Rovio is no stranger to merchandising partnerships, having released plush toys, board games, drinks and even a cookbook with Angry Birds branding.
Its latest merchandising endeavour promises to have perhaps the most lasting impact on the company, as it partners with Hasbro to release a brand of toys called Telepods. The tie-in is with the sequel to the cross-platform mobile game, Angry Birds Star Wars, aptly titled Angry Birds Star Wars 2. The game will feature 30 playable characters, each with their own powers and unique personalities modelled from the movies.
But kids (and adults, we suppose) will have the opportunity to unlock these characters only by purchasing the accompanying Telepod, an action-figure-cum-statue that, when placed near the smartphone or tablet, is magically transported into the game. Think Skylanders but with cute, furry birds. The technology uses a phone’s or tablet’s built-in camera to read a barcode on the bottom of the toy.
The enterprise itself does not appear to deviate too much from the conventions of a typical Angry Birds game, but the graphics and various physics dynamics have been spruced up.
Angry Birds Star Wars 2 will launch on September 19th on Android, iOS and Windows Phone 8.