Visa: Shoot for the Starz


INITION were delighted to work with Visa to develop an interactive solution that would engage guests and fans at the renowned FIFA World Cup 2018 event in Moscow.

Using technology to add interest, Visa wanted to offer a unique experience. The brief was fairly open, but the solution needed to: reflect the Visa brand, be football related, as well as shareable on social media. It also needed to provide an attractive spectacle in the lobby of the Marriott Hotel for the duration of the games.


INITION developed a holographic competition called Shooting for the Starz, a stimulating activity that would bring fans closer to some of their football heroes. Visitors had the chance to kick an augmented reality football around while being coached by famous football star Zlatan Ibrahimović, the face of Visa’s campaign.

With a HoloLens AR headset, visitors were able to visualise the ball, the target and Zlatan himself. The virtual Zlatan gave spectators the ultimate coaching session to kick the perfect virtual shot. To give fans a realistic sense of kicking a ball, a haptic ‘Buttkicker’ was concealed under the stage. This gave an audio and physical sensation when kicking the hologram ball. With a Kinect2 sensor, the shot could be tracked, including the angle and speed of the kick.

The immersive experience became a real spectacle, as visitors were able to follow the game on a large 3m wide wall screen behind the player. Cameras captured players’ best kick, which was automatically incorporated into a shareable media video clip and sent to the player within seconds of them finishing.


“What a dream, being coached by Zlatan IbrahimoviC! It felt so real”

The Shooting for the Starz competition was in high demand, with over 2000 people taking part in the challenge, hoping to win one of ten signed footballs.

The high level of enthusiasm and excitement resulted in participants and onlookers sharing their individual videos on social media, and showing off their scores.

The holographic experience encouraged visitors to immerse themselves in the football hype, meet a football hero and create their own small competition within the FIFA World Cup.

Visa and Shiraz were amazed by the buzz the Shooting for the Starz competition created, which exceeded their expectations.

“It pulled people into the area like a magnet and became a group entertainment shared not just by those at the event, but with their friends on social media” said Justin Bell Vice President of Digital at Shiraz Creative

They are currently looking for more opportunities to use INITION’s combination of technology and creativity to bring events closer to spectators and deliver that WOW factor.

STOP PRESS: This project has just been announced as a finalist in the 2018 Experience Design & Technology Awards by Event Tech in the category “Best Combination of Event Technologies (B-to-C)” The awards are being held in Las Vegas in November.