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Media and Communications

10 Most Bizarre Video Game Adverts

10 Most Bizarre Video Game Adverts


As every good business man OR WOMAN knows,
it’s no good making a brilliant video game if no one is going to buy it, which is why
so much money is poured into advertising… with over uh… where’s the… uh, anyway,
you don’t want to listen to me listing off random factoids about the economics of the
video games industry. That’s what Worst Games Ever is for. What you are here for is to see a load of
adverts that are meant to market video games or consoles, that either succeed in the best
way, or fail in the most bizarre. While we can neither confirm nor deny the
quality of the following, their inclusion here doesn’t necessarily mean they’re
bad or even good, it just means that they are, in one way or another, just a little
bit strange. Art is subjective after all Shall we look
at some? Let’s look at some. I’m Ben from TripleJump and here are the
10 Weirdest Video Game Adverts 10. Standoff – Xbox 360
When will someone put a stop to this fingergun-crime-wave? Advertising the Xbox 360, this advert was
brought to us by marketing agencies 72andSunny and McCann Erickson, of ‘I’d Like to Teach
the World To Sing’ fame, as a way of showing off the communal feelingls that supposedly
imbued the console. Showing a busy train station being drawn to
a halt by, surprisingly enough, a standoff between the travellers brandishing literal
hand-guns at one another, it’s not long before one stray ‘BANG!’ sends everyone
into a miming frenzy, gunning people down without hesitation, remorse or bullets. Unfortunately, it wasn’t run in syndication
on television and was instead only shown to selected audiences at the Zero Hour launch
event; but was then uploaded to the internet where it’s since enjoyed massive success. You have to admire everyone’s devotion to
realism, with a window cleaner falling off his platform and dangling from his harness,
bikers pulling wheelies while brandishing invisible shotguns and everyone being entirely
in sync with one another from the moment the first ‘hand gun’ is pulled. Although having said that, you just know there’s
going to be that one person who refuses to accept they’ve been hit and so keep playing
anyway, spoiling the fun for everyone. 9. Kevin Butler – PlayStation 3
Kevin Butler was a fictional spokesman created to act as host for the 2009-2011 PS3 ad campaign
‘It Only Does Everything’. Played by Jerry Lambert, Butler appeared in
countless ads as a way of pitching the console’s numerous features, including the PlayStation
Move, PlayStation Network, and PS3’s Wi-Fi and internet browsing capabilities. The framing of the videos would mean he’d
usually appear to answer apparent complaints from customers about the console, before happily,
if not condescendingly, explaining it to them. However, Kevin wouldn’t be a true spokesman
without some controversy. His first advert drew criticism for the line
“You can’t read everything you read on the internet. Otherwise I’d be a Nigerian millionaire
by now”, which was accused as being an “unwarranted attack on the reputation and image of the
country” by the Nigerian Minister of Information and Communication. After this slap on the wrist, the line was
replaced by “You can’t read everything you read on the internet. That’s how World War One got started”
which is actually a way funnier joke. Still, he may have had a consistently changing
job title, confidence, connections to Sony CEO Jack Tretton and hosted Sony’s E3 2010,
but it didn’t stop actor Jerry Lambert from moonlighting in a Nintendo advert, with his
contract being terminated shortly after. 8. Laundry Bear – BattleTanx
Snuggle bear is the horrifically cute mascot for American fabric softener ‘Snuggle’
and has been victim of many parodies everywhere, from Mad TV to Robot Chicken, and this advert
follows a similar, if not more tasteful, line. The eponymous battle tank smash through the
walls of the laundry room (or kitchen if you’re normal) and proceed to run over the poor bear,
but not before ripping one of its arms and ears off, and setting the other arm on fire. Not entirely defeated, however, the bear returned
for a sequel advert a year later for BattleTanx: Global Assault, being recovered by scientists
and rebuilt in a parody of the Six Million Dollar Man; training to regain his strength
and fighting power… only to be immediately run over again by the marauding tanks and
attached to the front of one like one of those poor toys on the grille of trucks. This, of course, is a way of showing off how
manly OR WOMANLY and strong tanks are compared to fluffy toys and doing the washing. Men don’t do the washing! I myself am wearing this shirt for the 14th
