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By Shamus
on Thursday Nov 19, 2009
Filed under:


This advertisement is beyond the ken of my feeble human mind, and I demand that someone explain it to me:

Link (YouTube)

I can’t even tell if they’re making fun of or celebrating the games depicted. Or how either of them relates to fried potatoes in a can.


Comments (60)

  1. Eglador says:

    I think I’m too much of a gaming geek, because the only thing I thought in the beginning was “Why the hell is he losing health just by walking around?”

  2. BarGamer says:

    Injured foot, poisonous gas, pre-existing condition…

    BTW, “Lara” is a trap. You just know it.

  3. bbot says:

    I, on the other hand, was grossed out by him eating pringles with dirty, dusty hands.

  4. SkeevetI says:

    It is obvious to me that pringles is trying to wrangle the geek market. Nerds consume large amounts of salted snacks during a gaming session. Whether it be tabletop or other wise. Pringles is trying to topple the chessy dorioto monopoly

  5. SmallIvoryKnight says:


    He can’t resist deliciousness of this magnitude.

    Nah, I actually kinda liked the way it was going, until the girl came out. Pringles = HP boost is a good message. Pringles = Sexy girl comes and raeps you, Not so much.

  6. Goliath says:

    Maybe some kind of stamina or wakefulness meter? Or a ‘nerve’ meter; that is, once its run down, he’s too scared/weary to go on? It could be the flip of the mistake games make these days. Rather than an enforced stealth section on an action game, an enforced action section in a horror game.

    Wait, that was Silent Hill 5, wasn’t it…?

    It’s overly contrived; the pay-off is lazy. But I think it’s indicitive of at least recognition of gamers. It’s almost an inside joke. Now, while we (To misuse a pronoun) arn’t the shut ins we once were, what with the mostly mainstream nature of the modern video game, it is interesting that they would make such an ad.

    I don’t think it’s taking the piss. I think it’s actally attempting something interesting. Interestingly shot, certainly, and the joke about inventory sizes hit the mark, but it’s only okay.

  7. Girl Gamer says:

    Me too, bbot! That bothered me and the hammer space gag made me smile, but that’s about all I got out of this ad. It’s definitely a strange one.

  8. Torsten says:

    If the goal of the ad was to get attention of video gamers, it has to be said that it succeeded. At least I’d like to have some Pringles now. And I wouldn’t mind Lara either…

  9. tba says:

    What the f David Blaine?

  10. DmL says:

    Wow she is attractive and also has very very short legs…

  11. Heron says:

    I have a sudden urge to go buy Pringles.

  12. Kevin says:

    Another take on it is that she’s giving up all the tricks that she has on her in order to get to something (the Pringles) because he has them. Granted, she could probably take him without a problem, but the combination of him having the Pringles and the sexual marketing are used in combination in this one.

    Targeting the gaming community, no doubt about that.

  13. Vladius says:

    This is the logical conclusion of the “pander to gamers” mentality and “make bizarre, freakish, and nonsensical commercials” mentality.

    I blame the rap music.

  14. Magnus says:

    The one thing I couldn’t help noticing is that the pringles weren’t sealed.

    Given what he saw next, I expect someone had soaked them in acid…

  15. Eric Meyer says:

    I’m going to go with the intended message being “Pringles = powerup” for the geek viewers, and “Pringles = teh sexxay” for the non-geek viewers. Mostly because I’ve got nothin’ else.

  16. Mike Lemmer says:

    I never got the cheesy doritos monopoly on gaming snacks. Why would you eat a chip that leaves that much gunk on your hands while handling controllers/books/etc? I prefer Tostitos myself.

  17. acronix says:

    You know, I tought the idea of “attracting chicks” was a trick deodorant ads used. Every day that passes I see that trick used by more and more diverse stuff. Tomorrow we´ll be told that using diapers do that too.

    Anyway, this ad looks like a severe case of “Did Not Do The Research”(tm) to me.

  18. Wolverine says:

    I don’t get why he is losing health. I would understand it if it was recovered by eating Pringles, but this?
    Anyway, I think this is the best creatives come up with when execs tell thme “Go and make an advertismet for geeks and nerds.”

