ClassicRadar: Nintendo video time capsule, 1997-2001

The following games didn’t need a goofy accent or earnest delivery – they were the cream of the crop, the top titles for Nintendo’s star system. We grabbed their videos for completion’s sake, just so we can all witness what Nintendo thought about its own products. Hyperbole alert!

The N64 classics

GoldenEye 007: Catapulted Rare into superstardom, changed console shooters for good and sold more copies than Ocarina of Time.

Donkey Kong 64: An arguably unworthy follow-up to the DKC trilogy, with too much emphasis on collecting. Still sold like crazy though.

Jet Force Gemini: Much-hyped shooter that played like a mix of Contra, Mega Man and Starship Troopers. Not sure why Rare has left this one alone for so long (same with goddamn Blast Corps!).

Banjo Kazooie: Rare’s blatant ripoff of Mario 64 that recently saw new life on XBLA.

Banjo Tooie: Sequel to Rare’s blatant ripoff, which suffered from the same collecting binge as DK64.

Super Mario 64: One of the greatest games of all time, period. It was the first game released for the system and by far its best selling title.

Paper Mario: Nintendo ditches Squaresoft and makes its own Mario RPG, this time in an even sillier, paper-thin universe. As much as we love Paper Mario, this voiceover makes it seem like the most boring, sleep-inducing game on the planet.

Super Smash Bros: Though there are only three entries in this franchise, it’s quickly become Nintendo’s heaviest hitter. The latest, 2008’s Brawl, has already sold more than Melee and this N64 original.


Yoshi’s Story: Storybook-themed platformer that paled next to its SNES cousin, but was still a damn decent jumper in its day.

Kirby 64: Not exactly the best game in the Kirby series, this one felt more like “well, guess we should make a Kirby game” than a thought-out sequel.

Harvest Moon 64: Today we kinda poke fun and ignore this ruthlessly boring life-sim, but back in the day it was a major draw, and this was a strong version to own.

Perfect Dark: Rare’s impossibly anticipated follow-up to GoldenEye succeeded in some areas (multiplayer, graphics) but fell short in others (horrid framerate). The 360 sequel didn’t make much of a splash, but we’re keenly interested in the XBLA remake. (Update: See them compared here)

Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater: The original, released way back in 1999 and found the limelight in early 2000. Bizarre fact: the THPS games are known for their alt-rock, hip hop soundtracks, but this clip has the music turned off, probably to avoid paying any strange royalty fees. How would you even classify this kind of use?

Wrapping it up is a montage of everything else Nintendo was pushing at the time. Mario Kart 64, NBA Courtside, Diddy Kong Racing and so on. Voice actor bonus: Cam Clarke (Leonardo, Liquid Snake) narrates the Wave Race 64 footage.

Bonus! Awkward N-Sider video!

Ah, this is more like it. Two people clearly not meant for onscreen delivery forced to hawk the new Nintendo website in stilted, unsure dialog. Entire phrases are hilariously outdated (we’re cyberjocks!), they’re looking at each other for cues, the music is ultra-generic synth junk… it’s the perfect misguided, tragically unhip promo. We love it!

Next page: A graveyard of long-forgotten games that may trigger sudden memories of your lost youth


  • Nintygameplayerperson - May 2, 2011 12:16 a.m.

  • Fro4show - March 31, 2011 9:28 p.m.

    psshh I thought Kirby was fun. And Megaman Legends. AND about half of the other games you smashed on.
  • Kenzo - March 30, 2011 11:08 p.m.

    say what you will about the graphics but that pod racing game was awesome. game of choice at my friends house for years. also i remember that guy on the pokemon safari, thought the pokemon in the commercial looked awesome. not so much by today's standards.
  • alexk2064 - March 30, 2011 8:52 p.m.

    So, out of pure curiosity, I called the 800 number from the N-sider video. Still routes you to Nintendo. Menu options consist of hardware issues with the Wii or 3DS, parts, or game help. Thought you guys would wanna know.
  • philipshaw - March 30, 2011 8:43 p.m.

    Only Brett could think of an idea like this and I love you for it, I actually remember seeing some of these in a store back in the day
  • Finality - March 30, 2011 2:26 p.m. This is probably still my favorite old pokemon commercial, I didn't see it in the videos up there.
  • ristar200 - March 30, 2011 12:26 a.m.

    HOLY SHIT YES now I can watch all of these videos on the good video player!
  • Jayzilla - March 30, 2011 12:25 a.m.

    hmm... lots of accents here I mean the Nascar and Conker gbc commercial guy...
  • Jayzilla - March 30, 2011 12:23 a.m.

    I think that guy with all the accents does lotsa cartoon voices. I'm pretty sure he's the Joker on Batman Brave and the Bold.
  • Harleynator - March 30, 2011 12:21 a.m.

    The Pokemon/ Gameboy color for Yellow where the bus driver murdered all the helpless pokemon by crushing them is the main one I remember
  • AirickG - March 30, 2011 12:20 a.m.

    Ah Pokemon Snap... Only Pokemon could take a terrible idea and make a pretty entertaining game, I don't even think I'd be opposed to a remake...
  • RonaldRayGun - March 30, 2011 12:15 a.m.

    I miss how terrible things used to be...
  • adamstephenson - March 30, 2011 12:05 a.m.

    I remember getting that Donkey Kong Country promo in the mail with the Jungle Trees VHS holder (what the hell do you call that). Wasn't the VHS itself yellow? and it felt like it only weighed about half an ounce because there was only a few minutes of tape on there. I bought into the hype, I thought I was like maybe one of 50 kids in the whole world that got that tape. The KI teaser at the end of it made me go bonkers too, an experience shared with probably every other kid who got that tape.
  • TheBrownestWRPGuknow - March 29, 2011 11:47 p.m.

    i love you, Gamesradar, for bringing really funny/interesting articles on a consistent basis. More specifically, good job Brett, this was a great nostalgia trip.
  • icedoesnthelp - March 29, 2011 8:18 p.m.

    "careful with those eggs" *throws egg*
  • mynameisjay - March 29, 2011 8:14 p.m.

    Seems like a lot of these come from those setups at Toys R Us back in the day.
  • juicenpancakes - March 29, 2011 7:53 p.m.

    Whenever I see any kind of promo video for Super Mario 64, my mind races back to a time where Best Buy had a giant column of like 30 TVs set up all synced up to a single N64, so you could stand anywhere in the Best Buy and watch this magnificent, new Mario game being played. It's when I became a man. one else remembers this or had this happen did they?...
  • Redeater - March 29, 2011 7:46 p.m.

    Oh Conker.....what a suprise it was to go from Game Boy Color to Bad Fur Day.
  • batmanboy11 - March 29, 2011 7:44 p.m.

    ... I don't know what to say to thes monstrosities...

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