The Power of Viral Marketing

It’s been a while since I’ve seen so much marketing furore over a product that no one has even seen yet – probably not since the lead up to the PS2 – than what Microsoft has managed to whip up over their new machine with simple tantalising glimpses and “leaked” reports. Few even seem to remember that there is more than one console at E3 this year so I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like when we actually see the damn thing and what it can do.

Through their latest viral marketing portal, Our Colony, they’ve got the Xbox fanboys and gaming media in a frenzy over a rendered car (real-time or prerendered? That is the question) and two pictures that look vaguely hardware-like. Throw in the pictures that are supposedly from the new Madden, the leaked specs, and who-knows-how-many tantalising glimpses of controllers (wireless, of course), concept models, and white plastic, and the planned unveiling on MTV on 12th May and Microsoft seem to have everyone eating out of their hand.

Will Sony’s attempted upstaging steal some of Microsoft’s thunder? Probably, but you have to give Microsoft credit for a really credible attempt to level the playing field for the next generation.

On the subject of E3, how impossible is it going to be to get a ticket for Star Wars on opening night considering that’s the first day of E3? As if it wasn’t going to be unbelieveable huge anyway, they open it on the day that half the geek population of the world is going to be there.

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