Commercial Wars: The Insurance Battle

eagle-man-commercial

The internet is about choice and what could be a better way to show freedom and choice then by voting on which video is the best or worst? This week we have two auto insurance companies from Chicago Illinois fighting for worst and/or funniest video.

Eagle Insurance

This is a car insurance company that is based in my home town of Chicago. In 1993 this commercial was created by RDR productions and since it aired has become part of internet fame even showing up on E! channels, The Soup, the BBC and Late Night with David Letterman.

Linoln Insurance

These guys have been in business for over 50 years and you can see that they know making a weird commercial will get them traffic. The company even added a category to their website called Funny TV Commercials to profile what they have done.

We post, you decide

Time to vote fans of Obscure Internet, which companies commercial wins this week’s battle.

[poll id=”2″]

 

Commercial Wars: Atari in the 80’s

Commercial Wars: Atari in the 80’s

You did not have to be born in the 80’s to appreciate some of the insane commercials that were produced and released during that time.  In the 80’s we had a mix of commercials still influenced by the 70’s combined with the emerging technology of the 80’s with directors and writers trying everything to get you to buy their products.

Atari-Computer-System

Since console gaming was brand new and even arcade gaming itself was not wide spread to the TV watching audience the challenge was presenting their ad in a way that would interest the consumer. In addition, since the graphics of the day were not that exciting the fear was showing simpler graphics on a television screen where you can watch shows that have a higher production value could turn parents off to buying their kids the system. As a result the creativity level for the commercials was, unique.

Joust

My question is why would you want to highlight a home being destroyed over playing a video game? See, the bird knew what was coming and the kid just stood back and watched it happen. What was that thing at the end with him turning into a bird? Oh, I forgot, LSD was still popular back then.

Dig Dug

Know I understand how the war in Iraq came about it was Dig Dug. I really hope our department of defense is not this stupid. However, I think I discovered how Independence Day was made, with the cuts to different locations including “lovers lane” and the dirt moving from under peoples feet. Perhaps it was more like the movie, Tremors.  We jump into crises mode at the White House while dancers shake their butts on screen. You have to love the 80’s.

Come on! Do the Dig Dug Dance!

Asteroids

You know alien’s visited our planet back in the day. What you did not know was they were looking for video games. These people look like a mix between the Andorians from Star Trek and Night Elves from World of Warcraft. The main person looks like Data and they talk like Mork from Mork and Mindy. The good news is they will be too busy playing to enslave us. The bad news is they have the technology to travel to earth, but think Atari graphics are awesome.

Berzerk

So we start off here with an old lady almost nailing a kid in the balls. Old people, they think you can only play Berzerk in the arcades, but now you can play it at home. I think there were millions of bands back in the 80’s whose sole purpose was to sing jingles for commercials. At least we got the “Have you played your Atari today” line.

Solar Fox

This was before Wing Commander and women’s lib, we have the dashing and bored Soul Fox and the bubbling blond eating popcorn while their spaceship flies toward what looks like a 3D chess board. Poor Soul Fox is so annoyed that his busty companion wants to navigate his loins and he only wants to navigate the space field. I know the feeling, wait, no I don’t.

One thing of note, I did not even know of CBS Electronics.

Back to the Future

There you have it, five commercials from Atari made in the 80’s in a style only Puff the Magic Dragon could understand. Now you vote, which was the best.

Commercial Wars: The Celebrity Women of the Nintendo DS

Beyonce playing Nintedo DS
Beyonce playing Nintedo DS

Like the Gameboy before it, the Nintendo DS is a winner with boys and girls, men and women alike. What makes the DS work so well is the wide array of games on it that some hardcore gamers would call a waste of time, but casual gamers will think is the bee’s knees.  If you watched any sitcoms during the early days of the Gameboy you would be hard pressed not to find someone playing it. Today it is all about the internet and YouTube specifically.

Here we have five Nintendo DS commercials featuring celebrity women; you pick which ones is the best.

Nicole Kidman

So which Nicole should I be thinking of when watching this, the Eyes wide Shut Nicole, The Others Nicole or maybe Cat-woman Nicole? Poor Nicole may not be able to score high in Brain Training, but she knows how to hire a decorator that loves white, Martha Stewart maybe?

I love her shocked expression when she saw her score and then followed up by her determined look while playing again. Honestly, with her voice alone you know she is really smart regardless of what some game says.

