Why is MS still shunning KI

After KIWC I think it’s time that MS pits ads/ $$$ out for KI and give it some kind of coverage we all know halo is the end all be all, But I feel that being a exclusive KI needs more push for exposure. I heard something announced about a esports thing but no confirmed yet.


Major Nelson talked about the KIWC on his show. But I do get what you’re saying.


I don’t think Ads will help KI that much. You just aren’t going to see KI on television.

I think if MS was shunning KI, then we wouldn’t be getting a Season 3 and it wouldn’t be ported to the PC in the first place.


MS has done an amazing job at supporting KI, I hope they have more trailers before release and stuff too :slight_smile:

Microsoft has given us 3 seasons, and even possible esports, and the game is getting its THIRD year at evo what is huge.

plus the game is actually starting to get events in the uk too.

Airing a trailer during the Superbowl would’ve been perfect, but quite expensive.


haha that would be insane if they gave KI that kind of exposure, but I think stuff like that would more likely be saved for halo or gears what would obviously make more sense :stuck_out_tongue:

I saw after KIWC they put KI on the Free games store page front and center. I’m sure that generated a lot of attention.

According to Fortune, a 30 second spot during the Super Bowl was going for upwards of 5 million dollars. YIKES.

As far as MS “shunning” KI, I’m not sure where you’re getting that from. Do you think it’s overly realistic to start running commercials for a download-only fighting game that first debuted back in 2013?

I think the way they’re trying to bring the game along and build a fanbase actually runs really well with the type of game and the method of release. They’re building up a following, slowly but surely, within the FGC, the tourney scene, etc. They’ve also made season one free on XBL for a month and cut the price on season 2. They waited for demand on the PC and now they’ll be meeting that demand.

It’s been a slow burn, which makes sense considering that the game has been slowly built up over the last few years. They honestly couldn’t run huge ads for season one while explaining the pricing structure and why there were only six characters at launch and why it’s download only.

Now the counterargument might be “well, why not release a full retail game?” To that, I’d say two things. One… If they’d done that, and it didn’t sell well, KI would be dead and buried again, probably for good.

Two, we wouldn’t have an evolving platform, which was their intention all along. We’ve been getting a relatively steady stream of content since launch, and the game itself has evolved in all facets. Characters are getting more moves, more stuff to do, more tech to figure out… Would we have received all of this from the retail release, or would we have had to have waited a few years for an Ultra Killer Instinct or something along those lines?

We’ve been able to watch the game develop and change before our eyes and while that might not sound as cool as a full retail game two plus years ago, I personally like this approach a lot more than I thought I would, even as I have to begrudgingly concede that this kind of slow burn simply doesn’t lend itself that well to traditional advertising and marketing.

That might sound like I’m making excuses and sure, in an ideal world, I’d love to have both a constant stream of content and a triple A budget level of advertising, but that’s just not going to happen.

Fighters aren’t a triple A genre and KI doesn’t have the name recognition of MK and SF, at least not yet, but hopefully in time, they’ll keep building this IP up, and IG keeps impressing people with their amazing character designs and game ideas, to the point where it does break out of the genre and become a major cog in MS’s machine, right up there with Halo, Gears and Forza.

It was never going to happen overnight though, especially on a franchise that was 20 years old to begin with, so I’m really glad they’ve committed to the long sell rather than just trying to get everyone interested right away, failing, and abandoning the IP completely.

TL/DR: They’re trying, even if it may not be the way that we’re used to seeing, to make this a full-fledged franchise, and I tend to think that it’s working given where it started out and where it’s at now.


I wouldn’t say MS are shunning KI but I think I get what you are saying, it would be cool if they “embraced” KI a bit more. Idk if they realize it or not but KI could potentially be one of their best exclusives. I have no shame in admitting I literally only purchased an XB1 to play KI. I have always been a PS guy, and had KI been on that I more than likely never would have touched an Xbox 1. Its the main reason why I waited three years to get one, as I felt a little silly buying a console for a single game/franchise, but I could no longer hold out and caved in lol

They are doing good though, like people have said they have helped the game get to S3. This game has been supported for 3 years, which may not seem like anything to most people, but as an MK guy, that’s unheard of lol MKX hasn’t even been out for an entire 365 days and they have already announced a complete/GOTY edition which likely means that once KP2/XL is out, it won’t be getting any new content other than the improved netcode and balance patches. (I kind of think that’s on WB though)

TLDR: IMO Microsoft should promote/push KI a little harder and get it’s name out there to people outside of the FGC. KI could definitely become one of MS’s signature franchises if they just pushed and promoted it more.

