Publish Date: Dec 16, 2018

“Reindeer Games”, Microsoft’s 2018 Holiday Advertisement
Goal: The goal of Microsoft's 2018 holiday advertisement was to celebrate the spirit of the holidays and the power of inclusion and community. This ad highlights the introduction of the Xbox Adaptive Controller, which was a significant product milestone that brings to life Microsoft’s mission of empowering people.

What it is: Microsoft’s 2018 holiday advertisement, “Reindeer Games”, is an inspirational story featuring nine (and a half)-year-old Owen rising to the top of his game with the support of all of his friends, including his real-life best friend Gunnar, and a little help from the Xbox Adaptive Controller. Owen has Escobar Syndrome, which limits his mobility, but does nothing to reduce his passion for gaming.

We watch as his friends gather to cheer him on as word spreads of his impending achievement. The moment of joy experienced by the children celebrating together when Owen wins the game reminds us of the spirit of the holiday season and illustrates Microsoft’s overall mission to create accessible technology that levels the playing field and creates opportunity for all of us. The ad ends with the line “When everybody plays, we all win”.

The “Behind the Scenes” video tells more of Owen’s story and how the Xbox Adaptive Controller empowers him and other gamers with limited mobility.

Impact: To date, the ad has been featured in 25 positive press articles, generated positive sentiment and conversations across social media, and has been viewed over 1.4M times with over 3.5M impressions. The ad will be amplified in over 113 markets and translated in 36 languages, spreading the message of inclusion globally.

Reindeer Games

Behind the Scenes 


The Unstereotype Alliance Member Spotlight highlights members’ innovative experiences and exceptional efforts in the areas of social impact, diversity and inclusion. The case study serves as an example of best practices to lead the effort in fostering an unstereotyped culture.