Thinking outside the [X]box

If you’re the type that gets out and about, then you’re likely to have seen promo material that looks something like this:

destiny ps4















and if you haven’t, well then you just don’t get out and about. Or you’re just not a gamer. Or someone who uses the internet. Or social media. Or someone who keeps up with digital news for their MKF3881 blog posts. Ha, caught!

Anyway, this is Destiny.

Destiny is a brand new sci-fi shooter game from the developers Activision as well as Bungie, who are the creators of the Microsoft exclusive legendary hit, Halo. And if you haven’t heard of Halo then you really don’t get out and about. Because you don’t have to be a gamer [or someone who uses the internet, or social media, or someone who keeps up with digital news for their MKF3881 blog posts] to know Halo. Also, you’re missing out on lots.

The cool thing about Destiny is that it is also massively multiplayer, meaning it reaches a huge audience. To give you an idea of its potential, the game World of Warcraft has been played by over 100,000,000 people – that’s one hundred million, in case you got lost in the zeros. 


WoW players

It’s theoretically a gold mine for marketers. And Chinese prison bosses.


The other cool thing about Destiny is that the developers spent US$500 million on creating and marketing the title. What’s even cooler is that they made all that back on the first day of sale. A lot of cool things about this game. 

Sony were quick to make the most of this huge release by striking an ‘exclusivity agreement’ with Activision for the game’s marketing. The deal was meant that all advertising material would only be associated with Sony and Playstation, and would not feature other consoles’ brand names or logos. The whole point of this was to plant the idea in people’s minds that Destiny was a Playstation-exclusive game, deceiving them into thinking the only way to jump on the Destiny bandwagon was to own a PS3 or PS4.

Sony could smell Microsoft’s fear. And it didn’t smell good. So Microsoft came up with a fragrance to cover it all up.

Enter Destiny: The New Fragrance by Xbox


That’s right, Xbox UK responded by cheekily advertising a “fragrance” called Destiny, through the website Of course, this isn’t a real perfume – although if it was, it would smell a lot like envy.

The website has now retreated its Destiny-associated material (probably because of a breach) and put up a boring message about Xbox One offers instead. But here’s what it looked like before:



Despite the retreat, the stunt has gone viral with all websites digital covering the story.

They weren’t allowed to promote the Xbox, so they’ve had others do it for them.


Finally, they’re thinking outside the box





  • What do you think of the stunt? Do you think the ‘fakegrance’ worked?
  • What else – quirky and creative – could Microsoft have done instead?
  • PS4 or Xbox One?