MTV sends word that they will be launching a new division, MTV Games. Like the title implies this will be a new division within MTV that will focus on "developing, producing and promoting unique and creative gaming experiences that resonate with MTVâ€™s audience". The announcement does put the Midway partnership (below) into perspective.
MTV LAUNCHES NEW INTERACTIVE ENTERTAINMENT DIVISION: â€œMTV GAMESâ€
MTVâ€™S INTERACTIVE ENTERTAINMENT STUDIO, â€œMTV GAMESâ€, TO INCUBATE & PRODUCE ORIGINAL GAME TITLES FOR THE MTV AUDIENCE;
PLUS CREATE INNOVATIVE STRATEGIC MARKETING PARTNERSHIPS WITH GAME PUBLISHERS
New York, NY (June 27, 2005) â€“ MTV: Music Television today announced the launch of its newest division, â€œMTV Games.â€ Dedicated to developing, producing and promoting unique and creative gaming experiences that resonate with MTVâ€™s audience, MTV Games will work in-house through its newly created interactive entertainment studio, along with industry partners, to produce and market original video game titles. MTV Games will incubate original game franchises in partnership with independent game developers. In addition, the new division will forge strategic marketing partnerships with game publishers to connect with the MTV audience across multiple platforms. MTV will work closely with publishers, leveraging its unique brand and marketing capabilities to maximize the success of each MTV Games release.
â€œIn 1996 we launched MTV Films with the hopes of discovering some risky and bold stories to tell. Nine years later, Iâ€™m ecstatic about what we have accomplished, and today we launch MTV Games with a similar objective -- incubating breakthrough gaming concepts that embrace creative risk-taking, and push the boundaries of interactive entertainment,â€ said Van Toffler, President, MTV Networks Music/Logo/Films Group.
â€œTechnology, creativity and entertainment have continually adapted, expanded and melded together to create successful new industries,â€ said Jeff Yapp, EVP, MTV Networks Music and Logo Enterprise Group. â€œMTV Games is an exciting new division with enormous possibilities within an ever-evolving industry. We are forging into new territory and are enthusiastic about this unique and exciting new way of working with game publishers and independent game developers.â€
As part of todayâ€™s announcement, MTV Games unveiled a strategic relationship with Midway Games Inc. (NYSE: MWY), a leading interactive entertainment publisher and developer, to market, jointly sell in-game advertising, and collaborate on soundtrack development for three upcoming games. Under the deal, MTV and Midway will partner in a mutually beneficial royalty sharing structure. The first release from this partnership will be â€œL.A. RUSH,â€ a high-octane, arcade racing game that allows users to fully embrace the car-tuning culture with creative design assistance from West Coast Customs, the automotive customization authority featured in the hit MTV series, â€œPimp My Ride.â€ MTV Games and Midway will announce the two other gaming titles to be released under the agreement at a later date.
MTV Games will also be a dedicated gaming laboratory and interactive studio for the creation, incubation, and development of new original game titles culturally relevant to MTVâ€™s audience. In addition, MTV will tap MTV Games as a new creative hub, extending game concepts into larger entertainment franchises that have the potential to transition into television, film and more.
In addition through strategic marketing partnerships, MTV Games will market a diverse slate of releases to core gamers and casual gamers alike, with unparalleled audience reach via broadcast platforms including MTV, MTV2, mtvU and others, online portals, wireless applications, outdoor platforms, MTV Films, and much more. MTV Games will also partner with publishers to sell in-game advertising, collaborate on game soundtrack development, and develop complementary television programming. In the coming months, MTV Games will announce additional publisher partnerships.
MTV Games is overseen by Jeff Yapp, EVP, MTV Networks Music and Logo Enterprise Group who reports to Rich Eigendorff, Chief Operating Officer of MTV Networks Music and Logo Group. Tony Calandra, Sr. Director of MTV Interactive Products, will manage the new division and Joseph Varet, Director MTV Business Development & Strategy will oversee MTV Gamesâ€™ business partnerships and strategic relationships. Jamie Leece (formerly President of Gotham Games, a division of Take Two) will serve as MTV Gamesâ€™ Executive Producer working with independent developers to identify new projects. Marc Nesbitt, Sr. Producer of MTV Games will oversee all project production and creative.
MTV Networks owns and operates the cable television programming services MTV: Music Television, MTV2, mtvU, Nickelodeon/Nick at Nite, TV Land, VH1, CMT: Country Music Television, Comedy Central, and Spike TV, as well as The Digital Suite from MTV Networks, a package of thirteen digital services, all of which are trademarks of MTV Networks. MTV Networks also operates and offers joint ventures, licensing agreements and syndication deals whereby its programming can be seen worldwide.