If you’re feeling an impending sense of Doom, that’s just because Bethesda’s reboot of the classic shooter series is about to come out — and it’s blowing it up on TV.
GamesBeat has partnered with iSpot.tv, which measures TV advertising in real time, to bring you a monthly report on how gaming brands are spending and which are generating the most digital response. The results below are for the top five spending gaming industry brands in April.
Jumping up nearly $11 million from March, the game industry spent approximately $46.4 million running ads on national TV in April. Across the month, 34 brands ran a total of 77 spots 17,221 times, generating over 2.4 billion impressions on TV. Nearly a third of these ads ran for the first time, focusing on the brands’ new releases.
Bethesda Softworks tops the chart for the first time, having spent an estimated $8.6 million running one commercial 370 times on national TV. This spend, dedicated entirely to the new release of Doom, targeted many primetime programs such as Fear the Walking Dead, NHL Hockey and MTV’s 2016 Movie Awards. In total, the “Fight Like Hell” spot generated nearly 120 impressions on TV throughout April.
Back on the leaderboard is Microsoft Studios, finishing up in second place with an estimated TV spend of $6.6 million in April. Still focusing heavily on the release of new tentpole Quantum Break, Microsoft also spent on commercials for Gears of War 4 and Dance Central 3. Through strategic placements of a top ad, “Quantum Break: Cinematic Trailer,” during Fear the Walking Dead, NBA basketball, SportsCenter, and other shows, the brand generated nearly 300 million impressions on TV.
Continuing to push the latest “Uncharted” release, Sony Video Games also returns to the chart, having spent an estimated $4.9 million on 653 airings of 4 spots across 22 networks and 163 shows in April. The brand’s top ad, “Heads or Tails,” aired over 80 million times on TV in April, appearing during shows including The Walking Dead, Family Guy and Gotham. While also running ads for MLB 16: The Show and the Jeopardy! app, the vast majority of spending went toward Uncharted, which accounted for 80 percent of Sony’s impressions generated on TV last month.
Blizzard Entertainment joins the charts this month around a heavy push of the brand’s newest franchise, Overwatch. Running seven ads almost entirely dedicated to the team shooter, the brand managed to generate over 235 million impressions with an impressive social response. “Open Beta: Gameplay,” the brand’s top ad, generated 118 million of these impressions on its own. In total, Blizzard spent an estimated $4.7 million running these creatives 1,607 times on national television. Focusing most of the spend on AMC and ESPN, the brand targeted shows including The Walking Dead, Talking Dead and Better Call Saul.
Dropping a few levels from its March position, mobile game developer Machine Zone closes out our leaderboard for April’s top spenders in gaming. With an estimated spend of $4.5 million, Machine Zone placed its three ads 4,232 times across national television, generating over 461 million impressions. The brand chose to focus the vast majority of this spend on the ad “Café War” and on non-primetime airings, allowing it to generate substantial impression numbers while still spending moderately.