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Sunday, 2 December 2007

Push my buttons

Back in the summer, my publishers came up with a brilliant idea. Why not devise an online game as part of the publicity campaign for the new book, and then scatter it across the Internet to help spread the word. Great idea, I said. We could set it in the Louvre and have a thief dodging infrared lasers to steal a painting. Hell, while we're at it, let's have him stealing the Mona Lisa!

And then a moment of pure genius. Why not have him collect some items as he makes his way from room to room, that help him escape? Some ... hieroglyphs (you have to have read the book to understand why) which need to be arranged in the right order? And - wait for it - let's print the hieroglyphs in the right order on the cover of the hardback, so that people who have actually bought the book can finish the game quicker and have a better chance of winning some prizes!!! What people in the trade (don't ask me which trade) call an online promotional tie-in. Go on, admit it, it's pretty cool.

And gues what, they went away and did just that - don't believe me? I'll wait here while you go and get your copy and have a look ... See. The symbols are all there.

The only problem was that, as far as I can tell, having done all the hard work, they didn't let anyone know about the actual game. Not even me. I only found it because someone emailed in and told me (thanks Kate) that they'd found it on some random site.

And the pity is it's brilliant! Perfect for wasting time at work in the run up to Christmas (only remember to have a spreadsheet open that you can quickly switch to.)
Maybe they're holding their fire until the paperback comes out in the summer?

Well there's no reason you should wait that long - give it a go and tell me what you think. Click here for The Gilded Seal, the game - and remember to have your copy to hand!

http://www.ugoplayer.com/games/thegildedseal.html
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