Carrie Underwood

I know whenever I am chilling on my tour bus after a show I lay back and play my Nintendo DS. I would think Carrie would have more people in that bus of hers (I volunteer by the way) perhaps she just needs to be alone with her virtual puppy.

She does seem generally pleased with the game as the camera man seems pleased getting full body shots of her chilling. In the end we find out she is not alone and has a real dog of her own. Damn lucky dog!

Liv Tyler

The scene is what Liv did right after Armageddon, ok maybe not, but she does enjoy whatever she started off playing. Is it just me or is she just a bit too excited by signing her own name. It’s almost as if she was playing something else and they switched the screen, perhaps naked poker.

It is good to see Liv continues to practice her music at all hours of the day and her virtual piano skills are top notch. I wonder if they asked her to talk and sing to herself or did she do that on her own. I know personally I scream mad expletives every time I’m playing Halo or Uno online.

Beyonce

Damn I wish I was rich then I could play Rhythm Heaven from my penthouse apartment. I see the theme here now. Another singer playing a song related game and Beyonce is right on key. She is really enjoying that game with the facial expressing and singing along. Did you know this is how most pop songs are created?

Lisa Kudrow

See Lisa wasn’t dumb it was those around her that pulled her intelligence down as seen by this commercial. Dr. Kudrow would have solved that puzzle in a second were it not for interference. Maybe she was a little mean, but wouldn’t you be if they still refuse to do a Friend movie?

It’s not advertising its reality T.V.

Five celebrity women showing their love for the DS, so which one did you like the best. Operators are standing by.

[poll id=”16″]

Commercial Wars: Best use of Sexy

Bush Volleyball
Bush Volleyball

Let’s just be honest, sex sells and it doesn’t matter if you are talking about cars, clothing or even food. Market research and human nature shows that adding the right amount of sex appeal can push your product over the edge. Take the recent Old Spice commercials, with that spot the sexiness was used as a pun and it still worked wonders for both guys and gals. As long as you don’t overdo it and turn people off, sexy is a powerful tool.

Now when it comes to gaming you could be sarcastic and claim that since the stereotype of gamers not having sexy girls is more truth that fiction that adding beautiful girls will draw the guys in by the boat load. We here at Obsolete Gamer have even found that our Fappathon feature attracts the most views particularly by those in the coveted 18 to 35 age range. You always see booth babes at almost any convention that attracts young and older men and let’s not even dive into the way women have been drawn and animated in videos games.

Perhaps we should ask if a sexy gal in a commercial, trailer or in game actually helps a gamer decide to purchase a game or not. In my opinion I would say no. Sure, DOA extreme beach volleyball was interesting, but I did not by it because the game just wasn’t worth it to me. I guess you have to take into consideration where else you can find sexy gals so why spend sixty bucks on a game to see it. Either way, whether you care about the girl convincing you to by the game or not seeing a commercial featuring a hot babe is win win. Let’s take a look at some video game commercials that utilize sexy and you vote on which is best.

Metroid: Other M

Metroid was great even before I knew Samus was a girl, but once I found out it was like having your favorite pizza place hire a hot waitress, it just makes the experience better. Since we’ve known there has been no shortage of shots of sexy Sam wherever and whenever we can get them. However, I will say for the most part they keep to the fact that she is hardcore and on mission at all times. Personally, I think a hardcore woman is even sexier, but that’s just me.

Perfect Dark

The reason you look at a person’s eyes is so they know you are paying attention to what they are saying. The worst thing is to be talking to a woman and looking down because even if you aren’t looking at her chest it might seem that way. In this commercial the goal is to watch it once and see if you even remember what the hell the guy was talking about. I know I didn’t hear a word he said until the end. I was too busy looking at the sexy.

Tomb Raider: G4TV

Sure, it’s a G4TV commercial, (as a side note I don’t think Direct TV has it on my line-up anymore.) the thing is poor Lara has been misused and she is tired and needs to relax. I would think being on the beach in her combat boots would be uncomfortable, but what do I know. She is right however, you can’t leave her paused forever, that’s just rude.

