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Rock/Rap Group Shinobi Ninja Launch iPhone Video Game
Posted by Steve Juon at Monday, February 1st, 2010 at 3:00PM :: Email this article :: Print this article

From Versa Manos:

New York Rock/Rap Group Shinobi Ninja
Attacks Stale Music-Biz Models with New iPhone
Video Game App

“Shinobi Ninja Attacks” video game drives deeper fan engagement, with
free music downloads, videos, merchandise;
Smartphone GPS capability to locate concertgoers who have installed the app, so they can be rewarded with more free music and other promotion
NEW YORK, NY, February 1, 2010 – New York City-based independent rock/rap group Shinobi Ninja, today introduced their first music-focused gaming app for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad. Part cartoon video game, part music video, and part music/video player, “Brooklyn to Babylon: Shinobi Ninja Attacks!” integrates digital music and video into a classic eight-bit video-game environment. Players get immersed in the band’s imagined cartoon world and are rewarded for playing with free music downloads, music videos, and promotional merchandise.

In a first for music and gaming iPhone apps, “Shinobi Ninja Attacks” also leverages smartphone GPS tracking capability at concerts to locate and reward fans who have installed the app. A “lite” version is available free from the App Store on Apple’s iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch; the fully loaded retail version sells for $3.99, but through February 4, 2010, the retail version will sell for just $0.99.

“We had already built up a formidable Web presence, using Twitter and other social media; so to get to the next level with the band, we knew we had to vault over the cutting edge and just start hitting people over the head with a retro-animated beat-‘em-up iPhone app,” said Stephen Sternschein, Shinobi Ninja’s manager and the game’s co-creator. “It’s a whole new way to introduce people to Shinobi Ninja, and to drive deeper fan engagement with our music.”

“Shinobi Ninja Attacks” -- The Convergence of Music, Video Games, Videos with Real World GPS Interaction

Within the virtual world of the “Shinobi Ninja Attacks” game, players choose a Shinobi Ninja band member as their avatars. As Shinobi Ninja’s music plays in the background, “Shinobi Ninja Attacks” players fight their way through the streets of Brooklyn to the L-Train, until they eventually reach the mythical Club Babylon. Along the way players beat up evil hipsters, knock down douchebags from the Jersey Shore, and subdue angry subway riders, as they earn points and treasure.

The game comes pre-loaded with four Shinobi Ninja music tracks and two music videos that can be unlocked for free, as gamers reach higher levels within the game. “Shinobi Ninja Attacks” also rewards fans for making the real world journey to a Shinobi Ninja show. The app uses smartphone GPS capability to locate concertgoers who have installed the app, so they can be further rewarded over-the-air (OTA) with more free music and other promotions. According to bandleader and game co-creator Dave Machinist, “the app helps us monetize our music and hook in fans live at our gigs; plus, it keeps them engaged, listening to our music and playing in our imagined virtual world when we’re not around.”

Innovating the Digital Music Business Model; Applauded at CES
“‘Shinobi Ninja Attacks’ replaces the tangible experience people used to have opening a record sleeve or CD jewel case, poring over the liner notes, and looking over the artwork while listening to the music play,” Sternschein said. “It harkens back to recorded music’s glory days, because it helps music fans recover something that was lost with digital music -- the ability to interact physically with the music product itself.”
As interactive multimedia experiences become the norm, music fans are beginning to listen more with their eyes. Shinobi Ninja’s coordinated and immersive use of music, video, video games, and mobile technology was highlighted at the recent Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas in a presentation given by The NPD Group’s, Russ Crupnick. According to Crupnick, “Shinobi Ninja was able to integrate all of the elements in terms of the music experience, in terms of engagement, in terms of creating fans, in terms of rewarding fans; it’s a whole immersive experience.”
Developed by Shinobi Ninja Video Game, Llc., a partnership of Shinobi Ninja and Heard Games, “Shinobi Ninja Attacks” was designed and animated by Interbang Entertainment, with software programming by Cerulean Games.

About Heard Games

Founded by Stephen Sternschein, Heard Games is a software development company specializing in developing interactive media products with musicians by building branded digital environments that deliver content in innovative ways.

About Shinobi Ninja

Shinobi Ninja, is an independent rock/rap group comprised of six New York City performers: lead singers DA and Baby Girl, bassist Jonny on the Rocks, drummer Terminator Dave, guitarist Maniac Mike, and DJ Axis Powers. Inspired by acts as diverse as Nirvana, Janet Jackson, Faith No More, Sublime, and the Beastie Boys, Shinobi Ninja crafts their own brand of party music into an eclectic mix of musical styles designed to appeal to a wide variety of music fans. Shinobi Ninja recently debuted their latest extended-play (EP) single, “Brooklyn to Babylon,” and they recently released their first video game app for iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch “Brooklyn to Babylon: Shinobi Ninja Attacks.” Their latest music video can be viewed here. Shinobi Ninja’s next album is scheduled for release Spring 2010. Join Shinobi Ninja at . For more information, visit .

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