Get Your GOTY

When the Batman: Arkham City Game of the Year Edition popped up on Tuesday I knew it was an instant 'Shop Contest candidate. Then IGN weighed in with its parody, which got a lot of you guys to create your own. And /v/ pretty much blew the subject out of the water, making this subject, five days later, extremely old. I'm not giving up, however. We just have to come at it from a different angle.

There are no source images this week because it's going to be a rather open-ended challenge. But here is what I want to see: I want to see other products and advertisements as if their packaging was designed by the same idiots responsible for the Arkham City GOTY. Cereal, diapers, books, health insurance, presidential candidates, the naming rights to a stadium, it's all in play.

While I generally lay down no rules against using something in a 'Shop, I will make one just for today's: You cannot use a video game cover. While video game characters, of course, can cameo in whatever you're creating (and fake video game products can get this treatment, too), let's keep this creative and not copycat.

I also foresee a lot of submissions whose humor will be based solely on the words over a picture, rather than the picture itself, so I am going to give extra weight to those who actually do 'Shop something up, rather than just slap text on a poster.

Everybody cool with that? Alright? Awesome. You know the drill: The 20 best will get rounded up and published at the end of next Saturday. Meantime, I and the rest of the starred commentariat will approve and promote as many as we can so folks can see them and pass judgment.

This is your no-frills step-by-step procedure to participation in the Kotaku 'Shop Contest.

1. Create your 'Shop.
2. Upload it to a free image hosting service. I suggest imgur. It's stupid simple. No account is necessary.
3. This is very important: You must use the URL of the image itself. In imgur, this is the second URL it gives you after you upload the image. It's under "Direct Link (email & IM)"
4. At the beginning of the comments roll, click "Start a New Thread"
5. To the right of your name, select "Image."
6. Paste the imgur URL in the image URL field. It's the field that says "Image URL."
7. You can add editorial commentary if you want, but then just hit submit and your image will load. If it doesn't, paste the image URL as a comment.
8. This is important: Keep your image size under 1 MB. It will not upload to comments if it is over that size. What's more, we're getting reports that if your 'Shop is more than 1000px tall (vertical), it won't upload. If you're getting the broken-image icon, try resizing to a smaller dimension.

Now, Gentlemen, start your 'shopping!

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