Spose: King of Maine, King of Marketing

Converting a Twitter Follower to a Fan in 10 Minutes

I don’t quite recall how I came across @spizzyspose on Twitter, perhaps someone I know retweeted him or I followed on impulse based on his Twitter bio “Using proper English in rap songs since 2002.”

Whatever it was, today I opened Twitter and saw a bunch of posts about a mobile game with an unlockable album. I headed over to Google Play thinking, “I’ll download it if it’s free.” $1.99. Hmm, it’s cheaper than an album but I was still a little unsure. It was time to check Youtube.

This was the first result.

Spose — Nobody (featuring Watsky)

I connected with the song. At first, I reasoned that I could probably wait for “Good Luck with Your Life” to hit Google Play All-Access. But I want it NOW. I pulled the trigger.

Gameplay

The game takes you through the counties of Maine where you collect pine cones and coins. Coins unlock tracks on the album and pine cones are the in-game currency to buy track plays.

Each level starts as an infinite runner with a series of enemies that you must dodge or throw boots at to defeat. At the end of the level, there is a boss to defeat.

The game is short but it immerses you in Spose’s origin story in a way that’s reminiscent of the title track from Hamilton. It’s far from game as licensing opportunity or pet project (hello, 50 Cent games). It’s a clever scheme to entertain you, get you to collect in-game currency, so that you can spend it on music while you play, rinse and repeat. It’s almost game as concept album, like the much beloved Moonwalker from Michael Jackson or Beyonce’s Lemonade.

It excites me as a programmer that there are opportunities like this to mix programming and art, but I hope those looking to exploit this kind of marketing don’t just copy the look and feel wholesale without some twist. Doing so would be a betrayal of rap music, which thrives on the nature of its artists to reference, research, and remix the work of others, adding their own style to make it authentic and speak their truth.

Get the game at https://www.kingofmaine.com/.