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 Sega Blames Gearbox for ‘Aliens: Colonial Marines’ Marketing Mishap

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PostSubject: Sega Blames Gearbox for ‘Aliens: Colonial Marines’ Marketing Mishap   Sega Blames Gearbox for ‘Aliens: Colonial Marines’ Marketing Mishap EmptyThu Sep 04, 2014 1:38 pm


It’s been well over a year since Aliens: Colonial Marines landed with a rather spectacular flop, stirring up a storm of controversy that continues today. It’s still making headlines thanks to the ongoing class action lawsuit filed last April regarding the misleading advertising campaign used to market the game. Now, Sega and Gearbox Software, the game’s publisher and developer — Colonial Marines was actually co-developed by five different studios, one of which (TimeGate) has since shut down — are at war over who’s to blame.

The lawsuit was filed because of the misleading advertising campaign — including the E3 2011 demo for Aliens: Colonial Marines, which shared little resemblance to the retail product — that was used to market the game. The retail version we got looked significantly worse than the E3 demo, despite it’s being shown off nearly two years before the game would release.

According to Sega, the fault lies with Gearbox, which they claim to be solely responsible for the demo. In court documents filed this week, the publisher details an agreement both companies had to agree to regarding the “precise particulars of marketing assets” for Aliens: Colonial Marines. Gearbox told Sega the demo was representative of what would eventually become the final product.

Clearly, that wasn’t the case.

The demo is only part of the problem. The filing also lists eight instances where Gearbox made public announcements without their approval.

It would seem Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford is also partly to blame. “Effectively–it’s Randy [Pitchford] doing whatever the f**k he likes,” a Sega rep wrote in an email sent in October 2012. “Apparently he did it twice on [Borderlands 2] also, against, against all plans and despite the fact they asked him not to. I think our best result here is that we have no more panel sessions …”

There’s nothing good about all this, and it’s far from over. The next hearing is on October 29, a few weeks after the release of Alien: Isolation, which I’m sure Sega doesn’t want associated with Colonial Marines.
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