Peter Molyneux Declined McDonald's Video Game Because "Kids Imagine Ronald Skewering Them" 1
Image: Sega / McDonald's / Anna Shvets / Pexels

Like any massive consumer brand, McDonald's has never been blind to the value of a good video game tie-in.

1992's M.C. Kids on the NES kicked off the trend, followed by Global Gladiators on the Sega Genesis / Mega Drive. The company has also worked with Treasure on a themed video game in the past and, more recently, teamed up with Krool Toys to create Grimace's Birthday for the Game Boy Color.

However, the process of collaborating with a company like McDonald's is not an easy one, as Treasure found out when it teamed up with the fast food giant for 1993's aforementioned McDonald's Treasure Land Adventure. It was stipulated initially that Ronald was not allowed to defeat enemies and that the lava present in the game be removed. McDonald's even went as far as to forbid Treasure from showing its hamburgers on the ground, resulting in almost all references to the company's main product – food – being expunged from the final retail release.

Taking this into account, it's easy to understand that, when faced with the prospect of working with McDoland's in the early '90s, industry veteran Peter Molyneux declined.

Speaking in an interview with EDGE magazine from 1994, Molyneux – who was then still with Bullfrog, the company he co-founded in 1987 with Les Edgar – revealed that the studio had been approached by McDonald's to do a tie-in game:

McDonald's approached us for a joint game venture, and they specified that absolutely nothing in the game must contain any share edges – because apparently the kids can imagine Ronald skewering them or something – and you must use these characters this way and paint them this colour... basically, they say, "Do this game this way and don't it any other way."

It's interesting to think about what a McDonald's game with Molyneux's input could have looked like, but sadly, we'll never know now.