Sunday, March 28, 2010

Return of the Video Game Glove

I always thought that the spandex video game glove was an early-80's affectation, surviving only during those heady, pioneering days when the term "video athletics" could be uttered with a straight face.

But then I ran across this ad from the early 90's promoting exactly the same thing -- this time with licensed Sega Genesis and NEC TurboGrafx-16 logos (Nintendo apparently steered clear of this one, leaving a third design with a generic "HOT Gloves" logo):

These manufacturers never really got it.  Few serious gamers would consider the hot look (in neon pink, orange, green or yellow) a realistic prerequisite for being one of the best players around.  Especially as the arcade scene was already ceding dominance to home consoles, and the only person likely to see you in your hot gloves was your snarky little sister.

Still, the ad does its best to make the prospect seem attractive, citing the gloves' appearance on the mysterious Video Power TV show and shouting It's HOT! It's NEW! in colorful starbursts.

I have no doubt the gloves were hot -- they are described as Padded for Super Video Game Play, which likely made them feel like sweaty neon oven mitts after fifteen minutes or so.

But calling them NEW is radically overstating the case.

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