carried the ring around in my pocket everywhere we went waiting for the perfect moment to present itself. Nothing ever felt right.”

Brett and Alexandra had been living together for about six months when Brett had his big idea. They played mobile games every night, and the game Phrase Friends (a guess-the-phrase game similar to Wheel of Fortune) was a regular ritual. Brett emailed Jericho Games, creators of Phrase Friends, to see if they would create a special ‘proposal’ puzzle especially for Alexandra. A few hours later, Jericho Games sent back an email saying they’d love to help.

“It was our first marriage proposal on record,” says a spokesperson for Jericho Games. It took them about six hours to finish the custom code. “They told me all I had to do was start a new game with her and no matter the category, that would be the puzzle,” he remembers. Brett started the game, but it didn’t work the way it was supposed to, so he decided to hold off. Jericho Games worked on the problem, and the next day Brett tried again.

This time the puzzle worked, even though Alex had trouble figuring it out. She finally guessed it and looked up at Brett, who dropped to one knee and proposed. “It was the most wonderful day of my life,” Brett said. The wedding is set for July 12, 2014.

Jericho Games was smart to say yes to this idea, not only because it was a nice thing to do, but it also has given them positive PR. Perhaps there’s a new product feature in there — custom game phrases for special occasions!

Source: Forbes

OUYA Micro-Console Hits Stores

The opening salvos in the Console Wars, 2013 Edition are just beginning. We have Nvidia’s Shield appearing later this week, and today the OUYA micro-console appears in stores. OUYA, the Kickstarter-funded Android-based console retails for $99 with controller and hooks right into your TV set, hoping to grab a spot away from other consoles.

OUYA is in retail locations across the U.S., Canada, and U.K., including Amazon, Best Buy, GAME, GameStop, and Target. The console has a library of more than 170+ free-to-try games and media apps in 1080p HD to start. More than 17,000 developers have registered to develop OUYA games, so it’s a good bet we’ll see many more games from companies like Sega, Square Enix, and Double Fine Productions as well as many indie developers.

“It’s incredible to think that a little under a year ago OUYA was just an idea — we wanted to do something completely new in console gaming: build a $99 game console, with no discs to buy, open to all developers, and affordable to all gamers,” said Julie Uhrman, CEO and co-founder of OUYA. “Today, OUYA is real. Console gaming has never needed something new more than it does now.”

It’s not clear how well the console will do against the well-established competition from Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo. The current-gen consoles from the Big Three are likely to see price cuts this fall that will put them close to the OUYA’s $99 price point. Game prices will be the big difference, with all of OUYA’s games being at least free to try out, and most are either free-to-play or much less expensive than normal console games.

Dragon Age: Inquisition Drops The Number

At EA’s E3 press conference, among the announcements and trailers was the latest entry in their Dragon Age franchise: Dragon Age: Inquisition. Last September, the game was announced as Dragon Age 3: Inquisition, but EA had a change of heart. EA Labels president Frank Gibeau told IGN that the name change was part of a tactical marketing decision.

“It’s a tactical marketing decision,” Gibeau said, “There wasn’t anything strategic about it, to be blunt. We just wanted to draw more attention to the fact that Inquisition is an all-new chapter inside of the Dragon Age universe, as opposed to people expecting a follow-on to Dragon Age 1 and 2 in a literal, linear sense.” EA and Bioware are trying to market the game as an entirely new experience from the first two entries in the series. Unlike Dragon Age 1 and 2, Inquisition takes place in a completely open world.

Sequels and followups have become commonplace in the industry over the last several years. With titles like Assassin’s Creed IV, Final Fantasy XV and Battlefield 4, numbered sequels have become a common occurrence. EA is trying to differentiate Dragon Age: Inquisition from the rest of the sequels on the market. Bioware is proving that Dragon Age isn’t just another number.

Source: Polygon

Former I Love Bees Worker Hired By Microsoft

Back in 2004, Microsoft hired Elan Lee and 42 Entertainment to conduct a viral marketing campaign called I Love Bees. The campaign was an alternate reality game marketing Halo 2, and featured both Internet and real world portions, bringing players into the campaign. Now, Elan Lee has joined Microsoft as the chief design officer of Xbox Entertainment Studios.

He now works under Nancy Tellem, the former CBS executive who is now in charge of video content for Xbox. It is likely that Lee’s new position has to do with Steven Spielberg’s Halo television series which will be featured on the Xbox One. This new alliance may be part of an effort to bring more crossover content between games and video to Xbox’s entertainment services. The Xbox One’s robust TV features leave a lot of potential for working with video games to make cross-media games and shows.

Source: Joystiq

Supergiant Games Leads Sony’s Indie Initiative

Supergiant games presented their newest game, Transistor, during Sony’s E3 conference. Transistor is their second game, and their first release since Bastion took the indie gaming world by storm in 2011. Similar to Bastion, Transistor is played from a third person perspective, and it was announced as part of Sony’s initiative to feature more indie games on the PS4. Transistor will see the light of day next year on the PS4.

