I am sick to death of hearing about BioShock Infinite. It’s become one of those games, like Super Smash Bros. Brawl, that I’ve been hearing about for so long that the more I hear, the more it sounds like white noise.
Juggling video game press announcements can be a tricky thing. Announce a game too late (ie, too close to its release) and it might not have enough time to generate awareness. Announce it too early, though, and you run the risk of hitting a wall, your game running out of steam before it’s actually released.
That’s where I’m at with Infinite (to be fair, I’m at that point with many games, but we’re just talking about BioShock here!). It looks cool, and I was excited to see it when it was first shown off, but the more I see the more I grow tired of seeing it. Every new scrap of information – and really, most of the information to date has been in the form of meaningless scraps, like showing off enemies in individual releases – works in reverse, sucking away my excitement for the game rather than generating it.
It’s death by a million PR papercuts.
If you feel the same, about Infinite or any other game, you should at least know this: it’s not always the fault of poor marketing. It can sometimes just be a result of “external factors”.
“We probably would have announced it later, but we were worried about it leaking”, Irrational boss Ken Levine tells GI.biz. “We had a nice unintentional head fake, everyone thought we were working on this X-Com game, but we weren’t. It wasn’t what people expected. Without our presentation, people would have gotten the wrong message about [BioShock Infinite], it would have been confusing.”
“I would have announced it significantly later if I wasn’t worried about that. We had this external factor.”
OK, so they wanted the official announcement to beat a leak. I understand. I don’t agree, though. Leaks, even the most convincing ones, are never the same as official announcements, because there’s always the risk they’re either fake or will later be edited or even scrapped.
An official reveal, though, with trailers and screens and info, gets the ball rolling. And in Infinite’s case, it got it rolling too soon.
For the latest news on this game, visitKotaku's Bioshock Infinite Game Hub