To boost awareness of Arknights around the world, we partnered with Steve Aoki and his label, Dim Mak, to create a custom soundtrack.
Rolling out over the course of 2020, the soundtrack includes two new singles from Steve Aoki, as well as tracks from Bear Grillz, QUIX, and the world-renowned DJ duo Yellow Claw. In addition to creating the tracks, Steve worked closely with the Arknights team on two high-energy music videos — End Like This and Last of Me. Steve and the Dim Mak artists also promoted all of the releases on their social channels, building excitement and momentum for the fast-growing mobile game.
We partnered with 2K Games to bring New Bordeaux’s culture and Mafia underbelly to life for veteran fans and new audiences.
Case Study Video
Brand Strategy: Expanding the Pool
Mafia III had to contend with multiple AAA titles released around its launch, so expanding the audience was a must. Our strategy hinged on cross-cultural overlap, so we targeted potential fans within music, hip-hop, and sneaker culture with great success — Mafia III became the fastest-selling game in 2K history.
Ice Cube & DJ Shadow
We teamed up with renowned sneaker artist Kickasso and Complex Magazine to celebrate the game’s release with a Mafia III-inspired Adidas NMD. Influential artists and personalities in the hip-hop community helped to launch the shoe as an exclusive giveaway.
Because it was important to remain authentic to Mafia III’s setting, we also invited fans to experience the amazing city that inspired New Bordeaux. We worked with local NOLA hip-hop artist Curren$y to arrange a driving tour of the city and its unique, vibrant culture.
We knew the soundtrack was destined to be more than just a gritty, rock & roll backdrop for the game — even Rolling Stone wrote that Mafia III was “scored like a formidable Sixties mixtape.” So we brought it to partners like Spotify, Pandora, and Genius, along with a new Ice Cube and DJ Shadow collaboration for Mafia III called “Nobody Wants to Die.”
Hyper-Targeted HTML5 Launch
Rather than simply cut up the same key art into the usual set of digital banners, we created three distinct phases that emphasized different parts of the campaign with very different looks, targeted to different audiences.
The first visual phase was was built around the iconic red “III,” announcing the Mafia series’ return with some serious swagger. In the second phase, we began positioning Mafia III as the gaming equivalent of a prestige crime saga like American Gangster or Heat – more film than game — one that promised an unmissable blend of action, drama, and Oscar-quality writing. The third phase, building to launch, emphasized the box art with complex animations, site takeovers, and break-the-frame banners, ramping up excitement in an explosive way.
Ride to Valhalla in your very own wasteland Uber, take selfies with the War Boys, and share it all on social media.
Earned Media Impressions
Riding With the War Boys
A Massive Response
The execution not only entertained hordes of giddy onlookers, but also generated huge global brand awareness for the new Mad Max video game and Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment. Tens of thousands of fans shared their images on social media, and the hashtag #MadMaxAtPax alone generated an estimated 286 million impressions around the world. The wasteland rides were featured on the front page of popular media outlets, including The Verge, Complex, Maxim, Entertainment Weekly, Popular Mechanics and Business Insider.