New Dreamcast Ads

New Dreamcast Ads

by August 26, 1999

These ads are apparently going to be a lot less confusing than the ads we’re seeing now:

It’s Thinking, Part One… (15 seconds) The scene opens with a countdown from the number three. A nightmarish vision appears; it consists of close-ups of someone’s mouth and teeth framed by rapidly fluctuating geometric patterns. “Don’t think out loud,” the screen flashes, “it might hear you.” “It’s thinking,” rolls across the TV and the phrase is whispered by an eerie-sounding voice. Then, the screen flashes to the Dreamcast’s 9.9.99 release date and its trademark orange swirl.

It’s Thinking, Part Two… (15 seconds) This time, the countdown starts at two. Someone’s eye appears on screen, blinking and rolling wildly. Geometric patterns frame the orbit, while “Outsmarting it will only make it smarter” text appears and fades. The short ends as its predecessor does.

It’s Thinking, Part Three… (15 seconds) After the countdown begins at one, the world’s most frantic man appears. His head shakes and his mouth twists in a primal scream. If disturbed was a destination, this dude would have a first-class ticket there. The distortion effect is perhaps even more frantic than in the previous two commercials. “You know it’s alive,” the screen proclaims. “Worse,” it adds.

“It knows it’s alive.” You know the rest.

Opening Day (30 seconds) Inside a Sega Dreamcast, there’s a party going on…and everyone’s invited. The camera flies into the Dreamcast, revealing a multi-layered world where all the Sega characters are gathered in a massive room. A huge brain sits above everyone’s head and a grand old time is had by all the zombies, football players, hedgehogs, grapplers, etc. Ready 2 Rumble boxer Afro Thunder hits on a female Virtua Fighter who quips, “Don’t make me hurt you.” The brain urges the characters to learn to defeat their enemy, Steve from Hackensack. Steve, the only real-life human in the ad, puts the Dreamcast to his ear and listens. He looks more confused than Dan Quayle at a spelling bee. “It’s thinking,” the creepy voice whispers.

Old Days (30 seconds) Flying in to the Dreamcast’s innards, the camera focuses in on Pepito’s, a restaurant where an animated version of injury-riddled football quarterback Jim McMahon is complaining to Vikings wide receiver Randy Moss and video game character Rayman. “You’ll never get beat by the same whack play over and over,” McMahon whines and fumes, “our defense sucked!” Scenes are shown of football, Genesis-style and then replaced by shots from the new Dreamcast football game NFL 2K. Two Virtua Fighters, thankfully, come to toss the old goat McMahon to the curb. “I think old Jimbo got a hold of a bad taco,” Moss remarks. And yes, the machine is still thinking.

Daydream (30 seconds) Once again, the Sega characters are partying hearty inside a Dreamcast. An animated version of basketball star Gary Payton throws down a rap with the disgusting fatbody Virtua Fighter’s Taka while Sonic the Hedgehog scratches away at some records. Sonic begins dreaming of his new video game Sonic Adventures and frantic gameplay shots follow. When Sonic returns to the real world, Payton and Taka are urging him to stop scratching the records at light-speed. “My bad,” Sonic says, and shrugs his hedgehog-like shoulders. The whole shebang wraps up with another gentle reminder that the Dreamcast may well be more aware than the poor soul playing it.

Apocalypse (60 seconds) Behold the queen mum of Sega ads. A beautiful, black leather-clad Asian thief kicks a hapless guard in the mush, swipes a Dreamcast, and flees into the night. She emerges into a futuristic world, perhaps in Japan, and finds her stolen booty (even unplugged) is conspiring against her. The machine flashes the Dreamcast swirl on a series of TVs and commandeers a passenger plane to knock over a tower and trap its captor. After a frantic chase, the Dreamcast tampers with a stop light, causing the crook to plow her motorcycle into a car, and sending her flying into the darkness. She lands on a police car where two keystone kops are just waiting to haul her wicked butt to the pokey. The moral of the story? Don’t mess with a machine that can commandeer a plane.