Marketing Effect 3

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Really, Shamus? Of all the trailers you could pick to critique, you picked that one? It's just a bit of harmless piss-taking, nothing really 'abomidable'. Stuff like "one man" and "galaxy at risk" is just hyperbole. Also, what was he supposed to say? One man or woman? One person? One future space captain? The Sheperd in the trailer was male, ipso-facto "one man".

Also, I think people are being a bit selectively perspective with a lot of the Mass Effect 3 marketing. The marketing for Mass Effect 2 (and to much, MUCH lesser extent, Mass Effect 1) was just as action-focused as the marketing for Mass Effect 3, and that didn't stop it from being an excellent game. Remember the trailer where Grunt exploded a thresher maw with his shotgun? Or the one where Thane took down six heavily armed Eclipse mercs in hand-to-hand combat? Did it hurt the game in any way at all? No. So what's your keffufle?

People like to throw around the term 'Gears of War/CoD/Halo clone' like it's some sort of insult, but all that really means is that they've based the gameplay on a series which is generally considered to be good at what it does. It's not written by Cliffy B, it's written by the folks at Bioware, and surely that's what matters. But if the gameplay is at least decent (which, going by the demo, it is) then surely what's there to be upset about?

If it were just the marketing that was dumbed down, and not the game itself, that wouldn't be so bad. I'm not talking about the shift from mediocre RPG gameplay to mediocre shooter gameplay, I mean the lack of world building and plot depth in ME 2 compared to ME 1. It's clear that ME 3 will continue the trend.

My prediction is that EA will use the reaper invasion as an excuse to trim down some of those pesky alien species that don't connect with focus groups as well as the near-future human marines fighting for earth do. Humanoid aliens as main characters is a risky move for a summer blockbuster.

Your tolly right Shamus!
We need to start a review bomb campain immediatly this sort of thing is unasseptabl!!

No, really, I felt alone up till now in that the *game* was taking this direction. Less RPG elements, less and less consistent or original story, more and more average shooting. I gave up with the ME series half way through 2 and I don't think I'll be back - this marketing just confirms what I already feared.

Zachary Amaranth:
This became a gears clone last iteration. Why are people still surprised they're focusing on chest-high walls?

That is being a little mean, the series definitely lost me at the second game though.

(And I just have to ask again: Why did people aim so much pure rage at Portal 2? Remember that? The game had cosmetic, multiplayer-only DLC, and people got so mad they review-bombed it. Why was so much rage aimed at Portal 2, and so little aimed at Mass Effect 3? NOTE: I am not asking anyone to review-bomb anything. It's childish and pointless. I'm asking why, not demanding ME3 be similarly punished. Please, please no.)

Because people are stupid, basically. Hell, look at some of the replies other people left in response to this paragraph. It clearly says "Why was so much rage aimed at Portal 2, and so little aimed at Mass Effect 3?", or in other words, that lots of rage was aimed at Portal 2, and Mass Effect 3, while getting some rage, isn't getting nearly as much rage as Portal 2. You point out specific examples of how Portal 2 got review bombed and Mass Effect 3 hasn't. So what do people do? Ignore everything you just said about review bombing, pretend you said Mass Effect 3 got no rage whatsoever, and say "duuuur, u must not use teh forumz, Mass Effect 3 gets teh ragez to lol".

People. Are. Stupid.

Beyond that, no I don't know why people were so pissed at do nothing hats in Portal 2, but don't mind a bajillion different versions of Mass Effect 3 content that's actually useful in game doesn't get people nearly as riled up. And let's not forget all the other nice things Valve did for Portal 2, like free co-op maps and releasing the game early (which got people riled up and raging further because they tricked themselves into thinking it would be out days early with no basis in fact, and then blamed Valve when it was only about 12 hours early). Stupid people do stupid things, and I'd go nuts trying to understand why. So I just write them off as stupid and move on.

Oh wow, here I was reading the article and after I thought it was just pointless nitpicking, but after getting halfway through the second page I started to agree with Shamus. You know what, maybe this commercial deserves the hate. I mean, wow, what the hell.

Then I saw the commercial.

Holy shit this is beyond pointless nitpicking. This is incredibly petty. This is exactly like that one nerd who everyone hates, criticizing pointless details of something that's meant to be funny because for him everything should be serious business.

