A New Dawn: A Virtual or Real World Game?

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Over the last few weeks, a mysterious video game has piqued the attention of devout Irish gaming aficionados. Unfortunately for those who waited in line for the launch this past Friday, the mystery wasn’t what they had imagined. To the shock of eager gamers, ‘A New Dawn,’ something many had believed would be a new FPS (First Person Shooter) video game, was actually a clever recruitment campaign courtesy of the Irish Defence Forces in partnership with ad agency, ROTHCO.

The campaign began with a teaser trailer, similar to what many would expect with the launch of a major, new video game, to spark the interest of gamers. While the trailer itself received a significant amount of attention, the core of the campaign began when the gamers showed up on site expecting to find a video game, and instead found themselves participating in real-life Defence Force missions.

Through the use of a real soldier avatar, participants were fully immersed into a scenario in which they became a soldier in a platoon conducting a joint land, sea and air assault through first-person interactive video. The interactive experience allowed users to put their skill, determination and courage to the test to determine if they had the proper nerve and ability to apply for the Defence Forces.  It’s the truest test a person could take without experiencing combat first-hand.

“There’s a lack of understanding amongst the Irish public as to what the Defence Forces do, which is what we wanted to bring to the fore as part of this year’s recruitment campaign,” said Katie Oslizlok, Account Director at ROTHCO. “We were tasked with changing that perception, and in doing so, convince 5,000 18-24 year olds to apply for a career with the Defence Forces. We want to immerse young Irish men and women in the awesome reality of a career with the Defence Forces.”

The Defence Force’s new, innovative approach was a continuation from last year’s female-focused campaign that won a Silver Lion at Cannes Festival of Creativity.

For more about the campaign, head over to the official website.

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