It’s a big week for video game releases and their eye-catching promotions. While Bungie thrust unsuspecting players into the backstory for its latest game expansion, 2K Sports invited basketball fans to get a head start on their in-game personas—both creating a sense of community and frontline marketing that gamers will remember long after they put down a controller.

Destiny: Rise of Iron

Ahead of Tuesday’s Rise of Iron expansion, Bungie did something very clever in the way of “viral” marketing—it created an in-game virus that Guardians (in-game players) want to catch. Beginning with the power of influencers, Bungie “infected” a popular Twitch streamer named SayNoToRage, who got a mysterious buff (power-up) no one could identify. A Twitch account called owl_sector then appeared in the gamer’s chat for all to see, stating, “We’ve detected an unidentified foreign intrusion into your systems, Guardian. Stay calm. We will investigate.” Viewers were then directed to a website, where they could track the infection and read various logs by members of the Vanguard (high-ranking Guardians in the fictional universe) discuss the outbreak, often in the form of comical banter. A few days later, the entire world seems to have been infected and dozens of YouTube videos have been uploaded by fans instructing players how to contract the virus for themselves.

Source: Bungie

SayNoToRage, who has nearly half a million Twitch followers, was a natural choice for the in-game virus. There are five viruses in all—Brilliance 3.2, Glory 2.1, Splendor 2.6, Magnificence 2.0 and Fortitude 3.1. You contract them by running into other players who already have them. So SayNotoRage, who plays every day, is slowly spreading the buffs throughout the entire player base. “You gotta give it to them,” SayNoToRage said on his stream the following day, complimenting Bungie on the promotion. “They’ve got everyone super, super riled up.” Players speculate that since the infection has something to do with SIVA, a plague mentioned in the expansion’s trailer, Guardians will learn more once the expansion drops September 20. The promotion is very similar to Microsoft’s Hunt The Truth promotion for Halo 5, in which a journalist detailed his findings about Master Chief on a podcast leading up to the game’s release.

For new players who have been meaning to jump into the fray, Destiny: The Collection releases the same day, offering the game plus all expansions and exclusive content for those playing on PlayStation.

NBA 2K17

Sports fans are ready to hit the basketball court for fame and fortune with NBA 2K17, releasing on Tuesday. Leading up to the game’s launch, 2K Sports has been promoting the title with a free, downloadable mini-preview demo called The Prelude. Released September 9, The Prelude allows fans to choose from multiple authentic Division I collegiate programs to start their MyCareer and raise their draft stock ahead of time. The preview launched alongside the MyNBA2K mobile app, which scans fans’ faces to create custom in-game basketball players.

2K Sports never fails to get the fans riled up over which stars grace the cover of its sports titles. For NBA 2K17, Kobe Bryant was named as the Legend cover athlete and Indiana Pacers’ Paul George is the cover athlete for the regular edition.