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Best Video Game Trailers? 63

Posted by Cliff
from the high-wow-factor dept.
An anonymous reader asks: "I was doing my usual site browsing, and I stumbled onto this thread about the best game trailers at PCSynapse.com. It made me really think about how important it is for a company to make a good, early impression on potential videogame buyers, and give people something to anticipate. What do you say your favorite non-interactive game trailers of all time are?"
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Best Video Game Trailers?

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  • by heldlikesound (132717) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @02:33AM (#6866458) Homepage
    My dad saw it and asked when the movie was coming out...
  • by Anonymous Coward
    halo 2. the music is perfect. master cheif is the man. halo 2. http://halo.bungie.org/misc/halo2trailermirrors.ht ml
  • I remember downloading shakey cam footage of the "Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty" trailer for the PS2 years ago, looked amazing, better than any PC games at the time. It was as good a trailer as some action movies.

    I also remember the semi-famous "Into the Shadows" demo from a long time ago. The game was never finished but the demo was sweet, showed skeletons moving around casting multiple shadows on the floor, on a Pentium 90 with no 3d card.

    • by jesse.k (102314)
      The trailer for the remixed game "Metal Gear Substance" was awesome. It had all these words that kept morphing together: Subliminal, Subvert, Subordinate, Subsist... until finaly morphing into "Substance".

      Nevermind the incredible "WTF" scenes like Snake on a skateboard, Meryll alive and the giant soldiers.

      And the tagline: The fall, Metal Gear sheds its skin and reveals its SUBSTANCE.
    • The trailer for Twin Snakes is the best Metal Gear trailer.
  • I gather we are talking about intro's to games? or the actual tv commercial / promotion?
  • by the Man in Black (102634) <jasonrashaad@nOSpaM.gmail.com> on Thursday September 04, 2003 @02:53AM (#6866530) Homepage
    I remember distinctly saying "Holy shit!" on both of these. All hail Blizzard.
  • by PeteyG (203921) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @02:55AM (#6866537) Homepage Journal
    The non-interactive movie-style trailers to the best interactive movie / flying games ever. Wing Commander III and IV.

    Mark Hamill. John Rhys Davies. Malcolm Mcdowell. Space fighters. Great special effects. Cheesy writing made cool and memorable by quality actors. These trailers are the best things ever.

    Oh, did I mention that you can download them [solsector.net]?!

    If you don't download them, just look at the pretty pictures on the page there. Quality stuff.
  • by fuzzdawg (671742) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @03:36AM (#6866680)
    but being the UT junkie that I am I prefer the Unreal Tournament movies made by some of the best clans and players on the face of the planet. Good Stuff Here [4players.de]
    Cheers.
  • Its a somewhat interesting question.....but come on....this isn't news....this is posting to slashdot a brief thread from some messageboard. I'm not trying to troll here, but I'm just saying, there's FIVE FRIGGIN POSTS IN THE THREAD. Is that news? Gaw...o well, got karma to burn if the mods are feeling vindictive tonight.

  • by noselasd (594905)
    A Ratchet and Clank video made me instantly buy it(Playstation 2) And it's probably the best game I've played so far.
  • by Shaheen (313) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @04:07AM (#6866767) Homepage
    3DNark 2001 non-interactive demo
    Bloodrayne Trailers
    Brute Force
    DOA Xtreme Beach Volleyball
    Devil May Cry 1/2
    Doom III
    Duality
    Final Fantasy Series
    F-Zero GX
    GunGrave
    Halo 1/2
    Jet Set Radio Future
    Kakuto Chojin
    Killer 7
    Kingdom Hearts
    Max Payne
    Metal Gear Solid 1/2/3
    Metroid Prime
    Murakumo
    Ninja Gaiden
    Odd World: Munch's Oddysee
    Phantom Crash
    PlanetSide
    Primal
    PN 03
    Resident Evil (various)
    Shenmue
    Silent Hill 2/3
    Soul Calibur II
    *SOME* Star Wars trailers (not enough time to list 'em here)
    StarCraft - Ghost
    Sudeki
    Tekken 3/4
    Unreal 2
    WarCraft III
    World of WarCraft
    XIII

    That's all that pops out at me for now. There have been others that I've liked, but you will get a kick if you watch the above :)

    And yes, they are all non-interactive downloadable movies somewhere...
  • What I really really hate is when you see 'screenshots' or sequences on TV which are advertising a game, and they're things you'd NEVER see during actual gameplay.

