While many gamers decide if they will purchase a game long before ads are aired, it’s hard to deny that many have caught our attention throughout the years. We decided to share our favorites and select five of the funniest in recent years. While humor is subjective, everyone should be able to find at least some funny in these selections. If your favorites differ from ours, feel free to share in the comments section. Note: choices are not listed not by hilariousness, but by release date.
This 1997 Jet Moto 2 spot is the epitome of the “old woman who’s bad at driving” joke. Grandma is so bad at finding the acceleration button it forces the character to yell at her through the screen. She might have spent too much time admiring the awesome graphics to notice she’s in last place. I find it most ironic she was able to hook-up the Playstation and find the turn signal button before figuring out how to drive. Art imitating life.
One of the coolest games of the ’90s, Super Smash Brothers brought together the greatest Nintendo characters for the first time. The commercial made it an even more appealing game. A few of our favorites are holding hands and skipping through a meadow to the tune of “Happy Together” by The Turtles. It really is a peaceful day until the record slips and all hell breaks loose. Punching, kicking, swinging, bashing, smashing, even hammers. This is madness! Since it’s a Nintendo product, there aren’t any gruesome, blood-shedding violent moments allowing youngsters and longtime fans to enjoy a little rumble. Perhaps even funnier is that people must have actually volunteered to be inside those goofy costumes. If you see any 6 foot tall lizards running around with sledgehammers, it might be time to lay off the Super Mushrooms.
Demented Clowns! What could possibly be funnier than demented clowns? They could leave it at that, but Twisted Metal added even more funny to the concept in this 1999 spot. Checking your car for leaks or strange noises is always frustrating and Needles Kane appears annoyed his minion can’t find the right switch. After some fiddling around, the little guy accidentally blows up a parked car. The final image? A priceless ticked off clown. His reaction made me chortle without even trying. This is a well rounded commercial; you’ll laugh at the clowns, jump at the explosions — maybe even cry at the ending (that poor Family Truckster). He just wanted the hood popped, now he has to find another missile. Not every story has a happy ending.
Blizzard was able to recruit a wide cast of celebrities to promote their game such as the legendary William Shatner and Verne “Mini-Me” Troyer. One of the funniest commercials for the campaign featured Mr. T discussing his in-game character. Mr. T is so cool he even created his own race of Elves. Then you hear “the man” trying to put him down, telling Mr. T there’s no such thing and corrects everything being said. Don’t worry, Mr. T puts the fool in his place. It’s funny to hear someone I doubt has ever used a computer talking about hacking. A couple years later, Chuck Norris even made a commercial capitalizing on those Norris facts. Hey, a man can’t live off TotalGym alone.
In this three-year-old spot, we find virtual Tim Lincecum isn’t as serious about baseball as his living counterpart. It’s a cute little back involving Wang Chung. The funniest part comes at the end when some small innuendo is teased. Randy Johnson tells Lincecum to get a towel on, prompting the narrator to mention the “minor details.” If that’s not a jab at the guy’s…equipment, I don’t know what is. Unfortunately, MLB 2K9 was given generally mixed reviews and ratings. Speaking to the powering of a good marketing campaign, we’re more inclined to remember the ad than the mediocrity of the game. At least something memorable came out it.
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