Really? That commercial was a parody. Literally, it was a joke. It wasn't supposed to be FACTUALLY CORRECT. It wasn't supposed to be serious business. It wasn't supposed to give you an accurate portrayal of the game or the drama that goes on in it, or the feelings of any of the characters. It was just a silly ad to promote a silly gun while making Garrus sound like Serious Trailer Voice Man for shits and giggles. Hell, even the serious trailer voice was part of the joke.

And here you are deconstructing it and taking it way more seriously than it should be. Right now all I can think about is this guy.

Should have gone the artsy drama route with a oh no reapers we're doomed type dealie.
No wait I guess it's better that they don't try to pretend the story is the focus any more, and just outright say it's an action game. Better than lying.

Marketing people are almost universally soulless monsters with little to no idea of the product they're trying to promote or their customers'tastes. That's why soooo many adverts are annoying, some to the point that you actively avoid the product in question or deliberately choose their competitors.

The trailers of mass effect 3... are kinda boring...

They all try to grab the idea of 1 man that is going to save the universes... what about the other soldiers that sacrifice theyre lives in-battle? Aren't they worth anything in this process?

If they told me there would be a man that would lead humanity into salvation i would be better... but no... 1 man to save everything and everyone...

Action movie cliché, and then everyone is depending on him, giant space battles.... all so very cliché and now boring...

I expect a lot from the game i do (even if it's on EA's hands... and i really hate EA), but the trailers... they are really crappy...

I think Shamus is overreacting, but I totally understand where he is coming from.

This video is just plain awful. It's trying to so hard to be funny and ironic it's just painful to watch. And it's selling preorder DLC. That just makes it worse.

The fact that all Gamestop ads are are terrible or that its trying to be funny arre no excuse. It's indefensible. But Shamus could have picked any of the ME3 ads and trailers to rant about, they range from bad to terrible.

Saying that the ads are aimed at the shooter crowd doesn't excuse them either. Why should we have lower expectation for a marketing campaign because of that? Are you really saying shooter fans wouldn't understand anything better?

*deleted*

Chevalier noir:

Zachary Amaranth:
This became a gears clone last iteration. Why are people still surprised they're focusing on chest-high walls?

That is being a little mean, the series definitely lost me at the second game though.

It's slightly hyperbolic, but not particularly mean.

Unfortunately the game exists to make a corporation money - its important to keep this perceptive in mind always . . . that way you can take everything they do with an "oh, yeah, that's why".

Also, I'm pretty sure developers and the other people that work very hard to make a good game get pissed off just the same, when marketing does stuff like this, but, its important to "get the game out there" and that's what they're trying to do.

It's entirely possible to ignore the trailers and just enjoy the game when it arrives.

Also... as to complaining about their referencing to Shepard being only male -- think about how difficult it would be to make a GOOD trailer that blurts out rather breaking the 4th wall a bit saying "Or if you're a girl :3 teehee!" okay, I was kidding but you get the point? You can't just add a backslash after man and say "save the universe as a man/woman!" the point is, they know that most (not all, but most) of their target audience are male. It's just simple business practice at work.

In any case . . . blah? :(

Irridium:
Pretty much all the trailers are weak. All they seem to focus on are the combat and Shepard being badass or whatever. It's like a crappier version of Halo's marketing.

I know what you mean. Mass Effect 3 has had dozens of trailers and hype video released for it, all about how it's the end of the world, the reapers are here, blah blah blah

All of it combined has had less effect than that one Cortana line "This is how the world ends."

It kind cuts out all that pretentious hero speech bullshit and states plainly. "IT'S THE END OF THE WHOLE FUCKING UNIVERSE!!!!"

poiumty:
Oh wow, here I was reading the article and after I thought it was just pointless nitpicking, but after getting halfway through the second page I started to agree with Shamus. You know what, maybe this commercial deserves the hate. I mean, wow, what the hell.

Then I saw the commercial.

Holy shit this is beyond pointless nitpicking. This is incredibly petty. This is exactly like that one nerd who everyone hates, criticizing pointless details of something that's meant to be funny because for him everything should be serious business.

