Microsoft's Promotional 'Sonic the Hedgehog 2' Xbox Controllers Are Covered in Horrifying Fur (and Everybody Wants Them)
Over the years, there have been some monumental advances in video game controller technology. The Atari joystick became the NES controller, which became the PlayStation DualShock controller, which gave way to the Nintendo Switch Joy-Con, and so on.
But today, friends, we are here to tell you that the next evolution of the video game controller has arrived. And it is covered in electric blue fur.
OK, so it's not actually the start of a new era in game controller history. At least, we hope it's not. It's actually a custom, one-of-a-kind Microsoft Xbox Series S and a pair of controllers designed to promote the upcoming movie "Sonic the Hedgehog 2."
Like the film's protagonist, one controller is covered entirely in blue fur, while the other is covered in red (for Sonic frenemy Knuckles, who will make his cinematic debut in the movie). Honestly, the description doesn't really do it it justice. Please just look at these things:
We might need glasses because these controllers look fuzzy.
Follow and RT with #XboxSonic2Sweepstakes for a chance to win a Sonic 2 Xbox Series S Custom Console and Controllers.
— Xbox (@Xbox) March 22, 2022
Here's a slightly better shot, if your vision hasn't been permanently scarred:
— IGN (@IGN) March 22, 2022
The very thought of holding one of these in our sweaty palms as we white-knuckle it through a boss battle in our sixth consecutive hour of "Elden Ring" is grossing us out. But, apparently, not everyone feels that way.
To (literally) get their hands on the controllers, fans have to enter a social media sweepstakes requiring them to follow the official Xbox Twitter account and retweet the announcement post with a special hashtag. And, rather than recoiling in horror, people have been following the instructions.
As of this writing, the original tweet from Xbox has over 7,500 replies, 48,000 likes and 95,000 retweets. All the expected video game sites picked up the news, and it even filtered over into non-video-game sites like Creative Bloq, which covers graphic design.
That's the kind of reach and engagement brands salivate over. And whether the creative minds behind this campaign intended the controllers to be the stuff of nightmares or genuinely thought they were a little ball of energy in an extremely handsome package, it worked brilliantly.
Short of delaying your movie to completely redesign the main character after intense fan backlash to the first trailer, we can't think of a better way to promote "Sonic the Hedgehog 2." It's hard to top promotional products in combination with social media. Add a little fur, and you've got magic.