Classic Australian Sega Master System TV ad

See that video above? That ad used to play on TV and at the local video rental store back in the early 90s. The Sega Master System, I was was convinced back in 1992, was the greatest thing ever. Well actually, the Mega Drive probably earned that category, but the SMS? Amazing. I was lucky enough to get a Sega Master System 2 for my birthday in 1992, and the sucker was golden. So many great memories.

I just can’t believe someone uploaded that ad to YouTube. I had completely forgotten it, so it was freaky that it felt like I watched it only the other day. Sega has a notorious history of poor advertising in Australia, but it looks like they had at least some success with the Master System if I can still remember it these days 🙂

Although there is that old Nintendo slogan “We are Nintendo, we cannot be beaten” – no idea if that was purely an Australian thing or if it was used across the pond:

Thanks to Frank at Aussie Arcade for getting the ball rolling on this trip down memory lane and Retro Gaming Australia for posting them up on YouTube 🙂 Check out his channel for more Australian TV ads!


  • Anonymous says:


  • lol, that’s just how Australians roll when they say Sega 🙂

  • Sean says:

    LOL, that is what I thought when I watched too – is that really how they say “Sega” in Australia? Or is it just the way that one guy they hired to voice the commercial says it?

    So it is the former then.

    As a point of trivia, the North American “SAY- GA” pronunciation is a bit closer to the Japanese original:)

  • Unfortunately, yes – thanks to the local marketing over the years, that’s the generally accepted form of saying “Sega” in Australia; not sure if that’s changing these days, I’m an old fart so I’m not sure if things have started changing! When I first heard North Americans say “Sega”, I thought it was unusual until I started studying Japanese and realised they were rendering it as close as possible insofar as the NA accent goes, which can gravitate towards hard vowels rather than soft vowels (not that we’re much better, mind; we tend to use softer vowels in English a little more often by virtue of our colonial heritage and the legacy that has given to our regional accents).

    It’s not unlike how “anime” is pronounced in English-speaking countries, with that hard “e” vowel rather than the soft “e” vowel inherent in Japanese.

    … I just read what I wrote, and I’m hoping I’m not coming off as condescending, especially since you live over there!!

  • Frank_fjs says:

    You know, the NES never quite did it for me back in the golden days of what we now classify retro gaming. I remember being a SEGA boy and getting into heated arguments over which system was better; funny how competitive we were back then. Console wars, bit wars, Sonic versus Mario, those were the days. Back then I had little understanding of what a bit actually meant or represented, yet I knew that I wanted more of them!!!

    Games on the NES simply looked dull and lifeless in comparison to what dazzled on your screen with a Master System plugged in. Pity it didn’t share the popularity or amount of released titles as the NES. Oh, and the NES console wasn’t as pleasing to the eye as the Master System, especially once the Master System 2 came out. The NES, to me, looked like an outdated video player and was prone to mechanical failure whereas the Master System was black, sleek and sexy in addition to being a reliable workhorse that kept on gaming. It’s quite common for NES consoles to be out of action these days for various reasons whereas the majority of Master Systems still have a strong pulse.

    Pretty cool that the Mega Drive had such a jump start over the SNES, it provided me with much 16 bit gaming goodness and I still experience that awesome feeling whenever I see (and hear) the SEGA splash screen on the original Sonic game. SF2 did draw me to the SNES eventually though, and the SNES carried me through to the beginning of the 32 bit era…

    Wow, I wrote much more than I anticipated, think I’ve said enough, I’ll stop now. =)

  • It’s all good – love the depth in your response Frank!

    For me the, the NES was an awesome piece of kit in the 80s, but once the 90s began and our humble C64 was getting long in the tooth, it was the SMS I wanted, and it helped that some of my friends had one so we could borrow each others’ carts to keep things interesting.

    I reckon there might be some classy photos at my parents’ place of us playing some of the older retro systems, I think I’ll need to go hunting to see what I can find!

  • Mick says:

    I remember sending that video a few years back to elvis (from the AA forums) for use on their shortlived aussie gaming blog. I should have put it on my personal YT account. lol.
    It can be found on the Ghostbusters II rental VHS.

    I also remember a retro Amiga or Amstrad (?) competition commercial on the rental VHS of the movie ‘Sneakers’. I’m yet to track that one down…

  • That’s really awesome, had no idea it was on a rental video, and of Ghostbusters II no less!