Visa - Shooting for the starz

  • Tom Henchman

The Solarflare team worked with Visa to develop an interactive solution that would engage fans at the FIFA World Cup 2018 in Moscow. The brief was open, the solution needed to reflect the Visa brand, be football related, as well as shareable on social media. It also needed to be an intriguing installation for the location – the lobby of the Marriott Hotel, for the duration of the games.


Solarflare developed a holographic competition called Shooting for the Starz, an experience that would bring fans closer to some of their football heroes. Visitors had the chance to kick an augmented reality football 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 shot. To give fans a realistic sense of kicking a ball, a haptic device was concealed under the stage. This gave a physical and audio sensation when kicking the holographic ball. With a Kinect2 sensor, the shot could be tracked, including the trajectory and velocity of the kick. The immersive experience was a huge success with fans, as visitors were able to follow the game on a large 3m wide wall screen behind the player. Cameras captured the best kick, which was automatically incorporated into a shareable media video clip and sent to the player within seconds of them finishing.


Over 2000 people took part in the challenge, hoping to win one of ten signed footballs. The majority of those participants shared their experiences on social. The holographic experience encouraged visitors to immerse themselves in the hype, meet a hero and create their own competition within the FIFA World Cup. Visa and Shiraz were amazed by the buzz the Shooting for the Starz competition created, which exceeded all expectations and KPI’s set.