Dead or Alive: Xtreme Beach Volleyball

Remember what I said about stereotypes, well you have it all here in spades. These are girls playing beach volleyball, but honestly, can you blame the stares, even president Bush had to stop and look. I am not sure about having a bunch of guys all sitting around ogling at the screen, but the “play with yourself” line gives you an out for those of you with an XBOX in your bedroom or moms basement. At the end they guy speaking is the same guy that did the Navy commercials, let the seamen jokes fly.

Sex Sells

So here we have four different videos that use sex appeal to sell their games. Now the question is which one did it best?

[poll id=”15″]

Commercial Wars: War of the Sword and Shield

zelda sword and shield
zelda sword and shield

In the age of World of Warcraft the sword and shield still dominates when it comes to roleplaying. Even when you look at a game like Final Fantasy that takes advantage of both modern technology and magic, the sword and shield are still present in one form or another. From my old pen and paper D&D days to playing games like Neverwinter Nights and Dungeon Siege there is something about those type of games that keeps the fans playing.

As anyone knows there are tons of video games that feature not only the sword and shield, but magic, the bow and arrow and a medieval theme that makes us want to load up Lord of the Rings for a 15-hour marathon session. Let’s take a look at some commercials that try to capture that theme to draw you into the game world and hopefully make a sale.

Crystalis: Nintendo

This is classic adventure production at its finest.  You can breakdown the commercial and see how it was done using the technology they had at the time. First you have the hero which you want to look right as far as the costume and weapons. Second you have a basic forest-like landscape, but you blur the backgrounds to give it some mystery and pipe in some shots of what the hero is after. Then you add the destination in the far distance and a shot of the hero approaching the enemy.

Sure, the monster looks cheesy now, but at the time that was pretty good. The special effects were very nice for the time and overall made for a good commercial.

Zelda: Gameboy Color

This is animated but it is done very well for a short spot starting with the pan around and then into the Gameboy screen with the snow falling into the background leading to a shot of Link rushing in on his horse. Believe me, thirty second spots are hard because you have a little less than that to capture the audience and let them know what you are offering.

In this case you kind of expect people to know of Zelda, but still the challenge is there. You get a scene of what the game deals with. Link is searching for something and there will be challenges along the way. This may be simple compared to what we see today, but it was well put together and executed into a fun to watch commercial.

Golden Axe 2: Japanese

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Short and sweet, what is cooler than a Japanese guy dressed in armor wielding a giant sword? Well, alright, ninja’s and pirates, but still this was pretty cool. Honestly, the costume looks good, the sword looked real and we saw just enough before the in-game video to appreciate it without going overboard.

We get to see some cool shots from the actual game and then boom we have our warrior cleaving us in two with that sword again before the Sega logo.

Dragonfire: Atari 2600


Okay, so he does not have a sword or a shield, but when you have a talking dragon (especially with a voice like his) you have to profile it. Now while I do not understand why a medieval dragon is in some futuristic looking room caressing a game cartridge, I do think it is funny that the prince sneaks in like a thief to snatch it.

Not only does the costume of the dragon look plastic, but even the prince looks like he is wearing the princesses sleep suit. You do have to give them credit for zooming in on the stickman graphic of the game though.

Time for Ale

Alight, so we got a look at a few video game commercials featuring the sword and shield. Now you vote which did it best.

[poll id=”14″]

Commercial Wars: Best use of Mario Bros – Japanese edition

super mario bros mushroom girls cosplay
super mario bros mushroom girls cosplay

If you don’t know who the Mario Bros are stop reading right now. The fact is like Pac-Man Mario is a video game icon and with over 25 years of Mario Bros featuring many classic unforgettable hits it is no wonder the plumbers are still going strong today. Even when Mario is not fighting against Bowser or trying to rescue the princess many of his games have been entertaining from Tennis to Go-Kart racing. Obviously he has been in a ton of commercials and this week we look at the ones who used him best.

As you know the Nintendo Entertainment System originated in Japan and anyone who has watched any extended amount of Japanese commercials knows they can go from funny to crazy to downright disturbing. Let’s take a look at some of these commercials and vote on who gets the top spot.

Super Mario Bros 2 USA

If you thought Birdo was weird before this commercial from Japan will not make things better. Honestly, they makes things worse. Funny thing is there is an ongoing debate as to whether Birdo is a guy who dresses like a girl or a girl. My question is do you really want to know the answer. Unfortunately, I don’t have the translation for what Birdo said, but man watching him, her, it push that egg out of its snout was just disturbing.

