Promotional VHS tapes (picture heavy)

Franklint
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Franklint
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Joined: January 9th, 2007, 12:15 am

March 19th, 2009, 10:53 am #1

The Nintendo 64 era was right in the middle of the VHS era. Nintendo and other third-party companies took advantage of this, and ended up creating quite the spread of Nintendo 64-related VHS tapes. The most common of these are the Nintendo Power set, which were sent out to subscribers of the magazine. These tapes contained what were basically ten-minute commercials. There was one for the Super Nintendo, that took the viewer behind the scenes of the creation of Donkey Kong Country, and a handful for the Nintendo 64. This guide shows and describes many of the available VHS tapes.


Without further ado, let's take a look at the Nintendo Power tapes!

1. Banjo-Kazooie: The Adventure Begins June 29, 1998 (sent out in March-June, 1998)
This is, perhaps, the most common tape in circulation, and you can easily find it to purchase on the Internet without too much trouble.

Sent out by Nintendo, it shows a 10-minute overview of the game (created to make it look as appealing as possible) and features commentary by famous comedian Jon Lovitz. The video explains the plotline, before going into details of each level. It is, in all, quite an entertaining and humorous package, and I'm sure it would make me want the game if I hadn't already finished it. You can find a digital version of the video here: http://64dd.net/content/vhs/bk_promo_ta ... o_tape.avi, courtesy of 64DD.net. Does this originally ship with a subscription slip in the box? Mine didn't come with one.

The box:


The tape:
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0914.jpg

Other box shots here:
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0908.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0909.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0910.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0911.jpg


2. Diddy Kong Racing: A Wild Racing Adventure! (sent out in September-November, 1997)
Also very common, although not quite so much as the Banjo-Kazooie tape, comes this publicity video for the then up-and-coming game Diddy Kong Racing. Unfortunately, this one lacks the charm of the Banjo-Kazooie one and, although it tries hard, it just comes off as cheesy with poor acting. It is presented in the manner of a current affairs-type program, supposedly broadcasting a story of a reporter attempting to shoot a report on Diddy Kong's latest adventure, getting injured, and the news team trying to get to the bottom of the game. You can find a digital version of the video here: http://64dd.net/content/vhs/dkr_promo_t ... o_tape.avi, courtesy of 64DD.net.

This tape originally shipped with a small slip in the box containing subscription details and a special deal to get a discount on said subscription as well as a free copy of an official Diddy Kong Racing strategy guide. If you're only after complete versions of these, you might want to check that any tape you're considering buying comes with this slip.

The box:


The tape:
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0929.jpg

The subscription slip:

http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0931.jpg

Other box shots here:
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0926.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0927.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0928.jpg

3. Rayman's Dream Team
This is easily my favourite video of the lot, both because of its rarity and the content. Like the BK one, this features gameplay footage and commentary by an unknown speaker. It is split up into three large portions and a fourth, smaller, one. The first three promote Rayman 2: The Great Escape, Tonic Trouble and Rocket: Robot on Wheels, and the last is a small preview of Rayman: The Animated Series. It is blatantly a commercial, and the speaker concentrates on the impressive technical features. You can find a digital version of the video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hEPLVhMpoyc, courtesy of RandomAccessMemories and YouTube.

This one comes with two slips of paper this time. One is a special three-for-the-price-of-two deal for the games advertisted, including mail order options, which I was lucky enough to find pristine and not filled out in my copy. The other is a small piece of glossy paper advertising Rayman: The Animated Series, as seen in the recording.

The box:


The tape:


The buy-two-get-one-free slip:

http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0924.jpg

The Rayman: The Animated Series slip:

http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0922.jpg

Other box shots here:
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0916.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0917.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0918.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0919.jpg

4. Star Fox 64: Launch Date June 30, 1997 (sent out in March-June, 1997)
This film is presented in the same way as the DKR one, and is similarly poorly-made. I still prefer it to the DKR one however. It tells the tale of a poor Nintendo employee who gets kidnapped by Sega and Sony employees and forced to reveal details of Nintendo's latest project, Star Fox 64. While being initally resistant, the employee (naturally) ends up telling them way more about it than they initially asked for. Later on, some professor guy who seems to have a fair bit of knowledge about the game gets kidnapped also, and they all end up having an epic four-player battle. You can find a digital version of the video here: http://64dd.net/content/vhs/starfox_pro ... o_tape.avi, courtesy of 64DD.net.

