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Game Trailers: Show Us the Action!

Lights, camera, action! We all love a good game trailer, don't we? But what happens when those tantalizing teasers fail to deliver the gameplay goods?...

Paul Kelly

Jan 30, 2024

Game Trailers: Show Us the Action!


Lights, camera, action! We all love a good game trailer, don't we? But what happens when those tantalizing teasers fail to deliver the gameplay goods? Masahiro Sakurai, the genius behind Super Smash Bros., is here to call out the culprits, especially those sneaky trailers lurking on Steam. In the realm of gaming, where hype reigns supreme, Sakurai has a bone to pick with trailers that forget the golden rule: show us the action! Join us as we dive into his thoughts and explore the world of game trailers, where sometimes less is definitely not more!

Trailers That Pack a Punch:
When it comes to unforgettable trailers, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate takes the crown. From the epic entrance of Sephiroth from Final Fantasy VII to the heart-pounding arrival of Sora from Kingdom Hearts, these promos have set the bar sky-high. But here's the twist: not all great trailers rely solely on gameplay footage. Take, for example, the original Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and Elden Ring promos. These gems lacked gameplay footage but still managed to captivate our imaginations. And who can forget the infamous Dead Island trailer? It had almost nothing to do with the final product but left us emotionally devastated nonetheless.

Sakurai's Trailer Critique:
Enter Masahiro Sakurai, the mastermind behind Super Smash Bros., with his arsenal of incredible trailers. In the latest episode of "Masahiro Sakurai on Creating Games," he spills the tea on his thoughts about game trailers. Brace yourselves, dear readers, for Sakurai pulls no punches. He calls out trailers that plaster too many company logos, spend ages building up the story, and worst of all, fail to showcase any gameplay footage. It's a cardinal sin in his book, and he's not afraid to say it out loud. Please, game developers, heed his call: "Don't do that!"

The Steam Trailer Trap:
Sakurai takes a particular issue with the trailers found on Steam pages. He's had enough of those treacherous trailers hiding in the shadows, devoid of any gameplay footage. He pleads with creators to show us what really matters: the game in action. After all, if a game is available for purchase or pre-order, shouldn't we be able to see what we're getting ourselves into? Sakurai knows the power of a famous name, as he proved with the Joker reveal in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and the surprise introduction of Min Min from ARMS. But once money is on the line, it's time to spill the beans and reveal the gameplay goods.

The Case of Misleading Trailers:
The recent fiasco surrounding The Day Before serves as a stark reminder of the dangers of misleading trailers. It's an all-too-easy trap for developers to fall into, luring unsuspecting gamers with flashy visuals and promises of epic adventures, only to deliver a vastly different experience. Sakurai's plea for honesty and transparency in trailers rings true, not just for Steam but also for platforms like PSN and the Nintendo eShop. Let us browse with confidence and ensure that what we see is what we get. Show us the action, the excitement, and the true essence of the game.


In the world of game trailers, Sakurai stands as a beacon of wisdom. His critique reminds us of the importance of showcasing gameplay footage, of giving gamers a taste of the action that awaits. A trailer should be a window into the soul of a game, a tantalizing glimpse that leaves us hungry for more. So, dear developers, let us see what you've got! Show us the magic, the thrill, and the heart-pounding moments that await us in your digital realms. Remember, a trailer is not just a tool for promotion; it's an invitation to embark on a grand adventure. Let the games begin, and may the trailers never leave us wanting.

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