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Best Japanese Nintendo Adverts

Part two: Chris picks his favourites from Japan

Okay, so I had to cheat. Last month I gave you my ten favourite UK Nintendo adverts and this week I was planning to bring you my ten favourite Japanese ones. Truth is, I have eleven favourites and I couldn't bear to lose any of them, so here's my top eleven instead. You think that's madness? Wait until you see these adverts...

11) Super Mario USA (1992)

Let's kick things off with an advert for the western version of Super Mario Bros 2, which was later released in Japan as Super Mario USA. This ad begins with Birdo (back when he was a cross-dressing male) explaining the game's history and ends with him making some very disturbing noises.

10) Mario Kart DS (2005)

There have been loads of great DS adverts in Japan, but this is my favourite of the lot. It plays on the idea that you can play Wi-Fi races against people from all over the world, and leads to some frankly awesome facial expressions.

9) Famicom 2 (1993)

This advert covers loads of things at once. Firstly, it's celebrating a brand new version of the Famicom (the Japanese NES) which sports an all-new design. Then it celebrates the release of Wario's Woods and The Legend Of Zelda on the Famicom (Zelda was only a Disk System game in Japan until late into the Famicom's life). Finally it celebrates the fact that this new Famicom comes with an AV cable, which was also new at the time.

8) Kirby's Adventure (1993)

So, you think Kirby's Epic Yarn has an original art style? Wondering where they came up with the idea for it? Have a look at this advert for Kirby's NES debut and all will be revealed.

7) Super Famicom (1990)

When the SNES was first released in Japan, who better to sell it to the Japanese public than a plasticine version of Mario singing "Konnichiwa Super Famicom"? I also love the Bowser appearance at the end, even if he does look a lot like the Chewits monster.

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  1. LaytonMario3 Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 17:09

    Birdo at 11? What? Birdo is at least worth 5th, as Birdo is a great character, and this ad will arouse the Birdo: male or female discussions again. :)

    The others were good , too.

  2. Rabbid_girl Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 17:12



    I have to admit, japan is pretty awesome.

    But those mustashes...


  3. ledreppe Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 17:18

    I like the Famicom ads, brings back memories of my SNES days (obviosly not memories of those particular ads).

  4. Switzerninmaster Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 17:31

    LOL japanese people doing impressions of other countries is fail

  5. RubbishGamer Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 17:39

    That last one was hilarious.


  6. TheLupineOne Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 17:59

    AWESOME. Why can't all Nintendo adverts around the world end with that classic "coin" sound?

  7. danbish Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 18:10

    Loved that Mario Kart 64 one. I agree, it should have been made into a cartoon. The animation is soo nice to look at and top quality. :D

  8. Ai64 Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 18:11

    The mario kart ad was incredible. Why can't the ads do better here though?

  9. oh dae su Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 18:24

    I'm gonna be having nightmares for the rest of my life after watching that Birdo ad.

    So so creepy :cry:

  10. Colgax Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 19:05

    So that's how a Mario anime would be...


  11. ThOnlyEarthbound Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 19:25

    That last one was mental.

    I want to watch that at church.

    Not that i go to church...

    So why would i care?

    Don't judge me.

  12. Waldy565 Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 19:28

    birdo was just disturbing, mario kart ds was one of the best, famicom 2 was wierd, didnt like kirbys adventure 2, super famicom was, er, average, if i remember (although ive neva played a metroid game) samus dont fly, pikmin 2 was pretty good, zelda a link to the past was amazing, apart from the dragons hed falling off :P, legend of zelda: links awakining = Now THIS is how you promote a Zelda game: with puppets. 'nuff said, mario 64 was just EVIL and the number 1 dont deserve to be number 1: either mario kart, pikmin or mario kart 64

  13. ArmouredSwampert Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 19:47

    THat Mario Kart 64 ad was amazing. Why can't our ads be as good. We get two annoying twigs from Dublin looking like idiots.

  14. Violet Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 20:47

    Chris, I'm sorry, but you should be ASHAMED for not including these two.

    Fire Emblem

    F-Zero X

    Seriously, the Fire Emblem one was even in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, for heck's sake. That one is a big omission.

    Not only that, but the Zelda rap is way better than the puppets, although I like both.

    Oh, I just remembered another one...

    Kid Icarus

  15. okamiwolf21 Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 21:03

    the expressions of the actors in the mario kart ds ad are hilarious :lol:

  16. PeterR Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 21:15

    i want zelda puppets!

  17. Avalanche2114 Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 22:12

    My favourite is the Mario Kart DS one.
    It's hilarious! :lol:

  18. MrChewtoy Tuesday 30th Nov 2010 at 22:44

    That Kirby advert is one of my all time favs, and the music is awesome. I also spend ages listening to that Pikmin music on Brawl's soundbox. 'Cos I'm that cool 8)

  19. Rabbid_girl Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 08:16

    I actuslly thought the super mario world one was quite good, though at some points i was worried about mario's head falling off :P

  20. bouncer0304 Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 10:34

    Why does Japan have cooler adverts than us- it's just not fair :(. I'd have loved to have seen Mario Kart made into a cartoon as it would have been epic. As for the Birdo advert..... let's just say thanks for giving me nightmares!

