Best of lists are so 1999.
While 2009 was a great year for gamers and an unbelievable quantity of great titles were released, there were some marketing tactics and campaigns that caused anger, dismay and head-scratching among consumers and the media alike.
Set on Stun, noting that these “are the ones that angried up our blood and became stains on the internet,” runs down the Top 5 Worst Videogame Marketing Campaigns of 2009.
Coming in at the top (the bottom?), was Evony, the online game with a litany of complaints against it, not the least of which is using advertising images featuring scantily clad females that have nothing to do with the actual game at all.
Set on Stun scathed:
…you sued people who reported on your gold-spamming and malware, you spammed blogs with comments, you ripped off image assets from other games, you and your sniveling CEO complained about people shining the light on your deceptive practices.
Dante’s Inferno from Electronic Arts came in at number 2 on the list. The marketing campaign generated controversy at every step, causing Set on Stun to write, “Dante’s Inferno & EA seemed to try to piss off anyone who came even close to caring about their game, a game by all accounts, should be pretty kick-ass.”
The marketing for Dante’s Inferno was fascinating to watch unfold. Gamers, and even the media, became so rattled after a while, that every time a bizarre story surfaced on the Internet, people immediately wondered if it was a plant/front for the game. Sometimes it was.
Professional and industry opinions on the campaign were split as well, as witnessed in a bipolar Ars Technica headline for an excellent overview of almost everything Dante’s Inferno threw at the press.
Shoot even went so far as to name Wieden +Kennedy, the firm behind the Dante’s Inferno marketing, as its Agency of the Year.
Head over to Set on Stun to see the rest of the list.
Any other campaigns you can think of that didn’t make the list?