Top 10 Video Game Commercials of All Time

Mercenaries 2 oh no you DidntWe've all grown up among an onslaught of advertisements. It is almost impossible to look anywhere in a semi-urban place and not see some sort of ad. Television has perhaps been their most successful medium, and video games have been advertising on the same tube we play them on for as long as they have been around.

So to celebrate the hundreds of video game ads, we present the Top 10 Video Game Commercials of All Time. This is the definitive list, carefully developed by our writers and then culled down by Greg and Nate. Blood was shed and tears were wept as we narrowed our "short list" of 25 ads down to just these 10. Without intention, we managed to select a set of ads that not only cover over 20 years of gaming from Nintendo, Sega, Sony, and the PC, but a wide variety of types of ads, from live action re-enactments to comedy to musicals.

This is the first official "list" we've ever posted, and we promise more in the future. They may seem easy to make, but we spent hours putting this together and had a ton of fun doing it.

10. Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball

Play with a friend, or play with yourself

Every medium has its lowest common denominator, but few advertise it as transparently as Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball. Where Playboy pretended its appeal was in articles and Baywatch hid its shame behind thong-thin drama, the titillating fighting game franchise made no attempt to deceive when it finally went full pervert.

9. Jet Moto 2

Hey, lady!

Grandma jokes. Not exactly clever material, there. But something about this commercial stuck favorably in my mind for fourteen years, and considering I didn't care for Jet Moto at all, that's pretty surprising.

8. World of Warcraft

Mr. T's Night Elf Mohawk

World of Warcraft probably didn't need any advertising, but a series of commercials were released featuring Ozzy Osbourne, William Shatner, the Office Space film, and of course, Mr. T. No other actor could get away with the amount of ego required for this ad.

7. Kirby Canvas Curse

Touching is good

This commercial is wildly innacurate. Kirby has no legs in Canvas Curse! And the DS' touch screen is way too small to use your finger for this game! It did, however, usher in Nintendo's risky new era with an eye-grabbing commercial. And if you don't smile when Kirby happily waddles across the finger, you have no soul.

6. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

Do the Zelda!

I was floored the first time I saw this commercial about eight years ago. How could something like this exist? The answer is: Japan. Mixing dance pop, cosplay, awful voice overs, and absolutely no footage of the actual game, we get the ultimate ad for The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.

5. Metroid Prime

Destroy. Decimate. Exterminate.

Never has such a strange and unique game been translated to a live-action TV spot so well. Sure, the bulky suit has a few awkward movements, but the atmosphere and effects matched Metroid Prime so well that some viewers had trouble distinguishing in-engine visuals from live-action shots.

4. Final Fantasy 7

Not coming to a theater near you

Sony pulled off a huge coup by stealing Squaresoft away from Nintendo, but they still needed a game to sell systems. Final Fantasy VII was that title, and they created three commercials chock full of out-of-context-spoilerific cutscenes. Gameplay footage need not apply here, but it did the job. This is the only ad that still gives me goosebumps every time I see it, and I don't even like the game that much.

3. Mercenaries 2: World in Flames

Oh no you didn't

Action packed 30 seconds? Check. Unique visual style? Check. Catchy song? CHECK! When we asked people what their favorite video game commercial is, most of them immediately thought of Mercenaries 2's 2008 summer epic: Oh No You Didn't. Listen to the full song if you need a shot of adrenaline.

2. Sega Dreamcast

The launch party

Could you imagine a commercial where LeBron James and Sly Cooper trash talk each other today? That's why I love these Dreamcast launch commercials so much. They launched the system with a party atmosphere, and not only was everyone invited, they mingled: zombies and prize fighters, sumos and hedgehogs, and so on. No system's advertising campaign has ever been as holistic as the the Dreamcast party.

1. Super Smash Bros.

Battle royale

Nintendo has never been known for its violence, so when this Super Smash Bros. commercial was released with Mario and the gang wrestling and tossing each other to the ground, the world seemed to stop for a moment. Super Smash Bros. is not only an excellent game, its ad is simply timeless.

Here are some honorable mentions that just missed the cutoff:

What is your favorite video game commercial?