Kohnke’s work for the financially troubled Perpetual was for its MMORPG game in development, Gods & Heroes. The big bonus is for favorable reviews of the game, which begs the question: How can you get a game reviewed that’s not finished?
We’re contacting industry sources to find out more about what constitutes successful influence for a pre-launch, and to find out if this arrangement is common in game PR.
1Up and a few other sites are mentioning the recent firing of Jeff Gerstmann from Gamespot in their coverage of Kohnke as a sign of a PR having too much influence. According to some reports, he was dismissed for writing a negative review of a game with big ad buy on the site. There are currently 11 Facebook groups celebrating and supporting Gerstmann.
(disclosure: I did some publicity work for Gamespot’s editors from 2003 to 2006, including Gerstmann)