Product placement is nothing new, of course: since the earliest days of film, advertisers have always wanted to work their brands into the context of the entertainment people were enjoying. So in today’s world where a significant demographic isn’t watching a film or TV, but pursuing other entertainment options, it’s no surprise that the latest frontier for the product placement is the videogame.
What is surprising, however, is that it has only really taken off in the last year or so. Naturally, the rise of online games means that placements don’t have to be embedded in take-home boxes, only to become immediately anachronistic, but things such as movie advertisments on billboards or marquees can change as new films come out.
It’s only a matter of time, I’m sure, before they start trying to target ads to other information they have gleaned from a particular player’s profile. I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before a savvy game maker has an online user choose, for example, their background music from various bands, and then having that music come out of, say, a Prism Durosport.