When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

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timewarpgamer
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When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by timewarpgamer » Tue Aug 25, 2009 8:08 pm

I don't see much coverage on the TurboGrafx-16/PC-Engine in these forums—probably because this console was never properly released anywhere in Europe—so I thought y'all might find a recent feature from my web site interesting:

http://timewarpgamer.com/features/tg16_ ... arity.html

I must admit that I find the regional differences in box art to be fascinating. It seems like there are numerous sites that catalogue box art (VG museum and the thecoverproject.net come to mind), but I'm not really aware of any places that really compare box art. If I'm missing a great site, please fill me in. And such a feature sure would fit nicely magazine format (hint, hint).
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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by sscott » Wed Aug 26, 2009 12:43 am

Interesting article.
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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by Stuart_c » Wed Aug 26, 2009 3:20 am

Is it just me or does the guy on the American Dungeon Explorer box look like he's taking a pee :lol:
Very nice article m8, are you going to do a follow up with boxes on different consoles?

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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by Coopdevil » Wed Aug 26, 2009 3:30 am

I find American box artwork to be generally dreadful anyway, but I honestly think that US cover for Dungeon Explorer is the worst box art I've ever seen with the exception of those dull, dull, dull SMS boxes with the little doodles done on graph paper.
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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by harlequ1n » Wed Aug 26, 2009 3:39 am

Coopdevil wrote:I find American box artwork to be generally dreadful anyway, but I honestly think that US cover for Dungeon Explorer is the worst box art I've ever seen with the exception of those dull, dull, dull SMS boxes with the little doodles done on graph paper.
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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by ShadowMan » Wed Aug 26, 2009 3:46 am

I still hold up the Amiga version of Mega Twins as a worse piece of Box Art than Megaman:

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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by TwoHeadedBoy » Wed Aug 26, 2009 5:13 am

Hardcore Gaming 101 did a thing where they looked at the Japanese artwork of Western games, good fun!

Is that Mega Twins really supposed to be an interpretation of the Chiki Chiki Boys? Oh no!

I like the American version of JJ & Jeff there, really funny looking :lol:
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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by harlequ1n » Wed Aug 26, 2009 5:56 am

ShadowMan wrote:I still hold up the Amiga version of Mega Twins as a worse piece of Box Art than Megaman:

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At least that box looks like it was painted by an artist and not a 8 year old boy...
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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by oli_lar » Wed Aug 26, 2009 9:27 am

I've seen a lot of this stuff on the net, and while a agree with most of it I think alot of it is just being over exposed to similar styles. I'd be sure that there are people in Japan who are bored of generic anime covers. Personally, I like the TG16 R-type artwork.

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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by Chinnico » Wed Aug 26, 2009 10:38 am

Ahahah! Most of the TG-16 boxarts reported in the article (very nice article indeed) are really awful. I understand trying to market a product at best, adapting ads and images to the country where you're selling it, but I think this is almost an insult on american customers.
What anyway makes me laugh even more is the change in titles.
When it comes to possible misunderstandings or easy pun (see Puck-man -> Pac Man), I can accept it. So, maybe Be Ball might have been one of such cases. I can accept the change from Devil Crash (does that mean anything?) to Devil's Crush.
But WHY Adventure Island -> Dragon's Curse? Maybe the original title was felt too dull for american people?
Or Gunhed to Blazing Lazers (good grief! laZers... not only blazing, but laZers indeed...)
And... ahahahah! Military Madness! That's great.

I am particularly susceptible on this topic because here in Italy we use to make the same slaughter with movies. For example the excellent Mel Brooks' "The Producers" became "Per favore non toccate le vecchiette" (Please don't touch the old women); or "The Running Man" was changed to "L'implacabile" (the implacable), even if the name of the movie's show remained The Running Man even in the italian translation.

Usually game's localisation has spared the titles until some recent exceptions, probabily for the historical low consideration of videogame's industry in my country. I must also point out that people making game's localisation here are often gamers themselves and take particular care in respecting the product and the buyers.

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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by thl » Wed Aug 26, 2009 12:43 pm

The box art for the Mega Drive/Genesis conversion of Strider looks a bit naff:

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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by Antiriad2097 » Wed Aug 26, 2009 1:59 pm

This topic also gets a mention in the latest episode of Retronauts, which is dedicated to the Turbografx.
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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by takesages » Wed Aug 26, 2009 2:14 pm

Interesting article, it's fun and well written. I don't agree with it all, but it's good work! Anyone know where theres any more of these to look at?

In many cases I actually prefer the American box art... yes, it's awful, yes, it often says nothing about the game, but it's normally awful in a way that's now quite funny and camp. At the end of the day, the made generic looking rubbish becasue thats what the kids were watching on TV ... look at the 'generic princess' - how many US cartoons at the time had character design like that? Not the ones that are now famous like Transformers and Thundercats, but what about the ten million others? I'm pretty sure it did a decent enough job of appealing to the audience.

I think the article gets way to wanky over the Japanese stuff. "Beautiful, twisted, and even tragic?" Really? To me it looks like a woman whos crying BLOOD. It's like.... tears, right... but, also blood. So that's deep. Yeah. That's straight from the book of cliche fantasy garbage right here. Besides, it looks like the computer graphic they used in Knightmare on CITV to me.

I don't know how people can look some of these boring, unimaginative and samey anime crapfests and think they look good. At least I'll REMEMBER the dungeon explorer box. Generic anime loser #32? Not likely.

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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by timewarpgamer » Wed Aug 26, 2009 5:55 pm

Stuart_c wrote:Is it just me or does the guy on the American Dungeon Explorer box look like he's taking a pee :lol:
Very nice article m8, are you going to do a follow up with boxes on different consoles?
LOL, so true about that guy's left hand. That's where I was going with "one hand clumsily holding his weapon and the other holding...his smaller weapon?" but I tried to keep it as PG as possible. It took a lot of self-control, haha.
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Re: When Box Art Goes Wrong: TG-16 Marketing in the US

Post by timewarpgamer » Wed Aug 26, 2009 5:57 pm

TwoHeadedBoy wrote:Hardcore Gaming 101 did a thing where they looked at the Japanese artwork of Western games, good fun!
Thanks, I'll definitely check that out. Love the site, but I must have overlooked that feature.
I run the 8/16-bit retro gamer website TimeWarpGamer, and if you want to follow the latest developments, you can find me on Twitter as well.

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