Ubisoft and Microsoft-owned in-game ad provider Massive have announced a partnership with Paramount Pictures to place gameplay-reliant, ad-based clues in the Xbox 360 version of Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas 2, creating a scavenger hunt that promotes the upcoming film 'Tropic Thunder.'
The campaign is considerably more extensive and gameplay-reliant than most in-game ads have been to date. Rather than static marketing artwork, the Ubisoft Montreal-developed title features an in-game "scavenger hunt" consisting of a series of successive clues.
Gamers who complete the game-within-a-game will receive a "free digital VIP map" for the title, as well as an entry into a 'Tropic Thunder'-themed sweepstakes whose prizes include an Xbox 360 Elite system. The contest began in mid-July and will continue through August 25.
Massive's effort represents a more involved, participatory in-game ad campaign than gamers have traditionally been familiar with. This relatively nascent advertising segment has received a considerable amount of attention, with Google also buying into the market via Adscape Media, but research examining the return on investment for such campaigns is still young.
Paramount interactive marketing senior VP Amy Powell commented on the deal. "We’ve had a track record of success working with Massive since the business started," she said. "This is taking our in-game advertising campaigns to the next level by making them interactive and actionable. Gamers are motivated to seek out the next ad, which is an amazing way for us to build awareness and excitement for our new release."
Said Massive CEO Cory Van Arsdale, "This is a new and highly innovative use of dynamic in-game advertising, and really demonstrates the creativity and marketing power of this medium."