Celebrity Games Got a Whole Lot Beta

BCM215

My DA process has had a slow start but, week after week I have felt improvement within my research and the progress of my DA. With each weekly blog post, I have been able to further develop my research and ultimately my analytical frameworks.

Beginning my DA I had made the assumption that Kim Kardashian (KK) had developed a game with pop up ads and in-game purchases solely to make money and to enhance her rapid shot to fame she had been experiencing in 2014, but through my research I feel I judged this game and KK by the game’s cover too quickly. Through my game experience, my assumption has been proven true but what I’ve discovered from my research about this game and the mobile gaming industry has peaked my interest.

The mobile gaming industry is fairly new and there are hundreds of thousands of games available to download for mobile devices so how did a celebrity with no gaming experience or knowledge, get the opportunity to develop their own game?

Kim Kardashian Hollywood (KKH) is developed by Glu Mobile, who claims to be “The Leader in 3D Freemium Mobile Gaming” (Glu, 2020). Their purpose is to deliver fun mobile games and game experiences and I believe they have certainly hit the mark on with KKH. The CEO of glue, Niccolo de Masi approached KK in late 2013 with the aim to “reuse engines but could add popular appeal” (Tweedie 2014) and KK fit their ideas. So in 2014 KKH was released and did better than either party had expected.

My analytical framework examines the KKH game from a financial and marketing perspective. In the first year since the game’s initial launch, over $71.8 million was made from in-app purchases alone as the game is a freemium game, meaning it is a free to download game and generated over 40 million downloads. Financially, this game has made millions and continues to do so as there is no “end” to the game so although the aim of the game is to become an A list celebrity and gain followers, there is no limit to how many followers you can accumulate as continuous updates allow for players to continue to grow their following.

Looking at the game from a marketing perspective, it was simple but genius. With the rise of Instagram and Twitter, KK was able to not only announce but also continue to promote (and still does) her game from just her social media platforms. The game targets females “emphasising the importance of cultivating a unique individual style for dissemination across networked media (Soehendar & Widjayanti 2020). Using the power of social media and targeting her female followers made this game one of the top games in 2015!

Kim Kardashian, Twitter 2014
Kin Kardashian Instagram, 2021

As I continue to develop my research, I seem to enjoy the process more and more and cannot wait to continue my DA. From my research thus far, I feel as though this game has done everything right to make it as popular as it has become.

References

Company | Glu 2020, Glu, viewed 29 September 2021, <https://www.glu.com/company/&gt;.

Tweedie, S 2014, The Mastermind Behind Kim Kardashian’s Insanely-Popular App Explains How The Hit Game Was Created, Business Insider Australia, viewed 29 September 2021, <https://www.businessinsider.com.au/kim-kardashian-hollywood-game-history-2014-8&gt;.

Soehendar, P, T & Widjayanti, P, E, 2020, THE MANIFESTATION OF KIM KARDASHIAN’S AESTHETIC AND GLAMOUR LABORS IN KIM KARDASHIAN: HOLLYWOOD MOBILE GAME, undefined, viewed 29 September 2021, <https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/THE-MANIFESTATION-OF-KIM-KARDASHIAN%E2%80%99S-AESTHETIC-AND-Soehendar-Widjayanti/160fcfc628619f7f85c87aa4958a07ad458a9424&gt;.

Celebrity Games – DA PITCH

BCM215, Celebrity Games-DA Pitch

The mobile phone gaming industry is a fairly new creative industry with the first mobile game having been introduced in 1997 (Osborn 2014). In a 2012 study, 44% of participants admitted to playing mobile games on a regular basis (Osborn 2014) which suggest to me that the mobile phone gaming industry is an area with the greatest potential to see increase a perfect area for celebrities to also increase their reach.

Mobile phone games are easily accessible for those who have a smartphone with around 3.8 billion people having access to a smartphone which equates to 48.2% of the world’s population (Smartphone users 2026 | Statista 2016). This is again proving the immensely large reach of people this industry. With it only becoming more popular as the access to smartphones increases.

Statista 2021

To put this industry into perspective, Candy Crush Saga was the first mobile phone game to reach $1 billion in revenue and although it hit its peak in 2015, it still continues to release new levels and as of 2020 has 273 million users playing the game at least once a month (Candy Crush Revenue and Usage Statistics, 2021). In 2020, the game was able to generate sales of $1190 million in revenue continuing to prove it is still a highly profitable game.

These statistics would impress anyone, but a celebrity or a celebrity’s manager may find these statistics as more than just impressive, they sound exciting and look like an amazing new business venture to delve into. It may also sound like a great way to continue to capitalise profits. With my DA, my goal is to look into reasons why celebrities have developed mobile phone games. Was it just to make money? Were fans asking for a game? Who reached out to who first? Was it the game developer or the celebrity?

My DA Celebrity Games, will require me to actively play a variety of celebrity mobile games in my free time (not that i’m complaining) to then review and give my opinions on as well as finding external research which will help to identify the reasons this gaming industry is continuously growing.

Looking at my DA, I will be analysing each game from the perspective of a mobile phone gamer who strictly sticks to her games and doesn’t stray far from them or tries to expand her phone game collection. My DA will examine the role of marketing and financial benefits celebrity mobile phone games have.

My Current Games

Celebrity Games will be made public through my youtube channel with mini reviews posted weekly around 5-8 minutes in length. I will also try to film parts of my gaming experience to include into these weekly review videos to be able to talk on how the game experience made me feel. Did the aesthetics make me enjoy the game more? Did the music and sound effects make sense in conjunction to the game? These will be some of the questions I will look at unpacking with each review of a celebrity’s game.

To gain more of an understanding on my DA, please check out my DA pitch video below.

To this I say, lets get gaming!

References

Candy Crush Revenue and Usage Statistics (2021) 2021, Business of Apps, viewed 18 August 2021, <https://www.businessofapps.com/data/candy-crush-statistics/&gt;.

Osborn, G. (2014). Always on the Move: A History of Mobile Gaming. (Article). (Accessed: 18.8.21). http://www.proelios.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/A-History-of-Mobile-Gaming.pdf

Smartphone users 2026 | Statista 2016, Statista, Statista, viewed 18 August 2021, <https://www.statista.com/statistics/330695/number-of-smartphone-users-worldwide/&gt;.