Blizzard has teamed up with Korean Airlines to brand airliners ahead of the upcoming launch for the keenly anticipated real-time strategy game.
With less than a month to go to the launch of StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, Korean Air customers flying between July and December have the chance to take their flight in either the Boeing 747-400 or the Boeing 737-900 emblazoned with the game logo and main character of Jim Raynor.
As the competition gaming tour-de-force, the original StarCraft had an important role to play in the massive ‘pro gaming’ and net gaming cafe scene in South Korea so such a marketing move is certainly less unusual there than it might be elsewhere.
However it does serve as a timely reminder of just how big of a release StarCraft II is expected to be world-wide. Industry analyst Michael Pacter had said previously: "I think they’ll sell 5-6 million units quickly, 9-10 million eventually" . If such sales materialise it would make StarCraft II one of the best selling PC games of all time. The original StarCraft has so far sold 11 million copies, making it 4th largest selling PC game of all time behind the Sims, the Sims II and World of Warcraft respectively.
The airline itself considers the campaign as a strategic move to market itself to younger people. "eSports is an established part of youth culture all around the world," said Yong-won Suh, executive VP of Korean Air.
"We look forward to positioning ourselves as a global airline that appeals to the younger generation by operating airplanes wrapped with StarCraft II images and celebrating the launch of StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty," he added.
Star Craft II: Wings of Liberty is due for release on PC and Mac on the 27th of July.