Gaming's Most Useless Pre-Order Incentives

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Pre-orders have become a standard marketing strategy for video game developers to sell more units. Pre-ordering ensures that units are sold before the game's actual release. This can prove risky for gamers, as many games can be misleading prior to their release with fancy trailers.

Buyers' rewards to taking the pre-order plunge are certain bonus incentives. Whether they're in-game or physical extras, sometimes (more often than we'd like to believe) we're presented with something so useless and completely out of left field, we're left wondering what the developers were thinking. 

Super Street Fighter IV - Super Thumb Fighters

It's not uncommon to find toys accompanying a game in a pre-order bundle. Whether it's action figures or statues, this makes the perfect physical addition to a bundle. What doesn't make a perfect addition is something no one wants to play with, like Super Thumb Fighters. 

These finger condoms were decorated with various characters from the game, with the intention of having buyers wear thumb during their thumb wrestling bouts. If only anyone actually thumb wrestled...

Resident Evil 5 - Snow Globe

Resident Evil was one of the pioneers of survival horror games, and produced some of the greatest hits of modern gaming. Naturally, you'd think Capcom would take the opportunity to create some truly terrifying bonuses for the sequel to the biggest title in the series, however, this was not the case...at all.

Instead of scaring players, Capcom decided to give out horrifying, blood-curdling...snow globes. Yep.

Infamous: Second Son - Condoms

Sometimes pre-orders differ geographically as much as they do from vendor to vendor. Infamous: Second Son is a perfect example of how strange things can get once we start crossing borders. The Italy-exclusive pre-order bundle of the game came with a box of Infamous-themed glow in the dark condoms, complete with two cans of red bull and the slogan 'Enjoy Your Power'. 

What's most ironic about this package (no pun intended) is that it completely contradicts the age-old stereotype of virgin gamers. Maybe Italian gamers get laid more.

Fallout 4 - Socks

This one probably had a lot of fans scratching their heads. The highly anticipated Fallout 4 has been shining proudly in the spotlight for months, doing no wrong with it's impressive trailers. Out of nowhere, it seems as though Bethesda has decided to release a Best Buy exclusive bundle that comes with the season pass and, you guessed it, socks.

There is nothing left to say about this one. Go home Bethesda, you're drunk.

Saint's Row IV - Wastes of Money You Don't Have

This one's a lot to take in. A truly mind-boggling attempt at a pre-order, even for the developers of the wacky Saint's Row series. The aptly titled 'Million Dollar Package' bundle lived up to it's name as a single unit with a million dollar price tag that offered:

  • Saint's Row IV Commander in Chief Edition
  • Full-sized replica of the Dub Step gun
  • Hostage rescue experience
  • a trip to space on Virgin Galactic's shuttle
  • Plastic surgery (vague)
  • a spy training day
  • a personal shopper
  • capsule wardrobe
  • 7 nights at the Top Royal Suite of the Burj-Al-Arab in Dubai
  • A week for two at the Jefferson Hotel in Washington, DC
  • First class flights to both Washington and Dubai
  • a Lamborghini Gallardo
  • A Toyota Prius with one year of insurance
  • a Super Car Membership

There are no words to describe this package. Considering it didn't sell (surprise, surprise), it feels like more of a marketing stunt but was a legitimately offered package.

Published Nov. 3rd 2015

Contributor

Travis is a semi-professional writer, self proclaimed vigilante, and amateur bio creator. Small town Canadian boy, red plaid and all.

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