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He just sits and listens to the people in the boxes September 15, 2009

Posted by David Gillespie in technology, Video Games.
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OK, so here’s an idea for a campaign. I don’t care who does it, I’d just love to see it in action, so if you work on Nintendo or a major cereal brand, listen up.

We’re long past a place where kids are interested in putting together dinky little toys made from plastic parts in cereal boxes, but there’s something there about the notion of the prize inside which i don’t think is going away. I’d like to see Nintendo collaborate with someone for the next big Pokemon release. Except rather than put a toy in the box they produce a series of cards which trigger an augmented reality game when placed in front of a camera.

Let’s say I have my cereal and I get a card that displays Pikachu. My friend gets his cereal and he gets a card with…well…one of the other ones on it (Pokemon was more my little brother’s set). When I put just one card down in front of the camera, I can interact with my character, and perhaps get additional cards or items in other boxes or products that allow me to do different things to them (in a less kinky fashion than on the example below – it’s just for effect people).

When my friend puts his card next to mine though, our Pokemon proceed to fight. Now, as in the game proper, I can play (read: place) additional cards down that give me character different attacks and abilities. So instead of just playing cards or controlling it on a screen, I can physically interact and play with my friends while needing to purchase product from someone to expand the available repertoire of moves available to my character.

The downside is it would be horrendously expensive to produce, the upside is of course that it would be effortlessly cool.

Even if only for me.

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If you don’t know me by now August 13, 2008

Posted by David Gillespie in marketing, philosophy, technology, Video Games, web 2.0.
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This is Toad. Toad belongs to Nintendo.

This is Toad. Toad belongs to Nintendo.

I’m working my way through a great article by Marcus Brown, a guy who has clearly been doing this for a while, though I’ve only just found him. The article, If I Were A Client Today is actually on a blog he was previously writing and now has left behind called The Kaiser Edition where he would write from the point of view of a handful of personas (as far as I can tell, I’m still figuring it out as I’m not actually all that bright).

The piece is part analysis of where we’re at in agency-land, part retrospective of his time client-side at either Nintendo or Sony or Microsoft (if he reveals which one I’m not there yet, but I have a hunch based on the litany of characters sporting mushrooms on their heads). One of the more curious revelations thus far is the Internet Department he was hired to be a part of didn’t get placed with the Marketing department or the IT guys but in their R&D labs.

This is curious but also brilliant, an early realisation that the Internet and technology in general is good for more than just spitting out new kinds of ads. For me it naturally harks back to Iain Tait’s 10 Reasons Digital is Better Than Advertising, in particular his first point in that series, that you don’t have to do advertising.

When Iain says advertising there though, what I think he means is you don’t have to do something that lacks substance, you can do something with balls, that means something and actually impacts people’s businesses long after a campaign has finished. I’m not saying this is unique to digital, Droga 5’s Tap Project is evidence it can happen anywhere. But I think there’s a greater propensity for it to happen online, it moves things from distinctly separate operations closer to functioning as a single organism – and that’s where things are going to get really interesting.