Super Mario Bros: DS

So I won’t lie I just put this commercial here because the Japanese lady is cute and what she says and her facial expression are pretty cool. This was part of a series of Japanese commercials that showcased people acting naturally while playing the game instead of acting out a script. I think it was a winner.

Super Mario World: Super Famicom

I really think Mario could win America Idol I mean just look at his moves and singing style. Do you really need to know what he is saying? I have to say I like the presentation with the animated Mario and particularly the animated Bowser at the end. You have to give it to the Japanese; they know how to roll out a product.

Paper Mario

I swear this commercial makes Mario look like a mix between Barbie and Batman. Mario is just chillin on his own private beach, golfing, playing tennis and then boom, he has to go be all bad ass. Mario was smart and made sure to get all the royalties and now he is the Bruce Wayne of Japan.

Mario Kart: DS

It’s Mario Kart United Nations style. I love how the Japanese portray the American version, lol. I can’t blame them we do it to them.  I wonder why they are called the Hot Mario Bros, sounds like a porno.

 

Commercial Wars: Best use of Spider-Man

obama and spiderman
obama and spiderman

Spider-man, Spider-man, friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. Ah, the wall crawler has been a fan favorite for generations and our web slinging hero has been in a ton of video games across pretty much every console system, hand held and computer.

In some instances we just get the game footage and maybe a little music as the name should sell itself. However, some of the commercials for Spider-Man games were just classic for the good and for the bad. Let’s take a look at three different Spider-Man video game commercials and decide which company used him best.

Atari 2600 – Spider-Man

You have to love the eighties. I mean just look at these costumes they are just incredible. Funny thing is Spider-Man’s costume still looks better than Superman’s latest live action version. I love the enthusiasm the Green Goblin has. I mean I know he is crazy, but damn.

Spider-Man 2: Enter Electro

Another live action commercial this time featuring Electro and I must say it looks pretty good regardless of how silly Electro’s costume is. The special effects look good from the electricity to even Spider-Man’s web. Unfortunately, I am left without jokes to make because everything comes together well considering and even the game was fun.

Spider-Man Vote

Alright, you got me. This is not a video game, but you have to admit this is pretty awesome. If you thought ACORN had issues just imagine filling out your voter registration as Spider-Man and you know he votes Democrat so the tea party would be all over him.

My Spider sense is broken

You guys make the call which was the best use of Spider-man?

[poll id=”12″]

Commercial Wars: Best use of Awesome

awesomeness demotivational poster Barley
awesomeness demotivational poster Barley

A great commercial like a great movie trailer can really hype people up to go see or buy it. Sometimes the video is much better than the game, but sometimes you are surprised to find the trailer matches the film. When a company takes the time to put real money and effort into a video game commercial and it comes out awesome it earns respect regardless of the game. This week we take a look at some of the best video game commercials that just look awesome in the way it was put together.

Sega Dreamcast: Thief

The Sega Dreamcast was one of the most awesome consoles that never really got the credit it should have. This commercial embodies the awesomeness of the console and the games behind it. You have to love when a company takes a movie-like approach to a game. The action, the humor and even the dialog all match and you spend the entire time into what’s going on. By the time you see the final splash telling you about the Dreamcast you’ve already purchased it.

Call of Duty: A Soldier in All of Us

Sure, this is a brand new commercial, but as we said Obsolete Gamer profiles good games regardless of when it was made. In this case the game takes a cool thought that we are all playing this war game and we come from different backgrounds. I love the fact that they add many different types of people and it comes together so well that you have to give it its praise. There was just enough humor and spirit to complement the action, beautifully done.

Halo Reach: Deliver Hope

Yet another modern game and yet another spectacular display of visuals with a perfect blend of music, heart and action. You did not need to hear loud booming explosions. You did not need to hear the screams of the dying. You did not need to hear one word, all was told to you visually with a light side dish of audio mastery. Yes, a commercial can do all that and “Deliver Hope” did it.

Vote or Die

Here we have three different action oriented videos that deliver awesome and so much more. Now the question is which one of the three did it best? The choice is yours.

[poll id=”11″]

Commercial Wars: Best use of Phil Hartman

Phil Hartman
Phil Hartman

Using celebrities to sell products is as old as commercials themselves. One thing many people don’t know is that very famous stars still do commercials, just not in America where they would be seen. On the other hand some celebrities did commercials while they were trying to make it. Finally, some just do it because they really like the product.

