Icon Medialab, the Swedish digital media consultancy with offices in London, is to launch the first phase of a centrally hosted, locally managed website for Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. The site aims to be the on-line community for PlayStation gamers throughout Europe.
Icon MediaLab has re-designed and re-engineered the existing Playstation-europe.com into a central site supporting 14 country- specific sites and spanning five languages, renamed scee.com.
A central server provides an infrastructure that allows local operators to customise content according to the preferences of its region’s players. The result is a series of Europe-wide sites with a harmonious set of functions and consistent structure, but an individual look and feel.
According to Icon MediaLab project manager Magnus Helander, the demand by PlayStation users for a “relevant and credible reflection of what they see as ‘their’ brand” is reflected in the importance attached to creating a distinct local identity.
In view of this, Icon MediaLab new media manager Stephen Fuller says regional operators will have a free reign in terms of content and design. “There is maximum flexibility, though the central platform puts some restriction on functionality. The next development will allow local editors to develop this aspect of their site,” he says.
Further developments will include game microsites, competitions, chat rooms, bulletin boards and Web-mail. The quick turnaround in deployment means that if a fixture is built on to one site it can be very quickly shared across all sites. Additionally, new sites can be set up in around two weeks.
Icon MediaLab won a competitive four-way pitch last August to secure the contract. It will consult on future developments of the project through its network of offices throughout Europe.