    When I see a game ad, I want to see what it's like from the perspective of playing it. Not some dumb raycasted promotional graphic that looks NOTHING like the game. Gran Turismo's screenshots are guilty of this. Nearly all of them are 'external' views. Who uses the external views while driving? I want to see what the graphics quality is like from
    • Gran Turismo 3 had excellent graphics..in out..who cares, that game rocks..and the intro is awesome...GT4 is said to be even better...
    • I agree. You see this constantly in first person shooters. I don't care how beautifuly you can get 3dsmax to render your models, if the game engine(halflife) cant compete whats the point?
      • What's the difference if it's still rendered in the game engine, though? The replay scenes in GT3 are still rendered by the game engine.

        The only difference is the HUD and, in the case of GT, the interior of the cars. On racing games I have a tendency to turn off the interior view. In FPS games how much modification I do to the HUD is dependant on how it looks, but if something really bugs me I'll change it, rather than suffering with it, and seeing it beforehand isn't really going to change that.
        • The difference is the engine cant always keep up. I've seen some absolutely stunning renders of counterstrike and natural selection models that look nothing like they do ingame, even with all the detail settings cranked up.
          • Then that's a different situation: using content (or renders of content) that are not used in the game itself. All of the GT3 stuff I've seen is either the intro footage (which obviously is not the game engine) or shots of in-game rendering, which uses the same content (or older content in some cases, which usually looks worse) as the game itself.

            Showing off models as they were rendered before putting them into the game and finding out that the game couldn't handle it, and trying to pass them off as in-gam
  • It's a bit old, but when you saw the trailer ...
    you wanted to play it!

  • I liked:

    "You are in a"

    Man, I was on the edge of my seat.
  • The Half-Life 2 preview movies. They may not be actual trailers but they sure are cool and make me want to buy the game.
  • by carou (88501)
    Oni, a much underrated game developed by Bungie (who, of course, went on to write Halo) had a great trailer. All the scenes were from actual gameplay (or at least the engine) with hints at the plot, fight scenes, gunplay...

    A Dark Future ... An Uncertain Past ... No one left to trust

    Unfortunately I can't find a download link which still works in general, but FilePlanet subscribers may have luck via http://www.3dactionplanet.com/oni/files/movies.sh t ml
  • Mortal Kombat 3 having TV commercials hyping it's Arcade release still stands out in my mind. Not because it was that great, just because no one else ever did it.
  • I just got Brute Force and I was so impressed with the HALO 2 demo in it that even though I was drunk I remember saying. Shit FU** numerous times throught the video, it was the damn cool.
  • American McGee's Alice. The trailer was all CG rendered FMV which didn't actually match scenes from the game -- but it was very cinematic, stylishly done and pretty exciting.

    And it alone was enough to land a potential movie deal with Wes Craven, which just goes to show...

    The nice thing is that even if the trailer didn't show game footage, the game maintained the atmosphere of the trailer -- you can't accuse them of lying about the experience, you just got a different experience in the same exact vein. Goo
  • by Quinn (4474)
    Maybe it was the years of heavy anticipation of an unofficial Wasteland sequel, but the original Fallout trailer left me near tears.

    It begins with the vinyl crooning of a melancholy oldie from the Ink Spots over a scratchy black and white retro-future newsreel. An ad for an atomic-powered car, then a shot of a soldier in power armor kicking a man on the street, filling him full of lead, then waving to the camera.

    The perspective pulls back to reveal a boxy old console television, and as the music starts t
    • Agreed, Best FMV ... Ever.

      But don't leave out fallout 2. With a wonderfully educational VaulTek newsreel and some Louis Armstrong (Kiss to Build a Dream On) crooning out from the P.A. speaker deserves note.

