Sony Interactive Entertainment and popular video game series NBA 2K have joined forces to create a new campaign to highlight just how realistic the game’s latest installment, NBA 2K23, feels on the PlayStation 5 console.
Titled “The Shot Caller” and created by Adam&Eve/NYC, which is one of two agencies the long-running game franchise hired to promote NBA 2K23 this summer, the ad stars Willie Martinez, a young basketball fan who’s shown playing solo in front of his home.
As he’s narrating his own game, a shot clock emerges from his roof, court lines appear on his driveway and a jumbotron sprouts from a tree—and suddenly he’s on the court in a raucous NBA arena, passing to Dallas Mavericks point guard Luka Dončič and scoring the game-winning buzzer-beater.
But at the close of the ad, it’s shown that Willie has been playing as an animated version of himself sporting jersey No. 27 in NBA 2K23 the whole time, highlighting just how life-like the video game feels. It wraps up with the tagline “Feel the energy on PS5; Feel the contact on PS5; Feel the moment on PS5.”
The 60-second ad, which was directed by Terence Neale and debuted on Tuesday, Dec. 8, will be running across TV, digital and social channels in nearly a dozen countries in North America, Europe, Asia and Oceania.
“The Shot Caller” is the most recent component in NBA 2K23’s global marketing push, which has been in development since this summer with the theme “Answer the Call.” Both Adam&Eve/NYC on the East Coast and its sister agency DDB San Francisco out West have been working on the account.
A few months ago, Phoenix Suns shooting guard Devin Booker and rapper Jack Harlow both starred in the game’s inaugural campaign, which focused on ordinary gamers stepping into NBA legend Michael Jordan’s virtual shoes.
NBA 2K23 has been available for purchase since early September.