  19. wildweasel says:

    There’s a Metal Gear life bar and two Resident Evil 4-brand health bars on screen. Unless those two circular bars in the corner are supposed to represent the durability of his weapons. =P

  20. chabuhi says:

    I think that Lara-esque model is in 6th grade with my daughter.

    Jeez …

    “Eat Pringles and you too can fall deeper into your detachment from reality AND have a chance at fulfilling that pedophile fantasy you’ve always had.”

    There should be a law forbidding the attempt to make underage models look adult and “sexy” (I guess sexy is what they were going for here). Maybe that would stop so many people from entering their 5-year-olds in pageants trying to make them look like Mini Anna Nicoles

  21. Somebody Else says:

    I think it’s mocking, in that weird pseudo-affectionate way you get when that one guy on the team is a fan but doesn’t want to really admit it openly. It’s got the Perpetually Locked Door, which can only be opened with the Key of MacGuffin (Presumably found in the Cave of Obstacleness?), it’s got the Hyperspace Arsenal full of weird, inexplicable items, and it’s got Ms. I Exist To SEX, who nevertheless does nothing more than prance around suggestively. But I don’t really think it’s too celebratory…

  22. Scott says:

    @bbot: I’m grossed out by him eating pringles.

    @SkeevetI: Pringles will not make any significant dent in Frito-Lay profits. Case in point: original flavored Ruffles chips sell more than the entire Pringles company line.

    @Shamus: I thought I caught a glimpse of sense every once and a while, but this commercial lost me. I don’t know whether to feel insulted or amused at the effort.

  23. Rutskarn says:

    This ad is hilarious, mostly because they pretty much have no idea what they’re talking about.

    “So…gamers. We need to tap that market. What are they into…like…Resident Evil? I think my nephew played that once. Oh! Remember Lara Croft? Yeah, throw her in there. Lara Croft taking her shirt off. We’re geniuses.”

  24. swimon says:

    The big question as always with silent hill is what does it mean?

    Clearly the pringles can is a phallic symbol and the fact that the biggest phallos attracts women is perhaps a reflection of the misogynist views of the protagonist.

    The fact that she could fit all those things on her person or rather inside her clothes could similarily mean that he only views women as big vaginas trying to fill themselves.

    On the other hand it could also mean that there is more to her than meets the eye and there is a lot more on the inside than there first appear to be. This would perhaps mean that he is not at all misogynist and his belief that women mindlessly seek the biggest phallos would perhaps stem from a feeling of inadequacy.

    But why is the woman Lara Croft? And what does the individual items mean? Clearly this needs further analysis.

  25. mark says:

    So this ‘game’ has 1 life bar, 2 health bars, a radar that appears to show him teleporting, rapid drain of ‘life’, and he’s very near to dinging lv2. Why doesn’t he just find an enemy or two and shoot it? Leveling usually fills up all your meters!

    edit: the rubik’s boob did make me giggle…

  26. RTBones says:

    I think its actually an interesting concept, if not quite researched enough. The fact we are all here talking about it should say _something_. :)

    1) I can give a pass to the “losing health while walking” – maybe his health was from a temporary buff. Could be the air in the area has a poison effect.

    Edit: Gauntlet — Wizard. Needs Food. Badly.

    2) The two dials in the bottom right never change. Thought at first one might be an ammo counter, but when he takes a shot early on, it doesnt change. Durability meter maybe? For his “armour” or weapon?

    3) I get the nod to the “i’ve tried every conceivable exit to this place and still cant get out because I dont have the right key.”

    4) Pringles as a power-up? Fine with that. But WHY does the door open automatically? If its a strength buff (to force his way in) he should have to try the door again. If its an intelligence/wisdom/perception buff, he should discover a hidden catch which opens the door.

    5) I get the inventory joke, and finding Laura. She’s always skulking about looking for artifacts and random dudes with Pringles to jump.

    6) On Laura, if its really the Pringles that let him “get to the crunch”, shouldnt he have taken a SECOND helping of Pringles to buff his charisma so she’d, you know, “get to the crunch….”

    7) That can of Pringles was UNSEALED!! There’s a joke in here about a trap. Its actually in the DM’s notes for the clip: if the player consumes the Pringles and looks laura in the eye, he turns hard for 1d4 turns….

