Friday, May 06, 2005

Corporate Whoring


Separated recently
(for a few days) from my World of Warcraft addiction (enduring a mild case of DT), I decided to plug up my PS2 and venture into console gaming.

I started up a game that has garnered horrible reviews and is certainly guilty of having a god-awful title: Run Like Hell (or RLH, as all the hep cats are saying).

I totally agree with Gamespot's criticisms. The camera sucks, the cutscenes suck, the gameplay is simplistic, the quests are monotonous . . . whew!

Why do I enjoy this game?

For some reason I have a disorder that causes me to enjoy sub-par entertainment. I've always been quite partial to low-budget horror films. I worked in a video store for awhile and ran through every Friday the 13th, every Leprechaun film, dogs like Rumpelstiltskin and Night of the Demons and even cheese-gore classics like Dead Alive and Cannibal Holocaust.

Oddly enough, the thing that I really dislike about RLH is the advertising!

Let me set this up for you: It's the maybe-far-distant future. The future, anyway. You're a pilot on a big space station. There are some kinda cool humanoid aliens working on the space station. While you're away on a mission the station is overrun by really vicious aliens (that come in two flavors -- the Aliens-style aliens and the Captain-Gantu-ish brutes). It, naturally, falls to you to kick ass, take names and save the surviving station inhabitants.

And don't forget to get a refreshing BAWLS! beverage from machines located all over the station.

Yeah, no shit.

I've discussed advertising in games before and said I felt that it could be quite appropriate to a game. But RLH is, definitely, not one of those games.

What twisted fucking ad exec paired these things?
At the very least the BAWLS should, like, completely restore your health instead of giving you a miniscule amount. I mean, if you're going to awkwardly position your brand into a randomly-chosen videogame, shouldn't it do something really great in said game?

I'm the head of Charred Deth Cigarettes. I decide to slot them into the new Mario game, really create some cross-brand synergy. So when bringing my horrendous plan to fruition, do I decide that my cigarettes just give Mario a 5% increase in his jump height? Fuck no, when he grabs one of my smokes, it warps him straight to Bowser and makes him grow the size of the screen.

That's
what shitty marketing is about!

1 comment:

dan.lucas said...

Ha! The cig should give Mario a cowboy hat and boots and have him mumble something about this being "Mario-boro country."

I'm also with you on terrible movies; Alien Beach Pary Massacre and Shakma, a movie about a crazed babboon let loose on D&D players, are both in my collection.

But man, I can only play a bad game once before I'm done. I got Celebrity Death Match for Christmas and if it wasn't for my girlfriend's brother, it probably wouldn't have lasted the thirty minutes I invested.