So what the hell was going on with the video we just posted below? It's all part of Microsoft's new "A Hero Must Rise. Believe" campaign to promote Halo 3.
The campaign experience does not focus on "Halo 3's" graphics or gameplay, but instead looks at the themes that lie at the heart of the tale that spans the entire "Halo" trilogy: duty, sacrifice, and most importantly, heroism.
The spot from today is called "Museum," and is a teaser for the upcoming "Diorama" in which a major scene from the Halo 3 trilogy was modelled by famous designer Stan Winston—to scale—in a massive 110 square metre setup reaching over 3 metres into the air. All the smoke and mirrors are almost enough to make you forget Halo 3 is just another notable FPS. Almost.
Full press release after the jump.
A HERO MUST RISE. BELIEVE.
Landmark "Halo 3" Marketing Campaign Debuts; Ushers in Game's Launch on September 25
Every so often individuals are called upon to rise above themselves and act in a selfless manner - to help, to protect, to defend those in need. We call these people, who rise up in the face of great adversity, heroes. One such individual's story is about to be told worldwide. On Sept. 25, "Halo 3's" epic hero Master Chief will rise once again - he'll face seemingly insurmountable odds with the entire fate of the galaxy riding on his shoulders.
In memory of this hero, and helping build to what promises to be the largest entertainment launch in history on Sept. 25, a series of dramatic and evocative communications elements, created by McCann San Francisco, T.A.G., AKQA, and Microsoft Global Marketing will offer a stirring look at the "Halo" universe and Master Chief.
The first of the films, entitled "Museum," premieres today on http://games.yahoo.com and provides consumers everywhere with a reason to "Believe" in the amazing stories and action within the Halo experience, bringing the epic battles to life in the style of a museum "diorama."
Certain to catch the imagination of audiences around the globe, the ads are unlike any video game advertising ever created, and offer a powerful look at the world of "Halo". Uniquely, the campaign experience does not focus on "Halo 3's" graphics or gameplay, but instead looks at the themes that lie at the heart of the tale that spans the entire "Halo" trilogy: duty, sacrifice, and most importantly, heroism.
Through the eyes of celebrated Hollywood creature designer Stan Winston, known for his landmark work on Aliens and Jurassic Park;, as well as New Deal Studios, model creators for Spiderman 3, 300 and Superman Returns, and acclaimed director Rupert Sanders, people will experience a dramatic and moving look at mankind's struggle against our future enemy, the fierce warrior force known as the Covenant.
The central element that much of the integrated marketing campaign centres on is a painstakingly accurate replication of a key moment from a climactic battle set in the "Halo" universe. At over 1200 square feet, reaching a height over 12 feet above the ground and with each handcrafted human and Covenant figure standing eight to twelve inches high, the diorama was large enough to fill an entire studio.
Filming the Experience
Shooting the campaign took several days as the individual soldier's stories were told, and as the camera spanned the landscape, finally resting on the mountain top where Master Chief appears to have been conquered by the Covenant enemy...or so it would seem. Viewers quickly realise that there is much more of the story that's yet to be told - and the game will tell all.
The story of the diorama and the battle that day has been told through films that will be shown in 27 countries around the world on television, in cinema and on the web. But the Halo 3 experience is much larger than that, with future testimonial films depicting soldiers' third-party accounts of their experience in the battles, and with the hero that is Master Chief.
As part of the integrated campaign, an innovative web experience has been created that enables consumers to interact with and explore every part of the climactic battle in minute detail. Beyond the TV, cinema and print efforts, the site is also supported by an online advertising campaign that starts the conversation with the consumer and a branded channel on YouTube that helps to position Master Chief as the biggest hero in history. All digital components were created by AKQA San Francisco.
Viewers get a sneak peek at "Diorama" on http://games.yahoo.com Friday Sept. 14 at 9 a.m. PST / 12 p.m. EST, as well as a feature on the making of the diorama, entitled, "Ammo". The "Diorama" work will make its TV debut during NFL Football on CBS Sunday Sept. 16. This, and the full series of web films, which honour the heroism of Master Chief, will also be available on Xbox LIVE Marketplace and http:www.halo3.com/believe starting September 14.