American Idol Invades the Virtual World
American Idol Invades the Virtual World
Kris De Leon
Kris De Leon
Staff Writer, BuddyTV
American Idol has launched now launched an online game. King.com, an online video company, has signed a multiyear license for American Idol from Fremantle Media for the United States.

"The idea behind the game is to really re-create the experience of going before the 'American Idol' jury…Players will create a personal avatar and dress them in costumes and then use the cursors on the keyboard to sing and dance to the music," said Robert Norton, vice president of business development at King.com.

The online game has a rhythm-based structure which features licensed cover songs from the American Idol television series such as "I Heard It Through the Grapevine," "The Greatest Love," "Lady Marmalade" and "I Want You Back." Following its launch, more songs will be added over the course of time.

As for the contents of the game, the program has multiple versions of each song which have been recorded, which will enable the singer to go “off-key” depending on the player. Each player participant will be criticized and reviewed by generic judges. Moreover, the game also assimilate sets from the original television series.

"It's the most expensive casual Web game ever made," said Toby Rowland, co-founder and co-CEO of King.com. The producing company spent more than $250,000 to generate the game. And although the creation of the game is quite expensive, the game remains to be free, available through Yahoo.com, King.com and AmericanIdol.com.

Recently, Konami Digital Entertainment also released a PlayStation 2 game called “Karaoke Revolution Presents American Idol.” The said game features the voices and images of American Idol judges Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson. The game enables the players to sing into a microphone to a variety of cover songs on sets from the show, and as always, get comments and critisisms from the judges. Moreover, the idea of projecting American Idol as an online game is to promote the web sites and further endorse the show itself.

-Kris De Leon, BuddyTV Staff Columnist

Source: Entertainment Weekly

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