Nick's Gaming Blog

Youtube Video of the Day 4-19-2010 (Final Fight)

If there’s one thing I can say with great certainity about video games (other than the fact that I will never be good at any RTS title, and that Dead Rising will still have the worst ally AI of all time several eons from now) it’s that the gaming industry has mastered the art of viral marketing in a way that few other industries have.  This is supposing that you don’t count the little Splinter Cell: Conviction mishap in Aussie-land yesterday…though considering that got press, maybe that was veiled viral marketing?

However blatant “old-school” advertising is something that’s usually been reserved for those with the cash and presence to afford 30 second spots…aka, the latest Square Enix title (I still remember the catchy Kingdom Hearts commercials) or Bioware’s recent “black hole of time consumption.”  But the Internet has changed all that, with sites like GameTrailers and Youtube offering cost-free venues to host advertisements, which in turn yield hundreds of thousands of hits.

Yet many of these tv-based ads amount to nothing more than a graphical showcase, which, admittedly, isn’t always the strongest suit for up-and-coming titles (especially those on Xbox Live’s Arcade and PSN)  That’s when it pays to be creative and not be under the “30 second dash” of TV.  It is possible, contrary to what you may believe, to still get people to want to buy something without sending oodles of breakable crates to well-known bloggers (coughDante’s Infernocough) or creating entire alternate reality games like Halo 2′s I Love Bees campaign.

Sometimes all it takes is some minimalist animation and a healthy helping of non sequiturs, with a side of nostalgia.  That’s exactly what this advert for Final Fight: Double Impact has achieved, in my opinion.  Join me after the jump…if you don’t end up looking up the three or four other installments in the series.

For those that don’t know, Mike Haggar is arguably the most well known character from the Final Fight, and as one might assume from the genre in which his games take place, as well as his burgeoning stature, he’s not exactly an “Ivory Tower” intellectual.  But, like many people who seek to get involved in politics at the microcosmic level (and, alarmingly…quite a few at the “big stage” of politics too) speech-making and sheer intellect aren’t always emphasized.

Sometimes, guttural noises and biceps the size of Mack trucks is enough.

I LOVE the decision to only have Haggar only speak with his little sound clips from past Final Fight titles.  Great call.  Throw in the nostalgia of the old arcade box upon which the franchise began, and the sheer oddity of his debate opponent throwing up, and I’m totally up for getting this.

Also, the self-deprecating nature of the ad…poking fun at the fact that ex-Professional Wrestler Mike Haggar actually is the Mayor of Metro City in the Final Fight series…and having to confront what the non close-combat responsibilities of such a position would be like for Haggar, is pretty hysterical.

Oh, and all the “blowing up brick wall” text graphics.  Very Nineties.  Love those too.

Like I said, there are several other installments, which can be found on Youtube or GameTrailers, most of which are equally entertaining, though the post-animation part of every ad is the same…just so you know.

What do you guys think?  Is it funny?  Unfunny?  A clever ad tactic or derivative?  More importantly, do you want Haggar as your Mayor?

2 Comments

    THinking back on it, this ad takes the idea of the character speaking in his game voice from the video called “Terry Bogard’s day out” of the SNK game King of Fighters. And that Terry Bogard video wasn’t even advertising. I’m feeling that Final Fight is somehow stealing someones original idea.

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