SegaSoft online games tap into cultlike mind-set

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SegaSoft, looking to break into the lucrative online gaming market, is relying on an unusual and potentially controversial marketing strategy centered on a fictional cult. To market the HEAT.NET network, which targets 18-to-34-year-old males, agency Ground Zero, Santa Monica, Calif., is creating the fictional CyberDiversion movement, a "cause" whose purpose is to divert onto cyberspace what it describes as a primal human urge to kill.

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Copyright April 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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