Forza Horizon 5 PR stunt reminds us Xbox ANZ is nuts

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Video game marketing can get crazy sometimes, and the latest Forza Horizon 5 PR stunt is a reminder that the folks at Xbox, specifically Xbox ANZ, are just nuts.

Xbox ANZ is the Australia and New Zealand division of Xbox and to promote the launch of the new open-world racer they dropped an actual jeep, a Polaris RZR, from about 4,500 feet up in the sky. A stunt diver follows after and they parachute one after another before said diver gets into the Polaris and zips around, but not before showing many copies of Forza Horizon 5 in the compartment.

Xbox is already known for some crazy marketing ideas as a whole, like when they teamed up with the R&B group All-4-One to promote Game Pass and made the Xbox fridge meme a reality. But Xbox ANZ really takes the cake with campaigns like this and the one they did last year that turned Queenstown, New Zealand into “Greenstown” to promote the launch of the Series X|S.

The Forza Horizon PR stunt ends with the driver creating a number 5 in trails of pink smoke and is just another example of Xbox ANZ’s tendency to get really wild with their marketing. In addition to those two stunts, they love making weirdo collectibles, tchotchkes and rarities. Just a few weeks ago, they produced an Age of Empires-themed cereal dubbed WOLOL-Os to promote Age of Empires IV.

They’ve also made a greaseproof Xbox controller, an Xbox Onesie and of course an Xbox bodywash, the latter of which I can only imagine smells like what achievements smell like. All I can say is that whatever Xbox ANZ does next for Halo Infinite will probably be just as wild.

Personally I want to see what they’ll do for Elden Ring. While not an Xbox exclusive, the game was announced on the Xbox stage back at E3 2019 and as one of the ultra-serious rogue-likes that is developer FromSoftware’s trademark, would be ripe for marketing irreverence.