I dunno, I think that while we don’t get the coverage we feel we deserve from a lot of games media (and we don’t enjoy the spotlight of television ads… Or even pop-up internet ads) there’s still been some effort towards keeping KI going.
I mean, if they agree to fund another 2 years of KI WC as well as a KI Convention, plus a PC Port and an entire new Season of content (including a character from one of their biggest blockbuster franchises), it’s clear they aren’t abandoning the game.
You want to talk about shunning, take a look at MKX on the PC. NRS just kinda gave up on them.
I do agree there should be more done to promote/advertise KI, but from the looks of things were relatively well off.

I’m kinda curious about what you mean by this. Could you clarify? What would constitute embracing KI more to you?

They made season one a games with gold game, they cut the price of season 2, they’re bringing it out on PC, we just saw the first KI World Cup, it’s been at EVO and it’s been featured at E3 three times and part of their large presentation twice… I get that a good amount of their efforts have been aimed at bringing KI along within the FGC, I’ll certainly grant you that, but what would be a good, effective, cost-conscious way of bringing more attention to this game?

Whenever this topic has come up, I’ve heard stuff from people like they want to see KI pushed more, or promoted more. Where do you specifically want to see this? Banner ads on IGN? Full page ads in Game Informer? TV commercials?

Sure, I wouldn’t mind seeing some of that as well and if they decide to go that route, I’d be pumped, but probably more for seeing the game I really like getting it’s much deserved time in the sun than anything else, because I’d have to think that they’ve weighed the cost of such things with the benefit of new money coming in and have likely found their current course to be more cost effective or perhaps even the more logical route to go.

In other words, and really, I’m just guessing here, I can’t imagine a company that has a lot of products and a lot of places to put money and wants to see a strong return on their investment because they’re here to make money saying something like “we think we have a good product here, even if it’s a relatively niche product in a niche market. Instead of slowly building up the reputation within that market, let’s pour money in to it in hopes that people outside of that market will love it because we think it’s good.”

I dunno, to me, that sounds rather risky.

By embrace I pretty much mean promote it, push it, show it off, wear it on their shoulder as one if their games that you can’t get anywhere else like Halo or GOW and that’s why you should buy an XB1. I can promise you had I not been a follower of the FGC, I likely never would have heard about the new KI.

Those things you listed are all great things and are exactly what I think they should be doing. I don’t think a small youtube ad would hurt though, just a tiny little something to catch the eyes of people who aren’t already fighting game fans. I do understand that it is a niche product in a niche market so spending a ton to make a commercial or ads could very well be a bad investment, but I think KI is a quality product and that the people deserve to know about it :wink:

While I certainly agree that it should be featured at E3 within the same breath as Halo and GOW and what not just by virtue of what a quality product it is, they have pushed KI at events like E3 and Gamescom. IG had a booth at PAX South (I believe that’s the one) recently. They revealed The Arbiter being in KI at a huge Halo event and did it simultaneously at a large KI event.

I mean, I get that without the mainstream stuff like internet ads and TV spots, it can seem like MS isn’t “all in” on KI, but I really tend to think that they’re just taking a less traditional approach to promoting a game that’s well… Less traditional in both it’s genre and it’s method of delivery and in that sense, I tend to think that they’re doing a great job, especially given how long this game has been on the market.

That said, I really do hope that more people see what a great game this is. I agree 150%, the people deserve to know about it!

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That is true, they are doing a lot at the moment it would seem which is amazing! I do agree though, they could very well just be trying something a little different in their marketing approach like you said, and I agree that they are doing a fantastic job!

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Wonderful. Another anger bomb thread…

Okay, let’s start by looking at the word “shunning.” verb: “can be the act of social rejection, or emotional distance. In a religious context, shunning is a formal decision by a denomination or a congregation to cease interaction with an individual or a group, and follows a particular set of rules. It differs from, but may be associated with, excommunication.”

I’m pretty sure this is not an appropriate word to be used in the context of KI’s relationship to Microsoft. (you could probably make a case that they are shunning Kinect, but not KI…) So, learning from recent threads, instead of making that kind of strong, negative statement, how about re-titling the thread “Suggestions for better marketing of KI?”

