The least-loved name in gaming has struck again, this time with a ridiculous marketing campaign that's offended nerds across the country. In order to create buzz around their upcoming title 'Dante's Inferno', Electronic arts instituted a contest at last week's Comic-Con in San Diego. The goal of the contest was to commit 'acts of lust' with models working at any of the booths that year. The picture of the best 'act of lust' would win an all-expenses paid dinner and 'sinful night' with two 'hot girls', a limo ride, and fabulous prizes.
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Needless to say this campaign offended some people, not least of all the models working the convention themselves. No doubt EA's goal was to inspire some terrible behavior on the part of some over-zealous con-goer and then eat up the free publicity for their game. It's not like they haven't done something like that in the recent past. Back during E3 they staged protests against Dante's Inferno, so trying to engineer a few real ones is hardly beyond the scope of their powers.
Thankfully for the reputation of nerds everywhere, nothing awful happened at Comic-Con, and now EA is facing substantial backlash over their contest. EA is rushing to do damage control and clarify that they didn't intend to offend anyone, but it's possible that this behavior has convinced quite a few gamers that their products aren't worth buying. I certainly hope it has, because a loss in profits is the only way Electronic Arts is ever going to learn its lesson.