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July 2010

Gaming Industry Promotes Use Of Live-Action Storytelling

The video gaming industry has always been able to capitalize on the use of storytelling to better connect with their audience. A recent article published in Brandweek profiles the use of live-action ads to promote the September release of Halo:Reach - the latest game in Microsoft's hugely successful Halo series.

The live-action ad, called "Birth of a Spartan", features the star of the game - Carter-A259. It's a 3 minute cinematic short that reflects an increasing trend to use live-action storytelling to promote video games.

While the use of storytelling to promote consumer products is nothing new, the gaming industry has reaped the benefits of an engaging cinematic experience on viewers for years. Scott Duchon, co-founder of agencytwofifteen - the San Francisco based agency that handles the Microsoft Xbox account, says that they "needed to find something that was going to have a bigger emotional connection" than merely taking clips from the game. They needed to "have story lines that connect with people the way movies connect."

It's hard not to agree with the success of the big players in the extremely lucrative gaming industry. While the gaming industry is quick to see the benefits of the cinematic experience in its ability to push the envelope, there are many major consumer brands that still fail to see its full potential.

The ad has been shown (in varying times) on ABC, cable, online - and in theatres for Iron Man 2 during its opening weekend.