Wii U Commercial Pulled Because One Person Complained

In Britain, the Advertising Standards Authority operates under a fairly simple rule. If even a single person complains about a commercial, they take a look at it, and if they agree, they can pull the ad from the airwaves. And that is exactly what happened recently with a Wii U commercial.

You may have actually seen it before; as the first Western Wii U ad, it stood out for being truly awful, sounding more like a discount dollar store commercial than something for a new home console.

Sadly, it wasn't pulled for quality concerns. It was pulled when someone complained that the commercial was "misleading", in that it makes certain Wii U controller features appear standard when not every game supports them. And... well, they have a point. Something the ASA agreed with.

The ad referred to a number of features of the Wii U console and GamePad, including being able to shoot at the TV using the GamePad, switching gameplay to the GamePad if someone else wanted to use the TV and using the GamePad to zoom in on targets, enter key codes and interact with the surroundings in the game. The ASA considered that it would be clear to consumers that many of these features would not be available in all games. However, we considered that the option to switch gameplay to the GamePad controller could be available on all games, and as this was a new console consumers would not have an awareness of whether this was something specific to individual games or a general feature of the console. We considered that, in this context, the ad should have made clear that this feature would not be available on all games. Because it did not, we concluded the ad was misleading.

The ad breached BCAP Code rules 3.1 and 3.2 (Misleading advertising) and 3.10 (Qualification).

As such, the clip can no longer be shown on British TV in its current form; it will have to be edited if it wants to return.

ASA Adjudication on Nintendo of Europe GmbH, UK branch [ASA, via CVG]


    It's confirmed, people are officially stupid.

      Nah.... thats been confirmed donkeys years ago... this is just an affirmation


    God damn soemtimes I wish I was born in the 60's. Growing up in the 70's and 80's would have been so much better in a lot of ways.

    Worse in others of course. But I miss living in a world that wasn't so god damned politically correct and full of entitled whiners.

      This isn't about political correctness, this is about accuracy in advertising, and consumer protection. If the ad contained a note saying that the option to switch play to the gamepad was limited to particular software, it would have been fine.

        You're probably right.

        I'm being too self centred in assuming most people would KNOW it didn't apply to all software like I did.

        Oh well. My apologies.

          I'm a video gamer, and up until I read this article I didn't know the WiiU didn't support that for all games. Maybe I haven't been paying attention to WiiU reviews or whatever, but given the ads, and the fact that it's been put up as a really useful feature by alot of people, I naturally assumed it was supported on all games. Because hey, why not?

            Why assume that? They didn't say it would be possible for all games nor, did they show it possible for all games. They were simply talking about how a controller can redefine gaming.

        Wrong again; clearly we're dealing with a mastermind here who managed to find one loophole in a terrible add. He could give half a shite if it's misleading, only that if he proves it to be so he doesn't have to switch his TV on to a painstakingly awkward 'PEWPEWPEW!' :P

    Seems completely reasonable if it fits the legal definition.

    I, too, would assume on a first pass that "transfer games to pad!" was a universal feature of the console. Given the number of game site reviews lauding this feature (with stating the limitation), it's easy to see how people might misunderstand.

    A simple "*May not be available on all games" is all that is needed to meet legal requirements.

    I don't see how that ties into user entitlement or stupidity?

      Well technically it does fall into entitlement, just not the bratty entitlement the internet loves to accuse everything of. Yes, when you buy a product you're entitled to certain things, one of which being that it works as advertised. That's a long, long way from being a douchebag who thinks the world owes them everything they ever wanted.

      They aren't talking about games, they are talking about what the controller can do. Or do you expect to be able to shoot zombies in all games too?

      "*May not be available on all games" is unnecessary. Hardly anyone would read that on "first pass".

        Obviously, it is necessary, otherwise the complaint would not have been upheld in line with the fair trading act.

    I also assumed the transfer from TV to game pad was a universal feature, and I have read a lot of the articles on the Wii U... just goes to show...

    Makes sense yes.. it is a big part of the selling point for the ad.. I remember ads from the past, when I cared enough to watch them, that would always have a little * and then some small writing saying that it wasn't available in such and such conditions etc..

    Yeah it actually makes some sort of sense. You can't be too lenient with advertising or people will try and get away with all sorts of things.

    Fucking nanny state bullshit, why do we allow the whiners to have EVERYTHING they want at the drop of a hat? This is why the world is so fucked, because no one puts their foot down and says no.

    A map from a 2 year old COD game was removed because of some sook. The xbox live ad with people using their hands as guns was pulled, a gatorade ad was pulled because a guy outran a train he ran in front of. parents cannot control their children etc etc. Fuck this planet.

    Oh crap better get the trailer pulled for life of Pi because not ever movie has a tiger stuck in a raft that's false advertising.

    Fucking idiot...

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