The release of anything new is always exciting, especially in the world of gaming and dedicated fans will go to extreme lengths to get their hands on a copy of their favourite game. To avid gamers, video games are not just games they are a kind of lifestyle - a hyperreality parallel to their everyday lives.
Today I witnessed the run up to the release of highly anticipated Xbox 360 game 'Halo:Reach'. For those of you who are new to gaming, Halo Reach is a video game set in the year 2552 where humanity is locked in a war with the alien covenant on the human colony of Reach.
I was sent to Westfields shopping centre in Shepherd's Bush where there was an outdoor display advertising the new game. 3 giant pictures of characters starring in the game were hand painted onto the exterior walls of Westfields. The display had a stop-in-your-stride kind of effect as many passers-by were greeted by these wall paintings as they entered the food terrace of Westfields shopping centre. This shows great innovation and creativity especially since these were not billboard ads, rather they were hand painted wall art creations in Europe's largest indoor shopping centre.
To add to the hype of 'Halo:Reach' a live stuntman wearing a jetpack was seen soaring into the sky towards Nelson's Column during a 30 second flight to further publicise the game release. This was a great PR stunt which added to the overall anticipation of the new game. For me this further indicates the fine line between reality and the hyperreality of the gaming sphere, where the two worlds seem to co-exist.