Super Bowl 50: Video Game Commercials Disappoint


Gaming ads featured barely at all in the line-up of Super Bowl 50 commercials.

If you’re someone who watches the Super Bowl “for the ads”, then you may have been disappointed last night by a severe dearth of video game-related material. Though in the past we’ve at least a small handful of gaming commercials, Super Bowl 50 chose instead to line its roster with car ads, choirs of toddlers, and dogs in hot dog suits (I’m not complaining about that last one).

Of the two commercials we did see, Mobile Strike and Pokemon, one was obviously more enjoyable than the other….and it’s not the one you’d think. Both were shortened versions of a fuller, more engaging ad (though that’s to be expected). Mobile Strike brought in Arnold Schwarzenegger to duke it out against an elevator full of other enthusiasts in a live game of Mobile Strike, summoning tanks and squadrons of fighters with the push of a button. It’s silly, and entertaining:

Pokemon’s 20th anniversary ad

was released online a week ago, but what was shown during the Superbowl is a woefully condensed version of the original, Easter Egg-full commercial. If you blinked during the showing, you probably missed the Pokemon in it, and assumed it was just an ad about living up to your full potential, or something. I recommend watching the full version at the link above, but this is what played during the game:

Presumably, game companies had better things to spend their big dollars on than expensive Super Bowl commercial spots, but it was still disappointing to see so little love for gaming in a showcase of what are supposed to be the best TV ads we’ll see all year. Oh well. Maybe next year.