When I chose the Alan Wake image for yesterday, I purposefully chose a different box art than the one it will ship with. Here’s the actual one (taken from the limited edition, to boot):
You’ll notice the art is the same, but it says right across the top “A Psychological Action Thriller.” Gee, thanks, now I know what I’m buying! Meh. One of the reasons I picked up the limited edition was on the off chance they’d eliminate the text on the top (they clearly didn’t). It’s just… pointless. I think it hurts the otherwise awesome box, honestly.
I bring it up because another game I’m interested in, Alpha Protocol, recently went gold… And upon the trip to read about the game some more, I came upon this:
This box art is superb… I really like it. BUT WHY?! Yes, I know it’s an espionage RPG – why else am I looking at it? Gahhhhh. This upsets me. I really hope this isn’t a trend.
I can see why it’s happening – games like Alan Wake and Alpha Protocol are “different,” genre-wise. Alan Wake isn’t a survival horror game, and Alpha Protocol isn’t an FPS/3PS (which I suppose is implied by the box) – but is it really necessary to point this out on the box? Are people really too lazy to read the back of the box?
Aren’t you ready for these box arts: Halo Reach (The Generic Space FPS!), Starcraft II (The Space RTS!), and, of course, Madden ’11 (The Football Simulator You Bought Last Year!).
…Then again, this could bring us to a new level of honesty to the customer: Balls of Fury (The Wii Shovelware Your Grandma Will Buy You!).
Maybe this isn’t such a bad idea after all.