By James BrightmanWhen it comes to baseball video games, despite improved efforts from 2K Sports, there’s really been only one game in recent years that consistently sparkles with quality and that’s Sony’s MLB The Show franchise.
Kevin Butler has a special relationship with The Show because, as you may remember, the very first appearance of KB was in a commercial for the game featuring Red Sox player Dustin Pedroia. Since then, Butler has risen to cult status among gamers.
IndustryGamers recently met with Scott McCarthy, brand manager for PlayStation software, at a press event featuring MLB The Show 2011 cover athlete Joe Mauer. McCarthy gave us the scoop on what SCEA’s got planned for Butler next.
He continued, “That’s in an effort to talk to sports gamers everywhere, not just fans of The Show. So we’re targeting anyone who’s ever played FIFA or Madden or NBA, so they can look at The Show as something that provides them with that sports fix also. That’s something that’s been missing in general from previous year’s campaigns with baseball games. It’s really spoken to baseball fans who appreciate the nuances of the game, and so we want to bring that out to people who just appreciate great sports. The first airing will be during Red Sox-Yankees on Opening Day.””We have all the baseball gamers on PS3… as far as market share we can’t target more baseball gamers, so we have to target sports gamers in general. And so with that in mind and using the Joe Mauer/Kevin Butler ‘Well Played’ [vibe] that we got last year, we wanted to expand on that just as we’ve expanded on PS3 in general with the ‘It Only Does Everything’ campaign. What that led us to in the spot was Joe and Kevin sitting down on the couch together really smack talking back and forth with each other, continuing that ‘bromance’ that started last year,” McCarthy revealed.
And way before Opening Day, McCarthy let us know that the whole trash talking theme will be brought online next week with a series of Kevin Butler videos. “Another big thing this year is co-op. If I know baseball and you don’t we can actually play on the same team this year. Co-op is one of those important modes that helps us bring in the sports gamer. And how we’re messaging that is actually kind of funny.
Going back to Kevin Butler, we made a series of online videos where Kevin is actually teaching consumers how to increase their level of trash talk,” he said. “Because The Show is on such a higher level this year, you have to increase your trash talk to get the most out of the game – at least that’s what Kevin thinks. We’ll be unveiling a series of videos where Kevin is unveiling his shaft method of trash talk. So everyone’s going to get shafted by Kevin Butler!”
Sony really has struck gold with its Kevin Butler campaign presence. We’re looking forward to seeing these new ads.
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