3D Orbit Ball Rolls Circles Around Our Spare Time

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We have a love/hate relationship with Candystand, whom we've reviewed so often we ought to be on their payroll.

We think they know it.

To fully leverage our weakness for time-wasting single-person games and sell us candy at the same time, they've come out with yet another such offering called Orbit Spherez. (Guess what candy they're pushing.) It merits a NSFW rating. Be careful.

Our only big beef: what's up with the laggage? We are not fans of laggage.

by Angela Natividad    Apr- 1-07    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Games, Good



Milwaukee's Best Brings Us Closer to Technology than We Ever Wanted

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We're completely weirded-out by the T-Scan 2000 for Milwaukee's Best Light.

The TScan scans your tongue to gauge which beer is right for you. Because we're sharp as tacks, we didn't actually put our tongues on the screens, just clicked through the scanning process to the very end. But the system rejected us because it lacked sufficient tongue information. Okay, whatever. So we clicked through again. Again, insufficient tongue information, and could we please add pressure too?

OMGWTF, we said. So, ever so gingerly, we put our tongues on the monitor.

And still yielded no results.

And now our screen is wet.

We feel so douchey.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-29-07    
Topic: Brands, Games, Online



Win an Xbox 360 for Spying on Neighbors and Making a Montage

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Apparently even movies want in on CGM. Paramount gets together with Eyespot to push a video mash-up contest for the Disney-fied Rear Window-esque film Disturbia starring Shia LaBeouf.

The promotions put heat on how well you know your neighbors and encourages a sensory mix of audio, visual effects and whatever else you can weave out of Final Cut Pro. Contest winners get an Xbox 360 because everybody already has an iPod and only spammy banners give iPhones away.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-23-07    
Topic: Games, Online, Promotions



Fuel Recycles for Mazda's Queue of Lame Duck Campaigns

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Commendably persistent in its quest to spark the libido of speed-freak co-eds (previous attempts one and two), Mazda throws the weight of some slightly-below-indy Canadian bands behind a new virtual driving game.

Created by Fuel Industries, the courses were shot on college campuses and university students can choose between three.

We played the game and it seemed promising until we realized the speed couldn't be adjusted (from what we could tell, anyway) and we didn't even have to mess with the right or left functions. Just keep pushing the forward button and the car turns for you. If only real-life cars were that smart. Oh wait, Lexus might be.

Learn something from Candystand, the branded-game pros, or even Nokia, who really struck gold with almost the same idea. In fact, it was made by the same people.

Ew, a sloppy seconds campaign. Not cute.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-21-07    
Topic: Bad, Games, Online



Online Game Encourages Community, Existential Advertising

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There's all kinds of time-wasters people can play online and there's innumerable ways for people to win money. There's also hundreds of mindless advertising awards show that offer up nothing more than pretty statues to collect dust in your office. Why not combine all this into something that's fun and involves people outside of the industry as well.

Dubbed existential advertising, Lost (the site, not the show) is a place where people can join, invite others and get creative in doing so. Instead of link-begging (which is all we're up to at this point, sadly), players are urged to come up with creative ways to invite people to the site. For each person that accepts an invitation, the inviter gets a point. If they don't get any points withing a 30 day period, they lose and they are out of the game. If them win, they get $5,000. Give it a try.

by Steve Hall    Mar-17-07    
Topic: Consumer Created, Games, Good, Online



Trademarks and Taglines Combined Make Poetry

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If you've ever wondered why it's so difficult to trademark your taglines and copy points, look no further than a site called Trademarked Sentences, a growing collection of hundreds of corporate taglines. But simply listing them would be boring so the creators of the site have added a tagline poetry maker and a trademark trivia game.

In the words of marketers the world over, the creators describe the site, saying, "You deserve a break today. Leap ahead and Think different. The website is... Rewarding. Very, very, very rewarding. THE POSSIBILITIES ARE INFINITE. Use it for all it's worth. because We bring good things to life." Indeed.

by Steve Hall    Mar-16-07    
Topic: Games, Good



SXSW: Toys for Boys, Playing in Will Wright's Virtual Doll House

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At the recent SXSW conference in Austin, Will Wright, the famed game designer behind SimCity, The Sims and the yet to be released and highly anticipated Spore, flipped through pages of storytelling to an audience of all ears. Linking stories with the shift from passive to interactive media, Wright outlined the social and biological differences between games and film. While games utilize our basic instincts within the brain, film typically provides a rich emotional palette. Rather than push for the complete adoption of one or the other, Wright integrated the two into a cohesive experience.

more »

by Ariel Waldman    Mar-16-07    
Topic: Games, Industry Events, Trends and Culture



Wrigley Starts Solstice Sweepstakes, Makes Good on Digg

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In its ongoing effort to deluge us with distractions, Wrigley's Candystand pulls yet another promotion out of its candy ... self.

After a brief registration process you, yes you, can take part in a sweepstakes for a Pontiac Solstice. The Wrigley/GM contest is heavily branded with information on the Big E Pack, which contains an inordinate illogical amount of Eclipse gum (over 60 pieces!!!). Its unique packaging and the way it's hocked on the short sweepstakes introduction ("Keep one on the counter ... in a desk...") brings baby wipes to mind.

While we're here we might as well tell you about Candystand's sequel to Flash Element TD, lamely titled Flash Circle TD.

David Scott of the original Flash Element assisted in creating the Wrigley-fied remix. It's doing nicely on Digg, whose community doesn't seem to mind that the game is swathed in LifeSavers ads. It did spark an interesting conversation on idea-ripping though.

Who'd have guessed candy would mesh well with cars or even consoles, for that matter. What is the point of candy anyway?

by Angela Natividad    Mar-15-07    
Topic: Games, Online



State Farm Tosses Bone at Cogs Working Through March Madness

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Just because you have a job doesn't mean you should miss out on the fun and games of March Madness. With the wilting white collar worker in mind, Tribal DDB throws together a March Madness tourney toolkit on behalf of State Farm.

It makes one feel pathetic in its all-encompassing office splendour. Users hungry for the rush can download March Madness propaganda, create a little bobble-headed friend and play office hoops.

That's almost like being at a March Madness game ... except not.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-14-07    
Topic: Games, Online



Graphic Artist Makes Grid-Based 80's Ad Mash-Up

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Curiouser and curiouser. Australia-based graphic artist Jason Nelson throws together an odd piece of work called Hermeticon, which uses bits of '80's toy and candy ads to create sound and video collages that spark to life when you type things out into a grid. He calls the results "ad-driven spells."

It reminds us a lot of all the ad generators already flying around except less coherent than usual. That's okay though, we dig it.

It might just be because our childhood connection to Rainbow Brite sparked back to life when she appeared for a moment - just a moment! - on the grid. We can't help but admire the emotional range of a good nostalgic mash-up. That's why we sit on in the dark watching "I Love the 80's" reruns at 2 AM.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-12-07    
Topic: Consumer Created, Games, Good, Online










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