Codemasters’ marketing makes me feel DiRTy

The Colin McRae series of rally racing games are probably my favourite non-arcade racers. I have four separate McRae games, three for the XBox and one for the PSP which is the only import game that I own for that system (it was released only in Europe.) The next-gen incarnation of the series is something that I’ve been looking for, in spite of the series’ name change to the bland four-letter word title “DiRT.” The weird lower-case “i” doesn’t do the title any favours. It’s, well, stupId, but the name of the game isn’t going to keep me away

The demo for DiRT was recently released (curse you shoddy Microsoft hardware!) and the early word has been positive. Indeed, it is a very nice looking game and if it plays anything like its predecessors, it is certainly worthy of any extra attention (especially since the previous titles didn’t come across as massive sellers). My frothing demand was increasing.

Enter Dirty1CMD.

This morning I receive a message in my Flickr inbox: “You are Dirty1CMD’s newest contact!” Nice! I go and check out his photo stream and what do I see? Nothing but screen shots of DiRT. I check the profile:

This site has been set up to showcase images from the new Colin McRae Dirt game.

All the game images are from XBOX360 so far. PS3 shots will be added as soon as they are approved.

I’ve not added anybody as a contact who wasn’t into Rally, cars or Videogames.

Sorry if anybody feels like they’ve been spammed. I’ve tried to be subtle.

Subtle my ass.

I was likely targeted because of my recent photo of a Sonic the Hedgehog graffiti mural which clearly shows that I like video games and, obviously, getting unsolicited messages about video games. Hey, I’m all for using Flickr to show your screenshots and to build a small community around your site, just don’t be spamming me about it — and yes, a mere “contact add” is spam when it’s coming, unsolicited, straight from Codemasters’ ad wizards. Yes, compared to the dozens of spam emails I might get in a day it’s not a big deal, but this is a reputable company with many, many legitimate ways to plug its game. This isn’t one of them. All this does is leave a dirty taste in my mouth and I’m sure that’s not the kind of “dirt” they were aiming to get.

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