May 30, 2005 America's leading advertising information service AdAge.com has a fascinating article on the development of Microsoft's next generation gaming console not just as a gaming environment but as a new kind of marketplace. Microsoft's new Xbox 360 console game system has been engineered to accommodate and advance advergaming concepts as never before and the company's global audience of gamers will be sold aggressively to marketers when the product hits the stores in Q3, 2005.
“Picture a videogame racing season on Xbox Live sponsored by one of the world’s leading auto manufacturers,” said Peter Moore, Xbox’s corporate vice president, worldwide marketing and publishing.
“At the start of the season, 250,000 people pay US$10 each to sign up for a head-to-head 30-race competition.
The stakes? How about a million bucks to the overall champion? In the final race, 16 finalists go head-to-head for the million-dollar prize. And with spectator mode, 250,000 fans will log on to watch the competition.
If you are the sponsor, you've captured the attention of hundreds of thousands of people who've spent the last six months living and breathing your tournament and your brand.”
Anyone in the advertising, marketing or media space would be well advised to read the article in full.