International pop star Enrique Iglesias will appear in popular social game CityVille as a digital avatar offering players collectible branded in-game gear and options to virtually recreate his Europhia Tour concert arena. Part of a promotional deal with well-known Facebook game maker Zynga that's running through October 10th, in-game users can also preview his soon-to-be released music video for "I Like How it Feels."
Tie-ins include a computerized cameo by Iglesias, whose chatty alter-ego will visit players' cities, and options to collect items associated with the singer's lifestyle, including signature fashion accessories like his leather bracelet and military cap. By progressing in the game, enthusiasts can also unlock a two-seater plane, Miami high-rise and speedboat, which may be added as status-enhancing objects to their simulated cities. Users will further be offered the choice to build a faux performance venue (the Euphoria Arena) styled after the real-world amphitheaters in which Iglesias performs, thereby unlocking advance looks at his latest video, featuring rapper Pitbull.
Similar to Lady Gaga's recent partnership with sister title FarmVille, which included a branded farm, exclusive song previews and bonus tracks, the campaign is intended to raise awareness for both the artist and software developer. Currently drawing about 71 million monthly active users across Facebook and other social networks such as Google+, CityVille is down from its all-time high of over 100 million players. A free-to-play title which appeals to a wide cross-section of ages and interests, the initiative may help Iglesias rope in additional fans. Likewise, it may provide CityVille with an opportunity to widen its lead over rival The Sims Social, which has been quickly storming up the charts to the tune of 62 million players.
Other recent high-profile partnerships for Zynga include an appearance by Indiana Jones in newly-launched title Adventure World, and cameo by storied hip-hop producer Dr. Dre, who brought streaming music and simulated collectibles to Mafia Wars.