Top Players In Mobile For May 2013

Editor’s note: Newzoo and Distimo have released monthly mobile game data for May 2013, listing top worldwide games and publishers for iOS App Store and Google Play.  New zoo’s Peter Warman contributes his analysis.

The top five iOS publishers have seen a shake up this month, with GungHo Online Entertainment storming up from the bottom of the chart in April to make number one, thanks to their Android and now iOS hit game Puzzles and Dragons.  They’re followed on the list by Supercell, King.com and EA. Funzio have continued their climb up the charts and are now at the number six spot, pushing Gameloft down to number 7. Two publishers have re-entered the list – COLOPL, and NAMCO BANDAI.  Zynga has climbed one position this month and is now at number eight with five games in the top 200.

Source: Newzoo and Distimo. Rankings based on gross sales.

Focusing on iOS games, as mentioned Puzzle and Dragons from GungHo Online Entertainment is this month’s best performing game, replacing Finland-based Supercell’s Clash of Clans. This is the first time the Supercell hit, now at number three, hasn’t topped the charts since December 2012. Candy Crush Saga from King.com has now climbed into second place. Hay Day, also from the Finnish publisher, remains at number four.

The Hobbit: Kingdoms of Middle Earth moved up from last month to take the number five spot. Megapolis from Social Quantum made the biggest climb up the charts, moving four places to number six. The Simpsons: Tapped Out is still proving a success, taking up two positions in the top 20 at number seven as well as number 14 for the exclusive North American version. Meanwhile, the social casino favorite, Poker by Zynga, fell down the list to number 20.

Source: Newzoo and Distimo. Rankings based on gross sales.

Looking at the Google Play store, the top five Android publishers also changed dramatically this month. LINE Corporation remains the top publisher with LINE WIND runner, its most successful game. GungHo Online Entertainment climbed four positions to number two, and COLOPL  moved up from number six to third place. The April chart’s second and third place publishers, CJ E&M Corp. and Mobage, are now at fourth and fifth. King.com, EA Swiss Earl, Kabam and Gameloft remain the only Western publishers in a still Asian-dominated list for Android chart toppers.

Source: Newzoo and Distimo. Rankings based on gross sales.

Puzzle and Dragons was once again the best performing game for Google Play store in terms of revenues, but the rest of the list saw a dramatic shake up. LINE WIND runner from LINE Corporation, last month’s number seven, is now the number two game. Last month’s number 13 game from COLOPL is at number three.

The other top five games in April all fell down the list in May.  The April chart’s number two Android game from WeMade Entertainment fell four positions to number six.  The number four game from CJ E&M fell to 11th place.  April’s fifth place game from Fincon fell to number 15.

Source: Newzoo and Distimo. Rankings based on gross sales.

About the Author

Peter Warman is CEO and co-founder of Newzoo, the games market research and consulting firm servicing clients across all game business models and regions.

 

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$7 Billion Earned From Google AdSense Last Year

Google has announced that their ad-platform Google AdSense has grown to 2 million publishers worldwide. In addition, these publishers have earned more than $7 billion from the program over the course of the last year, sending out an average of 100,000 checks a month. AdSense allows publishers to use customized targeted advertising to reach out to potential users easily.

Google has also added mobile and video options to the mix since the program was launched ten years ago.”Wherever people can create content, wherever users are going, we want to be able to enable a monetization solution,” said Susan Wojcicki, SVP of advertising and commerce at Google. The program has become broadly popular, and Google is continuing to expand the possibilities.

Source:Social Times

Alamo’s New Games Market To Moms, Families

In a bid to keep families engaged on the road while advertising to those families, Alamo Rent-A-Car has released a series of mobile apps designed for family road trips. Alamo has teamed up with several ‘mom’ bloggers to create and push these apps, in addition to promoted tweets and Facebook posts from Alamo. Four of these games can be played from the AlamoGames2Go web app, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Vine by using the hashtag #AlamoGames2Go.

The four games are Alamoding, PixPursuit, SnapFamily, and Alamovie. Each of the apps involves using picture or video to capture family moments, which can then can be submitted for a chance to win every week or to win a $5000 grand prize. In addition to the contests being held by Alamo’s apps, the participating mom bloggers will be holding contests as well.

An increasingly growing part of social networks is mothers. Alamo is attempting to break into this market by creating these applications and games for families and marketing them to mothers. Alamo will be tracking the success of these games as the campaign goes on by noting how much attention and participation the games get.

Source: Adweek

Babes, Mayhem And Dubstep In Deadpool Launch Trailer

On the eve of its release, a new trailer for High Moon Studio’s Deadpool has surfaced. The trailer shows how the Deadpool comic’s trademark writing has crossed over into video game form. Cable, Wolverine and other heroes and villains also make an appearance, and of course it wouldn’t be a video game trailer without dubstep. Deadpool is out in stores today for Xbox 360, PS3 and PC. Send dubstep, guns, and babes – Deadpool’s ready to rumble!