Karaoke is becoming one of many increasingly crowded genres on the Wii, but it’s one that Mindscape is determined to conquer.
The company’s offensive began in November with the launch of U-Sing, its fledgling music brand that’s the result of a partnership with Universal Music.
Thanks to the game’s appeal, the Wii’s broad audience and some heavy marketing, the game saw a moderate level of success with more than 150,000 units sold in its first eight weeks.
Now the two companies take the next step in growing the franchise with the release of U-Sing: Girls Night, a new collection of songs that is perfect for a not-so-quiet evening with the ladies.
“U-Sing is very important to both Mindscape and Universal Music and we are putting our full commitment behind it,” says Mindscape UK’s general manager Mark Stanger.
“Based on the stunning success of the first U-Sing game last year, we are extremely optimistic about the potential of Girls Night. It’s the first special edition in the U-Sing franchise, with more to follow. We know that there is a big female audience for karaoke titles, so having a 100 per cent dedicated version in Girls Night really addresses that female audience directly.”
The publisher has drawn from feedback on the first game and revamped the interface to make it more accessible to players.
Throw in new challenges such as the Golden Notes and a great mix of multiplayer modes, and Girls Night has everything consumers could want from their latest croon-‘em-up.
Of course, the biggest addition for Girls Night is the launch of the U-Sing Wii Store, a digital service that allows ladies to download new tracks for the game. It’s Mindscape’s first efforts at a digital games service of any kind, and one the company is keen to get right.
“It’s very important to Mindscape that we have the ability to offer our user content by every viable means,” says Stanger.
“The great thing about the U-Sing digital store is that it adds-value to someone who has bought a physical version of the game, by extending the catalogue, and making those downloaded titles available for life.”
The first batch of songs will be made available shortly after Girls Night is released, with more released later in the year with the arrival of more U-Sing titles. New tracks will cost anywhere from 200 to 300 Wii Points each, making them enticing impulse purchases for any wannabe divas that have mastered the already packed tracklist (see ‘All The Ladies’ Singles’).
Crucially, all of the songs that will be available through the U-Sing Wii Store will be fully compatible with other titles in the series.
WHAT’S LAUNCH GOT TO DO WITH IT
Girls Night will enjoy just as big a launch as the original U-Sing with no less than three SKUs available on day one. Consumers that already own the first game will be able to pick up a standalone copy for £29.99. Meanwhile, anyone yet to buy into the U-Sing brand will be interested in the two hardware bundles. They can choose from a copy of the game with a single microphone for £39.99, or set themselves up for multiplayer sessions from the get go with the double microphone SKU, retailing at £49.99.
Mindscape is working on a major marketing campaign that will not only engage with Girls Night’s target audience but also grow the U-Sing brand in the UK. The company will be running ads across a range of media, including print and online, and will be focusing primarily on women’s lifestyle and mainstream press.
The Girls Night campaign will also play up to the inevitably busy World Cup season, with an advertising push encouraging ladies to arrange a night of karaoke while their male friends are out watching the latest football match.
U-Sing: Girls Night will be released for Wii on June 18th.