day in a row. 7. Crash Bandicoot 2 Cortex Strikes Back
The year was 1997, and the much anticipated follow up to the previous year’s SMASH HIT
Crash Bandicoot was on the horizon. What better way to drive hype and anticipation
than by putting a weird custom model of main character crash in front of an unmoving background
and having him gesticulate, float, and otherwise gyrate around in front of it while speaking
in Australian-tinged fluent English and getting REALLY CLOSE TO THE CAMERA- I DON’T LIKE
IT. This, is a weird one. Up until this point Crash hadn’t spoken
apart from occasional ‘woah’s, and wouldn’t speak again until an ill-informed cameo in
Skylanders, you know, from the dark times we don’t talk about. He says strange things like ‘I just flew
in from the new ruins level and boy are my arms tired’ – implying that crash flies
now? Or that he flies but only when we can’t
see him doing it? Schrödinger’s flying crash? Anyway then he yells ‘HYAH’ at the camera
and it’s bad. There’s never really been a proper explanation
as to why this was made, but it exists now as a quirky piece of gaming history, and to
serve as a reminder that you need the people making your adverts to at least know the product
first. 6.Resident Evil Four – Breastfeeding(2005)
Reportedly banned from broadcast, this French advert took a strange approach to advertising
Resident Evil 4, by showing a woman breastfeeding her child while completely naked, which is
FINE, OBVIOUSLY. The act of breastfeeding is natural and perfectly
normal, but maybe it’s not normal when promoting a zombie game? Anyway, as the camera pans around her, showing
the baby, a young boy’s voice can be heard (in French) “Remember the place where you
felt the most secure, the most comfortable, the most loved. This place will never exist again.” And then the woman looks around to show she
is actually A ZOMBIE! Similar to the old YouTube trend of ‘screamers’,
it’s a bit of a cruel joke to play on unsuspecting TV viewers who would probably assume this
advert to be for some kind of baby formula, so it’s hardly surprising that it was pulled
from syndication. Still, the zombie face on a non-zombie body
is a bizarre design, and especially weird considering that there weren’t really any
zombies in Resident Evil. 5. You Cannot Beat Us – Nintendo Entertainment
System (1987) MUM, ALIENS HAVE HIJACKED THE TELEVISION! “We are Nintendo. We challenge all players. You cannot beat us” Shown only in Australia,
this 1987 advert offers a fascinating look at time before 3D modelling had been brought
to nintendo’s games; with all the featured characters rendered in the best dodgy 80’s
CGI money could buy. It features horrific 3D renderings of some
of Nintendo’s villains, such as a strangely Lego-looking Bowser, Lakitu, the dog from
Duckhunt and uh… ‘Smicks’ from Gyromite which look weird
enough in game, but here look like a duck with human arms and malicious intent. The advert, mainly featuring the best-known
Nintendo villains… and Smicks… was probably meant as a call-to-arms for Nintendo fans,
creating a challenge to beat the games, but the robotic voices and poorly aged CGI just
makes it downright terrifying and it has rightfully gone down in history as one of the freakiest
adverts ever made. 4.Segata Sanshiro – Sega Saturn
Mario? Sonic the Hedgehog? Get out of here. Everyone knows that the best video game mascot
of all time is a Japanese man in a dōgi beating the stuffing out of everyone in order to get
them to play video games. The man, the myth, the legend that is Segata
Sanshiro blessed the screens of Japan between 1997 and 1999 as a way of advertising Sega’s
newest system: the Sega Saturn. At first simply attacking poor youths with
a relatively healthy social life in order to send them indoors to play on their Sega
Saturns, Sanshiro moved on to bigger goals, including making other martial artists explode,
disguising himself as Santa Clause and uh… going on a date? The character, always leaving a room in a
state of utter carnage – and usually littered with unconscious non-Sega-Saturn-Players – has
been credited as a major reason for the increase of Sega Saturn sales in Japan, which ultimately
managed to surpass both the Mega Drive and N64 in sales. His last television appearance in a Sega advert
ended with him sacrificing his life in order to save people from a wayward missile by launching
it into space through the sheer power of his ankles. We will always remember you, Segata Sanshiro 3. Centipede -Atari 2600
MUM THE ALIENS ARE BACK! It’s amazing what you can do with some stock
footage, a centipede costume and a little imagination. Centipede was originally an arcade classic
before being ported over to the Atari consoles, where, according to the game Manuel, you play
as a garden gnome defending his mushroom garden from numerous creepy crawlies,. Sounds innocent enough, but that’s a little
