At its investor day event this week in Providence, Hasbro updated the latest news on its games business.
Production begins next week on the Ouija movie.
The company announced a deal with Disney:
[We’re] expanding our strategic relationship [w/Disney] to include global rights for gaming and other play experiences based on major Disney Properties including Disney Princess and Disney Junior. The Deal also includes rights to include Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head toys based on Disney Princess characters.
And regarding Dungeons & Dragons KRE-O, which launches in January, Brian Goldner, Hasbro’s CEO, said:
We’re delivering all new building and battling play experiences that combine fast module building and performance weapons for battling. We’ve also developed a new series of animated shorts that will introduce today’s kids to the rich lore and heritage of Dungeons & Dragons and all the great characters in the Dungeons & Dragons brand.
In terms of general strategy for the games business, Hasbro is working off of six “gaming insights” derived from market research.
#1: Gaming continues to become more consumable. In line with this, Hasbro is launching this fall a number of new under-$15 products based on well-established brands.
#2: Girls like to game too. According to Hasbro 51 percent of digital gamers are girls but under 10 percent of the game aisle is targeted to girls. Thus, while known for its boys business, Hasbro is working to expand its demographic coverage, starting with Disney Princess games for girls in 2014.
#3: Adults prefer “friction-free” games. Hasbro’s research has found that adults think games take too long to learn, too much time to set up, and too long to play. For adults, then, the company will be releasing friction-free games including Draw Something Party, based on the mobile app, and Pointing Fingers, which allows players to point at their friends with giant foam fingers. A Funny or Die party game that has players matching captions with pictures is already in retail.
#4: The retail experience is important. Hasbro is supporting retailers with a gaming merchandising toolkit to help them make the game aisle easier to shop.
#5: Personalization engages. The recent Monopoly token replacement campaign in social media demonstrated the value of personalization in games. Monopoly revenue in the first half of 2013 was up 17 percent.
#6: Mobile integration is an important feature in the current market. And addressing mobile integration is Hasbro’s new Telepods line. Telepods is a series of physical games with components that can be recognized by a mobile app and added to a digital game. Physical products for Angry Birds Star Wars Telepods are currently available. The mobile app components launch September 19th.