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Joystiq presents

Promotional Consideration: Drop Dead Zelda

Promotional Consideration is a weekly feature about the Nintendo DS advertisements you usually flip past, change the channel on, or just tune out.

Though we featured a number of Zelda commercials earlier this week, like Vanessa Williams, we've saved the best for last. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening, arguably the finest handheld game ever released, had its share of unusual ads, relying on corny rappers and wacky puppetry to sell the ARPG in the US and Japan. In the UK, however, gamers were treated to the slapstick humor of one of Britain's most distinguished comedians.

Ninvolving. Ninexhaustible. Nintendo.

In the states, Rik Mayall is best known for his role as the titular imaginary friend in Drop Dead Fred, a 1991 comedy film that has since become a cult classic with many. Those familiar with British sitcoms, on the other hand, should instantly recognize him from his often vulgar and violent parts in The Young Ones, Blackadder, and Bottom.

Rik's foray into the world of video game commercials didn't end with Link's Awakening or his run-in with the glass window; he went on to create several more ads with Nintendo for SNES titles like Super Mario All-Stars and Street Fighter II Turbo: Hyper Fighting. His Nigel Mansell's World Championship Racing spot, in particular, remains our favorite to this day.

Super Mario All-Stars:

Street Fighter II Turbo: Hyper Fighting:

Star Wing (Star Fox):

Nigel Mansell's World Championship Racing:

Rik eventually procured a home in west London with the loot he brought in from his appearances, jokingly dubbing the four-story house "Nintendo Towers." The most money we ever made off of Nintendo was from when we sold our Pokemon cards to a kid down the street, and that was barely enough cash to pay for lunch. We called that meal "Thank you, Nintendo, for buying us this slightly dry chicken sandwich. It's too bad that we couldn't get any curly fries with it. That would've been tight."

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Reader Comments (Page 1 of 1)

Fullmetal Salchemist1

10-07-2007 @ 1:47PM

Fullmetal Salchemist said...

Zelda is not an RPG.


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Moresauce, saucesauce2

10-07-2007 @ 3:20PM

Moresauce, saucesauce said...

SAUCE LOVES "TIGHT"... thas ill yo. Hey kid, you get me righ? sick ads fem


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Mr Khan3

10-07-2007 @ 4:13PM

Mr Khan said...

@ 1

The debate about Zelda's status amongst genres is an interesting one, i would call it an "Adventure" game because i feel that RPG, even ARPG (like PSO) requires more customization than Zelda. Zelda's got 1, up to 3 swords depending on the game, and the game's focus is more on the action than the accumulation of items or experience points

Zelda is a game of skill, so RPG it is not, but that can be debated


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Ry Guy4

10-07-2007 @ 8:05PM

Ry Guy said...

Implying that role playing games are not games of skill is a bit close minded, especially if you don't define what skill is. Zelda isn't a very action centric game compared to actual action games either. The concept of Zelda is dungeon crawling and puzzle solving. It's a primarily slow paced game based around item based problem solving.

Role playing games follow some similar themes, and though they are often slower due to their battle systems, they have similar dungeon-driven themes..

So please define skill, and why these similar genres don't share it.


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10-07-2007 @ 9:27PM

Gerwurztraminer said...

I agree that Zelda games do require more "skill" as compared to Final Fantasy, a game acceptably defined as an RPG.

What I mean by this is that, in FF you can level up beyond belief by fighting the easiest enemies over and over and eventually be stronger than the final boss 10 times over.

However, in Zelda, you can't reach level 99 - there are only so many hearts and jars to assist you. You have to actually be good at dodging your enemies to survive to the end of the game.

That being said, I prefer games like FF because I like the strategy involved with them more than the skill based Zelda games.


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10-07-2007 @ 11:24PM

Blue said...

Is it just me or does that gameboy seem much smaller than it should be?


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Fullmetal Salchemist7

10-08-2007 @ 2:56AM

Fullmetal Salchemist said...

'i would call it an "Adventure" game'

As an avid adventure gamer, I would respectfully disagree. The Zelda series is generally classified as an "action-adventure" game, and there it shall remain in my mind. I don't mean that in a bad way, the Zelda series is my favorite gaming franchise, and it consistently has the best games on any system, but it is an "action-adventure" series nonetheless.


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10-08-2007 @ 4:29PM

phanboy_iv said...

That super mario all-stars commercial IS good.
Gee, I wish we'd get more commercials like that in the states.


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10-13-2007 @ 10:25AM

Tyler said...

For the love of...

OK people, you simply cannot compare Final Fantasy and Zelda, two completely different types. In FF, sure you can level to infinity but who cares? There are usually challenges that are way beyond the final boss(FF7's Ruby Weapon, FF10's Monster Arena, ect...) and some RPGs actually have significantly harder difficulty levels that start you at level 1. OMG NO SKILL.


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10-14-2007 @ 8:43PM

Dr_W@dsy said...

The core reason (for me) why Zelda is not an RPG is the lack of an experience/customisation system. Once you're a decent way through most zelda games you can easily ignore monsters, and there's no reason to fight if you don't have to because you don't get XP or anything like it for your trouble. I would class Zelda as action-adventure games, since they are too 'active' to be pure adventure games (think myst, king's quest, zork etc).

That said this debate can run forever, and it's really not that important :)


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