Thursday, January 3, 2008

India, Meet GoCrossCampus.

It gets pretty darn cold in New Haven in January. Freezing cold. Below freezing. Superfluid-helium cold. Far too frigid for playing GoCrossCampus in the snow and ice. So, we decided it was high time to pack our (virtual) bags and head overseas for some (virtual) fun in the sun. Where are we (virtually) off to? Why, nowhere else but Hyderabad, India! (Seriously, it was like 85ºF there today.) That's right, GXC is overseas in our very first game outside of the ole' US of A.

We're launching two games in India this winter: the first at Muffakham Jah College of Engineering and Technology, and the second a few weeks later at Vasavi College of Engineering and Technology. Muffakham Jah kicks off on Monday (Jan. 7), and you can bet it will be quite a spectacle.

These two Indian games are our first shot at a more streamlined, bare-bones, and more efficient GXC marketing experience -- all underground, no bureaucracy, pure awesome. We're seeding the game via email, Facebook, Orkut. Even smoke signals. (Seriously.) (Ok not really. Come on.) Planting a few posters in key locations around the campus. Spreading the word-of-mouth as far as our non-native Hindi dialects will carry. Getting our whole 'viral media' carnival up and running. No campus-wide email from the student government, no administrative oversight, no official student group partnership. What are we thinking? Can it be done? Will GXC succeed without any top-down publicity, student committees, or any real on-campus organization at all? We think so, and we're willing to give it a shot. So then, why in India? Why not!

In all seriousness though, these two games offer a great new testing ground and expansion opportunity for GoCrossCampus. We'll be opening up to an entirely new continent, greatly expanding our user-base, working to prove our game as an international success for the college market, and testing out a very different style and methodology of in-house GXC marketing. The college-age population in India is an intensely technology-focused one. Students are smart, savvy, and yearning for every bleeding-edge trend after bleeding-edge trend in today's ever-expanding mediascape. Viral sociality is baked into every meal. Online interaction is in the water. And GXC is about to step into the limelight. (Yes, I know that was a horribly mixed metaphor, thank you.)

So, will the entire Indian subcontinent be placing armies and issuing orders by the billion(s)? Or will no one know, and no one care? We'll just have to wait and see. So keep an eye on the Muffakham Jah tourney come Monday... it's sure to be one crazy game.

And if nothing else, at least it's a lot warmer than New England right now.