This tape comes with a very similar subscription slip to that of Diddy Kong Racing, the only differences being the images and the title of the strategy guide offered.

The box:


The tape:


The subscription slip:

http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0938.jpg

Other box shots here:
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0932.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0933.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0935.jpg

The Nintendo Power tapes were certainly not the only ones available, although they were the only ones available publicly, and by far the most common. In addition to these, Nintendo was responsible for a few promo tapes typically played in retail outlets, one or two tutorial tapes for using developer tools, and even a few included with special releases of the console. Some of these are outlined below (please note that the information is far from complete, and community efforts to expand the knowledge of this sub-niche of video game collectiong will be essential).

5. Top Gear Rally

As of yet, I have not managed to watch this tape. No online version is so far available as far as I can find.

The cassette is adorned with a full-size sticker proclaiming "Watch this NOW! (Because you won't get a clear view when your windshield's under 4" of mud.)". It is possible that this was a Nintendo Power-distributed tape, although I see no evidence. Did this tape come with any kind of slip in the box? Mine didn't.


The box:


The tape:


Other box shots here:
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0940.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0941.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_0942.jpg

6. Hot Newz 64

This is one of several promo tapes that I do not currently own. It seems to be reasonably rare, but I have seen a few different sales and mentions of people owning it. It is one of the better and more professional-looking videos, and is filmed like a news presentation, with a presenter talking about Jet Force Gemini and Donkey Kong 64. He does a good job, and managed to crack a smile on my face at one point. After a spiel about the game, we jump to an amalgamation of in-game footage. We then go back to the desk, where the presenter introduces a different game expert from Team Nintendo who provides more information, and finally watch some more footage of the game with commentary from the presenter and the expert. The film is punctuated with segments of "Ask Dan", a so-called insider who has come out and revealed tips about a few games.

You can find a digital version of the video here: http://au.gamespot.com/users/justjason/ ... mT_5bgEvTE, courtesy of justjason and GameSpot.


The box (courtesy of themadhatter222 on eBay):


7. Change the System (sent out prior to the N64's US launch)

I know very little about this particular VHS, and it seems about the same rarity, if not a bit rarer, as the Hot Newz one. It tells the tale of three of the USA's best gamers being invited by Nintendo to come and test out the system. They are told about, and play, Super Mario 64, Pilot Wings 64 and Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire, and enjoy the experience greatly. It's great to watch Ken Lobb talk about the amazing revolutions in video gaming introduced by the N64, and is generally a pretty well-made tape, despite the rather abrupt ending. This is the only recording I've seen that contains explicit footage of unreleased and prototype games, including Kirby's Air Ride and Mario Kart R. This tape also features a slideshow of gameplay footage at the end. This may also have been a Nintendo Power release, although I have no real proof either way.

You can find a digital version of the video here: http://64dd.net/content/vhs/change_the_ ... system.avi, courtesy of 64DD.net.


The box (courtesy of 64dd.net):


8. Nintendo 64 Introduces Three New Ways to Bring It

This tape was also a free mail-out from Nintendo Power. It features long previews of Major League Baseball Featuring Ken Griffey Jr., 1080° Snowboarding and Kobe Bryant in NBA Courtside. Presented quite well, it doesn't rely on goofy "news team" gimmicks, and sells the games effectively. Worth a watch (especially now, when the presenter goes on about the awesome graphics that aren't really awesome anymore ;)).

You can find a digital version of the video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3K2cA_KHdkw, courtesy of RandomAccessMemories and YouTube.

The box:


The tape:


Other box shots here:
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_1296.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_1297.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_1298.jpg
http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e3/Fr ... G_1299.jpg

9. Conker's Bad Fur Day promo tape

This VHS came in a special pack for retailers, and was designed to be displayed in stores to promote the game. This one is quite rare.

The box:


The tape:


The tape in its original retail box:
http://i78.photobucket.com/albums/j82/M ... VHS001.jpg

Many thanks to Mop_it_up for the images.

10. Nintendo's "Funtastic" console series store loop

This particular VHS doesn't really have a title. Indeed, it was never meant to get into the hands of consumers. Not many copies are in circulation.

