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Nintendo Takes GameCube Previews to Top 12 Markets

11 Sep, 2001 By: John Gaudiosi

As part of its $75 million marketing budget for the Nov. 18 U.S. launch of GameCube, Nintendo will open Game Cube Clubs in 12 markets over a seven-week period, beginning Sept. 28 through Oct. 6 in Atlanta, Chicago and Los Angeles, that will allow consumers to play 10 exclusive GameCube games like Luigi's Mansion, Wave Race: Blue Storm, Pikmin, Super Smash Bros. Melee and Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader.

Three tours will run concurrently and each club will be in a market for approximately 10 days. More detailed information and free Club tickets will be available online at www.nintendogamecube.com.

Tour dates include Philadelphia, Detroit and Phoenix Oct. 11 through 20; Boston, Minneapolis and San Francisco Oct. 25 through Nov. 3; and New York, Dallas and Seattle Nov. 8 through 17.

In these select cities, Nintendo will transform loft areas and vacant retail space with 32 game play stations (each equipped with a Panasonic 32-inch HDTV monitor), surround sound audio systems, special club lighting, VIP “cube” rooms and a dance floor with DJs spinning music. At the clubs, guests can enter the “Play It on Panasonic” sweepstakes for a chance to win a Panasonic Tau PureFlat HDTV monitor and home theater sound system. Panasonic representatives will be handing out brochures on home video and audio products.

This approach is different from traditional 18-wheel truck tours, which Microsoft will use to preview Xbox this fall and Sony continues to use to promote PlayStation 2 and PS One. Nintendo used a van tour to promote its Game Boy Advance earlier this year.

"A traditional truck tour is too pedestrian for the unparalleled entertainment of Nintendo Gamecube and for the players who want to play it," says Peter Main, executive v.p. of sales and marketing, Nintendo of America. "Our clubs will immerse people in a multi-sensory experience, with sights and music pumping out of high-end digital audio and video equipment and, of course, the best games on the planet available only for Nintendo."

MTV will be the exclusive sponsor of the Nintendo Cube Club launch preview party in Los Angeles and the launch countdown party in New York City. The Nintendo Cube Club tour will be co-sponsored by Stuff, Yahoo! and DC Comics, among others.

Nintendo will also continue its “human interactives” campaign that launched with Game Boy Advance. Team members, wearing specially equipped outfits that include flat-screen monitors and a GameCube system, will be dispatched in each of the club markets to allow people at malls and movie theaters to play GameCube games, literally, on them.

Nintendo will also host a “What Would You Do For a GameCube contest for consumers online through September and October at www.nintendogamecube.com, as part of its “Nintendo Difference” marketing strategy.

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