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Video Games Industry: Halo 4 vs Flappy Bird

A small industry case study comparing Halo 4 & Flappy Bird
by

Peter McGiffen

on 8 June 2016

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Transcript of Video Games Industry: Halo 4 vs Flappy Bird

Video Games:
Halo 4 vs. Flappy Bird

Comparing
Video Games:
HALO 4 &
Flappy Bird

MEDIA INDUSTRIES:
MARKETING & PROMOTION

Read and annotate the articles that relate to the marketing and promotion of Halo 4 & Flappy Bird.
Find at least 5 techniques / strategies that are employed for each game.
Rank them from #1 most important to #5 least important / effective.
Feedback your ideas to the class.

What are your initial thoughts in relation to the following question:

(This week's Homework Question.)
"How important to the success of the game, is the institution producing and marketing the game?"
(500 words)
Halo 4:
Launch Trailer
What does the trailer promise?
What genre is the game?
What narrative expectations are established here?
Who is the target audience?
Flappy Bird:
Review (IGN)
HALO 4 - MICROSOFT &
343 INDUSTRIES
Microsoft -
A massive multinational + huge resource base: $ 100 million budget for production and marketing. Fan Base.
Build on successful franchise - sequel.
Game content - high end technology, photo real graphics, cutting edge SF-FPS.
High Profile TV & Internet trailers.
Movie Tie-In, Halo 4: Forward unto Dawn
343 Industries -
proven track record of games design.
(Halo CE Anniversary. Halo Reach. Spartan Assault).
Collaborative studio.
Flappy Birds -
.Gears Studio
Dong Nguyen & .Gears Studio
$0 marketing budget + "word of mouth"
Low tech - retro graphics arcade / platform game.
Free download from iTunes & Google Play.
Viral Marketing:
Famous YouTuber PewDiePie's video about Flappy Birds had 7 million views in days. Now it has 25+ million views!
TheFunnyVines (1.2M followers) tweeted a rap about the game.
Creator became an internet phenomenon.
https://twitter.com/FunnyVines/status/431156082590089216


Cameron Goldworthy's
Flappy Bird
Rap on Twitter
FLAPPY BIRD: VIRAL MARKETING
PewDiePie's "Dont Play This!"
YouTube Review
Halo Reach Trailer
'Halo 4' Live action Trailer and 'Forward unto Dawn' pre-release webisode Trailer.
Media Distribution
& Technology

Qu. What role does technology play in getting the product from the producer to the consumer?

List as many examples as possible and assess their relative merits.
Google Play -
Android's online Shop
Amazon - just one of many online retailers.
+ Online pre-release special offers.
Or download the game and some costly DLC through your Xbox 360...
Look at the HALO 4
SYNERGY & MARKETING list:
Halo Waypoint - website
Halo - TV adverts
Halo - online trailers
Halo - Movie tie-in
Halo - novels, graphic novels, encyclopedia ...
Reviews - Fans, Gamers, Distributors, wider media.
Halo toys - die cast metal
Halo toys - mega bloks
CD soundtrack, DVD
T-shirts, hoodies
What benefits does this range offer in terms of potential commercial success?
Product Successes ?
Halo 4:
Costs: $100 million (estimated)
Takings: Grossed $220 million on its first day of sales and $300 million over the first week. More than One million people played the game in the first 24 hours after its release. Has sold almost 9 million copies to date ($535 milion).

Flappy Bird:
Costs: minimal (2 days developing!!)
Takings: $1.5 million (estimated) $50,000 per day for a month in advertising revenue. Over 50 million downloads before withdrawn.

