11/26/2007

Quirky Online Games for the Plucky Office Procrastinator

I have to admit I’m a sucker for branded online games. I love the old-school feel that comes from playing them, the throwback to the Atari and original Nintendo-style graphics, the simplicity of the keyboard controls, and the thrill and gratification that comes from beating a game of low-to-medium difficulty. I’m hooked. And many users throughout the Internets are, too.

And more to the point: As viral marketing campaigns, online games almost always hit a bull’s eye. The reasons are obvious: They grab user attention for long periods of time, serve as free advertising, provide a distinct interactive brand experience, and help players self-identify with a specific corporate messaging.

Of course, any sort of online gaming experience—especially that of a nostalgic nature—will inevitably cut into the productivity of anyone’s day. It’s hard to hype up a time-consuming hobby frequently frowned upon at the office by administrative types. I’ve found, however, that dabbling in a little online fun can do just the trick to mushroom that imaginative spark and transform it into spot-on creative execution.

If, for example, you have a slam-dunk idea but still need to hash out the details, a dash of online gaming can help you carve out the finishing touches. Don’t believe me? Go ahead and check out some of the following branded games. If they don’t help you come up with some quirky and totally awesome digital marketing ideas of your very own, I invite you to go off on me on this very post with an irate comment or two. So here goes:

Headcase, from Wrigley’s Candystand: Use your mighty brainpower and oversized head to collect green diamonds and bounce your way out of chewy situations in this land of bubblegum wonders.

Absolut Disco, from Absolut Vodka: Not so much a game as a groovy online experience, this Studio54-inspired disco affair lets you boogie down to a myriad of keyboard-controlled late 70s psychedelia while using your webcam. Far out!

Zuma, by Yahoo! Games: From the makers of Bejeweled and Bookworm, this PC-only game is guaranteed to swallow up tons of your time. Swivel your stone frog and chuck your colored balls in the right direction before the hungry Aztec idol gobbles up the entire string of balls with a single swooping gulp.

Now that you know where to go, go ahead and kill some of that valuable office time. Let me know if these games get your creative juices flowing. Happy gaming!

33 comments:

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How can I survived my office days till now without knowing this??

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remember snood?? that was my favorite online game as you may remember

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