  27. Someboringguy says:

    I think it is a mockery at how puzzles are designed in a video game.There is this guy, trying all the doors (BTW SH memories) and he doesn’t know how to open them.
    And he tries randomly objects from his inventory and unexpectedly, eating snacks makes the door open.Because it was obvious.Eating snacks makes the door open.It’s common sense.
    And the girl is like a level boss, he needs to resist her charms in order not to have his soul devoured by the succubus.
    And everything has a deeper meaning, s psichological meaning that relates to some memory hidden in his subconscious.

  28. UtopiaV1 says:

    Wow, they must think us nerds as shallow, predictable creatures constructed entirely out of sci-fi and hormones…

    And they’d be right… ¬_¬

  29. potemkin.hr says:

    wow, she must have a magic bag of holding judging by the sheer amount od junk she’s carrying around :D

  30. pffh says:

    @Chabuhi: Woah you´re right that Lara is very young.

    Was the second health bar an xp bar? I think it says Lv. 1 next to it but I can’t quite make it out.
    Also did anyone else notice that she takes her shirt off and then we get bring on the crunch? As in sex = crunch, I don’t want anything to go crunch when I have sex.

  31. Galenloke says:

    I think my brain just crashed. Rebooting…

  32. Riku Kanninen says:



    Lara opens the door after hearing the delicious crunch of the chip.

    What a bunch of nonsense, says I.

  33. Daf says:

    Best. Video. Ever.
    *munches on Pringles®*

    The losing health while walking around has been done enough times (gas clouds in AoC, radiation in Fallout, planet heat in Mass Effect) that it can be used as a plot device to show the player only has a limited time to solve the puzzle and get to safety.

    I do agree that it’s (probably) making fun of the “random object = door key” method of puzzle solving.
    Which sets up the joke for “Lara”‘s inventory; she’s obviously a veteran and knows to pick up every damn object that isn’t nailed down in case she needs it later on :)

  34. Rosseloh says:

    How…odd. But then, I absolutely can’t stand Pringles.

    I think it’s safe to say that they succeeded, however, because gamernerds will be divided into two groups: Those who argue about why the commercial is absolutely ridiculous, and those who see it and say “Ooh, gaming!”

  35. RTBones says:


    After another look at that sequence, I think you’re right and I missed it. My initial take on it was that it was the door behind him opening. Why? One cobweb-covered doorknob looks the same as the next, I guess. Might also be that we dont Laura really come out of a door, we just see her in a hallway after our hero backs up. Might could be too that I am occasionally too poor to pay attention. Makes no odds.

    Not like it matters. It _is_ all a bunch of nonsense. The clip, the debating about it, the breaking it down, the rambling on about it. All of it. Nonsense.

    Funny nonsense, but nonsense nonetheless. :)

  36. Eric(Ninjews) says:

    Those pringles were bad, they did not come sealed.

  37. Audacity says:

    All Pringles are bad, they taste like crap, and have the texture of something that is certainly not potato.

    Soo, from this I deduce that the next Silent Hill will feature heavy product placement, Pringles replacing health drinks –or whatever they use in the newer games– and instead of Pyramid Head we’ll be stalked by creepy Lara Croft who has a pocket dimension in her shirt… And people thought the PSP game was the weakest link in the series.

  38. Chad says:

    I thought it was funny, but dang, I have to agree with the ones that are saying Lara looked all of 12. I just couldn’t get into it looking at her thinking: “That kid needs to put on more clothes.”

  39. evilmrhenry says:

    After taking a closer look, his health doesn’t start dropping until a few seconds into the video, so I’m going to guess poison gas is the culprit.

  40. Sydney says:

    To be fair, “open the can and eat a Pringle” makes more sense than most Resident Evil door-opening methods.

  41. Danath says:

    The hilarious cornballness of this ad had me open mouthed from the moment he saw the pringles can right to the end. Fantastic!

  42. ccesarano says:

    I dunno about you guys but I’ve never played a game with shaky cam like that.

    Or the person playing it is like 80 and has trouble keeping his hands still.

  43. Nick says:

    I don’t get it, but if I were him I think I would be a little more wary of a pristine can of Pringles sitting in a dusty hallway in which every exit is locked.

  44. Lar says:

    “You eat a lichen corpse”
    “Uggh-that meat was tainted. You feel deathly sick”

  45. MuonDecay says:

    Truthfully, I’d rather have a nice lean sandwich if I’m going to eat while sitting around for long periods of time.

