Clash Mini x Harry Potter: The Ultimate Crossover
Ah - there's just something about crossovers. If they're done well, they can be a magical combination of two worlds that already shared a natural link. When the Clash Mini team came to us wanting to keep players engaged during their Beta period and attract wider audiences, we knew that we had the opportunity to do something exciting, challenging, and fun. What the project ended up being was an epic crossover between the worlds of Clash Mini and... Harry Potter. Here's how it went.
Where We Started
Clash Mini is a new Clash of Clans game, launched to Beta in August 2021. It’s a strategic board game set in the Clash universe where players position their favourite characters and watch them come to life to battle.
The road to a global launch can be a long one, and the Clash Mini team wanted to understand ways they could engage a wider audience of potential players during this time - all the while importantly retaining their existing user base and keeping them excited about what's to come.
Supercell wanted to focus on showcasing the game: from what the environments are, who the characters are, how they play the game to what this game adds to the wider Clash IP. The question was: how?
*Enter Harry Potter*
For this project, we wanted to make the game relevant to existing as well as potential new players by spring-boarding on the back of upcoming reactive moments. Waste took the annual Clash Mini strategy and looked at topics and common themes that the target audience may have a passion for.
We specifically identified a set of planned reactive dates over a three-month period - and one of these was the 25th anniversary of ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’, which we identified would be celebrated by a fan base close to that of Clash Mini.
We set out to test our premise in the channels, and found that the Clash Mini community organically made references to Harry Potter and Wizard's Chess when they saw Clash Mini for the first time. There were plenty of similarities between the two games, and we realised that the two were a natural fit. So, we ran with it.
We used this strategic insight and recommendation to brief two 3D videos to release on this date. Together with Vlad, Community Manager, Connie, Graphic Designer, and Chen, Game Artist, all members of the Clash Mini team, we managed to put a uniquely Clash Mini spin on it and join up the two audiences.
This is how we recreated the iconic Harry Potter Wizard's Chess scene in a Clash Mini setting, with Clash of Clans characters magically moving Clash Mini character chess pieces.
✨ Magic. ✨
The Clash Mini Spin
We wanted to use this cultural event not only as an opportunity to tap into a trending moment, but a way to join up two communities that were naturally linked, and get across the vibe and feel of the Clash Mini universe.
In order to do this, we wanted to create two videos for Instagram & Twitter that were a shot-for-shot recreation of the very memorable Wizard Chess scene from the first Harry Potter film, and a few smaller videos for TikTok. To put a Clash Mini spin on it, they would be ‘mini-fied’ featuring the Barbarian & Archer queen characters facing off.
The production required very close attention to detail, especially with the textures, lighting and animation, ensuring we achieved a Wizard-y feel while staying true to the Clash style. We animated the Clash Mini chess piece characters in 2 second blocks (every other frame) in order to achieve a choppy animation style akin to stop motion.
'As a Harry Potter fan, casting our adorable Clash Mini characters into the roles of Harry, Ron, and Hermione was a treat for the imagination!
As a creative, this was an incredible opportunity. Exploring a crossover between one of our most visually aesthetic games, and a game within one of the most well-loved fantasy franchises of all time is either a dream brief, or a shot of Felix Felicis.
And even better, the two were a natural fit. If Clash Mini is Fred Weasley, Wizard Chess is George. (For the Muggles reading this, they’re basically twins. The former is a strategic auto-chess, and the latter is… well, chess.)
It was a joy to see these concepts brought to life so lovingly. Our animators managed to exaggerate these tiny character personalities in such comical ways, and at every stage of the project, the team added more and more touches of detail and humour.
Judging by the genuine lols from fellow Potterheads in the agency, we knew this mash up would be a hit with not only our game community but with the Wizarding community too.
– Maricris Llanillo, Senior Art Director, Waste
The performance of our videos exceeded expectations! The quality & visual tone of the full 3D animation really engaged the Clash Mini players on social media and the Harry Potter fans alike. The video received lots of praise and admiration from the community - with many instantly recognising the references to Harry Potter and being impressed by the quality of the animation.
The TikTok spin-off videos, using the viral sound by @kimberlypizzo, had the highest AER on the Clash Mini TikTok that month, garnering 35k views and a 15% engagement rate. The videos had a significantly higher than average video viewership compared to the rest of our content, owing to the topic & style.
Not only did the content get players speculating about the future of the game, but it started conversations about lore and the role that Clash Mini has in the wider Clash universe. And also, getting excited about the future of Clash Mini.
'I was initially sceptical about the overlap between the Harry Potter and Clash Mini audiences, but when I saw the excitement and confidence of the Waste team, I decided to trust them on this one. It was a fun project to work on, especially considering the collaboration between Waste and Clash Mini - a true team effort.'
- Vladislav Perge, Community Manager, Clash Mini