We take a look at the top five Sega Best Commercials when the brand celebrates its 60th anniversary.
Sega is one of the most beloved brands by the millennial generation. Many of us have grown up with a Sega product at home or, if we had any from Nintendo, we knew of its existence due to the bitter rivalry they experienced in the 90s. A rivalry very well explained and detailed in the book “Console Wars” by Blake J. Harris.
Well, the Japanese brand has turned 60 years old. Originally founded on June 3, 1960 under the name of Nihon Goraku Bussan Co. Ltd. and was engaged in manufacturing jukeboxa and slot machines. After several purchases, mergers, and name changes in 1965, it was renamed SEGA Enterprises and was importing arcade games into Japan. Disenchanted with the American arcades, they decided to make their own games and arcade games by merging with Service Games. After releasing several games, they created two home systems to compete against the Nintendo Famicom until 1986 when they released their Mark III model and called it “Master System”. Two years later he launched Mega Drive, thus beginning a battle to dominate the living rooms of our houses.
Now, 60 years later we are going to go back to the past and review the best Sega Commercials.
Although, really finding a “good” ad as we consider it (good story, realization, message) has been an arduous task. We understand that we must contextualize these commercials over time and understand how the world behaved in 1988. It was a time when comparative advertising was allowed in the United States and very aggressive advertising campaigns were launched. And everything always focused on a target audience that responded to the profile of a child/teenager who spent the day playing games that their parents did not understand. The “future” they said. Still, among so many promotional advertising campaigns we have been able to rescue five ads that we list below.
In 1995 Sega launched the Sega Saturn, the console that had to compete with PlayStation and which ultimately succumbed. This advertising campaign was trying to “get closer to the future” and warning us that there were only 5 years left until the turn of the millennium. A “futuristic” character put us in a situation until Caribbean music and a teenager up to marijuana showed us the new console. Even consoles were considered child’s play and people with mental problems …
In 1987 Sega launched an advertising campaign to compete against Nintendo. This campaign was not limited to carrying out aggressive comparative advertising and presented us with a very desired aspiration at the time. The possibility of staying at home playing with your older brother and your parents working. The images evoke one of those endless summers when we were little and we had no worries.
In the summer of 1993, Sega launched an advertising campaign for Game Gear, its full-color handheld console to compete against the almighty Game Boy. A hilarious staging featured a man playing with a tube screen on an airplane and connected to a ground wire. The smoking of the creatives was only to demonstrate that you could do the same but with the Sega laptop. An advertising campaign that, despite its histrionic behaviors (that “Sega” as the end of the spot with bulging eyes was very scaring) explained very well the benefits of the product.
Vive una aventura Sega
In our Spain, Sega allocated a lot of budget to make advertisements for Mega Drive. Spanish creatives racked their brains to avoid the histrionics that marked American advertising campaigns. To do this, they created an umbrella claim called “Live a Sega adventure” that invited us to live multiple adventures under the seal of quality of the Japanese company. Car drivers, adventures, athletes, … all prepared to enjoy a unique experience.
The Genesis premiere advertising campaign was based on an aggressive comparative advertising campaign against Nintendo. Under the word game “Genesis Does What Nintendon’t” they wanted to attract an audience that was looking for new horizons when it came to playing. So they created a jingle sung by a female voice that was burned into the heads of the Americans. This aggressive marketing campaign paid off and caused the Genesis to be better received than Super Nintendo in the United States.
Although we have selected what are possibly the five best Sega ads, the number of spots that were released at the time was overwhelming. That is why, by way of nostalgia and retrospect, we leave you with a selection of campaigns that were launched in Spain.
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