Really? That commercial was a parody. Literally, it was a joke. It wasn't supposed to be FACTUALLY CORRECT. It wasn't supposed to be serious business. It wasn't supposed to give you an accurate portrayal of the game or the drama that goes on in it, or the feelings of any of the characters. It was just a silly ad to promote a silly gun while making Garrus sound like Serious Trailer Voice Man for shits and giggles. Hell, even the serious trailer voice was part of the joke.

And here you are deconstructing it and taking it way more seriously than it should be. Right now all I can think about is this guy.

Your missing the context. Mass effect isnt comedy hour fun time, it touts it self as "mature" (lol) and "serious". This ad flys in the face of that, not to mention its just a badly written commercial.

In my opinion, this is just REALLY REALLY bad nitpicking and being really over the top harsh against Bioware/EA.

Its a trailer to MARKET the game, go on have a crack at Modern Warfare 3's marketing about how stupid it is.

I agree, this marketing shit is BS. Reminds me of that over the top Dead Space 2 ad campaign about the game that wasn't for your mother or whatever crap that was. Only this time, I actually care about ME... so it pisses me off more. I think they want to hit more than just their basic customers this time... which basically means they just want more money. But then that's what EA does.

I agree completely look at what marketing did to Lara Croft...

Nothing sexual at all about the game, shes a competent Indiana Jones like figure, smart athletic, does everything herself. She's a decent role model for girls.

All the marketing goes on about is her boobs.

Good game.

Being the best of the bad doesnt make it great, only successful. I wish I didnt have so many resons to increment my disgust with each sequel.

xXxJessicaxXx:
I agree completely look at what marketing did to Lara Croft...

Nothing sexual at all about the game, shes a competent Indiana Jones like figure, smart athletic, does everything herself. She's a decent role model for girls.

All the marketing goes on about is her boobs.

Good game.

And the best that happened to LC is being combined with Indiana Jones to form Daring Do(but not officially).

This is the main reason I've cooled down on the Mass Effect franchise over the years. It seems as if they're pushing it as less of a sci-fi space opera RPG, and more as Call of Duty in space. Which is probably going to appeal more to some people, but it appeals a lot less to me. Shamus seems to assume that it's just the way they're marketing it, which is sad in it's own right, but I'm concerned for what's actually going to be in the game.

Sure, Mass Effect was always sort of militaristic, but at its core it felt like something more. Mass Effect 2 definitely felt like it had less substance in favor of more big words and militaristic glory, I hope to god Mass Effect 3 doesn't push it further :-/

I don't know, I'm still gonna buy it, so maybe I should just shut my mouth and withhold judgment until I've actually played the game >,<

Whelp.... honestly, without trying to be a troll, I don't see what the hoopla is over these games. I should start off by mentioning that I've only played the demos for ME2 and ME3. I might still be inclined to play ME2 now that it should be really cheap, and I don't have an Xbox to play the original on.

Anyway, nothing about the demos has made me say "Oh shit, I gotta get this game." In fact, as I was playing the ME3 demo last night, I was at turns laughing and at others overly focussed on the ridiculously sour expression on my female Shepherd's mouth. She had this permanent downturned frogmouth frown thing going on. Speaking of female Shepherd, I didn't count, but I felt like aside from the buzz cut look and the chin bob, all of her hairstyles were a variation on the ponytail. Boring.

I was laughing, because watching Shepherd and Anderson run during the demo was absolutely ridiculous. I don't know if Bioware used mocap or just winged it with the animations, but watching Anderson sprint with his back ramrod straight, arms and legs pumping like some weird robot... I was giggling uncontrollably.

I think the ME franchise probably has a lot to offer, and a lot to offer me, a big sci fi fan, but unfortunately I think that the hype machine surrounding the franchise really pushes me away. When we get guys writing article like this: http://io9.com/5886178/why-mass-effect-is-the-most-important-science-fiction-universe-of-our-generation, I cringe a little bit.

I'll probably pick up ME2 one of these days, after I'm done Skyrim, Yakuza 4, finally finish Demon's Souls (finished Dark, but Demon's seems way harder) and a couple other games. Hopefully by then I can grab ME2 and see what all the fuss is actually about. And maybe by then the marketing machine will have died down and I can enjoy it without being inundated with ads to buy DLC and pre-order on PSN and join up with Origin.

Since when have EA done good advertising?

