Spider-Man spins a web to catch Irish game fans

30 Mar 2005

One in five Irish computer game fans own a game based on the superhero movie Spider-Man, making it slightly more popular than games titles based on the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

A new survey conducted by the retailer Game, which has 11 outlets in State, reveals the 10 most popular games titles licensed from movies. The list was compiled from GameÅfs Reward Card database, which currently has more than five million members. It tracked the purchasing habits of more than 155,000 games fans in Ireland and the UK to produce the chart. Game then split the chart into separate categories for Ireland and the UK.

In Ireland, Spider-Man was in first place, owned by 20pc of games fans. This was followed in descending order by Lord of the Rings (19pc); James Bond (17pc); Final Fantasy (16pc); Harry Potter (13pc); Enter the Matrix (12pc); Resident Evil (11pc); Star Wars (10pc); Tomb Raider (9pc) and Star Trek (8pc). Other movie franchises that scored just outside the top 10 were Shrek, Toy Story and Black Hawk Down.

Film tie-ins are popular with games publishers as they tend to offer a ÅesafeÅf choice because consumers are familiar with the content. ItÅfs a trend that dates back to the late Seventies when the original Star Wars became one of the first film franchises adapted for the Atari VCS games console.

Hollywood is not averse to tapping into the popularity of games titles, either, as movies such as Resident Evil and Tomb Raider started life as games before being adapted for the big screen.

Allen Wilson, commercial manager for Game Ireland, commented: ÅgThe cross over between games and cinema is increasing all the time. Not only are video games being made to be released at the same time as films at the cinema, but the trend is occurring the other way around too.

ÅgThis demonstrates not only the increasing importance of video games, but also the advantages for companies and brands of using cross-media promotional and selling techniques. Brands such as Enter the Matrix, Tomb Raider and Star Wars have benefited from multiple revenue streams by marketing and selling films, DVDs and video games,Åh he added.

By Gordon Smith