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Published on May 16th, 2016 | by gareth


Why The Lack Of Outrage Over The Rise Of Video Game Fast Food Marketing?

Healthy living, the signs are everywhere as are the signs and commercials offering an array of sugary or fast food options. In our fast paced society it is difficult to eat right especially when so many unhealthy options are easier and cheaper than making healthier choices.

Companies such as Disney have made this more of a concern as they recently ended a long term partnership with McDonalds after various groups questioned the wisdom of associating their films and toys with unhealthy Kids Meal options.

While Hollywood still has various animated films do tie ins with fast food places, it has not been as severe are in recent years. The same is not true for live action films as Carl’s Jr. and other chains routinely do cups and ads with film connections as it has proven to be a lucrative way to increase sales.

So the other day I stopped to get us something to drink and although it was unsweetened Ice tea, I was faced with a sign for DOOM next to the order box, and had our drinks handed to us in DOOM cups.

I got to thinking about this and realized that Taco Bell recently ran an Overwatch promo and have done some in the past most notably for Destiny. Call of Duty is no stranger to this as well as they have also associated with Mountain Dew.

While naturally it makes all the sense in the world to me for this type of marketing to happen, as let’s be totally honest here; many gamers have fast food as a regular part of their diet.

With the focus on healthier living and the stereotype that most gamers are overweight people who live sedentary lives playing games for hours on end, I wonder where the same special interest groups are advocating the health of the young gamers of the world. They devoted far more time to Jennifer McDaniel than covering why it is ok for kids to eat unhealthy and become obese than it is for gamers.

I am sure the argument would be that they are adults and as such can make their own choices. Fair enough, but that has never stopped anyone before as there are no shortage of people who think they know best how an adult should live.

There are also a large number of children who game and yes, despite the M rating they will still play M rated games and will likely be enticed by gaming themed cups according to the logic that saw a Happy Meal as a serious threat.

To me it is in many ways America 101 in that fast food companies and game companies are doing business in a way that allows them to reach a larger consumer base and thus increase brand awareness. I was able to visit the locals, get the cups and not be out anything more than an unsweetened tea that is about as healthy a drink as you can get short of a bottled water.

It is about choice and gamers and those who include fast food as a regular part of their diet will continue to do so regardless of any promotion with a game or film. I also think gamers are a more informed group than people give them credit for as many are aware of the risks associated with fast food and can make their own choices.

With games becoming costlier and costlier to make, it is only natural that game companies will look for new opportunities to market their games, and like it or not, fast food is here to stay and is a proven tool that is part of many gamers lifestyle.

Freedom of choice is supposed to be just that, the freedom for an individual to do what they believe is right for them and if that includes getting a game themed cup or item at a fast food locale, then so be it.


About the Author

Syndicated movie & game critic, writer, author and frequent radio guest. His work has appeared in over 60 publications worldwide and he is the creator of the rising entertainment site and publication “Skewed and Reviewed”. He has three books of film, game reviews and interviews published and is a well-received and in demand speaker on the convention circuit. Gareth has appeared in movies and is a regular guest on a top-rated Seattle morning show. He has also appeared briefly in films such as “Prefountaine”, “Postal”. “Far Cry”. and others. Gareth is also an in-demand speaker at several conventions and has conducted popular panels for over two decades.

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