Activision’s Black Ops – “There’s a soldier in all of us”
Call of Duty is an extremely successful video game franchise created by Activision consisting of seven different games to date. In the fall of 2009 Call of Duty - Modern Warfare 2, the prequel to this year’s Black Ops, set the record for five day video game sales with 550 million in revenue. The Call of Duty franchise has a very strong and loyal following but Activision decided to advertise heavily for their newest installment regardless. A billboard in Times Square was only the first step in this advertising thunderstorm. Though the numbers are up for debate, Activision CEO Bobby Kotick called this campaign “The biggest investment ever made in the launch of a game title”. The commercial being critiqued received the most attention of all the Black Ops advertisements. The commercial was developed by the Advertising Agency TBWA, and was directed by up and coming director Rupert Sanders.
The target audience for this advertisement is most likely males 12-34 years old, which is consistent with the largest sector of the video game market. The ad ran heavily during National Football league games in order to target this demographic. The NFL dominates this demographic in terms of viewership. The ad aired during day games as well as night games. The commercial appealed to hardcore gamers as well as novices and was designed to excite the loyal followers of the franchise as well as stimulate the interests of new players.
The commercial shows people from all ages and occupations, including a business woman, a young girl, a nurse, a chef, and even celebrities Kobe Bryant and Jimmy Kimmel, engaging in realistic war battles set to The Rolling Stones “Gimme Shelter”. The central message of the commercial is that anyone can experience the rush of being a hero from the safety of their video game consoles, as driven home by the tagline “There is a soldier in all of us”...