    Of course that’s also because with a metabolism like mine it takes half a can of pringles to count as a snack, by which point I might as well just have a salt lick on my desk.

  46. Stuart says:

    My take on the beginning of the ad was this:

    Chris is desperate for a green herb. He sees a tube of pringles. They call out to him. Everything seems to be quiet for the moment. Gingerly, he puts one in his mouth…


    The noise attracts the attention of the undead in the next room. Chris cannot stop eating pringles despite hearing the oncoming horde. As he is engulfed by his attackers the slogan is displayed: “Once you pop, you can’t stop!”

    – etc, etc.*

    But at the point where “Lara Croft” came in the ad just lost any meaning it might have had. At least, In my opinion, what I thought the ad was going to be would have appealed to me and I would have found it humorous. What it turned into I thought was cheap an unimaginitive – but perhaps some of the jocks-turned-gamers will buy some pringles now.

    * Alternative ending 1: As the infected rush in Chris lobs the can of pringles into the crowd, and makes his escape while they are distracted by the irresistible flavour.

    * Alternative ending 2: The infected rush in and everyone begins to enjoy a pringle enriched party.

  47. Nyaz says:

    Well, color me confused…

  48. Lex Icon says:

    At first, the idea that eating a Pringle to open a door seemed insane. Then I remembered the Silent Hill 2 room that housed a tin can full of lightbulbs. A sealed tin can… full of lightbulbs.

    If that can exist, then the Assassins were right and nothing is true anymore.

  49. Why does the character’s axe have an ammo count?

  50. kmc says:

    @swimon: brilliant!

    Also, does it bug anybody else that you can’t eat Pringles very well because you can’t fit your hand in the can? I’m all for snack foods that remind me of simple mathematical surfaces, but as soon as you get, like, 10 chips down, you can’t grab them very well anymore, and you have to turn the can sideways. If you’re lucky enough that they don’t all fall out on you, they get turned in weird directions and the whole stacking convenience is lost. Pringles, as it turns out, are not for obsessive types like myself.

  51. Gndwyn says:

    The door thing is a reference to Half-Life and every other corridor shooter where you walk down a hall filled with doors but they’re all just wall textures that make a “locked” sound if you try to interact with them.

  52. Dan says:

    Why did he pick up the can with his hands? Shouldn’t he have just run over it and autohealed? Seriously, that is a massive waste of hotkey resources.

  53. AnZsDad says:

    Hmmm…I can’t help but wonder at a little phenomenon I’ve just noticed.

    Throughout the game reviews and comments on this site there are suggestions that we would like to see more diversity in game story lines. In other words, gamers (at least, the literate ones who frequent Shamus’s blog) would like to see more creativity and less falling back on established genre tropes. That is a fine ideal for games, movies, books, comics – any medium designed PRIMARILY to entertain. This, however, is a commercial, designed primarily to engage interest in a product. There is only one thing more useless than decrying the use of tropes in commercials: extensive discussion as to whether the elements of said trope were implemented accurately! The health/life/ammo bars and counters were there to indicate to you that this was modelled after a video game, but they were not specifically intended to be working components of a game!

    Put it this way: if the game interface elements were not there, how many people would have picked up on the “hammerspace” joke? Most people less-familiar with games would have thought they were trying to make a joke about the stuff women carry with them at all times and would have wondered why there was no purse.

  54. ima420r says:

    I don’t get it. A robot that turns in to a building? I don’t get it.

  55. Cuthalion says:

    Silent Hill x Tomb Raider fanfic -> Pringles commercial?

  56. Cuthalion says:

    I can’t believe they used my idea.

    I can’t believe you all hate it.

    Good thing they already paid me.

  57. Wow! I want to go eat Pringles so Lara Croft will want to bang me!

    That is the message that commercial was trying so send us right?

  58. Nixorbo says:

    I have no idea what I just watched.

  59. William says:

    The cooking mama one makes even less sense. You wouldn’t think that were possible, but it is, oh it is.

  60. Rilias says:

    Since he is obviously a horror Shooter guy the vast amount of inventory space she displayed might have been a massive turn on…

    OK I just said that simply because it sounds so strange.

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