This paper posits to provide a comparison between the games and the branding process that takes place in the everyday business environment. The interactions that take place in the monopoly game can be compared to the branding processes that occur in the real-life business environment. The game of monopoly has a long as well as complex ambiguous history. However, the game has been compared to diverse fields, particularly the real estate industry. However, the creators of the game had a completely different principle in mind. Before the advent of monopoly, there was the landlord’s game. This was a board game intended to promote and teach Georgism. Georgism is an economic perspective that alleges that land cannot be privately owned, but belongs to the community. Henry George was a political economist of the 19th century who alleged that real estate and industrial monopolists profit unfairly from both rising rents and land appreciation. To rectify this issue, George recommended a “single tax” on the landowners. Consequently, the Landlord’s Game was planned to demonstrate the ease with which property owners inflicted financial devastation on tenants. As a game with some significance, as well as a learning form of entertainment, the title depicts a serious game. Although Monopoly was produced to celebrate rather than grieve over land monopolies, the entertainment does display the power of the landlord, for better or for worse.
MODERNIZED FOR CONSUMER CULTURE.
However, recently this well-known game has linked itself with another facet evident in of industrial capitalism, in the form of advertising. Hasbro, in 2006,launched a version of the game of Monopoly known as Monopoly Here & Now. The new edition updates several things in regard to the 1930’s classic version of monopoly. This includes, changing the properties to contemporary properties that would be widely recognizable. For instance; Boardwalk was changed to Times Square, while Park Place was changed to Fenway Park. As an alternativeto paying luxury taxation, the contestant shells out for credit card debit. The electric company is deposed by cell phone services. Airports substitute railways. A player collects $2 million in Here & Now for passing Go.
Renaming the properties in the Monopoly game is definitely not new. Numerous unofficial and official affinity versions of monopoly game have been produced. There are several versions for different cities, towns, colleges, TV shows, and entertainment imaginable. But, Here & Now replaces the traditional game tokens with innovative, branded tokens. Currently there are Toyota Prius, a New Balance shoes, McDonald’s French Fries, Starbucks Coffee mugs, and a Motorola phone. Additionally, there is a generic laptop, dog and an airplane.
Philip Orbanes, in his latest book Monopoly: The World’s Most Famous Game,provides details on the multiple editions of monopoly’s early retail version. The game’s well-known metal tokens are modeled after attraction bracelets, although they added to the cost of the game. In the course of the depression, entertainment was regarded as extravagance. Consequently, Parker Bros provided a simpler version that excluded the tokens, in order to minimize the cost of the product.
Usually Hasbro’s move would be dismissed as deliberately destructive and opportunistic. In any case, the branded tokens in Monopoly appear comparable to fixed in-game advertising such as the Honda component on the SSX3 snowboard courses.An article in the New York Times in regard to the new edition of monopolyreferred to the monopoly new version as a gigantic advertisement and criticized Hasbro for assuming the low road.
The historical connection between the monopoly’s cultural origins and the tokens should diminishthe reaction to the hybrid cars and metal fries. The brands utilized thereof did not request the advertising nor did they pay a placement fee for advertisement. In its place, Hasbro petitioned for those specific brands, to materialize in the game. Mark Blecher, Hasbro’s Senior Vice President, alleged that the branded tokens depict anillustration of the 21st century America. In so doing, Hasbro introduced the iconography of commercial commodities to monopoly. Indeed, other designs of advertising-freeoptions would have been achievable. Monopoly’s original tokens were comparable in shape and size to bracelet charms, therefore, a suitable contemporary update of the small tokens may have been Bluetooth earpieces, or SD memory cards. However, Hasbro’s perception was that branded commodities bear remarkable cultural currency. Here & Now utilizesbranded tokens to characterize its game world. This game world refers to the modern corporate culture, in contradiction of the original game’s baron world.
Realism and Branding
Through Monopoly Here & Now there are several lessons that may be learnt that would be applicable to advertising in regard to commercial videogames. The majority of developers focus on thesuitability of brands in regard to games. Large publishers also demonstrate their reluctance to trade in in-game space even when the premiums are high. A number of players and developers are of the opinion that branding is suitable when it develops realism in the game. This theory is typically cited in reference to sports and urban settings, which are overwhelmed with advertising in the real-life world. Realismwould therefore mean visual authenticity, or correct appearances. However, Monopoly Here & Now doesnot embrace brands for appearance. Instead, Monopoly Here & Now embraces the brands to insert contemporary social ideals to the game.
Besides promotion, in-game advertisement and product placements have the potentiality to bear the cultural benefits of the brands which mark them. Such incorporationindicates a design strategy dissimilar from visual legitimacy. Nevertheless, it doesnot matter significantly whether sports arenas and billboards bear real advertisements or bogus ones. In its place, brands may be utilized in the service of the legitimacy of practice. Brands are usually built around aspirations, values, experiences, ideas, and history. Consumers make linkages with brands when the two are in specific contexts.
Brands’ cultural principles can still be utilized as a connection between game mechanics and visual appearance. In a number of cases, it may be simpler for a participant to comprehend the behavior of a character, idea, or situation when facets of that behavior would be offloaded from the game-simulation into a branded service or product.
By emulating the producers of Monopoly Here & Now, contemporary game designers ought to recognize that there may be occasions when advertising would actually develop a design. Advertisingmay be utilized in exploiting cultural pre-conceptions in regard to well-known items that consequently serve as shorthand for facets of the game world. Thatkind of mind-setfavors in-game advertisers, thus making advertising an apparatus in the designer’s hands, instead of in the hands of the agency, network, or brand.
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