Microsoft sent out a news release about the Xbox 360 titles that cleaned up in Spike TV Video Game Awards last night. Clearly, a strong showing. But I’m somewhat skeptical — maybe cynical — about one particular category that “Halo 3” won.
First, let’s recall the marketing hype and consumer-product tie-ins that proliferated around the launch of “Halo 3” in September. Mountain Dew and Microsoft served up a “Halo 3”-branded drink called Mountain Dew Game Fuel, which boasts an “invigorating blast of citrus cherry flavor and added caffeine for maximum intensity.” It was billed as the first beverage co-branded with a video game.
Now comes the Video Game Category of “Most Addictive Game fueled by Mountain Dew,” which Microsoft pointed out in its press release as “the only category with consumer online voting.” The nominees are: “The Orange Box,” from Valve; “Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock,” from Activision; “Wii Sports,” from Nintendo; and “Halo 3,” from Microsoft Game Studios.
Is it any surprise that the first video game branded paired up with a beverage would win in the category sponsored by that beverage? Or maybe this was legitimately the fan favorite for most-addictive game — also plausible. Thoughts?