Lately Atlus has been selling games stateside bundled with a ton of extras. Extras are nice and collectible…but don’t forget the standard editions for people who just want to play the game. Take the following example:
What would possess someone to try and fit so many things in one game box? Let’s see, it comes with: the game, 100 page artbook, multimedia CD with soundtrack and artwork, a keychain, 3 buttons (think political buttons), and 2 lenticular cards. Not to mention the box has no support for the corners or center. So how many people would actually use any of this stuff? The art book is paperback but contains pieces from all of the Growlanser series. It was pretty well made. The multimedia CD is alright I suppose. The lenticular cards… I suppose you could carry them around in your wallet to amuse children, but other than that they’re useless. The buttons are huge and poorly made. They remind me of political buttons you can get at any rally. Since next year is an election year, I can just collect a bunch of buttons and tape pictures over them. Pictures of things I actually want to see, not the Growlanser logo or little fairies. And finally we come to the keychain. This thing comes in its own box and seems to be a centerpiece in the package. However, it’s very heavy, bulky and inflexible. You’d have to be a big fan to carry that thing around in lieu of a smaller keychain.
Oh sure, you think I’m picking on the Growlanser series. I know the legendary edition of Halo 3 comes with that ugly and pointless helmet. What about the Assassin’s Creed limited edition that comes with an action figure? Well, this isn’t the first time Growlanser has offered a strange compilation of extras. Need I remind you of the previous game?
Not quite as much as the current package, but even more outrageous. If you can’t see for yourself already, here’s what the package contains: the game, soundtrack, a deck of cards, a necklace with a ring, and a watch. What the hell? A watch?! It doesn’t look as bad as the sports watches, but still… And the ring on a necklace…are there actually people who walk around sporting video game jewelry? If there are, then I’m living in the wrong place. At least it’s not as bad as Square-Enix trying to sell a marble on a silver chain for $105. That still strikes me as excessive though.
So what else can we expect from the Growlanser series in the future? Will the next game come with a replica of the hero’s armor? Maybe it’ll come with a tote bag like GTAIV. Every company seems to one-up the previous special edition. Maybe in a few years we’ll start to see cars bundled with a limited edition game. I can’t wait to drive GTAVII. What a cop magnet.