Kickstarter Launch Video
Chris Zhao-Holland had an idea. An avid gamer since the age of 4, he was aware of the issues many players face when shifting from the ease of a console controller to a keyboard and mouse. His solution ? A hybrid – providing all the advantages of a console controller with the precision and flexibility of the PC keyboard-and-mouse setup.
Wife Gwen Zhao-Holland wasn’t much older than that when she played her first video game. While gaming has changed significantly over the last few years, controllers have not. Sinister is their solution.
This dynamic duo met us through Hamilton’s annual Lion’s Lair event in September 2013. After months in production on their groundbreaking haptic game controller they were ready to debut it to the world on Kickstarter. Their goal? To raise 150,000 and begin production on the controller.
We met multiple times with Chris and Gwen to get a sense of video styles they liked while working side by side with their San Francisco based PR company to develop appropriate messaging for the consumer audience. Kickstarter videos are unique in that they are usually promoting a product that does not exist – in essence, they are selling an idea. The way to get people to connect to that idea is through elaborating on a company’s personal story, and the uniqueness of the product.
Stylistically, Kickstarter videos need to have the pace and tight informational approach of a commercial, while still incorporating that documentary feel in order to tell the ‘story’ of the device and really sell the passion and resolve of the company to potential consumers. We used a fast paced, broadcast journalism approach to tell the story, and incorporated 2D and 3D animation to give a Marvel-style feel to the piece while showcasing the controller’s special features as it was still in development when we produced the video.
We pulled together a rock star team and pulled out all the stops to deliver this piece to the team at Tivitas – just in time to premiere at CES 2014! Best of luck Gwen and Chris – thanks for giving us an inside look at Sinister!