#crimediggers is a serious game with which the target audience can discover that a digital background is extremely relevant for detective work. The story is about money laundering practices in a suntan studio owned by ‘Lara’, who is being mishandled by a gang, and her boyfriend ‘Steve’, who has disappeared.
The media strategy allowed the target audience to speak about #crimediggers from the inside, so we began a creative partnership with parties such as Tweakers, a popular Dutch IT forum (exclusive preview/use of blogs/exchange tips and tricks on the platform). Other media (video trailer/radio/banners) were part of the challenges by inserting hidden messages in them.
#crimediggers differentiates itself in its rich story line hidden among the clues, which are used to dig into the world of complex criminal activity. The game appeals to the target audience’s world and challenges them in the online serious game, but it also ties in seamlessly to the campaign’s other media communications.
The campaign for #crimediggers inserts challenges into banners, videos and a radio commercial in order to get the player to look beyond the surface. This can include hidden messages in the audio spectrum, or message concealment techniques such as stenography. These messages contain URLs that players can use to earn extra points in the game.
This went so far that people on forums asked whether it was possible to see the banner somewhere else, in order to pick up the extra points that were available.
With the intensive cooperation (agile) between the national police, digital detectives and Steam, together we have delivered a creative serious game that is challenging, exciting and educational for the target audience. The remarkably integrated campaign recruited large numbers of players and sparked fanatical discussions online.