And isn't that their entire marketing campaign? "Let's piss people off and get word-of-mouth advertisement with Internet Fury, and if we're really lucky, Prime Time TV slots in the news."

As depressing as this makes me, it is effective because of threads like these, so I applaud the irony of people getting their panties in a bunch and helping EA.

Well done, guys. Bravo

The real problem with this marketing campaign is that it is furthering what is easily the worst "innovation" in video games ever.

The idea of multiple, different, pieces of DLC offered to different types of people for (pre-)ordering at different retailers. It is a slap in the face to 100% completionists, the pieces of DLC aren't just different skins for the same basic thing, and if you don't have a particular retailer in your area, or you live in entirely the wrong country, you can easily miss out on the thing you actually do want.

Day one DLC is already a terrible thing (when that content is included on the printed disc and you are getting/buying an unlock code), and splitting up your potential day one content amongst different sources of revenue is only making things worse.

I wish I could say I'm surprised to see Shamus screw up again with something Mass Effect related, but I'm not. When he criticized a lot of supposed plot holes in ME2, I felt the need to correct his misunderstandings, and now it seems I have to do it again.

He has two main points "They make Shepard sounds like someone who isn't Shepard but rather some lunk-head", and "the DLC sucks, look at how bad this commercial is".

His first point is reminiscent of his earlier problems criticizing ME2: He doesn't immediately get it so there is no way it actually could make sense. He seems to be forgetting the part about the Reapers being scary as hell. No single force in the Universe stands a chance against them. People may attempt to flee such a situation, and it must be made clear that running away isn't an option. The Protheans tried that and the best they could do was allow a small handful to survive, a number so small that they didn't have enough genetic diversity to continue breeding.

Thus, Shepard must convince everyone that the choice is between fighting and having a chance of survival, or dying. This is actually a rather old philosophy going back to Japanese Bushido: "If a warrior goes into battle with the knowledge that he will die...then he will not. If he is unsure...he will surely die". This is something Shepard echoed even more closely in the latest trailer here, when he says "Each of you needs to be willing to die. Anything less, and you're already dead." There are times when such a line would be over the top, but with what they are facing it is entirely appropriate.

The other point is his diatribe against the EA commercial. Now it does seem to be a pretty stupid commercial, but his beef here is with EA, and this seems to be a trailer for Gamestop to encourage people to get it there rather than Amazon. It's also unfair to use this clip as something that is supposed to represent EA marketing with ME3 overall. Most of the video clips I've seen, and I've seen plenty, have been quite excellent. Shamus even admits to this in the beginning. What he has done is take the worst example and tried to paint the entire campaign with the same brush.

Now the commercial is about pre-order DLC, so he also attacks that. The fact that EA is offering the pre-order DLC is not the same as the marketing for said DLC. You can appreciate the marketing for something you hate, like my appreciation of the Bud Lite commercial where the guy jumps out of the plane to get his beer, or you can appreciate the product and hate the marketing. Thus, I'll leave whether EA should be doing the DLC for another time.

Shamus has this problem with the marketing specifically:

Shamus Young:
"We've got this awful dissonance where the "Take Back Earth" trailer tries to sell us on this universe of loss and hopeless odds, and then we've got other commercials telling customers the game is all about "LOL Gunz!!!"

Yes, it's almost as if EA is trying to market to multiple groups and its primary concern is not what you alone might want. The truth is, the game has both of these things. These things will appeal to two different groups. People will play for the story, people will play for the guns, and others will appreciate both. This isn't "dissonance", its a nuanced approach to marketing that widens the market as much as possible. People who only want a good gun game might actually start appreciating deep and engaging story, but may never had tried it out because they assumed they only liked games with lots of guns and explosions.

Shamus, the marketing isn't saying it's big, dumb, and loud. They are saying "Hey, if you like story, holy *#!% is there an awesome story. Oh, you want intense military action? Holy $#!*ing %*#! is there some awesome action in this game". Please, start looking beyond your immediate first impressions.

Isn't everyone in the gaming world already aware of Mass effect, I've never played the games but I know who the Reapers are, what a Qunarian is, that Miranda has an ass, the people have a disturbing fetish for an incredibly ill space jew/gypsy and her sweat, etc.

So isn't the point of the advert to appeal to people outside that demographic and get them to play (and more importantly buy) the game?