"To What extent do the institutions creating and marketing games matter?"
Your conclusion.
Technology, Exchange &
Gameplay
Qu. "How does technology impact on the gameplay for Flappy Birds & Halo 4?"
List as many key gameplay features as possible for both titles.
Halo 4: Infinity
Spartan Ops
Halo 4: Launch Trailer
Halo 4 - spinoff
Spartan Assault

(Android App to free Xbox One download)
& of course the
iTunes Apple Store
Follow up activities -

1. Reah "The Flappy Bird Story":
http://mashable.com/2014/02/10/flappy-bird-story/
2. IGN Video: The Price of Success:
'Why the creator pulled the game'.
Flappy Bird & Technology
Smartphone & Tablet
The Internet: Online solo play

Halo 4 & Technology
Xbox 360 console only
Offline gameplay - solo, co-op, multi-player.
Online multi-player: competitive & cooperative modes. (Infinity - Spartan Ops)
Introduction to Marketing and Promotion of Video Games
Some Key Terms -
Please Jot down a Definition
:
Platform Game
FPS
Conglomerate
Independent
Franchise
Synergy
Merchandise
Viral Marketing
Two-Step Flow
Opinion Leaders

What does the review showcase? what is the genre of the game?
What narrative expectations were established here?
Who is the target audience?
A summary of the marketing techniques applied to Halo 4 and Flappy Bird.
(Add any of the following to your answers as needed.)
AIMS & OBJECTIVES
DEVELOP YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF MARKETING VIDEO GAMES.
UNDERSTAND & EMPLOY USEFUL KEY TERMS.
YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO: IDENTIFY KEY TERMS USED IN CONTEXT;
DEMONSTRATE AN UNDERSTANDING OF VIRAL MARKETING VERSUS
BIG BUDGET MARKETING;
YOU MAY ALSO BE ABLE TO EVALUATE THE MERITS OF EACH MARKETING STRATEGY.

MS4: Media -
Text, Industry & Audience.
Synoptic Questions
The questions on this unit are very broad and can focus on one of the following areas:
Text: Genre
Text: Narrative
Text: Representation
Industry: Production
Industry: Distribution & Exhibition
Industry: Marketing & Promotion
Industry: Regulation
Industry: Global Implications
Industry: Historical Background
Audience: Targeting & Positioning
Audience: Interaction & Debates
Today, we're going to discuss, "Why do media institutions matter when marketing video games?"
After watching the live action trailer for 343 Industries' prequel game Halo: Reach, what audience expectations are set up for their latest game, Halo 4?
Gameplay
3. Franchise Success?
Halo 5 Trailer.
How will these live action videos build demand for the Halo 4 video game?

Does this alter your initial ideas about the Halo 4 target audience?
How will this review help promote Flappy Bird?
How will this Twitter rap help promote Flappy Bird?
Issues and Representation
Consider the Representation of the main characters in the games we've seen so far.
Could anyone take issue with Flappy Bird?
However, some gamers have commented on it being a "rip-off" of elements of Mario...
Some gamers have said the game-play is very frustrating.

Issues and Representation
Analyse the construction of the characters:
Master Chief & Cortana.
What images of Masculinity and Femininity do they offer?
Could this cause controversy?
Keen observers will notice that the Halo franchise uses a lot of live action footage. The games themselves use a lot of live action motion capture footage to create authentic game-play.

What other marketing goal may this lead to?
What advantages does this
example of viral marketing
have over Halo 4's trailers?
FLAPPY BIRD RUINED MY LIFE!
Does Smosh's satirical swipe at Flappy Bird help promote the game?
Why did 10 million people watch this video?
HALO 4:
TARGET AUDIENCE
MALES 16 - 40.
Richard Dyer suggests that the target audience for Halo is mainly male and looking for an active escape from a passive life.
Also the pleasure of succeeding at the game is one of masculine self-actualisation - becoming a hyper-masculine hero.
Furthermore, another pleasure is that of engaging in online play with a wider community, simultaneously allowing masculine expression and comradeship.
FLAPPY BIRD TARGET AUDIENCE
TARGET AUDIENCE
: Any smartphone / tablet user. non-gender / age specific.
Acknowledged as a casual gamer with a few minutes to spare when not using social media on smartphones.
In this instance Dyer's theories can be stretched to suggest that by being able to 'control' the problematic Flappy Bird, players are exerting control over something when in their real lives they may find themselves powerless.
This in turn may lead to an increase in self-esteem with game play progress.
4. Remastering. Cash-in? For XBox One, The Master Chief Collection.
BELL
ACTIVITY
Target Audiences
Do you think there is a stereotypical target audience for Halo?
Try to write a profile of the player?
Do the same for Flappy Bird.
Are there similarities / differences?
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