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Nickelodeon Online Game Linked to ‘Avatar’ Series


Richard Tedesco

Promo Xtra

August 5, 2008

Nickelodeon aims to build on the buzz from its popular “Avatar” animé series with the introduction of a global multiplayer Web game based on the series in September.

The online game, “Avatar: Legends of the Arena,” spins out a prequel to the three seasons of “Avatar: the Last Airbender.”

Nicktoons Network will repeat the final episodes of the recently concluded third season, with those episodes providing viewers with access codes for the online game launching on Sept. 15 at

The game will help to build players’ anticipation for the theatrical release of M. Night Shyamalan’s “The Last Airbender” from Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies in July 2010. The film was inspired by the anime series that tells the story of Aang, a 12-year-old boy struggling with his destiny to become an Avatar.

“There’s an amazing range of mythology about it,” said Jason Root, senior vice president of “It lends itself to game play. So this is really an opportunity as we role things out to the next level.”

The anime series has already engaged the imaginations of the six- to 14-year old core demographic: the two-hour third season finale averaged 5.6 million viewers. The series will keep its mythology alive in reruns on Nick’s cable channels.

Players joining in the 3D online game will create their own characters to interact with Aang in the days before he realized his super-human capabilities as an Airbender.

Root sees a strong potential to expand the audience for the series—and the movie—with the September release of the game in 77 countries.

“We’re trying to deepen the audience’s current relationship with the show,” Root said.

The game will ultimately be available in 81 countries. A beta version, at, was introduced during Comic-Con International last month. is in discussions about possible sponsorship of the game, according to Root, who said a possible migration to another gaming platform is yet to be determined.

Meanwhile, THQ will release “The Last Airbender: Into the Inferno,” also based on Nick’s anime series, this fall.







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