Cannes Lions

Xbox Halo 2 Wars

EDELMAN, London / MICROSOFT / 2017

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We created a live experience that dropped influencers into the chaotic onslaught of a real battle – bringing the intensity of the new Blitz Mode to life.

Typically, the games industry engages with influencers with formulaic game launches.

We ripped up the rulebook for this campaign and invited influencers to our biggest ever traditional media preview event to get hands-on with the game, like never before.

Gamers were pulled from the main event and led to a rigged room unaware that this was no longer a conventional games demo.

The room transformed into a military command centre with a live action lieutenant and video feeds to soldiers on the battlefield.

It was do or die, practical special effects mimicked the on-screen drama as the influencer was tasked with making a decision to save their own life, and their units.

In an instant, they had the potential to become a hero.


How do you make a totally live and immersive version of Halo Wars 2?

All the special effects, characters and fear were 100% real, and accurately modeled on the Halo universe.

We built a 20ft platform that moved and rumbled on demand, air cannons filled with rubble, exploding control panels, a door that melted, walls that turned into live video displays and a bank of layered Halo world sound effects that shook you to the core.

Every single button, light and switch was real, every detail carefully crafted to take you away from the world you know, and into the intensity of a real Halo Wars battle command centre.10 hidden cameras allowed for dynamic 360 coverage so all the action was captured. A lot of fun for everyone watching live on Twitch, terrifying for the gamer in the hot seat.


- One in seven of all downloads of the beta came directly from Instant Hero content on

owned channels.

- 4.2m+ video views (vs target of 2m) across owned and earned.

- 575m+ total coverage reach (vs target of 250m).

- 20 influencers from 6 markets took part in Instant Hero experience, resulting in 5 livestreams and 21 videos across their channels.

- 80 media and influencers attended the preview event from 17 markets, delivering over 85 preview stories and 50 gameplay videos.

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