EA sports, Obamas in the game!

20 10 2008

This year we’ve seen the Obama camp using new technologies to reach voters.  Twitter, Facebook, Myspace, blogs, and Iphone applications are the new “webroots” approach to politics.  Even the announcement of Biden for VP was sent via text message to supporters, before it was made public.  Just when you thought the man was communicating on every electronic medium, he finds another way.

9 different games have Obama advertisements of some degree.  Electronic Arts has 9 different titles containing Obama campaign ads, the biggest title is Madden 09.  The marking firm responsible for introducing politician to end product is Massive Inc.  They allegedly approached the McCain people about doing similar ads but either didnt see the appeal, or didnt have the money to buy the spots.  The Dems are the only people you see cluttering the digital sidelines of games your paying $60+ dolallars for.

screenshot from Burnout 2 on Xbox 360

screenshot from Burnout Paradise on Xbox 360

Sources say the Obama camp has ad contracts for 9 different games.  The biggest deal is with EA sports.  Video game advertising has been around since the Nintendo, but campaign advertisements are uncharted waters.  The closest a politician usually gets to a game is proposing legislation to block game content.  The Grand Theft Auto series has been the straw man of many politicians stumping for votes of parents.  Second Life has been of interest this year, Ron Paul’s people built an entire virtual headquarters on the grid of Second Life.  Mark Warner of Virginia created an avatar and held a virtual press conference during his campaign.

I can see it now, a Sarah Palin unlockable character in Cabelas’ Big Game Hunter.

Advertisements in games can create negative opinions of the product if they take too much attention from the game itself.  More than one videogame has been ruined by Coke, Pepsi, or Yum! in years past. Obama needs to closely monitor where, and how his ads are placed in these games.  The billboard ad seen above is clever and the obvious choice for a driving game.  Searching on the internet the only images I have found is the ad from Burnout Paradise.  Madden 09 allegedly has more Obama spots, it will be interesting to see if they are posters on sidelines of the field, or maybe commercial breaks between quarters during the game.  The Microsoft’s Xbox Live browser would be another opportunity for banner ads, and voters would not have to buy a particular game to see your spots.

This is an interesting new way to get your point across to that demographic of people who spend free time gaming.  It could possibly add authenticity to a game, since Obama signs are everywhere in real life, its only fitting. Futher down the road if he decides to pass legistlation restricting game content, it would be very insulting to the type of voter he’s trying to get through to, this is the definition of a single issue voter.




2 responses

20 10 2008
4 11 2008
Tony - Free-games-247.com

Thanks, keep up your great post !

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