Spiked Debuts

MTV sisters GameTrailers and Spike have done the industry a solid and rounded up the lineup of exclusive game debut videos from Saturday night’s 2009 Video Game Awards show.  This year’s show had one of its most impressive collection of exclusives, which thanks to GameTrailers can now be perused at leisure.  Additional props to GameTrailers’ YouTube-like transparency with viewer traffic and user ratings, which allows for a bit of pocket analysis of how each debuts is faring with the hardcore set, as well as a glimpse at the power of getting these videos on Spike’s TV show.

Debuted games include a surprise announcement about a new True Crime from Activision, EA’s big reveal for the next Medal of Honor, and a lineup of first glimpses for Halo: Reach, Batman: Arkham Asylum 2, Star Wars: Force Unleashed II, Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands, TRON: Evolution, Spec Ops: The Line, Green Day: Rock Band, Crackdown 2, UFC Undisputed 2010, and Deadliest Warrior.

If you have more time to kill, scroll a little further down to see clips of celebrity presenters at the show such as Snoop Dogg and Tony Hawk, and check out how they’re faring.  Wonder if any of their agents got acquainted with GameTrailers this morning.

Launch the trailers at the Spike VGA page at GameTrailers {link no longer active}.

Ad Age Viral Video Chart For Week Of Nov. 30

Ad Age lists the top 10 viral videos for the week of November 30.

The highlight in this week s chart is a video from LG’s Give it a Ponder campaign, one of several the mobile phone maker has made to promote responsible texting among teens.  The off-the-wall spots star James Lipton, host of Bravo’s Inside the Actor’s Studio.   They play on the paradox of having the cultured drama coach provide thoughtful advice on relatively trivial teen dilemmas.  Beyond that, they’re hard to describe.

For videogames, Microsoft hangs on with Natal at number five with about 450,000 views.  More impressively, the Tillman the bulldog viral for Activision’s Tony Hawk: Ride stays at number two with more than a million views.

Three other new entries make up the bottom of the chart, including videos from a couple tech companies quite obviously on opposite ends of the cool factor spectrum.  Google, please tell Cisco that the point of hiring marketing folks to make your viral videos is to inject just a bit of chic into the geek.

Ad Age s chart includes number of views for the week and percentage change in views for videos that stayed on the chart.  The list is compiled by Visible Measures.

Check out the full list and watch the videos at Ad Age.

Ten Best Ads Of The Decade

Business Insider is featuring the top ten TV ads of the decade, as chosen in a poll conducted by Adweek.  As Business Insider points out, Adweek was focused on creative that defined the decade and not necessarily those judged on entertainment factor alone.  The list also doesn’t include Super Bowl ads, which Adweek is ranking in a separate poll.

Creative for videogames gets a nod in Microsoft s diorama spot for Halo3.   A Sony ad for PlayStation was nominated but didn’t get the votes; it’s in the expanded list.

Watch the top ten at Business Insider.

The expanded list of all nominees and voting results are at Adweek {link no longer active}.

Transforming The Franchise

GameTrailers has the exclusive debut trailer for Activision’s Transformers: War for Cybertron, the publisher s third title based on the IP.  The trailer opts for slick CG over any glimpses of in-game, focusing on a premise reveal that separates this game from Activision’s prior film-based Transformer titles.  Slick set pieces and well-directed action highlight the setting as a battle-scarred Transfomers home planet, with the game taking place long before the robots brought their hulking mess of a war to Earth.

Watch it at GameTrailers {link no longer active}.

Auto-Tune The Sony Ad

Sony has paired up with Auto-Tune the News to get more mileage out of its celebrity endorsed Panel of Experts TV campaign.  The company has put out a viral video that gives spots from the campaign featuring Justin Timberlake and Peyton Manning the Auto-Tune the News treatment.    Two from the group who started the YouTube phenomenon, where they use the audio software Auto-Tune to remix news segments, make an appearance in Sony’s video.

Watch it at YouTube.

Milking ‘The Office’

Kellogg is pushing its Raisin Bran Crunch cereal with a funny, creative, and heavily derivative viral video introducing a mild-mannered, cereal-crunching alien named Miles Melman.  Melman borrows his looks from Alien designer H.R. Giger.  As for dialogue and comedic delivery, as well as the overall tone of the production, the video openly channels Ricky Gervais original The Office BBC TV series and his character from the show, David Brent.

Watch it at YouTube {link no longer active}.

Establishing Shots

EA has released a trailer being billed as the intro cinematic from its upcoming sequel Army of Two: The 40th Day.   The spoiler of a title page aside, the opening sequence depicting a seemingly normal day in Shanghai through a tourist’s lens is deftly directed, with subtle setups and visual clues that a conflict is about to enter the everyday setting.  It’s worthy of a film.  Part of its impact comes from the reality cum fiction premise of devastation befalling a mostly unsuspecting metropolis.

Watch it at GameTrailers {link no longer active}.

No More Effort?

Ubisoft released a trio of trailers for its upcoming Wii sequel No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle that defy logic.  They’re quirky, much like the IP.  In that sense the positioning makes sense.  But at least one of them has the distinction of actually making 20 seconds seem like time thrown away.  It’s a clip of game hero Travis Touchdown smelling his armpits.  It will be interesting to see if Ubisoft continues in this direction with marketing the title, if only to see if this wasn t what the publisher considers off the deep end.

The one titled Haunted has the most chuckle factor, with an acceptable reference to Silent Hill.  They re all exclusive to GameTrailers and available through the link.  Check out the Haunted trailer at this jump to GameTrailers {link no longer active}.

Future Mag, Courtesy Of Sports Illustrated

Sports Illustrated is giving a peak at the future of digitized magazines with a video of what one of its issues might look like on a tablet computer.  It s not as much groundbreaking technology as it is a slick combination of the modes and methods with which people now interact with digital content.  The word is that publishers other than Sports Illustrated parent Time Warner are looking at formatting their content similarly for tablet computers.  Given the focus on interfacing with rich media and interactive content, it’s easy to see a game magazine taking a similar approach.

Watch it at YouTube

It’s Good To Be Michael Bay

Blockbuster director Michael Bay has helmed a TV spot to promote Victoria s Secret’s Christmas lingerie catalogue.  The long-form ad has everything one would expect from the explosive, and some would argue chronically over-budgeted, film director.

Explosion at 1:14.

Watch it at AdFreak. {link no longer active}