So you’re releasing a spin-off game of an established franchise, What do you do to advertise it? Put out a dull double page ad. It’s not like Squaresoft didn’t have great artists working on the game. They didn’t just have one artist working on it either. They had three great artists: Akihiko Yoshida, Hiroshi Minagawa, and Hideo Minaba. Instead they focused on three topics highlighted in blue. They load up the ad with a bunch of text. It lacks excitement, enthusiasm and quality. The image they do choose to use features 5 generic characters. It doesn’t do justice to some of the more colorful and intricate character designs the game features.
Budget doesn’t always dictate the quality of ads. For instance, Ico, a game that didn’t have a large budget had a great double page ad. You’d expect Squaresoft to pull off all the stops to get people excited for a brand new game. The ad campaign for Final Fantasy VII was well done and not overly complex either, using an image from one of the in-game cutscenes. You just feel that they could have done something more with marketing Final Fantasy Tactics.
The problem with this Resident Evil 2 advertisement isn’t artwork. The artwork featured in this ad is creepy and well done. The main problem is that there is too much text and too many tiny screenshots. It seems this is a tactic that companies thought was an effective means of advertising a game. I would have rather they have focused on the important text and had three larger screenshots.
They’re also trying to advertise too many things at once. The game, the strategy guide and some movie sweepstakes. This ad suffers from poor layout so everything feels like they’re squeezed in together. Whoever designed this could have use the space they have more wisely.
Klonoa: Door to Phantomile was a new platform game featuring a character named Klonoa published and designed by Namco. So how do you advertise this brand new character that’s meant to compete with the likes of Mario and Sonic? Don’t make the ad about him and place him in a tiny circle.
This has got to be one of the most oddest choices in regards to advertising an unestablished brand new game. Who is the target audience? The ad exclaims “Everybody wants Klonoa”, but an ad like this ends up alienating a large fragment of the market. And on that note who is the intended audience? The ad isn’t going to attract young adults because it’s not tastefully done and the screenshots show an unexciting and typical looking platformer. It’s not going to attract teenagers because there’s nothing that grabs their attention. I ended up picking the game by pure chance and ended up enjoying it quite a bit, but it’s no wonder this franchise ended up disappearing after two games.