For those that don’t know, Phil Hartman he was a great and funny actor that stared in a bunch of movies and television shows. Most people would know Phil from his work on Saturday Night Live, News Radio and by his voicing of the Simpsons characters Lionel Hutz and Troy McClure.

What many people may not know is that Phil Hartman appeared in a number of commercials for video game companies. So let’s see which company made best use of Phil.

Atari 2600: Crazy for Ice Hockey

The first thing that struck me was that ol’ Phil looked like he was creeping up to the adult section in the video store. The man behind the counter looked at Phil as if he was going to rent “Chicks with Sticks”. From there the old man did what you had to with graphics of the time, hype the hell out of it verbally. How Phil reacts is how Wii players need to act to pretend they didn’t just waste their money.

CD-I: Multiple personality

This is SNL Phil displaying his ability to act as difference characters. You have to love the cool calm voice in the beginning as if you called a phone sex line for depressed people. We see Phil take on a number of roles, to bad one of them wasn’t a lawyer warning us of how bad the CD-I was.

CD-I: Awesome

This is pretty much a part two of the first video, but it is another chance to see Phil go from cool hand luke to SNL character skit master in thirty seconds. Is it just me or does Phil love dressing in drag and sadly he didn’t look half bad. Wait; strike that from the record please.

We miss you Phil

Sadly Phil Hartman was taken from us all way before his time. All we can do is look back on his old work and enjoy his natural comedic abilities. As seen here Phil overshadowed all the products he was selling, but the question for you is, which company best used Phil Hartman?

[poll id=”10″]

Commercial Wars: Best use of a Rap

parappa the rapper
parappa the rapper

Rap is universal, sure it may be dominated by African American artists, but rap is for everyone. Well, everyone except video game companies. Don’t get me wrong, you have to do what you can to grab a younger generation but most of these were just really bad commercials. Also I have yet to find an old video game commercial using rap that has actual African American kids. Oh well, on to the voting!

Atari 2600: The Fun is Back

The fun is back oh yes er re it’s the 2600 from Atari. Oh my lord you know that guy went on to make millions in the music industry.  When Atari packaged its system for a new low price of just $50 you know it was time to make a rap about it.

Nintendo: Zelda Rap

Oh Lord where to start. Okay first, does anyone else get the vibe that the kids are looking at an adult magazine and not Nintendo Power? I mean besides the “”Nice Graphics” quote it sounds like something I would have said while checking out Playboy.

Next is the “rap” I have to guess this is a parody of rap because even Solider Boy isn’t that bad. Not only is the beat box out of something you’d see on rapping granny, but the “lyrics” sound like they were pieced together from a fortune cookie.

Finally and again the way they talk about the game toward the end, “Ya go Link ya, get some.” Is that not a line from every Ron Jeremy movie? I just think these children need more parental supervision and a kick in the ass.

Sega Genesis: Toe Jam & Earl

I can’t hate on this one too much because it does fit the style of rap at the time and the game was to have a “hip hop” vibe. Does this rap not sound like the “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” theme? I know when I saw this commercial the first thing I did was call my home boys for some two player action. Err…wow that just doesn’t read right.

This Ain’t American Idol

However, we need your vote. Which rap best fit the theme and style of the commercial?

[poll id=”9″]

Commercial Wars: Best use of Parents

nuclear bomb mushroom cloud explosion
nuclear bomb mushroom cloud explosion

Brand new Sunday feature where we pit three game related commercials against each other. You check them out and vote on which you think is the winner based on the category of the week. This week the category is: Best use of Parents.

We all know that parents are still the key to a lot of game sales in the U.S. so the use of parents in commercial is important. At one point or another everyone has used parents to get their point across using humor and other means. So we present you with three commercials that use parents, you choose which was the best in the poll below.

PlayStation 3: Desperate Dad

This commercial features a dad that tries hard to get his kids to play with him, but let’s face it unless he’s good at Street Fighter IV he should stick to watching MSNBC.

Nintendo: Addiction

Here the theme is addition where two parents talk about their sons fall in the deep dark hole of addition.

Sega: Kid Chameleon

The votes need to come in

Alright, here is your chance to vote. Which commercial made the best use of parents?

[poll id=”8″]