Nike just used VR to bring the childhood dreams of millions to life.
Everyone probably has done it at least once. You’re out in your backyard or at the playground by yourself. You imagine the crowd roaring around you as the clock ticks down to zero – your team is behind (or tied) one score and it is up to you to hit the last shot or make the last goal. You count down the seconds as you let rip the game winning shot. The shot goes in and the crowd goes wild – well in your mind they do at least. But what if you could step into that moment for real?
Now you can, thanks to the magic of virtual reality. Nike just released a new VR experience called “The Neymar Jr. Effect” in conjunction with the talented folks over at Immersive Media and Digital Domain (who did some pretty nifty stuff on this shoot which blended CG and live action – be on the lookout for an article on that) and it is pretty awesome.
In the experience you get to literally see the field from Neymar’s eyes (for those of you who don’t know Neymar, he is kind of a big deal in the soccer world). The experience starts with a title screen that zooms into Neymar’s eyes as he stares down the goal about to take a free kick.
From this point forward you are in Neymar’s cleats (which happen to be the ones that the ad is selling – go figure). You take the ball on the pass and begin to dribble the ball, using Neymar’s trademarked lateral quickness and agility to weave through defenders. As you get close to the goal one of the defensemen approaches with a sliding tackle aimed straight at the ball – which you skillfully kick up and over him continuing your approach to the goal. Now with only the goalie to beat you connect with the ball sending it past the goalie, who jumped the wrong way, and into the net in dramatic fashion. The crowd goes wild as you (Neymar) pull your jersey over your face in celebration.
All in all, the “The Neymar Jr. Effect” is among the best ads we have seen in VR and that is without talking about the things that make it so ingenious from a marketing perspective (be on the lookout for an upcoming post on that). Even for non sports fans, this is one that shouldn’t be missed.
We will be going behind the scenes with this shoot in another article to come as soon as it clears through the PR washing machine.