Hashtag Fill your heart with Vikings.
Assassin’s Creed is doubtless one of the best match set for virtual tourism, whether it’s climbing the pyramids or jumping off the Santa Maria del Fiore dome in Florence. Now, as spotted by Eurogamer, Tourism Ireland has teamed up with Ubisoft to get a campaign, marking the first time the game has been used in a nation’s official tourism advertisement.
The ad, which you may watch previously, showcases several Irish places out of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla’s most up-to-date Wrath of the Druids DLC, including Benbulbin, the Giant’s Causeway and Dublin, which, er, has clearly changed a lot from when Eivor was around in the 850s. The combo of in-game shots and footage from real life places, accompanied by appropriately epic music, does make for a successful advertisement, as well as underlining how amazing Valhalla’s facsimile of Ireland looks.
In a declaration, Tourism Ireland says the campaign has also appointed a few influencers”using a strong Twitch following by the united kingdom, Germany, France, Spain and the Nordic countries to function as (presumably in-game) Ireland tourism ambassadors. “Ubisoft has done an amazing job in bringing facets of Celtic Ireland to life in amazing detail. Tourism Ireland’s effort is really a fun and innovative way to bring the island of Ireland to the attention of a new audience of players. We wish to spike players’ curiosity concerning the featured locations and inspire them to come and explore them in the real world,” states Tourism Ireland’s Central Marketing Director Mark Henry.
While most of this does seem like a fun idea, it makes me wonder how large a niche gaming tourism really is. None of Assassin’s Creed’s previous locations suffered from a tourism shortage before they were featured in-game, or at least none of them reported notable spikes because of their inclusion in a game. There are of course lots of Youtube movies of gamers exploring real-life locations for games such as Yakuza, but frequently the pleasure lies in coming across something that you already know in a game, not the other way round, and millions of people have always enjoyed staring at impressive buildings around the globe. The question is whether a gambling tourism effort can be one of the new strategies to get individuals to travel, now that countries are trying to resurrect tourism after the pandemic.