SBD/March 7, 2014/Marketing and Sponsorship

Shaquille O'Neal Seeking Funding To Launch "Shaq Fu" Video Game Sequel

TNT analyst Shaquille O'Neal 20 years ago "starred in 'Shaq Fu,' a video game that was the basic run-of-the-mill fight game," and now, thanks to his partnership with New Jersey-based video game developer Matt Karch, there is "a sequel coming," according to Nina Mandell of USA TODAY. The idea for a sequel "began 10 months ago," when O'Neal's manager came to Karch "with a simple request: Shaq wanted to get involved with video games." Once O'Neal "gave the go-ahead, Karch and his company built the prototype for the game." Once they had "O'Neal's approval on that, it was officially time to launch." There is "now a YouTube video showing a preview of the game." The game, "Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn," is a "tale of O'Neal being kidnapped by an anonymous somebody who is well-known (and wearing a ninja costume)." The developers and O'Neal on Thursday "made the official confirmation of its existence by launching a fundraising campaign on Indiegogo, a popular crowd-funding platform." The team "put the goal" at $450,000. Karch said that that amount was less than 20% of the "actual money it would cost to make" the game (USA TODAY, 3/7). The AP's Derrik Lang noted the original "Shaq Fu" is considered "to be among the worst games ever made." But backers of the sequel "could receive anything from a pair of autographed size-22 sneakers to a pick-up basketball game and lunch with Shaq, depending on how much they donate" (AP, 3/6).
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