‘Being SalMan’ by PlayIzzOn Games: Another feather added to independent celebrity games

It is a known fact that games inspired from specific IPs are quite popular now. They not only help users connect to the brand or the celebrity, but also act as a powerful marketing and promotional tool given the acute digital penetration throughout the masses. The most common indigenous games involving celebrities as the protagonists are based mainly on the movies, but now it seems like there’s a paradigm shift in that trend too. PlayIzzOn, the game developing and publishing arm of JetSynthesys recently launched ‘Being SalMan’, the official game in regards to the Bollywood celebrity, Salman Khan. Given an independent game on a celebrity is not what we get to see a lot and to get further insights about it AnimationXpress reached out to the developing studio. “In this game, the audience is given an opportunity to play as and relate to their favourite Bollywood Star – Salman Khan. They can personalise their experience by picking one of the various characters of Salman Khan to execute different missions to eliminate the bad guys and get the good to triumph over evil. The first version of the game has various action sequences featuring Salman Khan in his three iconic roles – Chulbul Pandey, Tiger and Prem,” said JetSynthesys, vice chairman, MD and CEO, Rajan Navani. If you’re a mobile game enthusiast and have played Kill Shot, the above mentioned game might seem quite similar to you. You can choose from three avatars of the hero and embark on your mission, which is basically shooting bad guys with a sniper rifle in most cases. Salman Khan has apparently been actively involved with the studio during the production process of the game. The actor has even lent his voice for the game and is still involved with the studio as PlayIzzOn is planning the future content for the same. A major problem of celebrity-based games is the hype that builds around it fades within a few weeks after the release of the game. Even the overwhelming number of downloads are not able to provide the IP with user continuity and eventually the makers cease support for the game with no additional DLC (downloadable content). However, in the case of Being SalMan the makers seem to have quite an ambitious road-map ahead for the game as Puri explains, “This is a long term play with plans for a deeper engagement with gamers moving forward. We believe this is the beginning of celebrity gaming in India. We will build games for a global audience focused on Indian celebrities. We are continuing to work with user feedback and reviews to drive a much more enriching and engaging experience.” Being SalMannHow is the game planning to churn revenues? “The game’s revenue is primarily based around the freemium gaming model. The In App purchases designed in the game help the user to reach the optimum level of gratification with regards to the gameplay. Although a very minuscule percentage, we do use ads for monetisation. Also, on the iOS platform, the game is priced at a low price point for 10 rupees in India for an ad free version.” No surprises here that In-app purchases would probably be the backbone of the revenue system for the game. We were also informed that the revenue would be shared with Salman Khan. It’s been almost a month since the game got released and according to the PlayStore statistics, it has around “500,000 – 1,000,000” downloads already. With independent celebrity games like this one, the marketing of these would probably be easier as the IP would already attract users from the celebrity’s huge fan base. We’ll have to wait and see how it goes.