In the MMO industry, mostly in the Asia regions of China, Taiwan and Korea, it is very common to see games being tied to other non-gaming products. For example, Nexon Korea’s MapleStory became the official “spokesperson” of a kids’ vitamin pills brand not long ago. Recently in China, the local publisher of NCsoft’s Aion, Shanda Games, secured a partnership with a local fashion brand (Royal Elastics) to promote the Aion 2.0 update. Given the sizable community in Aion China and growing fashion industry, I will think this is a brilliant move.
In the recent 3.0 update in Aion Korea, a new series of fashion costumes were introduced, categorized as A “Style”, or Aion Style. There are talks and rumors in the Korea gaming industry about this series of virtual fashion costumes being the first to be brought it into reality, forming a genuine fashion brand of its own. Will this work? Well, after the Aion guitars, NCsoft owning a baseball club etc, I am not surprised anymore~