Over the years, countless video games and video game consoles have appeared in Japanese anime. Sometimes, they are part of the story. Other times, they’re just games. It depends, really.
This month, as new episodes are being broadcasted in Japan, fans are noticing when game machines pop up in anime. For example, people online were quick to spot an Xbox 360 style controller in anime Hayate the Combat Butler: Cuties and PS Vita style portable in Oreimo. Some fans even somewhat jokingly label characters as “An Xbox gamer” or a “Sony gamer”.
Far from a new trend, video game consoles have been appearing in anime for decades. What makes the trend so interesting is that the consoles can be obvious product placement. A good example of this would be Sega’s appearance in Neon Genesis Evangelion.
Then, there are in-anime game consoles that aren’t product placement per se, but are responding to real world trends. So when the Nintendo DS was super hot a few years back, it appeared in a bunch of anime in slightly altered form — as not to raise Nintendo’s legal ire.
People play video games. And if anime characters are supposed to be people, then some of them will game too.
What makes the phony game console depictions in anime different from their appearance in most Hollywood movies and TV shows is that these fake consoles are made by people who love and know video games. The way that the consoles are changed ever so slightly is fascinating. It’s clear that gamers created these fake machines.
Below, there’s a small fracture of gaming appearances from over the years. There are more — many, many more. Feel free to add them in the comments section below.
Sailor Moon: Power.tv
Sailor Moon: fanpop!
Red Photon Zillion: Dreamcast Talk
Ranma: Hardcore Gaming 101
Episode of Neon Genesis Evangelion
Crayon Shinchan: Fall of Saigon
Bamboo Blade: My Anime List
Detective Conan: Conan Wiki
Ga-Rei Zero: Anime History
Haiyore! Nyaruko-san: ステマブログ
Shinryaku! Ika Musume: dakara transplrance
Haganai: I Don’t Have Many Friends: dionysus
Hayate the Combat Butler: Cuties: 2ch