Just Shoot It! [Guest Post by Author Nick Cole]

6 Aug 2014 by

Author Nick Cole has provided us the below guest post about his new novel, Soda Pop Soldier. I asked Nick to write a little about his interest in corporate sponsorship and advertisement in gaming. Enjoy!

I’ve just finished a novel, Soda Pop Soldier, about video gaming in the future. In this SciFi future, video gaming is big business, and corporations spend a lot of money on their online armies. Basically, corporations fight for real world advertising space in a game called WarWorld. Armies use state of the art weaponry (advanced machinegun systems, mechs, tanks, and drops ships) to wipe each other out. Whoever wins gets to advertise on the premium advertising space they were fighting over. Whoever wins, in essence, gets to tell other people what they should buy. In the future that’s an important power. Just like today. I had to think up some future corporations, but I think you’ll recognize some familiar aspects in a few of them. TarMart, UberVodka, McBucks, MasterVisa. But there are two corporations who are fighting it out over the course of Soda Pop Soldier. sugarbombsWonderSoft, the enemy, and ColaCorp, the good guys, if you will.

My main character is a gamer named PerfectQuestion. That’s his gamertag. PQ fights for ColaCorp in this modern warfare arena of WarWorld, and his team is taking a shellacking from the bad guys at WonderSoft. That part is the Call of Duty meets the awesome novel Ready Player One part. The other part is very Diablo or World of Warcraft. PerfectQuestion needs some extra dough, so he signs in to an illegal online tournament and gets into more than he bargained for.

But back to “Just Shoot It!” the title of this post. Video games and corporate sponsorship have a pretty hilarious and long relationship. Today, some big companies are making games and giving them away for free on console systems like XBOX ONE. Doritos makes a fun mini cart racing game and bashes you in the head with snack-based advertising while you compete with your friends. Many other games, just like Snapple and Seinfeld, have engaged in product placement. So, sponsorship and gaming have a pretty tight relationship. There’s even been some pretty funny made up advertising that games like Fallout and Battlefield Heroes have put together.

But, in this future, the future of Soda Pop Soldier, big corporations are sponsoring entire digital armies, led by heavily armed players to fight in a Monday Night Football type arena setting that looks like Southeast Asia. It was a lot of fun to write, and if you want to take a look at how far we can imagine the relationship of gaming and corporate business going, then take Soda Pop Soldier for a spin. That way you won’t be too surprised when some tennis shoe company comes out with the “Just Shoot It!” campaign for their new Warrior AIR Kicks. Soda Pop Soldier is a machinegun-toting thrill ride through a SciFi future that’s not too far off. Game On!


Soda Pop Soldier
by Nick Cole

Publisher: Harper Collins Imprint: Harper Voyager
Published August 12, 2014 in Paperback Pages: 368
ISBN: 9780062210227

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