A couple weeks back, we discussed the growing trend of in-game ads in video games. And while it’s nothing new for sports games to feature sponsors in the background, the ad folks at Old Spice are breaking new ground, not just sponsoring a portion of the game, but completely fabricating a new statistic — swagger — to slap their name on.
Kotaku readers who’ve gotten their hands on the pre-release player statistics for the upcoming Madden NFL 11 football game noticed right away that there is a mysterious new “swagger” stat mixed in with the other numbers for each player. Not only is “swagger” displayed in a font that makes it stand out, it’s also got the Old Spice logo attached to it.
Old Spice is the “official deodorant and body wash” of the NFL, so I guess it makes some sense that they would so blatantly attached to the game. But why just a single stat? You often see things like “here’s the Coors Light starting offense, brought to you by Coors Light,” but you don’t often hear “Kyle Orton’s got a Doritos completion percentage of 57.8%.”
Is this the thin edge of the wedge? What kinds of “synergistic co-branding” do you expect to see next?