Taking Bethesda’s Wolfenstein to the masses
In September 2017, Bethesda wanted to breathe new life into the promotion of their latest Wolfenstein release ‘The New Colossus’, the 8th instalment of the World War II themed, high action, first person shooter video game series. While targeting an 18-34 male audience, they were interested to look at some out of the box, tongue in cheek ideas and experiment with a tone of voice through us that they wouldn’t have necessarily been able to explore themselves.
The main plotline follows protagonist William ‘B.J’ Blazkowicz, a Jewish Polish-American Army Sergeant who fights against the Nazi powers. The New Colossus is set in an alternate history in which the Axis powers won the Second World War.
Making the Nazi’s the bad guys in fictional scenarios isn’t anything new, but it’s still no surprise that Wolfenstein hasn’t been short of its opposers over the years. While the game equally has its die-hard fans and supporters, there were calls for it to ‘stay away from politics’ amidst some rumblings of controversy surrounding the franchise. The release period was also very competitive with the likes of CoD, FIFA, Battlefront and Assassin’s Creed all available at the same time, while many of the younger section of the target audience wouldn’t have been aware of the legacy of the Wolfenstein franchise.
We wanted to push the boundaries with our content and stand-out from the pack but were conscious not to cross any lines considering some of the sensitivities around the game. We created 4 videos and combined assets with original comedy shorts plus ‘Newsreel’ style snippets about its political impact. Our lead sketch imagined two of Wolfenstein’s Henchman discovering the truth about themselves before we let three special older ladies loose on a live play through of the game.
Wolfenstein The New Colossus stormed into the top 5 in the UK gaming charts with over 319k units sold in the first week of release. Our videos pulled in a combined reach of 5.3M, 2.1M views and over 63K engagements.