Some may have started their career as a dish washer, as a winged target there is however
only one known: as part of a marketing campaign of a well-known Scottish Whiskey manufacturer
the Moorhuhn was dragged out of the wild and into a Notebook to serve as a substitute
target for the competition.
Not knowing that they were witnessing history being written patrons at pubs were
invited by green-dressed huntsmen to join the hunt on innocent chickens on a Notebook.
Was it one of the winners who received a CD with the game or even a member of the promotions
team – up to today it is unclear how the Moorhuhn escaped. Fact is that it wasn't planned.
Whether by Email or as download from private websites the Moorhuhn started
its conquest of a growing fan community. Even on floppy discs the chicken got multiplied –
for the benefit of those people that weren't part of this phenomenon called internet yet.
Like a virus...
Like a virus the little game spread on German PCs and also beyond the country's borders.
The advertising industry cites the Moorhuhn as the most successful example of viral marketing;
some even claim it was the first viral marketing campaign ever.
The media quickly adopted the game and spun competitions and events around it which
resulted in groaning or even collapsing download servers.
The downloads hosted by well known providers numbered in the millions, the unknown number
of privately passed on games most likely ranges far higher and the number of killed virtual
fowl is certainly beyond count.
The success of the game was in fact so profound that in 2002 research
showed that 84% of all Germans knew the Moorhuhn. A representative market research in 2008
with focus on gamers determined that 98% of all German gamers know the chicken.