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Brief Published: 3 May 2018

Diageo’s Virtual Reality Cautionary Tale

International drinks and spirits giant Diageo has released Decisions: Party's Over, an immersive virtual reality (VR) experience that lets users step into first-person perspectives of the dangers of binge drinking.

The launch follows Diageo's October 2016 release Decisions – a simple 360-degree video that placed viewers in the front seat of a fatal drink-driving crash. The campaign accumulated almost 14 million views at the time, with 75% of viewers saying that in future they would avoid drink driving by planning ahead. Now, Diageo is building on that success with interactive features to increase the impact of its message.

Created by American immersive cinema production company Jaunt, Decisions: Party's Over is a VR experience depicting a party that ends in a case of lethal alcohol poisoning. During the experience, viewers can toggle between the point of view of four different characters, including the victim, to gain a broad perspective of the night's events and experience numerous missed opportunities for intervention.

"While drunk driving and underage drinking are at historic lows, binge drinking rates have remained stable," James Thompson, chief marketing and innovation officer at Diageo North America, told The Drum. "Our hope is to reach our audience on an emotional level and prevent future detrimental impaired decisions associated with binge drinking."

Immersive storytelling experiences like the Decisions series are a great way for brands to achieve emotional impact and boost social responsibility messaging.

For more on the latest boundary-pushing VR projects, check out our coverage from Tribeca Immersive 2018.