Hahaha, that little convo snippet between Shepard and Joker pegged Joker perfectly!

The first few hype trailers for ME3 were great! Starting with the one of the sniper holding up in Big Ben, London with the internal monologue bit. Then there was the other one that was sort of like a newscast. Aaand, there was a third, I think?

Then the real marketing trailers came out, and I watched one. It was a marketing trailer, not sure how else you can put it. People just need to realize that these extra gun DLCs and stuff have no affect on the actual game.

Just like in ME2 there was a slew of little item/cosmetic DLCs as well. They didn't add or detract anything from the game. The only difference was they weren't advertised so In-Yo-Face.

Shamus Young:
The portrayal of Mass Effect 3 in EA's marketing doesn't match the game.

Very true. I am particularly annoyed with the lack of Fem Shep after all the hype about her.

However, I do have issue with something you said: NOTHING can have as many errors as Mass Effect: Deception. Your average self-insert ME Fanfiction is more canon than Dietz's abysmal novel.

Waaghpowa:

Shamus Young:
Marketing Effect 3

The portrayal of Mass Effect 3 in EA's marketing doesn't match the game.

Read Full Article

I understand what you mean when you reference Portal 2 Shamus, but it seems some people just don't get it.

With Portal 2, people whined about the purely optional, co op only hat thing. The people who did bomb it, are just irrational haters of the idea, but are too stupid to understand that it's purely fucking optional and has no effect on the main game.

With Mass Effect, it should be receiving far more ridicule for this DLC shit because it very well could affect how the game plays. When the the DLC extras start affecting the game as a whole, people should be upset over it and not upset over some stupid fucking optional hats that don't change anything. Now since none of us have played it yet, we can't be certain that any of this DLC will change anything. If it does, we should all draw the line there. Nobody should have their game experience altered from the intended product because we didn't go out and buy some stupid action figure to get a gun in the game.

I really doubt having one extra gun is going to change the game as much as you are making it sound....
This just sounds like self entitlement at its worst. If you are really so upset that you have to rant on a forum (or article) about not having a gun or some other minor things because you didn't buy a toy or a special edition, then you probably weren't very interested in the game to begin with.

When I first saw the "Not too distant future.." add Shamus talks about, I thought it was a lot more terrible at first when it seemed like a serious ad. Once it was revealed as a joke I just rolled my eyes. The thing is, I marked this up not as another terrible EA ad but another terrible GameStop ad.

So was this ad developed my EA's marketing department or just approved by it? It struck me more as an ad put together by a marketing department for a retailer who most likely had little to no backstory on the game and were just going on the fact that they were promoting a bonus gun for per-ordering with them.

Nope, I completely ignore all ads for videogames now, especially EA ads. Their marketing team is the shit. They never represent what they game will be like. For the truth, you have to go to reviews or demos.

Or Valve ads, that seems to be the only decent videogame ad I've ever seen in recent times.

Yup, Mass Effect 3 sucks and so does EA. I wish it'd just be released and go away so I never have to hear about it again. I already decided not to buy the game due to all the BS. I'd probably orgasm if the game bombed horribly but obviously it won't.

The commercial with Garrus seems really nitpicky here. It was meant to be funny. And in the commercial, the Shepard with Garrus is clearly male, so of course Garrus is going to refer to him as a "man." The entire article just seems really forced to me.

How much of this is Bioware/EA? I know the developers have to design the DLC in the first place, but how much of this was pitched/is being handled by an outside marketing company? Or at least outside marketing consultation?

I simply mean to suggest that it may not entirely be the creators themselves who aren't showing care in the marketing like they are in the game and world.

Speaking as someone who actually has not played more than a couple minutes out of the whole series thus far, this campaign seems very effective (on me at least) at grabbing the attention of people not already engaged in the ongoing narrative. Current fans were sold on 3 as soon as 2 ended (I imagine.) This marketing is trying to pick up new fans.

Sorry, but some misrepresentation of the game and what it stands for sounds like standard marketing faire to me.

Shamus I think I love you.

I mean... I agree with you. Again.

I'm confused here. I don't remember any hate towards Portal 2, while ME3 is receiving all of the hate. Also, when ME2 came out, there was a commercial where Shepard teleported the bad guys into a toilet. The trend of silly marketing gimmicks isn't exactly new.

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