NBC's 'The Office' Plays Hooky with Mobile Games

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Wasteketball, table-top golf and other leisurely office diversions can now be enjoyed on the privacy of your cell phone, safe from the disapproving eyes of your boss—thanks to a suite of mobile games based on NBC's popular sitcom, The Office. Created by mobile content publisher Indiagames, The Office Games is currently available for download on Verizon and Cingular network phones, with Sprint and T-Mobile following suit in September. "We sat back and thought of all the silly things that the staff of The Office does to break up the day," says Indiagames vice president of business development Sean M. Malatesta. "These games are the classic things that office workers do. So as far as designing them, it was refreshing to think outside the box. Maybe we should have added a Jell-O competition..."

Starring Michael Scott (Steve Carell) and his band of dysfunctional staffers, each of the six mini-games offers quick and easy gameplay that harkens back to the simplicity of early mobile gaming efforts, before video and music became the mobile trends du jour. Of course, this isn't the first time The Office has ventured beyond the confines of TV—NBC recently released a 10-part webisode series during the show's summer hiatus. Given the relatability of the characters and situations, the decision to promote the property from online to the mobile platform—allowing audiences to play a more active role in the Office experience—was a no-brainer. "Being a thirty-minute sitcom, The Office is well suited to multi-platform because it's the right amount of material for consumers who are using newer, alternative platforms," says John Miller, chief marketing officer for NBC Universal's television group. "The core audience also tends to embrace technology, making it easier for us to find them in these newer spaces."
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