There’s game franchises that remain largely untouchable to in-game advertising and product integration, such as “Halo” and “Call of Duty.” And then there’s game franchises that fit so well you wonder why it’s not until the third game in the series before every brand and their subsidiaries wants in. For “Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock” due in stores on October 28, the product integration really moves the needle on the virtual amp, so to say. Brands present in the game? Gibson, Guitar Center, Audio-Technica, Crate, Ernie Ball, Krank, Line 6, Mackie, and Zildjian on the instrument and equipment side. Post performance, players can view their reviews in Alternative Press, Decibel, Guitar Player, Kerrang, and Paste magazines.
If the direct music tie-ins aren’t enough, branding from Pontiac and Axe, among other brands, appear in the game. Serious shredders will also want to upgrade the controller from the standard guitar to the Guibson Guitar Les Paul model for about $10 more.
Brands eager to align with the popular title likely haven’t yet missed the window. There’s unlockable content, rock venues (including the Pontiac Garage), and Activision and Red Octane plan to keep the game updated with downloadable content. Each of those game events offers opportunity for sponsorships.