Saturday, December 4, 2010

Majora's Mask: The Marketing

I don't know how many of you remember the marketing campaign for Nine Inch Nail's album Year Zero. Trent Reznor hired a few companies to create an awesome experience and really bring the concept album to life. Visit Another Version of the Truth for a good look at the idea. America has been taken over by neoconservative despots.. a resistance forms. etc. I liked this idea, and I think it's one of the coolest things to ever hit the web.

Anyway, I mention that because I just came across some old, but pretty interesting Zelda related news. When Nintendo got ready for the release of Majora's Mask, they tried something similar. It might have been the great granddaddy of the campaign that turned out to be Year Zero.

Radio Zelda is now transmitting...

Check out the archived version of the site, It appears to be some sort of radio show devoted to events in the real world that aren't really happening. The moon is getting closer to the earth, a rift has opened between parallel universes, scientists are searching for an individual with a bizarre genetic anomaly, people are panicking and demanding answers...

Now, sounds like a hoax right? Wrong. Computer nerds who know (or in my case, don't know) use the whois command. It'll give you the registration data for any domain name. And what is the whois data for you ask?

Domain Name..........
Creation Date........ 2000-08-01
Registration Date.... 2009-07-05
Expiry Date.......... 2011-08-01
Organisation Name.... Nintendo of America Inc.
Organisation Address. 4820 150th Ave NE
Organisation Address.
Organisation Address. Redmond
Organisation Address. 98052
Organisation Address. WA
Organisation Address. UNITED STATES

That is correct. Nintendo tried to go viral with a Zelda game. And I bow my head in veneration to such a sweet attempt. They event went as far to give "Radio Zelda" an affiliate site, (archived). The whois data turns out much the same. Z-science was apparently the site for the research group JRAMOA, the group of scientists who inadvertently brought our doom. Note how JRAMOA is an anagram of Majora. Others can be found on the archived version of the site.

Furthermore, both of these domain names currently redirect to

As if all that wasn't enough, fans eventually took the audio from Radio Zelda and the actual radio ads and created this fantastic footage of the apocalypse Nintendo was perpetuating. Rock on.

Long story short.. I thought this was cool. It didn't quite get the play that Year Zero did, but I think it's just as cool since I like both Zelda and NiN.

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