Sunday, 22 June 2014

Artix Entertainment review, Part 3.4

Previous section: Click here.
First section: Click here.

Follow the links in the article to learn more about other game companies' celeb endorsements. (Caution: May contain spoilers.)

3.4 Non-AE examples of celebrity endorsement
Celebrity endorsement, especially by singers, is uncommon outside of the genre of musical games. One other famous example of celeb endorsement for a non-musical game is Katy Perry's 2012 promotion of Electronic Arts' The Sims 3: Showtime. Unlike Artix Entertainment's usage of heavy metal and Gothic stars in a medieval game, Katy Perry's pop-music promotion for Electronic Arts is thematically appropriate, as the Sims 3 expansion pack is about making superstars out of the modern-day Sims.

On the subject of Sims, the much older “The Sims: Superstar” also has celebrity likenesses ranging from Avril Lavigne, Marilyn Monroe, to Jon Bon Jovi. Unlike the Katy Perry example, the older Sims game did not make such a big deal about the celebrities appearing in it. From the title alone, real-world celebrities making an appearance in “The Sims: Superstar” still makes sense as the Sims are still in the present day or a time when the celebrity culture became global.

Famous people are also randomly inserted in the Sims 4 trailers. Barack Obama and Kim Jong-Un (both being leaders of countries) have been made into Sims for not much reason other than the potential comedy.

Other companies have taken the approach of including superstars in technical roles for their games. Bethesda chose to hire Liam Neeson (a voice and film actor) to play the role of the Lone Wanderer's father in Fallout 3; and hired other famous voice actors such as Charles Martinet (voice actor of Nintendo's Mario and Luigi) to act in The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim. This allows the stars to build up their resume and the star factor to be expressed in a subtle way.

Tara Strong, famous for voicing cartoon characters like Teen Titans' Raven and My Little Pony's Twilight Sparkle, has dabbled in video game acting as well. She voiced Juliet Starling in the American release of Lollipop Chainsaw, Grasshopper Manufacture's pop-culture-laden yet violent take on the zombie slayer genre.

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