Advertising in Fiction

I find fictional advertising really interesting. I’ve noticed that several modern videogames include fictional advertising for fictional products as a type of world building. In the real world, thriving economies are underscored by a background of ads, so seeing ads in a fictional world makes it seem a little more real.

As an advertising nerd though, I like to stop and admire these ads and wonder about the thought process behind them. Are they simply mimicking a real world advertisement, or has some zealous designer invented an entire fictional ad campaign, complete with an original brand strategy? Usually these ads take the form of posters plastered throughout the environment, though I have also come across tv commercials and radio ads. Next time you are playing a game that creates a believable virtual world, look around and see if you can spot the advertising.