Commercials are an incredibly important part of marketing a game. I'm reminded of MadWorld for Wii which didn't really say much about what the game was all about, what you did, or even show off some of the selling points-- the violence. A simple "censored" box over bloody parts with commentary would have worked wonders, I think. Bah. I'm playing Tuesday evening quarterback here. Regardless, I'm put together fifteen of some of my favorite video game commercials. They either spark a memory, are from a game I really enjoyed, present the game well, or are just plain cool. Maybe some of these will spark a memory from you?
There are five commercials per playlist for easy access save for the first. The Ocarina of Time commercial is a separate link since for some reason it won't show up in the playlist.
Super Smash Bros. (N64)
This is most likely a fan-favorite of any fan of Nintendo. Why does Mario instigate the fight? Why does the portly plumber have so much hostility? It's ingenius how "Happy Together" continues to play while the four are still beating the crap out of one another.
Mario Party (N64)
"But it's-a-me, Mario!"
"Tell it to the judge."
I can only imagine how many of those four squirrely kids are now behind bars. It was all fun and games until you get a blister on your thumb from Tug-O-War, the cops come over because of all the noise, and your best pal Mario gets taken to the big house for something you started.
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64)
This commercial is a very well done one that gives chills and goosebumps to fans of the series. Perhaps not now, but when it originally aired it was darned cool. The music was also used for the unveiling of what would later be known as The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.
The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (N64)
Majora's Mask's commercial nailed the ominous nature and tone of the game. This is but one of the two commercials that aired in movie theaters all across the country. How scary would that be to look up one day and see a burning red moon with a scowl on its face looking down at you?
The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker (GCN)
Narrated by a mysterious girl, this commercial tells the story of a legendary hero on a quest to save a girl-- the girl narrating the ad, by golly. Showing off great cinematic effects and a high production value-- which a lot of my favorites display-- this commercial does its job very well.
Metroid Prime (GCN)
This commercial was directed by Alex Proyas who directed The Crow. The commercial masterfully blended 3-D special effects, a live actor, and in-game footage to create an incredibly clever and cool commercial.
Golden Sun (GBA)
What starts out as an ordinary orchestra concert turns awry with dragons, lightning, and a fierce battle as the music escalates. It doesn't hurt that the commercial is for a fantastic RPG like Golden Sun either.
Mario Kart: Double Dash!! (GCN)
Fifteen seconds, but the announcer makes it all worthwhile. Not just his delivery but also the words used. It just flows well. The fact that Double Dash!! is one of my favorite Mario Karts might sway my preference of this commercial though.
Mario Kart DS (DS)
Another short commercial, this one shows off some 3-D models of Mario and Luigi racing across a globe to show of the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. Comparing Mario Kart DS's online to Mario Kart Wii's online really is like night and day, isn't it?
Mario Kart DS (Japanese DS Ad)
The only non-North American commercial on this list, the Japanese Mario Kart DS ad is bizarre but in a good, hysterical way. It's a commercial that spawned avatars all across the internet, so while that puts a strike against this commercial, it's still funny all the same.
God of War (PS2)
Usually when the word "epic" is used on the internet nowadays, it's used incorrectly. No, the boxart of Sonic Heroes is not "epic". However, if you're using the word to describe the God of War series and the commercials for the games, you'd be right.
Sonic Adventure 2: Battle (GCN)
I could not find the original Sonic Adventure 2 commercial. Instead I found a lot of amateurish mock-up commercials. Regardless, both premises of the Dreamcast and Gamecube commercials are the same-- they use real-life hedgehogs for comedic results.
Jet Grind Radio (DC)
When I originally saw this commercial-- it must have been during wrestling or something similar-- I had thought I turned it on to some Japanese feed. Little did I know that this quirky and humorous Japanese-themed commercial was the American version. I still need to play the Xbox sequel now that I think of it...
Uncharted: Drake's Fortune (PS3)
This commercial uses the game's cut-scene engine to show off an impressive intro. While hero Nathan Drake is stealthily eavesdropping on the enemy, his phone goes off. What follows is some action accompanied by in-game footage of the game.
Ratchet & Clank: Future Tools of Destruction (PS3)
Saving the best for last, the latest retail release Ratchet adventure is set to "What A Wonderful World"-- a rock cover of the song made famous by Louis Armstrong. The entire commercial is CG only with no in-game footage to speak of. Usually I'd hate that, but the commercial still shines on its own.
That wraps it up for this installment, but in the coming weeks we'll see even more video game commercials of gamer past. I hope you'll look forward to them!