Archive for the 'Mobile Gaming' Category

Joe Pemberton

Mobile Marketing: Fries and a Casual Game?

Mobile marketers have a few kinks to iron out before they reach the delicate symbiosis between the marketer and the marketplace.

Burger King has announced a new mobile game. Users can play for a monthly fee of $2.99 — about the price of fries and a Coke.

So, there are two sides to put the mayo in dissecting Burger King’s rationale here.

First, let’s say the target user is a Burger King fan. She likes the kitschy enamel King from the TV ads as much as she likes BK’s juicy flame-broiled taste. But, is she enough of a fan to pay $2.99 a month to play the Burger King game on her handset?

From another angle, let’s say the target user is just a really avid casual gamer. But, of the games she could select, is she attracted to branded games of this nature; games where you have to “remember how to make a Whopper” and have to “squirt ketchup through the air while navigating through a BK restaurant?”

The jury is out on this one for me. I know we’ll continue to see experimentation with co-branded marketing campaigns, banner ads, branded content, “pay walls”, etc. I just wasn’t prepared for someone to suggest that users would like to pay recurring monthly fees for branded experiences; especially coming out of the fast food category.

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Joe Pemberton

Idle Bites (13 March, 2007)

1// Adobe is reporting that Flash Lite will now support video.

2// Wired has posted their interview with John Maeda, who spoke at the TED Conference in Monterey, CA this week. When probed on his favorite manmade designs, he offered this:

“I like stuff designed by dead people. The old designers. They always got it right because they didn’t have to grow up with computers. All of the people that made the spoon and the dishes and the vacuum cleaner didn’t have microprocessors and stuff. You could do a good design back then.

I think if you’re a young designer now, you’ve got the internet and you’ve got screens all over the place — it’s awful hard. Technology is just so powerful now. You can do so much with so little. You can shove it into the size of a quarter. For designers to design great objects where technology is concerned, that’s hard.”

Too true. (Thanks Nancy.)

3// Last weeks’ Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco, yielded some interesting discussion, like the keynote on networked mobile gaming.

4// File under: alternate desktop metaphors. Check out “BumpTop,” a desktop UI paradigm that uses physical behavior to aid organization of files. Whether or not the desktop metaphor is appropriate to mobile UI, could this type of physics and motion apply to mobile touch screens using a finger tip or thumb as the stylus?

5// Opera Mini. At most it looks like a strike against the operator content foothold. At the least it may be a reason not to have to buy a smartphone. (Thanks Christian.)

Joe Pemberton

The future of mobile gaming is connected

We’re constantly anticipating ways consumers engage in mobile usage. One area I’m intrigued with is mobile gaming — why and when people play them. With a few exceptions, mobile gaming is limited to single player puzzle games and stripped-down versions of best selling PC/console games. So, if you’re a hardcore gamer (as opposed to a casual one) you’re likely not that enthralled by Bejeweled, Sudoku or Tower Bloxx. My brother, a long time World of Warcraft (WoW) addict, actually laughed at me when I showed him Civilization III for mobile (which I thought was a pretty cool port of the desktop version).
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