A Dog Gets to Enjoy Microsoft's Gaming Worlds in Cute Holiday Ad

And 'Dogtopia' in Minecraft actually exists

We had thought most dogs were happily (though sometimes excessively) being tended to during Covid, but apparently some of them are bored out of their minds. Enter Microsoft's holiday commercial from McCann New York, in which a dog named Rufus gets to enjoy Microsoft games—just as his owners have been doing for months—thanks to a timely nap that transports him to fantasy land.

The spot, directed by Noam Murro of Biscuit Filmworks, focuses on Halo, Minecraft and Microsoft Flight Simulator, though we get a glimpse of Microsoft Teams as well. (Apparently, dogs dream of working, not just playing—though perhaps it's just a happy hour gathering.) 

Rufus rolling around on the iconic Windows wallpaper at the end is a nice touch, too.

Microsoft | Find Your Joy (A Dog's Dream)

"This holiday, find your joy," the onscreen text says at the end, followed by the line "See you out there." In this case, "out there" really means the "in here" of gaming worlds—and the whole spot, really, is an ode to virutal fun-having in this time when in-person joy remains largely untenable.

"This year more the ever, we felt it was important to give people a little lift, to remind them that while we are facing a lot of challenges, there are many ways we can connect, be productive and enjoy the time we have at home," says Kathleen Hall, corporate vp of brand, advertising and research at Microsoft.

The campaign is being activated within a few of the featured games, too. Blockworks has released a Dogtopia world as a free download available from Minecraft Marketplace and for Java. Press materials advise you to "run through a colorful bone-shaped forest, where bacon grows on trees and there are never any fleas. This world will be complete with doggie hot air balloons, a mountaintop dog mansion, a fire hydrant fountain, a doggie Mount Rushmore and so much more."

Dogtopia

Later this month, Flight Simulator will be decorating 12 cities around the world with holiday lights and magic, a holiday scavenger hunt for every Flight Simulator pilot to enjoy. Also, users will be able to fly the planes from the commercial, too.

CREDITS

Microsoft 

Kathleen Hall – Chief Brand Officer
Carol Hutchinson – Sr. Director, Global Advertising
Stacey Terrien – Director, Global Advertising
Jenny Leahy – Director of Global Advertising, Social and Media Partnerships
Ron Schott – Senior Advertising Manager
Dawn Novak – Senior Advertising Manager 
Hannah Westing – Senior Advertising Manager
Danielle Radcliffe – Social Media Manager
Jorg Neumann – Head of Microsoft Flight Simulator

McCann New York 

Creative  
Sean Bryan – Co-Chief Creative Officer   
Tom Murphy – Co-Chief Creative Officer   
Shayne Millington – EVP, Global Executive Creative Director   
Piper Hickman – EVP, Global Executive Creative Director  
Ferdinand Daniele – Creative Director   
Stephanie Cajucom – Creative Director    
Gabie Fleischer – Art Director   
Jessica New – Copywriter 
Gonzalo Hergueta – Designer 
Yung Lee – Designer 
Malik Dupree – Junior Designer 
David Cliff – Director of Creative Technology   
Hiya Vazirani – Creative Technologist   
Alicia Foor – Creative Technologist 

Business Leadership  
Kevin Nelson - Managing Director, McCann NY 
Jeremy Miller – EVP, Global Chief Communications Officer, McCann Worldgroup 
Scot Beck – EVP, Global Business Lead  
Socrates Papazoglou - SVP Group Account Director 
Patricia Burelli - Account Supervisor 
Divya Joseph - Senior Account Executive 

Project Management  
Monica Daniels – Project Manager 

Production  
Nathy Aviram - Chief Production Officer   
Mel Senecal – VP, Executive Producer  
Morgan Edstrom – Producer  
Kelly Ramsey – Senior Art Producer 
Caroline Sollman - Art Producer 
Charlotte Popper - Digital Producer  
Sean Flanigan – Digital Producer  
Eric Johnson (aka DJ Bunny) - SVP, Executive Music Producer 
Dan Gross – Music Producer 
Jamie Jou – Business Manager, Music  

Strategy  
Ash Farr – EVP, Global Director of Strategy & Research 
Jordan Berger - Strategy Director 

Business Affairs  
Danielle Korn – EVP, Talent Partnerships 
David Halberstadt – Business Manager 
Terry Marcello - VP Director Talent Payment  
Rosemary Smith - Talent Payment Manager 

Biscuit Filmworks  
Noam Murro – Director 
Shawn Lacy – Partner / Managing Director 
Andrew Travelstead - Executive Producer 
Rachel Glaub – Head of Production 
Sean Moody – Head of Production 
Emily Skinner – Producer 
Jennifer Berry – Production Supervisor  

MPC 
Matthew Loranger – Executive Producer  
Elias Bermudez Jr – Producer    
Stefani Na – Producer  
Daniel Seddon – Shoot Supervisor  
2D Lead Rob Walker 
Tim Kafka – CG Supervisor  
Colorist Vincent Taylor 
Color Producer: Kay Carpenter 
Color Assistant: Tyler Robinson 

RPS 
Damion Clayton – Editor   
Michael Shugarman – Assistant Editor 
Eve Kornblum – Managing Director  
Jenny Greenfield – Producer 

Giant Artists (Photographer)  

David Black – Photographer  

Craft New York  
Michelle Massaro – Senior Print Producer 
Lorrena Lapouge – Retoucher 
Andrew Bacha – Retoucher 

Sonic Union  
Michael Marinelli – Sound Designer/Mix Engineer 
Pat Sullivan – Head of Production  

JSM 
Joel Simon – CCO/CEO/Co-Composer 
Jeff Fiorello – VP/Executive Producer 
Jonathan Russell – Co-Composer 
Norm Felker/ Producer 
Andrew Manning/ Producer 
Sharon Cha – Producer 
 
Blockworks (Minecraft Dogtopia)

James Delaney – Founder and Managing Director

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Tim Nudd
Tim Nudd is editor in chief of the Clio Awards, editor of Muse by Clio, and host of the podcast Tagline. Previously, he was creative editor at Adweek.

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