This is something we’ve looked at in detail before, but an email flew into my inbox last week that was so hilarious I thought it was worth sharing.
To recap: in this job, when sent a copy of a game for review, you’ll often also be sent a list of restrictions of things you can and can’t talk about. Most of the time, it’s understandable stuff, like not mentioning any big story spoilers, etc.
The restrictions I got for PES 2016 (read my showdown “review” here), though, were truly bizarre, at least from the perspective of someone who writes about video games. I can’t imagine the hellscape those working in sports or sports marketing have to deal with if this is any indication.
What you’ll see below are the capture (so, the taking of video footage) restrictions for reviews of the game. Note that this stuff only applied to video footage, not the text of a review itself. So writing about the fact Wayne Rooney still plays for Man United, or that La Liga’s popularity is disproportionately skewed towards Barcelona and Real Madrid, was fine. Presenting it in video form was not.
Also note that this has nothing to do with Konami, the developers of the game! These restrictions are all coming from the various sponsors, competitions and teams they have had to sign licensing deals with to appear in PES, and are conditions of their inclusion in the game.
So the next time you complain that PES has trouble with its licensing, spare a thought for the legal (and markeing!) teams having to stay on top of all this nonsense.