Thursday, June 14, 2012

Coming Soon: Wreck It Ralph

Why I'm excited at the moment:

Wreck-It-Ralph, coming this November, is a brand new cartoon from Disney that features John C. Reilly as a video game villain who is tired of being the bad guy.  In an attempt to feel better about himself, Ralph hightails it out of his arcade game and begins experimenting in other games.  The below clip shows some pretty hilarious meetings with Jane Lynch in a war game, and Sara Silverman in a super-sweet and girly game called Sugar Rush.  But aside from the cool actors behind the scenes, I and I think most other video game lovers will be most frantic at seeing some of our favorite bad guys from real-life video games appearing in Ralph's support group.  I got a glimpse of King Koopa from Super Mario Brothers, Dr. Robotnik from Sonic the Hedgehog, and even a ghost from our beloved Pac Man.

I cannot contain myself.  Can you?
First of all, this is a genius move for Disney in terms of their already insane marketing strategy.  What better way to market the video game that seems to now come standard with every title they release, than to do a movie that is already the video game?  The movie website already features a playable section called "Fix-It Felix Jr.".   Secondly, the programming ideas rolling off my head for this November have just reached epic proportions.  I was already trying to find better ways to incorporate gaming into our younger kids programming, since most of their parents are highly against their precious ones ever touching a video game, let alone experiencing it in the "Book Sanctuary", they seem to think we are.  Through a title like this, we can safely and easily build programming around the movie release that could possibly introduce family gaming as one of our mainstays.

Finally, what has really got me smiling, is just the respect that the gaming industry has carved out for itself.  In the past, gamers were considered no-life, adult children who wanted to tamper with the innocence of children and make laziness and violence a way of life.  Not only that, but it held true to a very one-sided stereotype of a male-dominated, geeky world that wasn't very diverse.  Developers used to have to make games that tried to appeal to the movie and book community so that they could gain some footing in the entertainment industry as a real, viable part.  Now, however, things have flipped.  The gaming world has truly diversified, there is no one stereotype of a "gamer".  Instead of the games chasing books and films, they are now trying to appeal to the gamers.  With casual gaming on the rise, new technologies such as the Wii and Kinect appealing to our fitness and movement, and the upcoming Playstation Wonderbook which will focus more on reading, there is no denying now that gaming is a part of life and isn't going anywhere.

I cannot wait for this film, or the many other ways that this industry will continue to stake its claim.


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