Sony's PS5 London Underground stunt is truly iconic

PS5 London Underground signs
(Image credit: Sony)

While many lucky US gamers have been getting to grips with Sony's PlayStation 5 for days now, UK users have faced a painful extra week of waiting. The PS5 release day finally arrives in the UK tomorrow, and Sony today marked the occasion with an ingenious marketing stunt in central London.

Commuters were quick to spot that three of the four main entrances to Oxford Circus underground station have had their circular signs altered to represent the PlayStation's famous controller symbols. Perhaps even more striking than the best billboard ads, Sony has used a truly unexpected canvas for its latest iconic (or is that symbolic?) ad.  

See more

Three of the signs have been transformed to depict a square, triangle and cross in Sony's signature purple, green and blue colours. As for the fourth sign, well, Sony didn't have much work to do there – it's already a red circle. Indeed, we might never be able to look at the London Underground logo again without also seeing a PlayStation symbol (now that's what we call subliminal marketing).

Twitter users have been loving the stunt, with many sharing their own photos of the signs. And while Sony's London headquarters is just around the corner, it hasn't gone unnoticed that the Sony-fied tube signs are directly outside Microsoft's only UK store. (If you've been living under a rock, Microsoft's rival console was also released this month – here's where to buy an Xbox Series X.)

See more
See more
See more
See more

PS5 London Underground signs

The signs were created by A.J Wells and Sons in Newport (Image credit: AJ Wells & Sons on Facebook)

According to isleofwightradio (opens in new tab), the signs were created by Newport-based AJ Wells & Sons (opens in new tab) in "strict secrecy" over just two weeks. The illuminated enamel signs were "erected under the cover of darkness on Tuesday and will be on display for just 48 hours before it is game over". The signs will then be permanently displayed at Sony’s London headquarters.

While Microsoft has proven adept at responding to memes with recent marketing moves (including the creation of a genuine Xbox fridge), Sony's inventive tube signs might just be the best advertising stunt of the new gaming generation. If you're looking for more bold examples, our best print ads are bound to provoke a double-take or two (as is this confusing ketchup/makeup mashup from Rihanna).

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Daniel Piper
Senior News Editor

Daniel Piper is Creative Bloq’s Senior News Editor. As the brand’s Apple authority, he covers all things Mac, iPhone, iPad and the rest. He also reports on the worlds of design, branding and tech. Daniel joined Future in 2020 (an eventful year, to say the least) after working in copywriting and digital marketing with brands including ITV, NBC, Channel 4 and more. Outside of Future, Daniel is a global poetry slam champion and has performed at festivals including Latitude, Bestival and more. He is the author of Arbitrary and Unnecessary: The Selected Works of Daniel Piper (Selected by Daniel Piper).