Like its fellow Disney property Hannah Montana, The Jonas TV series has created a massive following by building a fictional universe around its musical namesake.
In real life, Jonas is the band formed by the three Jonas brothers, whose album has placed in the Top 10 of the UK charts. From their success, they have spawned several merchandising ranges that have been lapped up by their young fanbase.
And, of course, they have starred in the TV series named after their band, which follows a similar concept to that of Miss Montana’s own show.
The three boys star as fictional versions of themselves, struggling to juggle the burdens of fame and fortune with a normal teenage life.
For the band’s first video game, Disney Interactive Studios has produced a title that appeals directly to the Jonas fanbase and will be targeting this audience by using the most popular assets of the franchise.
“We will be looking to the established success of the Jonas brothers to really drive sales,” says DIS’ product manager James Thornby.
“The Jonas brothers are getting bigger and bigger in the UK. They have already released three albums and last year they had starring roles in Disney Channel’s original movie Camp Rock.
“Accompanying this is a wide selection of books, magazines and clothing ranges and they have further enhanced their following with the popular Disney Channel series Jonas.
“With such a strong tween following, we are expecting sales to match other breakout Disney Channel properties such as Hannah Montana.”
The game allows fans to play as Nick, Joe or Kevin and explore the life of the band. They can wander the brothers’ neighbourhood, school and other locations from the series, searching for new objectives and activities.
For much of the game, players will be performing as Jonas in concert. There are six live concerts to prepare for, with traditional rhythm action gaming allowing players to feel like they are part of the action.
The instrument they play will depend on their chosen brother, but all will use the touch screen to re-create Jonas’ skills.
For example, players will have to strike the right guitar chords with the stylus to successfully perform some of the band’s biggest hits and keep the crowds of screaming fans satisfied.
To improve their chances of concert success even further, gamers can customise the three teenage musicians with new outfits and styles that can be unlocked throughout the game. There are even new costumes to unlock for the ordinary school stages.
Thornby says: “The TV show has done really well, and our DS games based on Disney Channel properties enjoy evergreen sales potential with the likes of Hannah Montana, Wizards of Waverly Place and High School Musical all having previously translated fantastically to the Nintendo platform.”
Jonas has been marketed directly to the band’s existing fanbase through full page print ads in key Disney-licensed magazines.
This will be supported by a short targeted campaign leading up to the game’s release, with competitions and reviews appearing in girls’ youth media.
There will be extensive coverage of Jonas across Disney.co.uk and Disney Channel online sites. The publisher has also arranged for videos, banners and homepage takeovers to run on music sites in order to specifically target fans of pop music and the Jonas brothers.