That’s something you don’t see every day, Nintendo teaming up with an American oil company to promote a Mario Kart title. And apparently, the company has not only announced the marketing deal with an official website, but also th news that said game will be playable at this year’s SXSW (South by Southwest) event.
They’re talking a lot about a mysterious box they supposedly found in the snow near their location, but come on. Anyone with half a brain can tell that this is a really obvious ‘viral marketing’ stunt for Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.
Keep reading to see the box and why I’m so confident about it’s role…
When it comes to Nintendo and advertising, usually the results are not particularly great. You’ve got those ads that completely miss the mark (also known as every Wii U ad out at the moment), a bunch of contests that usually don’t add up to a whole lot and a lack of European marketing that can be best described as ‘utterly suicidal’. But Nintendo of Europe’s new Animal Crossing New Leaf promotion is a great exception to the rule. In fact, it might even be one of their ‘best’ (especially from the fan point of view) campaigns they’ve ever came up with.
Why? Well let me explain how the rules work:
If you register Animal Crossing New Leaf on Club Nintendo before 11pm on September 7th 2013, you get a Recommendation Code to pass to a friend.
Then if they register a 3DS XL on Club Nintendo and use your code…
They get a free download code for Animal Crossing New Leaf.
Yeah, you heard that right people. If you do this, you get a free copy of Animal Crossing New Leaf. As in, the whole game, for nothing. Okay, it’s a digital copy… but you can’t be too picky about that if you’re getting a new game for no monetary cost whatsoever.
Really though, this is a freaking awesome promotion. Free game for registering your 3DS XL with a code given by a friend (or knowing people nowadays, a random person on the internet)? Jackpot!
And what’s more, the contest rules don’t seem to state anything about what a ‘friend’ means in this situation, meaning that you could probably just go round asking for recommendation codes on Nintendo based internet forums instead. So rejoice European Nintendo fans, if you know someone who owns Animal Crossing New Leaf and haven’t registered your 3DS XL yet, it’s basically free games all round!
So what do you think about this contest? And if you’re a 3DS owner in Europe, are you planning to take advantage of it?
Hopefully this should boost 3DS games sales just a little by advertising the games to Wii U owners who may have otherwise been unaware of them. You see, apparently the Wii U eShop now has a section dedicated to showing off 3DS games like Luigi’s Mansion Dark Moon and Fire Emblem Awakening despite the lack of means to actually buy said titles through this version of the service Here’s a picture Twitter user Brian Davis took of this promotion:
Also interestingly, this service has apparently been around a while in Japan and Europe, but was only intrduced over in the US about a day ago. Did Nintendo not want to risk misleading people by promoting games they can’t buy on the eShop for a different console?
Regardless of why this is the case, this promotion seems like a pretty good idea. Cross promote your titles by showin them off to people who already own one of your other systems, hope they then decide to buy them for their other games console. Maybe they should have been started doing this the other round first though, by promoting Wii U titles through the 3DS eShop. After all, which console has already sold a ton of units and which one is on the verge of death here?
What do you think about Nintendo promoting 3DS titles on the Wii U eShop?
Been buying a lot of new 3DS games recently now that the system has tons of great games available to purchase? Can’t afford yet another title and want to be part of an interesting promotion? Well you may just be in luck, since Nintendo of Europe is launching the ‘So Many Games!’ promotion and letting anyone who registers three games get another one for absolutely free!
Best of all, the games eligible for this promotion are some of the best new games around, as shown by this list:
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Mirror of Fate
Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate (Nintendo 3DS version)
Luigi’s Mansion 2
Fire Emblem: Awakening
LEGO CITY Undercover: The Chase Begins
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Gates to Infinity
Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D
Animal Crossing: New Leaf
So it seems like a great deal to take advantage of if you ask me. After all, you’ve already likely bought Luigi’s Mansion 2, have some sort of interest in Fire Emblem Awakening and Animal Crossing and want at least one of those games a fair bit, right? What’s more, the promotion lasts all the way to June 30th, so there’s plenty of time to purchase any games from the above list that haven’t been released yet too.
Any European Nintendo fans interested in taking up this offer?
As of this point in time, Nintendo have finally released a Japanese overview trailer of Wario’s new Wii U game showing some more mini games. It’s not much (and the official site still hasn’t updated), but it’s something regardless. Either way, one important thing about this game has always been kind of bothering me…
Where’s the marketing/promotion for it? The game comes out in less than a month in Japan, and yet even they have had exactly one commercial and one trailer for it.
Above: The one real Japanese trailer ever released of this title.
The official site is basically dead and gets updated once a week if you’re lucky. Magazine scans showing nothing outside of the three or four games shown at E3 or whenever. Heck, remember E3? The time this game was announced? It was apparently not even deemed important enough to be shown at the actual event and got demoted to a short paragraph and some media on the E3 website.
And considering the game’s literally the Wii U’s only big game for March 2013 in Japan, you’d think by now we’ve had more of an idea what the gameplay was like in general. This is literally the only new game shown in the trailer above:
Above: And the official site won’t cover it for another two months at the current rate, so enjoy the screenshot.
Any others? Restricted to either two second videos in the background of those clips with tons of other mini games shown on the same screen or given no real focus or screenshots whatsoever.
In comparison, we know pretty much everything in the first two to four mansions of Luigi’s Mansion Dark Moon and th official website covers a plethora of different things. Animal Crossing? That got its own Nintendo Direct for God’s sake, then it’s own presentation in the middle of another Nintendo Direct. Fire Emblem Awakening got promoted like you’d never believe…
This game just seems like Nintendo’s not even bothering with the marketing. Advertising? Who needs much of that, and we won’t even cover more than three mini games! Trailer? One or two in the last six months should be absolutely fine. Official website? Who even bothers with those any more?
Above: On the one bright side though, this is more than Master of Disguise got. Or any Donkey Kong game by Paon.
So yes, does anyone else believe that Game and Wario is getting really, really badly promoted by Nintendo and is basically being sent out to die at the most quiet possible time of year? Because even the Japanese media don’t seem to have much info about this game…