Held in a lovely red case, this tape was played in retail outlets stocking N64 goods. It alternates between a montage of Funtastic console shots and gameplay videos, with a voiceover, and in-depth previews of upcoming games. After three loops of montage/preview sets, the entire video loops. This cycle continues for one hour, after which time the tape must be rewound and played from the beginning again. I have digitised the footage.

You can find a digital version of the video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=owJM591rilA, courtesy of me and YouTube.

The box:


The tape:



I would ask that this thread not be locked, as I'll be working on this guide for a good while to come now. If anyone has any input, post in here, in the general Guides thread or PM me. I hope this helps some people out, and happy collecting!.

Cheers,
Franklint
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alxbly
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Joined: October 18th, 2008, 11:13 pm

April 6th, 2009, 11:27 pm #2

Great guide Franklint, thanks for posting it. :) Our friends at 64DD.net have a great list of VHS promo tapes which includes a few European limited editions VHS tapes which were not listed:

http://64dd.net/modules/specials/?p

Wikipedia also lists other Nintendo Power promo videos but, sadly, doesn't provide any photos:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nintendo_P ... _VHS_tapes

I also know that there was a promo Pokemon video in the Pokemon Stadium Limited Edition console bundle and the Pokemon Stadium Battle Set console bundle:



For more information on the bundles, see the Console Editions Guide. However, I'm not sure what was actually on the videos, but I expect it was either game footage or an episode of the Pokemon cartoon. Or maybe both. However, I've never seen either video so I can't confirm what was in them or whether they differed in any way. :( They do look the same, though.

One promo VHS that is missing from all the lists is a rare video given out to developers:



This was a guide to Softimage 3D, an animation and design tool used in N64 and 64DD games development. The Softimage company still exists, you can see their website here:

http://www.softimage.com/

The Softimage promo VHS pictured above was sold on eBay a few years ago alongside numerous other 64DD development guides.
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Franklint
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Franklint
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Joined: January 9th, 2007, 12:15 am

April 9th, 2009, 3:18 am #3

Hey alxbly, thanks heaps for the response! With contributions from other members, I'm sure we can make this guide fully comprehensive.

On the Wikipedia link, the only missing video that I haven't put down is the Pokémon one (the Donkey Kong 64/Jet Force Gemini tape talked about is my HotNewz64 one above). I have seen pictures of the cover of this tape, and as far as I can tell, it doesn't seem to be an N64 promo exclusively. Wikipedia groups the N64 promos with the SNES promo, so I wouldn't be surprised if the Pokémon one isn't necessarily just about N64. I'll do some research.

I was debating how wide to make my guide. Indeed, I was aware of the promos listed at 64DD.net, and wasn't really thinking of including them, considering 90% aren't actually official releases, but more from unofficial N64 magazines and the like. Personally, as a collector, I'm not really interested in anything that's not official (apart from controller/console variations and USB converters), but I'll be happy to add in any info others get about the European tapes. As per the Pokémon tapes available in the Pokémon N64 bundles, these certainly qualify, and I thank you for the photos. I will endeavour to pick up both bundles, but if you own either of them, pictures of the front of the box, tape and anything else in the box would be greatly appreciated so I can add them in. In this vein, I know that a certain Conker's Bad Fur Day bundle shipped with a VHS as well. I believe Mop owns this, and a good-quality picture of the tape would be great.

The Softimage 3D tape is fantastic and it has become my newest collecting quest to obtain it. I just found out I have an extra thousand dollars in my bank account, which means I'll no longer be in debt to my parents, and won't have to be as conservative with my spending. If anyone comes across a buy link and they're not interested themselves, feel free to hit my up and I'll try and obtain/rip it for the community. Any idea how much the original eBay auction went for?

Thanks again man, big help.

