Starz Takes Spartacus Outside the Arena with New "Spartacus: Vengeance The Game," Sampling Opportunities for First Episode of Returning Spartacus Series
ENGLEWOOD, Colo., Jan. 16, 2012 -- Starz Digital Media, the digital and on-demand licensing arm of Starz, announced today a sneak preview of its upcoming Facebook social game, Spartacus: Vengeance The Game, launching on January 27. Viewers of the sneak preview video teaser are able to "like" the game and sign up to be invited to play once the game is live. Both the video teaser and Spartacus: Vengeance The Game are designed to accompany the STARZ Original series "Spartacus: Vengeance," debuting on January 27 at 10 pm et/pt.
The video teaser also coincides with a multi-affiliate sampling effort of the first episode of "Spartacus: Vengeance" starting on January 20 across multiple providers including on-demand and online platforms (see second section for more details).
About Spartacus: Vengeance The Game
Spartacus: Vengeance The Game builds upon the success of the existing Spartacus: The Game (originally named Spartacus: Gods of the Arena) that was launched on Facebook in January 2011. Spartacus: Vengeance The Game operates as an entirely new property by taking players outside of the arena and ludus walls.
"We are thrilled to present a teaser video of Spartacus: Vengeance The Game on Facebook in advance of the official game launch and the highly anticipated second season," said Mara Winokur, senior vice president, digital media, business development and strategy, Starz Media and lead executive for Starz Digital Media. "The teaser video gives users a good overview of the new Spartacus: Vengeance The Game, which takes on a greater level of sophistication by adding new elements such as improved visuals, multi-fighter battles, a more robust game economy, advanced game progressions, and more varied strategic options."
As with the Spartacus: The Game, Starz Digital Media partnered with Large Animal Games for the development of Spartacus: Vengeance The Game. "'Spartacus: The Game helped change the landscape for branded Facebook games based on media properties and was very successful," said Wade Tinney, CEO of Large Animal Games. "Its mix of visceral action, evocative graphics and long-term gladiator development remains unlike any other game on the market. With Spartacus: Vengeance The Game, we intend to amp up all of the things our players and the show's fans love." Spartacus: The Game produced approximately 4 million registered users, including more than 1,200,000 monthly active users at its peak."
Spartacus: Vengeance The Game, as with Spartacus: The Game, will be built on Large Animal Game's proprietary Toga(TM) application platform. Toga is a full-featured social game infrastructure which dramatically reduces the time, cost and resource needs of social and mobile game developers. It lets administrators manage and create game content without the need for engineering resources; lets product managers view advanced, custom stat packages; and supports cross-platform deployment, including Facebook, Google+, Android, iOS and more, ensuring that products are future-proofed. Its architecture is expandable via plug-in or library and easily integrates with third parties to allow limitless expansion.
Facebook-based Spartacus: Vengeance The Game is free to play and takes the player, a recently escaped slave, outside of the arena to embrace a series of challenges and lead his own band of warriors. Through his journey, the player will travel from Capua to Vesuvius, paralleling the feats of Spartacus's own warriors. As with the Spartacus series on STARZ, Spartacus: Vengeance The Game offers more than just fighting; it functions on a strategic level as well. Throughout the game, players will be given missions to wrest various locations from Roman control by overcoming a series of challenges, such as building and equipping an army, liberating slaves and other prisoners and acquiring fighters. All the while the player will be working with and conspiring against characters from "Spartacus: Vengeance."
Multi-Platform Sampling Opportunities for "Spartacus: Vengeance" Beginning January 20, 2012
Beginning January 20, STARZ will sample the first full episode of "Spartacus: Vengeance" to more than 61.1 million multichannel households in the United States with select cable, satellite, and Telco STARZ affiliates.
Participating affiliates offering free on-demand sampling of the first episode include: Comcast's Xfinity, DIRECTV, DISH Network, Cox Communications, Charter, Mediacom, Massillon Cable TV/Clear Picture Inc., Antietam Cable, BVU and Click! Cable TV.
The first episode will be available online free for sampling beginning January 20 at www.starz.com/spartacus, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/spartacus.starz, and direct through select STARZ affiliates including Comcast's Xfinity TV (www.xfinitytv.com), DIRECTV (www.directv.com), DISH Network (www.DISHOnline.com) and Charter (www.charter.net). Users on the go can also view the first episode on Comcast's Xfinity TV app (www.xfinity.com/tvapp) for the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch. In addition, AT&T U-verse, Comcast's Xfinity, Charter and DIRECTV will sample the first episode on their respective Facebook pages.
DIRECTV Audience Network and DISH 101 Network will air the first episode of "Spartacus: Vengeance" for their subscribers.
About Spartacus: Vengeance
On the heels of the bloody escape from the House of Batiatus that concluded "Spartacus: Blood and Sand", the gladiator rebellion continues and begins to strike fear into the heart of the Roman Republic. Gaius Claudius Glaber and his Roman troops are sent to Capua to crush the growing band of freed slaves that Spartacus leads before it can inflict further damage. Spartacus is presented the choice of satisfying his personal need for vengeance against the man that condemned his wife to slavery and eventual death or making the larger sacrifices necessary to keep his budding army from breaking apart. Containing all of the blood-soaked action, exotic sexuality, and villainy and heroism that has come to distinguish the series so far, the tale of Spartacus resumes in epic fashion.
The official "Spartacus: Vengeance" trailer, and behind the scenes videos are available at www.starz.com/spartacus. Follow "Spartacus: Vengeance" on Twitter: @spartacus_starz and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/spartacus.starz.
About Large Animal
New York based Large Animal Games is a leader in the Casual and Social Games space. Founded in 2001, Large Animal has produced over 100 games on a variety of platforms. Their current focus is on games that connect friends on networks such as Facebook and Google+, as well as on mobile devices. Their Spartacus: The Game(TM), Picturiffic(TM), Lucky Cruise(TM) and What to Wear(TM) games garner hundreds of thousands of monthly active users and are all powered by Toga(TM), their proprietary advanced social application platform. More information about Large Animal and about Toga(TM) can be found online at www.largeanimal.com.
About Starz Digital Media
Starz Digital Media, an operating division of Starz Media, LLC, is responsible for all digital and on-demand distribution of content from Anchor Bay Entertainment, Starz Originals from Starz Entertainment, Manga Entertainment, and other select entertainment providers. Through a range of distribution and marketing partnerships with multichannel video providers, Internet distributors and wireless operators worldwide, Starz Digital Media makes its content available under numerous business models including download-to-own/electronic sell-through, video-on-demand, pay-per-view, subscription video-on-demand and ad-supported streaming. The division also programs and supports numerous ad-supported broadband channels and develops games, applications and other related content from many of its properties for distribution worldwide.
About Starz Entertainment
Starz Entertainment, LLC, is a premium movie and original programming entertainment service provider operating in the United States. The company offers 17 premium channels including the flagship STARZ(R) and ENCORE(R) brands with approximately 19 million and 32.8 million subscribers respectively. Starz Entertainment airs in total more than 1,000 movies and original series every month across its pay TV channels. Starz Entertainment is recognized as a pay TV leader in providing HD, On Demand, HD On Demand and online advanced services for its STARZ, ENCORE and MOVIEPLEX brands. Starz Entertainment (www.starz.com) is an operating unit of Starz, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Liberty Media Corporation (NASDAQ: LMCA).