Okay, so in the interest of full disclosure - I am not a marketing expert (surprise!). I’m guessing most people posting in this thread aren’t either. That doesn’t mean logical and thoughtful suggestions might not be worthwhile. But can we all acknowledge that, while MS may not be perfect, they probably employ at least one or two logical and thoughtful people who also have degrees and experience in marketing? So even if we don’t understand the KI marketing strategy, we might want to assume that there is one, and MS has a reason for marketing (or not marketing) KI the way it is doing it.

So, in the interest of being helpful, I’d like to lay out the suggestions we have so far in this thread:

  1. More $$$ for advertising
  2. “some kind of coverage”
  3. Super Bowl commercial

We can’t really say much about #1 because we don’t know how much they spend on advertising, or how much money the game is bringing in, what the overall budget is or even what the strategy is. What we might be able to say is “I don’t feel like I see enough KI in places that I normally see ads for games.” That’s about it. I’m not sure what #2 means. #3 is an idea. Super Bowl ads this year cost about $5 million for a 30 second slot. I don’t know what KI’s budget is, but I’m guessing that’s not an achievable idea.

So, the other thing we can look at is what MS is already doing for the game:

  1. January games with gold promotion
  2. Season 2 combo breaker and ultra sale
  3. KIWC coverage (not clear how much MS was involved in some of these vs. Brandon Alexander etc. but it is all contributing to advertising the game):
    a. Maximillion’s Twitch Channel
    b. S3 Exhibition on Twitch and YouTube
    c. Getting recognized FGC talent like James Chen etc.
  4. Kim Wu Trailer at KIWC and on YouTube
  5. Arbiter reveal for KI at X Games Halo tournament

So, I think we can kind of see what MS’s strategy for the game is here. First, they are advertising to gamers and Xbox One owners. They are also using FGC streams/personalities and word of mouth for the game (this is a sort of “viral” marketing). They are giving away or reducing the price of earlier seasons to get people in line to buy S3 - and frankly anyone who hasn’t noticed a huge uptick in new players due to the Gold giveaway hasn’t been playing the game.

Which brings us to the final thing: What (if anything) do we think MS could reasonably do to better market the game?

I agree with others who have said that running a lot of TV ads is probably not going to help. I don’t watch any commercial TV on a regular basis, and I’m guessing a lot of the KI target demographic doesn’t either. What I do think might be helpful is more cross promotion. Things like the Minecraft skins they did. Cross promotions with other franchises like Halo, Gears, and Tomb Raider. I’m sure these “small” things take a lot more time and effort than we think, but it seems to me like they might be effective things to do.


side effects of being a budget project. Besides, microsoft has never dealt with a fighting game before so they are like 1 step foward and 2 steps back with KI just like this:

I think this last point is key, for sure and I think that we’ve been seeing this in action. From the early days of unlockable Shago with an XBL card right up to The Arbiter’s reveal for KI at KIWC and X Games Halo Tourney. They’ve been trying to put this game in front of people in a lot of different ways.

It wouldn’t shock me one bit if they revealed another guest character and that guest was from Gears. It’d be the only way you’d see any type of Halo vs Gears action and it’d be in Killer Instinct. I could see that having some solid promotional value. That would get the attention of both game journalists and fans alike.

Aside from that though, I really don’t understand the sentiment that KI’s not being promoted enough or they’re not really behind this game or whatever. I just get the feeling, which I always tend to get from threads like this, that some KI fans just don’t like the way it’s being marketed. They want to see more traditional marketing and because they’re not seeing those things specifically, they think MS isn’t doing enough or that it’s being “shunned.”

I dunno, personally, I think they’re trying to foster a community. They’re trying to appeal to Xbox owners (as @BigBadAndy said) and they’re trying to appeal to fighting game enthusiasts.

If there’s one thing I think could help MS with bringing in more KI fans, it would be bringing more fighting games exclusively to Xbox One. Now, when I say that, I’m not just talking about what would help KI only. I’m talking about recreating a place that existed on 360, where the MS console was the place to play fighting games. Right now, they don’t have that like they did last generation. But that’s more of a big picture idea as well as my incredibly selfish desire to have more great FGs on my system of choice. :slightly_smiling:

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No worries, the discussion is very respectful so far. Not as bad as you might think from the title initially :slightly_smiling:

I think the “involving and working with the KI community” approach helps tremendously. More budget is welcome, but even a big name like SF had to fight for its own future in terms of securing resources.

KI needs more Devs budget, pure and simple.