Two decades ago, Sega started the console wars with their cheeky and hilarious Sega Does what Nintendon`t ads. For a time where gaming was thought of as nothing but kid’s toys or something to do for an hour before hockey practice, it was a salvo that changed the way the public learned to perceive the video game industry. With the Sony and Microsoft press conferences over and the internet proclaiming the death on arrival of the Xbox One, we get to relive early 90s advertising all over again.
By now everyone should have seen the ad Sony made about how to handle used games on the PS4, and if you haven`t please take the 30 seconds to watch this video and then come back after you`ve changed your pants from pissing yourself laughing.
Taking a page out of the Sega playbook and channeling its PS1 Crash Bandicoot TV ad days, Sony delivered a dagger to the spine of Microsoft. The dagger has nothing to do about pouring a pound of salt onto a self-inflicted wound that Microsoft created, but sends a Godfather-like message of intent.
Sony has proven to be the most dangerous when it has been embarrassed and considered the underdog. The zeal behind the PlayStation 1 itself came into fruition due to the shaming Sony received at the hands of Nintendo when they were publicly humiliated at the 1991 CES, announcing the Nintendo PlayStation only for Nintendo to later discuss their partnership with Phillips. Although the way Microsoft cut into Sony`s market is not at the same level of embarrassment, who has not shook their head in disbelief at Sony for dropping a huge market share to Microsoft from the PS2 domination?
Sony is at its best when it plays the Sega role of instigator and dragon slayer. I fully expect the following months before the release of the PS4 to be filled with more cheeky ads and messages to make gamers remember the history of the PlayStation and make us remember how they slayed Sega and Nintendo. If they continue to embrace their PS1 roots then the Godfather of gaming will make us an offer we can`t refuse.
Written by – Dane Smith, Japan editor for PlayStation Universe. When not out on the streets of Nagoya wondering why no one is looking for a Yakuza-style showdown, he can be found cracking open the newest RPG to hit the shelves. You can follow him on Twitter or read some of his past musings.