- Sony Pictures has launched “Smurfs Bubble Story,” a mobile game on Android and iOS tied to “Smurfs: The Lost Village,” the third movie in the Smurfs franchise, premiering Friday, according to multiple reports.
- Developed with Tic Toc Games and published by Sony Pictures Television Networks Games, the game is free, but players can make purchases within it for power, bubbles, extra lives and credits. Variety detailed that the game features various challenges during which players amass a collection of well-known Smurf characters, including Smurfette, Hefty, Brainy and Clumsy. The goal is to defeat the dreaded Gargamel and find the Lost Village.
- “Smurfs Bubble Story” is available globally and accessible in English, French, German, Italian, Spanish and Dutch. The game is aimed at kids and families with 25- to 55-year-old women a demographic sweet spot.
With “Smurfs Bubble Story,” Sony Pictures has paired an iconic cartoon with an iconic game format. The history of bubble games dates back to a popular Atari game aptly called Bubbles released in 1989. Tic Toc Games returned to the bubble well with “Smurfs Bubble Story” after creating the blockbuster bubble game “Panda Pop,” which was published by Jam City. Sony Pictures is floating bubbles again after doing so with “Wheel of Fortune Puzzle Pop!” The company has also dispatched games linked to “Casino Royale,” “Da Vinci Code,” “Spider-Man 2,” “Charlie’s Angels” and more.
Marketers across industries are adding games to their strategic arsenals to generate buzz for their properties, build relationships with digital consumers and tap ancillary revenue streams. Sony Pictures could supplement its till from “Smurfs Bubble Story” in-app purchases. So-called freemium games like “Smurfs Bubble Story” constitute the overwhelming majority of the mobile game business, a segment estimated at $37 billion last year, and some such as “Pokemon Go,” “Clash of Clans” and “Candy Crush” have been huge hits
“Smurfs Bubble Story” seems to follow the direction movie-related games are heading in by being a concept distinct from the movie it is attached to. Examining the deep connection between movies and gaming, the publication [a]list said movie studios are on the right path by crafting unique gaming experiences separate from movies rather than making games that repeat movies. It asserts the tactic “grows the franchise as a whole.”