With the danger of becoming a Mass Effect dedicated-fansite, I come today to talk about Bioware/EA’s latest marketing campaign: Hijacking the UK government’s petition program.
Playing the Mass Effect 3 demo, one of the major things that annoyed myself and many others was how, while Shepard was on holiday or whatever between games, nobody had prepared for the Reapers coming. Everything you did in ME2 was to try get enough proof that shit was going down so you could convince the Space-Council of Space that they should probably prepare ze missiles or something like to that effect.
But no. Apparently nobody did anything, and the little that was done was useless. This was extremely frustrating. I mean, I had collected hours of HD 1080p footage from inside one of these Reaper things, but it wasn’t enough and still nobody listened. So to make up for this terrible disconnect between your actions and actual effect, Bioware (well, probably EA) has set up this latest campaign.
Well, no. This may be all tongue-in-cheek, but it’s still a marketing scheme which takes advantage of what is supposed to be the citizens way of raising issues in parliament. Not only that, but the petition is a ridiculous premise to begin with. The US We The People petition asked for a similar disclosure, and was shot down with a “We don’t know anything about aliens. Seriously.”
I hear you saying “This little petition is hardly a massive waste of anybody’s time”. While this may be true, you must also take into account the opportunity cost of this whole affair. Instead of barking up a useless tree, this marketing campaign could have been something great. Keep the same theme, but instead use it to ask for donations or at least raise awareness for worthy organisations. SETI is struggling with staying open after funding cuts, and even NASA’s budget isn’t what it used to be.
The marketing department seems to be forgetting the first part of ‘Science-Fiction”. At the end of the day, Bioware/EA is pandering to the crackpot UFO-enthusiasts while arguably exploiting a civil procedure, which sets it apart from many other patronising marketing campaigns. In conclusion, maybe Bioware should be keeping closer reigns on their brands. Also, Reapers.