Two-thousand and sixteen is going down as a real lousy year for most people, especially anyone who enjoys great music, charming famous people, or the binding fabric of society. In the midst of all the loss, however, it’s been a pretty fantastic year for video games. We’ve seen the release of some of the best shooters in years, several incredible indie experiences, and a few franchises finally return to form after years in the wilderness.
As good as games have been this year, boneheaded things still happen when the marketing department gets involved. Here are five of the weirdest things companies did to market their games in 2016, which range from “huh?” to “nuclear facepalm.” Importantly, the games involved in these decisions are not bad games. Some of them are among my favorites of the year. But it’s hard not to cringe at the thinking behind some of these marketing moves.
The Schick Hydro Man hugging Hideo Kojima (above) doesn’t even crack this list.