Annie Murphy shows people can still connect over Nintendo

Being locked down doesn't keep the Schitt's Creek star from playing games with loved ones, a key message the video game co has been using to reach casual gamers.

Nintendo is appealing to people who don’t want being stuck indoors to keep them from having fun and enjoying games with their loved ones.

In a new campaign for the Switch featuring Annie Murphy, developed by Vancouver’s We the Collective, the Schitt’s Creek star  decides to stay in on a rainy day and play on her Switch, starting with a light workout playing Ring Fit Adventure, before a game of chess with her mother on Clubhouse Games and a round of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe with her best friend. Murphy finishes the day by donning an 80s-inspired costume and playing Just Dance 2021.

The ad is the latest in a global series that has featured celebrities like Serena Williams, Awkwafina and Brie Larson playing their favourite Switch games. This series has tended to showcase games outside of Nintendo’s core titles, such as The Legend of Zelda, reaching beyond its dedicated fanbase to a broader, more casual audience with games meant to be enjoyed with friends and family. The new spot with Murphy shows that those connections over games can still happen, even if the people playing them aren’t in the same room.

Beyond that series, Nintendo has made other efforts to appeal to a more casual audience here in Canada. In 2019, an ad that ran on social and in movie theatres featuring a blended family from Collingwood, Ont. that bonded over video games. In November, it ran the #ChallengeAChamp contest, which gave Canadians the chance to compete against tennis star Bianca Andreescu in Mario Tennis Aces, racecar driver James Hinchcliffe in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and dancer Shanie Blais in Just Dance 2020.

A co-production of Kindred and Scout Productions in Vancouver and OPC TV in Toronto, the Annie Murphy spot will run across North America on TV and digital media. Craft is handling the PR.