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Adam Creighton, Computer and Video Gaming (Subscribe)

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Join my colony; Updated Xbox 360 announcements

  1. Join my colony
  2. Updated Xbox 360 announcements


  1. Join my colony

    • I want you to join my colony. Details follow.
    • OK, so it looks like the folks behind the Halo 2 "ilovebees" Alternate Reality Game (ARG) is back, this time hyping the Xbox 360.
    • Like "ilovebees", the new "ourcolony" ARG/viral marketing introduces another communal insect -- the ant -- as its metaphorically weighty logo. The ant has been appearing in flyers all over the world, was plastered over SF's Sony Metreon during Sony's PSP lauch, and Chief XNA architect and Microsoft corporate vice president J Allard ws sporting the logo for a brief cameo on the demo of the new Xbox gamer card.
    • What else? Well, there's a countdown clock ticking away to May 12 -- 4 days before the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) kicks off. And Allard said at GDC that Microsoft will be revealing the next Xbox at E3.
    • So, there are some cryptic messages in the website, not least of which includes the admonition, "You're not going to make it to the end if you try to solo this,
      there's strength in numbers
      be diverse with your people and thoughts
      don't forget to collaborate."
    • Given that, I'm asking you to join my colony. After you receive an invitation from me, go to website, and add yourself to the "Xbox Now" colony. Enter "play" in the first empty field, then join a colony on the next screen by entering the password 51298371. Contact me if you need me to send an invitation.
    • This is an intriguing viral marketing campaign, because if it truly is an ARG for Xbox 360, and somebody's not asleep at the switch, this is a huge way to build new, massive clans at the launch of the new console. Brilliant.
    • A word of warning: One thing that separates this from the "ilovebees" travesty (and makes me question whether this is truly an ARG for Microsoft), is the servers aren't scaling to the demand for the site. The first couple of days saw abysmally slow loads, colony-related error messages, and (maybe) a wee bit of frustration. Please stick with it -- I want you in my colony. But yeah, this could be the thing that kills what could have been an incredible viral marketing campaign.

  2. Updated Xbox 360 announcements

    • CNN's Game-Over column is one of many pre-E3 articles that make it sound like this year's industry hype may have some real substance behind it.
    • Of course, of interest to me is columnist Chris Morris's projections about the next Xbox, which he firmly believes will be call "Xbox 360" (more's the pity). He restates some things that're "old" (and I've talked about) as far as all games optimized for high-def televisions and every games having some sort of online capability. Morris also thinks a hard drive is still possibility, and he's not counting out backwards compatibility.
    • He also mentions more of the probable launch titles, including Perfect Dark Zero from Rare, and some others I've mentioned.
    • Also, check out Morris's article, "A wish list for Xbox 2" -- I hope Microsoft is listening.

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SOURCES:,,,, IGN, GameInformer, Official XBox Magazine, CNN,, and others.


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