A Case-Study On the Video Promotion Behind the Game Returner 77

Returner 77 is a space puzzle adventure in full 3D, focusing on providing an engaging storyline, cinematic cutscenes and immersive gameplay. The following content is a mix-mash of different video productions, from ads to App Store content. Enjoy!

Facebook Ads: Android Sale Promotion - A/B Testing
Utilising the power of A/B testing to continuously improve content, I created two sets of ads, containing both an A and B version.
Set 1: Storytelling
These ads are only 15 seconds long, but conveys the story of a space odyssey, building up suspense through increasingly fast cuts (video and audio), leading up to the introduction of a distressed character and ending with first person character interaction. This way viewer experiences a full storyline in a compressed format, showcasing environments, character interactions and gameplay, all within 15 seconds.

 The ads are enclosed inside a frame of graphic promotion content with discrete interactions.

The A/B version differ only in how the graphic content is positioned. Testing if a top position of the video content works best, or if a vertically centered version does.

Storytelling Version A

Storytelling Version B

Set 2: Puzzle Gameplay
The second set of ads doesn’t focus on story, but instead on interactive gameplay, while the A/B graphic frame format stays the same. Several in-game 3D puzzle examples are captured, end their interaction on mobile devices is showcased with graphics, mimicking finger tap and drag actions. This makes the gameplay footage less abstract, and the viewer can instantly recognise active mobile gameplay.

Puzzle Gameplay Version A

Puzzle Gameplay Version B

Facebook Ads: Desktop Graphics on Mobile Devices
How do you reach potential customers with the message that: “Yes! These graphics that you see are actually available on mobile devices! You don’t need Desktop or a PS4 to get great, rich graphics.” Well, you make it fool-proof. I added simple and generic-looking animated graphics, to frame the visuals in phone and tablet looking frames. The message was enhanced further with copy, accompanying the graphic animations.

Campaign Ad A

Campaign Ad B

Facebook Ads: Steam Summer Sale - A/B Testing
Steam had their Summer Sale in June 18, and Returner 77 tagged along. 9:16 resolution was tested agains 1:1 resolution, and dark visuals were tested against bright.
Set 1: Dark and Slow Cinemagraph
I added discrete animations to still footage of the main game visual, to keep the format short and the text in focus. The style and the animation simulating a flickering light ads a darker and more mysterious (perhaps even horror) feel to the visualisation.

Dark and Mysterious version A

Dark and Mysterious version B

Set 2: Bright and Rapid Cinemagraph
The second ad strived away from the space-themed style of previously created ads for the game, focusing instead on bright colours and rapid animations. Again, I animated still footage to create movement, but still leave attention to the text message.

Bright and Rapid Version A

Bright and Rapid Version B

Appstore App Preview Videos
I was tasked with crating an additional video to showcase Returner 77 in the Appstore. The message were to focus on some newly added functions of the game: a “Lore Scanner”, that revealed background stories of artefacts in the game, the possibility to view your inventory items in full, turn-able 3D and an improved tutorial intro. Except for this the AI help function and the fact that the game is in full 360 degree 3D should be highlighted. I used quick cuts, text overlay and visualisations of the mobile interactions to create an easy, understandable trailer, that respected the short time limits. 

The example below shows the iPad version. 
To conclude
These ads helped deliver the best campaign results so far, since Fantastic, Yes was founded. The approach of showcasing video material directly inside devices and other frames, showing mobile touch interactions and using cinemagraph techniques, helped make the ad content less abstract, and more hands on show the functionality and the value of the games.

 Continous development of the A/B tested ads, as well as new and innovative concepts will help ensure Returner 77's future success.
Thanks for Reading!​​​​​​​
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