hard to get across in a space-invaders-like 2D shooter. So, when it came to filming an advert for
the ports it was obviously easier to get the aim of the game across via a Little Shop of
Horrors-esque montage of centipedes coming out of the game and devouring the helpless
players, before assuming their identities and getting into bed with their wives EXCUSE
ME WHAT. Based on this advert alone, I don’t want
to ever play this game thank you. Do you? 2. Life Is Short, Play More – X-Box (2002)
There’s nothing like a video game advert for reminding you about the ever-encroaching
inevitability of death, is there? Which is probably why this advert was VERY
banned by the UK Independent Television Commission after over 130 complaints from the public
in 2002. The advert itself literally follows a man’s
life as he is projectile launched from his mother’s birth zone and soars through the
air, progressively growing older over the course of a minute – screaming the entire
time – before crashing down into his own grave; followed by the line ‘Life is Short, Play
More’. Created as a way of advertising the original
Xbox console, and unleashed on Europe in March of 2002, Microsoft apparently considered the
advert to be a “positive statement about life”, but considering that the line-up
of complaining viewers included a pregnant women, the recently bereaved, and sufferers
of major illnesses, it’s probably best to side with the ITC on this one, who said: “The
final scene of a body smashing into its grave was unnecessary and has caused considerable
distress.” Oh dear Microsoft. 1. ‘Baby’ – PlayStation 3 (2006)
Have you ever watched something and been slightly subconsciously paranoid that this could be
a supervillain trying to brainwash you? Because this is one of those times. This bizarre attempt at a talking point by
PlayStation was released onto television networks in 2006 and proceeded to destroy the minds
of everyone who saw it – emotionally that is, although probably literally too. This 30 second long advert shows nothing more
than a plastic baby doll sitting in an empty white room opposite the new PS3 console and
proceeds to do… this. This was the first in a line of PECULIAR adverts
commissioned by Sony for a $150 million campaign called ‘PLAY B3YOND’, all set in a white
room, and featuring different objects such as an exploding Rubik’s cube, a rally truck,
a pile of bones and a dragon. Some of these were to advertise specific games,
such as ‘Lair’, ‘MotorStorm’ and ‘Resistance: Fall of Man’, but others were simply there
to be abstract representations of the PS3’s capabilities as a console… and a baby. Yes, the ‘Baby’ advert is definitely the
most memorable advert of the bunch, by virtue of how unsettling it is, as was its obvious
intent. If you wanted to read into it, maybe it represents
appealing to your inner child, perhaps it represents a toy’s realisation that it is
now obsolete to its owner in the face of this new technology, or maybe it’s just an advert
relying way too much on being esoteric for its own good. PlayStation had previously utilised the ‘weird
angle’ for its adverts for the PlayStation 2, with adverts being made by surreal video
makers, such as Chris Cunningham and, most memorably, by David Lynch himself. Lynch made a series of adverts for the PS2
in an ad campaign called ‘The Third Place’ but it says a lot when a strangely animated
plastic doll is more memorable than something created by one of the most visionary directors
to ever live. And that’s our list. There are loads of strange, peculiar and downright
odd video game adverts out there on the internet, so sound off about them in the comments below. You can follow TripleJump on Twitter here,
and while you’re at it, why not support the things you enjoy by having a look at our
patreon. Finally, don’t for get to like the video,
share it with your friends, and subscribe to the channel. I’m Ben from TripleJump, and thanks for
watching.

34 thoughts on “10 Most Bizarre Video Game Adverts

  1. Ok America wants to show faggots and lesbians all over tv, but can't show a "naked" woman breastfeeding what a fuckin shame

  2. Woah, nudity warnings please. Thankfully I watched this first, not my husband with the delicate eyes. I had to lick him better.

  3. Whyyyy would “Kevin” mess that job up?? ☹️

    Also, that’s Braeden LeMasters in a PS3 commercial!! He’s in one of my favorite bands! Cool!

  4. I really hope they were joking about the Crash Bandicoot flying bit. That's actually an old joke that stand up comedians used to tell. It was meant to put the image of the comedian flapping their arms to get to the venue in the audience's mind. Thus the tired arms bit.

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