As the first anniversary of its Japanese launch approached, NetEase’s mobile game Knives Out (@Game_Knives_Out) already had a lot to celebrate. Its growth in downloads and revenue was no small feat for a game from a Chinese developer. Japan is one of the most competitive markets for mobile games, with a core of gamers who are loyal to domestic titles.
The leading Japanese games had done more than top the download rankings. They had built communities through rich, lively conversation on Twitter, extending gamers’ enjoyment beyond the games and into a social community with like-minded peers.
Conversation was what @Game_Knives_Out needed if it was going to keep competing with the domestic giants in Japan, and Twitter is where the gaming conversation happens. On average, 1 in 3 of Japan’s 45 million monthly active Twitter users is interested in game content. For eager gamers, Twitter is the place they turn to for the latest gaming information and social happenings.
Knowing that most of its players are under 30 years old — many of them teenagers and college students — @Game_Knives_Out tailored its creative plans to relate to this target group. And because there’s extra fun to be found in sharing the game with friends in the real world, the campaign tied this insight together with online and offline elements for a 360-degree experience.
To spark the kind of conversation that can unite and excite young gamers on Twitter, @Game_Knives_Out went big. And it went live. For its #荒野1周年 (Knives Out First Anniversary) campaign, the game combined premium prize giveaways with live performances by various music artists at Tokyo landmarks.
Launching its Twitter campaign with a First View, @Game_Knives_Out built nationwide buzz and drove website visits in the lead-up to its event with live gameplay competition, cosplay exhibition, and performances to commemorate the game’s first anniversary. Next, it used Retweet to Remind to keep gamers engaged in the conversation. Finally, on event day, it used First View again for a final reminder and then to share the live stream. Meanwhile, on the #荒野1周年 Twitter Live Event page, gamers could Tweet about the event as they watched it together.