Watch Dogs PR stunt empties Sydney news office

A well-intentioned promotional effort went horribly awry as a copy of Watch Dogs sent to Australian news site Ninemsn prompted a mass evacuation of its offices and summoned the local bomb squad.

Though Ninemsn is not in the habit of covering video games, Ubisoft's latest massive-budget effort was issued to the site anyway, inside special packaging consisting of a faux metal safe which would reportedly beep periodically. Immediately concerned by this unexpected, beeping package, Ninemsn staffers contacted their local colleagues, only to find that they had been the only recipient of this mysterious gift. Rather than risk personal injury of the explosive variety, Ninemsn contacted the local authorities who evacuated the building before sending over four police cars and a special police rescue unit.

"The PR company no doubt got carried away with their creativity and ended up sending us something the bomb squad had to open up," Ninemsn publisher Hal Crawford told the BBC.

Ubisoft was quick to offer a diplomatic apology. "As part of a themed promotion for Watch Dogs, our team in Australia sent voicemail messages to some local media alerting them that they'd receive a special package related to the game," Ubisoft said. "Unfortunately, the delivery to Ninemsn didn't go as planned, and we unreservedly apologise to Ninemsn's staff for the mistake and for any problems caused as a result."
[Image: Ubisoft]
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This article was originally published on Joystiq.