This video is both very clever and very disturbing. I’ve found no official sources saying that this was put out by Nintendo. But everything points in that direction. One thing for sure is that it got plenty of attention. A google search on “50 kids happy to get a Nintendo Wii for Christmas”, which seems to be the title of the clip, brings up around 900.000 results. Question is if they’ve gone over the edge.
I strongly suspect that the scenes are staged, the opposite is almost too scary. Kids, the leaders and innovators of tomorrow mind you, go completely bonkers and totally loose it over getting a Wii for Christmas. While we all know these things have a tendency to end up in the back of a closet after a short while.
“The Edge… there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over.” – Hunter S. Thompson
The core message lies between the lines. if you’re a parent that doesn’t get your kids a Wii, and thereby depriving your kids from ecstatic joy, you’re close to evil. So you better get yet another credit card with insane interest rates and buy Wii’s for the entire family just to point out that you’re in no way evil but actually love them very much.
I think the Wii is the coolest gaming console since Pong, but this is on the top five of uncool marketing stunts. However if it had a touch of humor to it, I think it could have been the other way around. But now it’s just the boring old we-don’t-give-a-shit-about-you-just-want-to-brainwash-you-in to-buying-our-crap attitude taken to a new media.
That conduct is so unbelievably misunderstood, but also a very common way of adapting to new technology. Treating new advertising possibilities as just another place to spam the same old message. My hope is that the video didn’t actually come from Nintendo, now that they just rocketed them selves back on to the cool kids cart. Pulling out of the graphics race and instead reinventing the way we interact with games, showed a true willingness to change and innovate.