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Yaris Game ‘Exceeding Expectations’

Posted by: Matt Vella on January 18

1191865750A little over three months ago, Toyota (TM) released the first free, “brand-supported” (i.e. advergame) on Xbox Live Arcade. Dubbed Yaris, the light-weight title is a relatively simple dodge and shoot driving game based on the company’s latest small car, which launched in the U.S. last year. The game was conceived and pitched to Toyota by Saatchi & Saatchi LA, which is also behind the company’s clever Tacoma-in-World of Warcraft TV ad.

Saatchi won’t release the exact number but says they’re ahead of their targets so far. Advertisers should be watching for the coming post-mortem on the project to serve as a crucial barometer of how well suited the next-generation console download services are to advergames.

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No longer child's play, the booming global games market is worth billions of dollars. In Games, Inc., BusinessWeek Innovation writer Matt Vella and Tokyo correspondent Kenji Hall analyze emerging business trends in video games and interactive entertainment. They’ll examine everything from button-mashing, chart-topping, console games to serious games commissioned by big corporations to train staff. They’ll also map the evolution of expansive virtual worlds and go behind the strategies at companies that are turning play into big business.

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