Thursday, 30 July 2009

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Where do we hold the Kempt GP?

The spacious North Weald Airfield is the location for our all-day event. It's a perfect place to test the limits of your skill - as the track is laid out on an airfield there's nothing to hit but plastic cones!

North Weald Airfield is conveniently located just off the M11. There is no postcode for the venue but directions are very simple if you are coming from the M11 - come off at Junction 7 and then follow the signs for North Weald Airfield.

Not coming by car?
The nearest train station is Harlow Town just 30 mins from London Liverpool Street. The Nearest tube station is Epping on the end of the Central line. Both stations are 15-20 min drive from the airfield, if you're on the attendee list and intend to come by one or other please do let us know and we'll try to arrange for someone to pick you up or put you in a cab.


What is the Kempt GP?

The Kempt GP is our way of getting to know you and give you the opportunity to mix with our other guests in a relaxed atmosphere. What’s more, you’ll learn some genuine driving skills and get to blast around in some serious sports cars.

The event is run by ex-Benetton F1 pilot Andy Walsh and the rest of the driving gurus at Car Limits. These chaps are experts in their (air)field and have improved drivers of all skill levels, including current F1 competitors and BBC F1 anchor Jake Humphries (read his glowing tribute here).

With assistance from three experienced instructors, you'll begin the day learning from the pro's as you get to grips with the two circuits set up especially for the event. The format of the day is structured so that you learn basic skills in the morning and use them to put in some serious lap times in the afternoon. Once you've honed your driving style you'll take part in the grand finale, the Fastest Lap Challenge.

The Cars
If your wheels are just that little bit flash then we'd actively encourage you to bring them along. Several of us will so you'll be in good company and North Weald is the perfect place to explore the limits of a car safely and responsibly.

If you're not bringing your own car (or even if you do and fancy a bit of variation) then you'll get to zoom around the course in a Lotus Elise (just about the best damn car to fling around a track) and a slightly more forgiving Porsche Boxster.

The Prize
Setting the fastest time in the end-of-day shoot-out will gain the winner a Magnum of champagne. It's your choice whether you use it to soak your fellow competitors or take it home for a champion's celebration. And of course, everyone gets their place in GP history on our illustrious leaderboard.


Saturday, 18 July 2009

Saturday, 18 July 2009

Kempt Go-Public with New Viral Theory at Online Marketing Show 2009

I’m very pleased to announce that we’ve finally been able to publicly launch our important new research and theories around viral, specifically the power of the medium of games in this space.

We unveiled our ideas in a presentation entitled: Viral, the Content Distribution Lever and the power of Games at the Online Marketing Show on the 30th June 2009. This presentation was the culmination of nearly five years work and research in the viral games space and I’m very pleased to say that it was immensely well received.

Our presentation outlined three simple principles which describe the crucial factors or mechanics that affect the success of a viral campaign: The Content Pool, The Content Ecosystem and The Content Distribution Lever and explained why the nature of the first two in the online games scene help to make flash games the most powerful and most importantly reliable of viral mediums. Interestingly just two days later on the 2nd of July Richard Spalding, Founder of Diffusion Media and Kontraband made a presentation at the Revolution forum where he stated that fewer than one in ten video-based viral campaigns are a success, not good odds in our opinion!

Don’t worry if you missed the presentation though, a substantial article based on it is going to be published shortly (we’ll of course let you know when it’s out) and we’ll be presenting an updated version of the presentation at Ad:Tech London on the 23rd of September.

More information on the show can be found on the OMS 2009 website and the Ad:tech London site.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Game DNA - Digital Genius

Keen Kempt watchers will have already seen our latest game Digital Genius. In many ways it is our most sophisticated release so far and draws together concepts and influences that have been buzzing around our heads over the last few years.

For example, Digital Genius is a clear descendent of Nintendo’s Wario Ware and Konami’s earlier Bishi Bashi series. These titles popularized microgames with their quirky approach, sharing a fast-paced, frenzied structure and a real focus on novelty - perfect for short attention spans. That’s probably why we took to Wario Ware with such gusto when we got a Wii in the office. Our first stab at this genre was the much-lauded VaioWare (shortlisted as the Best Online Game at the 2007 BIMA Awards), which we then developed into our own ‘Championship of Microgames’ TinyTrials.

After Wario Ware and Bishi Bashi the other obvious influence is Dr. Kawashima’s Brain Training. This was another big hit in the Kempt office and we learned its lessons well: with a little style and a clever format it was possible to get hardcore gamers hooked on simple problem solving. Even if we couldn't get our brain ages down from the mid-fifties.

Brain Training was particularly appropriate for Digital Genius as the game was launched with input from Mensa. In the early stages of development we began by using their IQ test questions, some of which made it through as microgames in the final release. Whilst this was fantastic in itself the real kudos came from Mensa actually taking part in the game; they asked their members to play through Digital Genius to set a benchmark for other players and this stands as a serious challenge to most gamers.

If you dig deeper into Digital Genius you’ll see more than just microgames as inspiration - videogame culture pops up all over the place; there are console knowledge quizzes, an arithmetic game based on Asteroids and various other nods to the likes of Gauntlet, Tron and Ray Ray Parade. We see this layering of references as a vital part of what we do - immersing ourselves in videogame culture means that we can build new games from the ground up using our influences as the cornerstones.