Flashback to the dawn of time – humanity has always tried to do something with one another. No, not that thing you pervert! Though one may lead to the other…

I’m talking about convincing others to do something. Or to narrow it down even more, convince people to buy something. Our beloved hobby of video games is no different. However, as the years went by, things would change. Many would say, “For the better.” And thank god for that.

In this piece, I’m going to share many of the old video game magazine ads that would be printed. Cringeworthy? Yes. Misogynistic? Oh you know it. Racist? Without a doubt. Dripping in sex? Just like any other industry! I’ll even throw in some random and weird ones too.

So join me as I jump back in time. A time where video game magazines were fresh and welcome. A time before YouTube existed and forced an ad on you every two minutes.

Also, as a heads up, I’m only posting each ad once. But please note: many could fit in multiple categories.

Game Boy, Nintendo Sure Were Different

Nintendo may be all clean and family friendly now, but as some of the ads above show, that wasn’t always the case. Besides some very…questionable…choices, they also just had some weird ones. There were so many to choose from, so I just decided to grab a few from all over the ad spectrum.

SEGA Does What NintenDON’T

VIZ Magazine let SEGA go a bit further with their ads than most publications. I’m sure you can figure out which ones those were above. Even the more tame ones though had some personality to them. But that’s what they were like back in the 90s. They wanted everyone to know that Nintendo was lame and they were hardcore. Though in the long run, that didn’t exactly work out for them.

Mascot Mania

So many mascots. The 90s especially were littered with them. And too often, their method to show you how great they were to buy their game was by putting down other mascot characters. Some definitely pushed the boundaries more than others, but that wasn’t a guarantee that they would be remembered.

Sex Sells, But Who’s Buying?

There’s a whole lot of these type of ads. That’s right, it should be no surprise that an industry that brought us booth babes at E3 and a yearly merry-go-round of sexual harrassment/assault claims would sell games to (more often than not) children using sex. Makes you wonder if stuff like this helped cultivate the dude-bro, incel, and gamergate crowds.


Just some other game magazine ads I ran across. So why not post them?!

Well, any you remember? Any you find shocking or are disgusted would see print? Or maybe you have some personal favorites? Let us know in the comments below and share your favorite video game magazine ads on Twitter!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: