Doritos Unlock XBox II

Concept, Chris Bellinger
Creative Director, Chris Bohlin
Art Director, Becky Frolker,
Designer, Matt Mayer
Writer, Brian Rubin
In collaboration with BlockDot Studios and Ketchum

From Chief Marketer:

Doritos was looking for a way to reach a large number of gamers (ages 16 to 24) and excite them in a compelling way. A tie-in with Xbox Live seemed a good fit. According to Microsoft, Xbox 360 players spend 1 billion hours each month using Xbox Live. The 25 million Xbox Live members worldwide average over 40 hours of use each month.

Doritos’ goal was to generate excitement about the brand, engage the audience and ultimately drive sales. The brand also wanted to challenge its fans to say what they think an intense video game would be like if gamers were in control.

To achieve these goals, Doritos launched the “Unlock Xbox” video game contest. This gave gamers with a great idea but no development experience a chance to bring their game to life by becoming a gaming consultant for Doritos (complete with a $50,000 salary), and having their entire experience turned into an online video documentary.

A mix of media on both Xbox Live and drove awareness and engagement for the program. Media placements were determined based on the phase of the campaign (submission, voting, download) and where a consumer could take action. For example, submitting an idea via the website or voting and downloading the games on Xbox Live.

More than 1,500 contestants signed up and presented ideas. A panel of judges narrowed the candidates’ ideas to the top eight; then online visitors cast their votes to determine the top three.

Those three contestants traveled to Microsoft to make their pitch and two finalists emerged. The finalists worked with professional game developers to create their games: “Doritos Crash Course” and “Harm’s Way by Doritos.”

The Doritos games were presented on Xbox Live for free download, and gamers across the country voted for their favorite game.

“Doritos Crash Course” emerged as the winning game and became the fastest-downloaded Xbox Live Arcade game in the console’s history with more than 1 million downloads in two weeks.

Results from an AdEffectiveness research study reported that 72% took action after seeing the ads on Xbox Live; 49% of these respondents went out and bought Doritos; 24% told friends about the contest; and 21% visited Doritos continues to receive incremental impressions through logo integration in the winning game, Doritos Crash Course.


Consumer Engagement, Digital, Point of Sale