Nintendo has announced a new live ad campaign set to run in UK cinemas over the next couple of weeks, consisting of a live demonstration of Wii Sports by some planted actors.
The plan is for the usual Wii trailer to run as part of the pre-film adverts, wherupon an actor playing the character of “Elsa” will enter the auditorium calling to her son “Steve”. At this point, the trailer will pause, the house lights will come up, and the actor playing Steve will identify himself in the audience before being challenged to a Wii Sports rematch by his mother. They will then play tennis live using the cinema screen.
Understandable. After all, my Mum and I love to play Wii Sports in random public venues all the time. In fact we’re planning a stage invasion at the Rod Stewart gig in Manchester next month. See you there.
But while my initial reaction to this was one of bogglement and pre-emptive embarrassment, it very probably will work. With the Wii stomping all over the competition’s sales at the moment as the accessible gaming machine for all, pushing the ease of interaction in a public forum like this will seriously hit the “Ooh, that looks like fun” market Nintendo is aiming for. Pick the right sort of family-oriented films to run it with as well, and many a car journey home will see parents marauded for a Wii by the l’il uns on the back seat.
The ad is set to run in Clapham, Greenwich, Stratford East, Cambridge and Liverpool this weekend, followed by Edinburgh, York, Southampton and Brixton the weekend after. I live in none of those places, so if you happen to see it, let me know what the reaction’s like.