      Too bad it defies description. Just go buy a copy of the fallout 1&2 combo even if it's just for the opening FMV's. It's like 15$ USD max.

      You won't regret it.
      • amen. 2 of the greatest RPGs ever.

        I mean, forget that final fantasy crap. You actually get to ROLEPLAY in these!!
    • Wasteland! Thats a game I havent heard about in a looooong time. I lost track of how many hours I played that game.


      Oh, and I completely agree with you about Fallout.
  • The trailer I always thought was best wasn't actually an "official" trailer, but a short movie [bungie.org] put together by a fan of the Oni [bungie.org] game (from Bungie [bungie.org]). It's made entirely of movie captures from the game and has a very fitting soundtrack. Being made by a fan, it captures the spirit of the game like few trailers our there ever did for their rspective games.
  • Probally forgotten, but the E3 trailer of Duke Nukem Forever from 2001 was great! At the time it was amazing what they did using the UT engine, looked more like how UT2003 looks now.
  • This is when Square really began to show the unelightened masses that videogames could be emotional, storytelling experiences, not just button mashing.

    This is the trailer that changed the mainstream perception of RPGs forever.

    It is also the first trailer I saw that looked like a cinematic movie presentation, focusing on the story/characters, instead of the gameplay.
  • With the marines descending into an alien artifact, then get ambushed, then the Master Chief shows up and kicks ass. It had an interesting little storyline, showed off some cool effects, and got me interested in playing the game.

    It was great! And they were like "yeah, its running on a P2 400..."

    Oh man, 2000 was a great year.

    skye
  • The Grim Fandango trailer [lucasfiles.com], no questions. What a real trailer should be.
    • That was the last good adventure I played, and a very good one indeed. I even played the localised (Brazilian) version, and it was surprisingly good (I usually prefer the original versinos). The jazz soundtrack was very good also. I still have some /musicas/jazz/Grim\ Fandango/*.mp3
  • My all-time favorite was from back when Blizzard was still a cool company. Not long after Starcraft came out, at the 1998 E3 they released a trailer for the Brood War expansion for Starcraft.

    The eerie operatic music combined with the glimpses of ultraviolent combat between zerg and human left a lasting impression on me.

    I also remember that as one of the last big files I downloaded over the 28.8 modem before I got my cable-modem. You can still download it [blizzard.com] from Blizzard's site.

  • The problem I have with trailers for so many PC and console games is that they often don't show any actual gameplay. Usually it's just animation rendered outside of the game engine that relates to the storyline, which for me is not why I buy games.

    A good storyline is great, but for any game I'm gonna buy, I've gotta be interested in the gameplay. Often you can't determine whether that's any good without a demo or a rental.
  • Into The Shadows ....
    At least I think that was the name of the game. Back when the 486DX266 was king. And 800x600 ruled the gaming world. mmmm I remember those days.
  • While these are not a trailer per say, the Red vs. Blue Pseudo-Parody Screening of the Halo2 trailer as an intelligence release about the upcoming war as well as the new style of armor that Master Chief wears was probably the best trailer ever, IMO.
  • Sure there are many others, but X-COM UFO intro came to my mind.. (but don't remember if it was the I or the II) simple but nice done.
    Alice was nice too..
  • I cant believe no one has mentioned the trailer for Fable yet, XBox or no the game looks amazing and I, for one, and eagerly awaiting its release.
  • How about Command & Conquer 2: Tiberian Sun? There was a trailer that played at the end of the 1995 version of Command & Conquer (Tiberian Dawn, the original) that raised hopes so high (Westwood didn't help by hyping the game like a frenzied dog) that the game was an abject failure by the (impossible, I say) standards everyone in the community had. As a footnote, the *seen* (it was a commercial success) of C&C2 killed the C&C community, I think.

  • Not that this would qualify as a classic trailer, but I just downloaded the trailer for URU: Ages of Myst [uruobsession.com] and found it very impressive, especially considering the text at the beginning, which informs you that the entire trailer was made using the game engine...no pre-rendered images.

Optimism is the content of small men in high places. -- F. Scott Fitzgerald, "The Crack Up"

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