AKQA creates pan-Euro rich-media campaign for Xbox

The digital agency AKQA is to launch a pan-European Christmas campaign for Xbox as the brand looks to boost sales ahead of its competitors Sony PlayStation 2 and Nintendo GameCube.

Key games launched for the festive season will be promoted using rich-media eyeblaster executions, which float across a web page and are interactive.

The shoot-'em-up title MechAssault will see web screens shake and bullet holes appear as if they have shattered the page like glass.

The cartoon adventure game Blinx will see a creative that streams the trailer promoting the game and the lead character burst on to the web page with his trusty weapon.

The creative is running across websites in the UK including lastminute.com, the games and gift channels of MSN.co.uk and the shopping comparison site Kelkoo.com.

The push will see 80 different executions run across 16 European markets including the UK, Spain, France, Germany and Italy.

Media planning and buying was handled by Universal McCann Interactive.

The promotion of individual titles forms part of a three-pronged advertising strategy.

The key to the strategy is games, as all three manufacturers, including Nintendo's GameCube, lose money on console sales, after a discounting war to attract consumers, and rely on the lure of titles to make profits.

The second strand of the campaign will see Xbox promoting its bundled offer of an Xbox games console and two free games, Sega GT and Jet Set Radio Future, for £159.99.

The third part of the plan is an awareness campaign highlighting the fact that Xbox now has a portfolio of more than 200 titles.