Ensemble Worldwide Malaysia and Maxis create an interactive AR lion dance app this CNY

Lion Demo.jpgEnsemble Worldwide Malaysia and Maxis have teamed up on yet another ground-breaking campaign, this time, for the Chinese New Year festive season.
 
The 'HuatAR' campaign is a world's first, devised by the team to bring blessings ('Huat' in Hokkien) and make the culturally significant lion dance more accessible to masses through the use of augmented reality (AR) technology. Users will have the opportunity to download the Maxis "HuatAR" app and collect unique ang pao packets from any Maxis store. Through AR, the scanned ang pao packets will transform and activate an interactive lion that users will be able to engage with.

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Executive Creative Director of Ensemble Worldwide, Chan Woei Hern, said, "Ang Pao packets are the one commodity Malaysians look forward to from big brands during Chinese New Year. This year, with the help of technology, we get a chance to give Malaysians that little bit extra in their red packet."
 
Lion.jpgLion3.jpgLion 4.jpgLion 2.jpgThe team worked with several parties to bring this to fruition, including Kun Seng Keng (KSK) Lion and Dragon Dance Association who acted as a cultural advisor. KSK has been a pioneer in lion dance, and shared insights about its evolution and future in Malaysia, including the challenges of economies, space and availability of lion dance troops during the CNY period.
 
The app itself was developed from scratch with The Ministry Experience. In-depth research went into studying lion dance movements to make the experience as realistic as possible, with the lion developing pet-like behaviours, and animated movements to have a mix of traditional and millennial interactions.
 
Woei Hern added, "There have been attempts at pocket-sizing the iconic lion dance into mobile before, but with the progress in scalable AR technology, we wanted to push the level of interactivity even further. The team has included lots of features to make it fun for the entire family, and we can't wait to see how Malaysians play and create their own content with it. This however is just stage one. As we see AR seep into more of our daily lives, we want to see how brands can infuse technology into every bit of their funnel, from e-commerce to education to story doing."
 
Head of Marketing Services at Maxis, Tai Kam Leong, said, "Following the cult success of PokemonGo, and Hotlink Pokemobile, we were excited to integrate the beauty of AR with the culturally relevant lion dance. The idea that our users would be able to have a lion dance within their pocket was powerful, and we are excited to partner Ensemble to bring this to life."
 
The HuatAR app is available for download from the play store today, and on iOS next week. There are three ang paos available at Maxis stores, with each initiating a unique lion named 'Ah Huat' who will perform a distinctive dance move.
 
The Maxis 'HuatAR' film was produced by MoJo Films, with Audio by Grand Theft Records. The team also worked with Animation Studio Pixel Post and Meccanica EFX on post production.

5 Comments

Jason said:

Hmmmm... felt like I've seen something similar done for Singtel last year

Embarrass Malaysian said:

These isn't the first time. It's a recurring trend with Maxis.

As for the agencies they work with, their ideas speaks volumes.

1. TC Bank Dream Rangers
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vksdBSVAM6g
Maxis Road Trip - Agency: Ensemble
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dFMH4CIoSrQ

2. IF Insurance Sow Down
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iSs2KYs4Hfk
Maxis Waze Safe Mode/Kids Voice, Agency: Ensemble
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PmvJKgetH4

3. Digi – We are family
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ddXLbwYkaIQ
Maxis – We’re family, Agency ?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6UDo8iJLkJw

4. VW Commercial – Kid
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vksdBSVAM6g
Maxis One Plan Commercial – Kid, Agency ?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDwpegz8YtA

What makes it worst is the Maxis Lion Dance video is so boring.

Curiousity then Disappointment said:

I checked your links...

The IF insurance came after the waze one and through a quick google search looks like any write up also came after the waze video.

And the Digi and Maxis came out at the same time.

VW your link is wrong.

What a waste of space...

Even more embarrass said:

Sorry, my mistake.

Here's the right VW link.
VW Commercial – Kid/transmission
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJL15n5P9BU
Maxis One Plan Commercial – Kid, Agency ?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDwpegz8YtA
Isn't it the same? Oh wait, the WV is mimicking a car and the Maxis ad is making sounds in front of a Fan?

Dear "Curiosity then Disappointed", what do you have to say about the Dream Rangers ripped off? Coincidences?

What about the Singtel Lion dance idea. It's for another Telco from a neighbouring country.

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