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EA Teams with Crest for Brighter Teeth and Darker Souls

by Delyth Angharad (WelshPixie)  Posted Wednesday, April 17, 2013 8:09:25 AM

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EA have announced their next Sim City DLC. It's more product placement, somewhat unsurprisingly - but what's interesting is that it's only available in the US.

Purchase specially-marked packages of Crest toothpaste and Oral-B Glide floss for a chance to win great prizes! Plus redeem cool content for SimCity PC or The Sims Social, and get discounts off EA games. Look for products with an orange colored sticker.

If you buy specially marked Crest or Oral-B products in the USA, you'll get a 'chance to win great prizes', including the 'Attractions Set' - a selection of five buildings for Sim City that attract tourists, including a 'giant garden gnome, Dolly the Dinosaur, a MaxisMan statue, Llarry the Llama, and the world's largest ball of twine'.

While the Nissan DLC was almost forgivable - it was low-impact, free, full of in-game benefits and promoting sustainable 'green' energy and low-fuel cars, this toothpaste DLC is rather less so. You have to buy from two specific brands of dental care to get it, and the prizes you get, though having the in-game benefit of drawing tourists to your game, are... well... icky. The world's largest ball of twine? This could only be from the country that boasts Car Henge, a Stone Henge replica made from stacked cars. Maybe that's why this pack is only available in the US - because it wouldn't fly anywhere else?

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So first Nissan, and now dental care. Is this setting the pace for Sim City's future - DLC after DLC that's nothing but tacky product placement? And what's with this USA-only malarkey - is the rest of the world going to get region-specific product-placement DLC, or is this strictly a USA-only thing? I wouldn't be surprised if the latter is true - after all, EA completely blacklisted the whole of Asia, with EA's Facebook page manager letting slip in the comments that EA won't provide Asian servers because 'that's where the pirates come from'. Considering Asia has a huge potential gaming population, that's rather a big chunk of money for EA to ignore, but the fact that they ARE ignoring it makes it less surprising that they'd focus on their core American players for game DLC when the rest of the world doesn't get a look-in.

Not that the rest of the world would particularly mind not having to buy toothpaste in exchange for virtual giant garden gnomes and record-breaking balls of twine, I'm sure. EA are kinda digging themselves deeper here, following the stupendous failure of Sim City's launch. The Nissan pack released to mixed reception, and they could probably have gotten away with it, but this Crest/Oral-B buddy-up is just a little too brazen, don't you think?

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Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not MWEB Connect (Pty) Ltd


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