  21. TheAPERSON Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 11:30

    Japanese TV ads = awesome

  22. Andy88 Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 11:42

    I remember seeing images of the Mario Kart 64 advert in ONM many years ago, thinking "wtf am I looking at!?"

    The Link to the Past one is so catchy. It's like a Michael Jackson routine. I frequently find myself singing it around the house! The bit where the magician casts the flame, combined with the epic Zelda riff is both hilarious and awesome:lol:

    Finally, the Link's Awakening one with the puppets is freaky :shock:

  23. imbusydoctorwho Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 12:19

    That Birdo is really disturbing but really funny.
    I love the zelda puppets.
    They were all brilliants ads.

    Nintendo if you are reading this makes ads like them again.

  24. FireHawk Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 12:38

    Great list, Chris. The LTTP advert is a classic and I'm glad the LA and Famicom 2 ads were included in the list as well. The animated MK64 advert's awesome, too. I look forward to the final part. :wink:

  25. samus_killer Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 12:59

    I'm just going to list my opinions on these ads, because they're so awesome to only talk about one. (Why Top 11? Because I like to go step!)
    11. That was just freaky to watch Birdo the way he/she/it spits out the egg at the end *shiver*.
    10. I've seen this Mario Kart DS before, so funny to see the japanese impersonate an American.
    9. The thing that sticks out the most for me is how strange it is seeing Link & Wario arm in arm.
    8. Definitely looks like the inspiration for Epic Yarn.
    7. Is Mario just saying 'Hello' in japanese over and over again?
    6. Cheesey Samus suit FTW!
    5. That music made my ears bleed, but at least it showed you the pikmin's abilities.
    4. Almost as infamous as the 'Zelda is really rad' ad. It's too awesome for words...
    3. I can see where the japanese ad for the Four Swords came from, if anyone has seen that. Oo look, Chain chomp.
    2. O.o My mind = Blown
    1. WHY MUST THEY SHOUT!? Great way to finish off the list. We all know Japan is bonkers.

  26. Mmmyeah Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 15:27

    The mario kart ds one is fantastic. i like the french facial expression. and the american wink. brilliant.

    as for ones i have seen, i cant think of any nintendo ads, but these arnold schwarzenegger ads are brilliant.
    Have a watch, they're all gold.

    I wish i could watch japanese tv. In fact i wish british ads were more like this.

  27. legend1992 Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 18:08

    The Famicom Orchestra and Mario Kart 64 ads are my favourites out of the ones you've picked out, Chris. But one of my favourite Nintendo ads ever has to be this one for Donkey Kong Country - as japanese ads go, it's as bonkers as it gets!

  28. Layton link Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 20:10

    That Birdo one was pretty creepy.
    Cool ads,you guys should do more japanese stuff

  29. Bexie Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 20:34

    I love that Mario kart DS ad. I like how Mario comes in saying "Tadaima..." as if he's going "Urgh. He's at it again." xD

    One ad I like is the Japanese ad for Minish cap.

  30. bowser jrfan Wednesday 1st Dec 2010 at 21:07

    Links awaking made me lmao seriously that part where
    link puppet turned around was funny :lol: :lol:

  31. markdean2012 Thursday 2nd Dec 2010 at 00:28

    no chris i dont think that was madness, i thought it was sparta :roll: (someone had to do it open goal)
    the zelda dance once is clearly based off micheal jacksons thriller video, also Ganondorfs pig form looks like a rancor from star wars.
    but yeah i want a mario kart anime exactly like that 30 second video too.
    btw wheres the link for the best UK ADs?

  32. Ammytastic Thursday 2nd Dec 2010 at 09:50

    This has got to be in your next blog, Chris!
    So does this! ... re=related
    And you can't argue with this one. ... re=related

    P.S. If anyone knows what song is being played in the second half of the other M ad please tell me!!

  33. geengy Thursday 2nd Dec 2010 at 17:35
  34. Azuwoy Thursday 2nd Dec 2010 at 18:06
    If you do one for the USA, then you should post this.

    LOL japanese people doing impressions of other countries is win


  35. Dragongirl Friday 3rd Dec 2010 at 11:22

    That Zelda dance video was awesome.
    Eat that Jedward.

  36. ALink ToTheMetro Sunday 5th Dec 2010 at 15:41

    almost choked laughing at the zelda links awakening ad XD

  37. ALink ToTheMetro Sunday 5th Dec 2010 at 15:45

    also check this one out for the gameboy micro

  38. KokiriThreepwood Sunday 5th Dec 2010 at 16:31

    That Link to the Past advert, Never though I'd see Link dance!

  39. The_BAAD_Man Monday 6th Dec 2010 at 21:02

    Oh wow, I love all of those! I couldn't pick a favourite, no way!

    I like this one for Yoshi's Island

    But THIS is hilarious!

  40. luigithelegend Wednesday 8th Dec 2010 at 20:55

    have some seriously messed upped feelings about link know after that dance video

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