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Games product placement.

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Anonymous

I was watching The Grass is Greener the other day w/ Cary Grant and Robert Mitchum and there's a scene where one of the characters kicks over a Scrabble board. This got me thinking of other movies that have board games used in their scenes. Scrabble makes another appearance in Sneakers (w/ Robert Redford), Monopoly (the British ed.) makes an appearance in the movie version of Patriot Games. Other than games like poker, bridge, and other common card games, what other movies can anybody think of that have a board game in a scene or take a 'lead' role, like the Scrabble board in Sneakers?

Just a curiosity - and shows how off tangent my mind can get at times. :D

- Geoff

hpox
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Games product placement.

π (Pi) features a game of Go.

Torrent
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Games product placement.

Both Alice in Wonderland and the sequel of Through the Looking Glass have games. In AiW there are cards. In TtLG, Alice is a Pawn in a large scale game of chess trying to reach the 'other side' and become a queen, she even comes across a fight between two opposing knights.

Harry Potter & the (Sorcerers/Philosophers) Stone had a large scale game of chess as well.

setarcos
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Games product placement.

Terrace was "featured on Star Trek: The Next Generation as a permanent prop." (According to BoardGameGeek)

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/2872

Anonymous
Games product placement.

There was a Magic: The Gathering poster prominently displayed on the wall of Peter Parker's (Spiderman's) room in the Spiderman movie.

Anonymous
Games product placement.

When I read "Games product placement" I thought the thread was about product placement in board games and thought: "Hum, finally a good idea to finance publishing!" :lol:

Anonymous
Games product placement.

Sorry!! :lol: :lol:

hpox
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Re: Games product placement.

artbytes wrote:
When I read "Games product placement" I thought the thread was about product placement in board games and thought: "Hum, finally a good idea to finance publishing!" :lol:

But that's a very good idea! I have this game here "POLECONOMY Le jeu du Canada" that I found in a thrift store and bought it for no reason. It's pratically an advertising billboard:

Anonymous
Re: Games product placement

hpox wrote:
But that's a very good idea! I have this game here "POLECONOMY Le jeu du Canada" that I found in a thrift store and bought it for no reason. It's pratically an advertising billboard

Well, now that I think about it, that's just great!!! It is going to get to a point when not only will we have to design them and publish them...we will also have to.... sell advertisements?????????? 8O

(((I am not even going to get into the planning a whole board around ads of different sizes)))

:idea: Idea! We can hide ads among chance cards. See it? You roll a double...hum! I have to take a chance card...What??? Milk?...It does the body good?

We can call them "cads"...and place them on poker decks too! :lol:

Anonymous
Games product placement.

In fact, that is not a bad idea at all. Many developers of web games (in browser) create a product and then license it to various brands. Has that been done with board games yet? I know that certain chains have endorsed games - like Starbucks does Cranium - but it is not reciprocated in the game. I am not suggesting that you make cards that say "get your partner to say 'Latte' using only this lump of clay". But having Starbucks on the box and cutting a deal with the chain could not only help pay for some of the overhead in publishing the game but it would also give your game a monopoly over the "gaming in the coffeehouse" niche. . . .

- Silverdragon0

Anonymous
Games product placement.

Seriously, I must confess that I have found myself thinking about changing the theme of one of my games just to get it financed by a mexican businessperson I know. :oops:

Chip
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Games product placement.

Silverdragon0 wrote:
I know that certain chains have endorsed games - like Starbucks does Cranium - but it is not reciprocated in the game. I am not suggesting that you make cards that say "get your partner to say 'Latte' using only this lump of clay". But having Starbucks on the box and cutting a deal with the chain could not only help pay for some of the overhead in publishing the game but it would also give your game a monopoly over the "gaming in the coffeehouse" niche. . . .

- Silverdragon0

In the case of Cranium, what Starbucks got in return was the exclusive right to distribute the game for a set amount of time. When the game was first introduced, the only place to buy it was at Starbucks. It was a couple years before it hit the shelves of Target and other outlets. The same has been true with a few other adult Cranium branded games. Hoopla for instance was introduced first only through Starbucks (I believe it's available at other stores now.) That's the reciprical part of the relationship.

The issue that arises with overtly promoting a store/company on the packaging or on the game board is that you alienate other similar retail outlets. In the case of Cranium and Starbucks (which has 7000+ shops), it didn't really matter whether Caribou Coffee (which is the second largest coffee chain in the country, but only has 250+ shops) was a little put off. Cranium didn't need Caribou. But they did/do ultimately need Walmart, Target, and the like. And you can be sure that these retail outlets wouldn't allow such promotion on a game sold through them. It would be like saying "Although you bought this copy of the game at our store, for any future purchases, please buy from Starbucks." If Starbucks weren't so big (it doens't matter that they're a coffee shop and not a game store), Target, Walmart and others wouldn't care if the Starbucks logo were on the game. It would only matter that the game was good and could be sold in volume.

In the case of the Mexican restaurant that someone mentioned in an earlier post and the idea of tailoring a game around this store, chances are, other true game stores wouldn't be threatened by this promotional move. The Mexican restaurant in question isn't likely to be a major threat to game sales unless its a franchise and has significant reach.

As for Cranium, they certainly could have created a private label version of the game for Starbucks - and perhaps they still will, although I suspect not. There was certainly enough volume to do so given Starbucks has 7000 stores. But I believe Cranium was more interested in developing its own brand and not highlighting someone else's. If you look at subsequent Cranium game offerings, you'll notice everything is branded "Cranium." Cranium is a brand, not simply the name of a game. Although offering a "Starbucks" version of the game may have suited Cranium in the short term (because it would have been an incentive for Starbucks to carry the game in the first place), it would have hindered them as they attempted to grow their own business. Only two games from Cranium that I can think of were distributed through Starbucks exclusively for a time - Cranium, and Hoopla (I should also include the deluxe/collectors tin version of Cranium - which was first only available at Starbucks). All its other games - Congo, Cadoo, Hullabaloo, etc. - had nothing to do with Starbucks. Yet if the original version of Cranium had been branded "Starbucks", introducing its other games to the general public would have been more difficult.

Should you choose to create a game that either incorporates another company into the actual workings of the game, or simply place logos and such on the packaging, you set yourself up for limited distribution. If your hoping to sell a couple hundred games, perhaps it doesn't matter. If you're hoping to sell tens of thousands of games or more, you better think twice. I've thought of including information from various retail outlets on the packaging of my games. For certainly this would be an incentive for the outlet in question to carry the game in the first place and perhaps even provide me with some money for doing so. But if I put funagain.com on my box for instance, why in the world would boardgames.com carry it? It would be very costly to manufacture a limited number of games just for funagain and then create one with different packaging for other stores. True "private labeling" becomes a realistic option once quantities are relatively high and the outlet in question has significant distribution power. Grocery stores and discount department stores like Target obviously do this all the time. They're moving a lot of product though.

There are ways to covertly give kudos to various people or companies in your game without resorting to logos on boxes or brands on boards that might alienate other stores. I'll return to these ideas at a different time though, for I have to go now.

Chip

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