Cheers,
Franklint
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alxbly
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Joined: October 18th, 2008, 11:13 pm

April 10th, 2009, 1:18 am #4

Franklint wrote:On the Wikipedia link, the only missing video that I haven't put down is the Pokémon one (the Donkey Kong 64/Jet Force Gemini tape talked about is my HotNewz64 one above). I have seen pictures of the cover of this tape, and as far as I can tell, it doesn't seem to be an N64 promo exclusively. Wikipedia groups the N64 promos with the SNES promo, so I wouldn't be surprised if the Pokémon one isn't necessarily just about N64. I'll do some research.
I'm afraid I don't own either of the Pokemon videos. But I do know that the Pokemon video wasn't released with any SNES bundle (too late in the SNES life for that) nor was that vid released with any GB/GBA bundle I'm aware of. That would makes it at least an N64 console exclusive... but I can't confirm whether the same video was released in any other Pokemon spin-off accessory or toy bundle. I've never seen anything that suggests that it's anything other than a N64 exclusive but then there's so much Pokemon stuff out there that it would probably be quite hard to tell. Whether the same vid was bundled with other Pokemon toys or accesssories remains unclear but I've never seen anything to suggest this.

The Conkers Bad Fur Day video wasn't a console bundle, it was a limited release with the game in the US. The original Softimage 3D video sold for a very reasonable price (about £25 at the time, if I remember rightly) although this would be affected by the stong pound at the time. Expect it to fetch at least twice as much now... but it's hard to say with things like this. On a good day (or in a vague listing) you might be able to get it quite cheaply...
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Mop it up
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Joined: August 8th, 2006, 5:20 pm

April 11th, 2009, 11:31 pm #5

When was this posted? I must have missed this... I guess I should check this section more often!

Anyways, this is a nice overview of the promotional tapes, which give an idea of what the era was like. I never knew that they sent out that many. I received that N64 Hot News one, but it was destroyed by an angry VCR. It's kind of sad really because that would be a neat thing to have. :(
Franklint wrote:I know that a certain Conker's Bad Fur Day bundle shipped with a VHS as well. I believe Mop_it_up owns this, and a good-quality picture of the tape would be great.
As far as I can tell, the Conker's Bad Fur Day bundle wasn't a retail release; I believe it was a promotional item sent to stores like GameStop. In any case, I can take any picture or pictures of it that you'd like. Do you just want one top shot like the ones you took of the other tapes?
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stoop_kid
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stoop_kid
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Joined: November 10th, 2008, 8:03 pm

April 26th, 2009, 10:51 pm #6

i got a np promotional tape for donkey kong country ill put pics up later
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Franklint
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Franklint
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May 7th, 2009, 2:22 pm #7

Yeah, a top shot of the tape would be awesome, Mop. Glad you like the guide! I'm still accepting suggestions as to what classifies as a "promo" tape. Should I include the Pokémon ones?

And stoop_kid, thanks pal, but I've got the Donkey Kong Country tape as well, and I'm not going to include it in the guide because it's not N64-related.

Cheers,
Franklint
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Mop it up
Guardian
Joined: August 8th, 2006, 5:20 pm

May 18th, 2009, 3:46 am #8

Franklint wrote:I'm still accepting suggestions as to what classifies as a "promo" tape. Should I include the Pokémon ones?
It depends. Were they used to actually promote the games, such as by sending them out to people or retailers, or were they just a bonus included with a product?

Anyways, here's the picture I promised... 9 days after you posted. I have to check this section more often! >_<

Plain tape:



Tape in sleeve:



Tape in box:



The flash didn't go off in that last one, but maybe you could brighten it up in Photoshop or something.
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Applepieman
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Joined: June 4th, 2007, 12:32 am

May 21st, 2009, 10:48 am #9

This is an extremely kick :donkey: topic. I actually had both the Banjo Kazooie, Diddy Kong Racing, and Star Fox 64 tapes. Yet surprisingly enough I have absolutely no clue where they went (I do believe DKR tape was lent to a cousin and lost it during a move), a mystery I'll never solve ;_;

I'll keep an eye on this topic for those other tapes not up on the web yet.
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Franklint
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Franklint
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Joined: January 9th, 2007, 12:15 am

May 28th, 2009, 7:41 am #10

wrote:It depends. Were they used to actually promote the games, such as by sending them out to people or retailers, or were they just a bonus included with a product?
I'm pretty sure they were just included with the games/systems, much like your Conker tape. You think they should be left out, in this case? Perhaps I put them in a different section and expand my guide to be about any N64-related VHSs? This would be a substantial project.

Thanks a lot for the shots, very cool. I shall credit you if I end up putting them in as part of a more comprehensive guide.

Thanks also for the support, Applepieman :).

Cheers,
Franklint
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