Jan 17th, 2013

Nintendo has released several TV commercials in the UK and elsewhere in the world. But one of the ads has now come under criticism for being misleading. One of the first TV ads to air in the UK showed the Wii U’s ability to play games on the GamePad controller alone. The game in the ad was New Super Mario Bros U, which can be played on the GamePad alone.

However, that doesn’t mean that all games can be played on the GamePad tablet controller. The UK Advertising Standards Authority believes the ad is misleading because it implies that all games can be played on the GamePad. Which isn’t true, of course — only a handful of games support this feature.

Nintendo tried to defend the ad, saying that gamers would understand the feature that’s being advertised, but the Advertising Standards Authority disagreed, and banned the ad from airing on UK networks. You can check out the Wii U ad in question below:

You can read the full ruling here.

local_offer    Nintendo  wii u  wii u advertising  
  • John Paul Herrera

    I….don’t know who was right.

  • HSN1

    Banned because of not EVERY game supporting this functionality?
    It’s like banning the DS’s ads because not every game uses the X button

  • bizzy gie

    What’s with random flashes in the beginning and end of the video?

  • sdmac200600

    lol wow. so i guess every comercial in the UK should be banned then

  • Gary Moscheles

    a misleading product? on my TV? bullshit.

  • Captain Falcon

    Oh, the many things I could say that were misleading based on Kinect’s commercials…

  • Adam Porter

    ah now this makes sense because i haven’t seen any advertisements for the wiiU basically since it launched.

  • Ford Crews

    It must suck to live in a nanny, sad they are trying to turn our nation into one. ;-(

    • kevinaaaa

       I agree,  sad to live in the UK.  but give it time, US will catch up.

      • Ford Crews

         I know. ;-(

      • Revolution5268

         US? how is US behind when wii u is selling bad on UK?

        • MujuraNoKamen

           I think he meant the US will catch up in terms of how much red-tape there is, not in terms of games/consoles sales. I could be getting the wrong idea.

  • That explains why we haven’t seen any WiiU commercials at all in Europe the past 2 weeks 😛

    But seriously banning a tv ad because it’s misleading? Then just ban every tv add for everything, they all are misleading. Example: tv add for finish, the tablets for in your dishwasher, they claim they clean you dishes anytime anywhere no matter how it’s stacked in the washer, well that ain’t gonna happen, it doesn’t work that way. So it’s misleading, ban the commercial.

    All commercials are misleading, it’s that simple. I smell tricky faul play, the Nintendo hate in Europe, whoever is behind it it’s a setup.

    LOL misleading tvadd I can’t believe I read such uthermost, senseless, b***t, misleading add…o_0 Nintendo really is hated in Europe, except their handhelds…

  • TheLast

    Damn, Nintendo is having a really hard time now, whether it be on the internet, or it the real-world. They just can’t seem to catch a break. :/

  • Mickey Mouse

    I’ve been wondering why the Wii U T.V ads have dried up recently. Looks like Nintendo will have to come up with something else, and hopefully sell it better to the masses aswell!

  • Fred

    Off-TV play is my favorite feature of the wii U. I’ve spent a lot of time playing New Super Mario Bros U and NBA 2k13 on the Game Pad while my wife watched TV

  • kevinaaaa

    Everyone says that is why you don’t see UK commercials.  I have to ask, is anyone seeing US ads?   I’m in Texas and I’ve not seen one ad since Christmas.   

    I believe that pulled the ads for the most part.

    • Arthur Jarret

       I haven’t seen any adds since getting the Wii U… but that’s most likely because I haven’t watched any TV since getting the Wii U.

      Too busy drawing on the gamepad.

  • kevinaaaa

    I believe it is misleading.  It implies every game can play this way.   But it is not fair because most ads stretch the true to the extremes.  They should ban most ads,  what beer commercial is not misleading.   Has anyone drank a beer and got a good looking girl because of it?

    • Arthur Jarret

       I did.
      She turned ugly the next morning – though.

    • Nah … but that’s just because I don’t look like the guys on the adverts either 😉

    • Val Berger

      if you consider that girls may look prettier with every pint you drink, so it doesn’t really matter, with whom you end up with in the end of the evening, then those commercials may have a point 😉

  • Mark Thom


  • CyanideInsanity

    I don’t know how it is overin the UK, but here in the US we get plenty of BS commercials. Can anyone from the UK confirm if you guys get false BS too, and that this is just a special case of a very slight miscommunication being banned?

  • fireheartis1

    Really what is misleading about this commercial?  I see nothing misleading about it, and nowhere in that commercial did it say all games are playable that way.  Man I smell some really stinky crap about this whole thing.  If we let Obama turn the US into a country were the government controls everything we’ll be screwed.  Let’s just hope congress is smart enough to vito a lot of his bills, so we don’t have to put up with crap like this.  A commercial being banned for no reason how freaking stupid.  How about banning the ones that are really misleading people and leave Nintendo alone geez.

    • Clem

      You’re aware that Obama hs no jurisdiction in the U.K., right? The ad was banned there, not in the U.S.

  • EvanescentHero

    Literally every Wii U game I own, save Nintendo Land (the point of which is to use the TV and GamePad in conjunction) can be played solely on the GamePad.

    Did they show games that can’t be played only on the GamePad being played on the GamePad? No. One of the main draws of the console is that many games can be played on the controller alone, so of course they’re going to promote it. I truly don’t see how Nintendo did anything wrong, ESPECIALLY when compared to, I dunno, every advertisement in the world.

    • Chris Traill

      The issue is not that it showed games that couldn’t be played on the Gamepad…The issue is it makes no mention of it not being compatible with all Wii U games.

  • Srpg2ishere

    Did anybody else notice “mass effect 3, toki tori , darksiders 2, trine 2, nano assault neo out before 31ST OF MARCH at the bottom of the screen? Who makes the release dates for uk? 

  • David Rampa

    lol, if i was living in the UK, i would be really offended because that just tells me that gamers in UK are really stupid. -> which they arent. (my best gaming friends are from UK)

  • spyridus

    Seriously?  Are the people working for the standards act on crack?  Obviously, this shows they have WAY too much time on their hands.  I saw absolutely nothing misleading about this commercial.

  • MujuraNoKamen

    That’s just nitpicking, what the hell is wrong with the standards agency and their red-tape. oh well, maybe this will prompt Nintendo into making a good commercial.

  • It is 100% misleading. It’s an advert for the console ( not the games )
    and it says  ‘#2 No more fighting over the TV’ . As some of the games
    don’t allow off-tv play it means you will have to fight over the TV, it
    couldn’t be any more misleading on that point so they are right to have
    banned it. They just need to change #2 to say Less fighting over the TV
    😉 or maybe … just maybe Ninty could get their finger out and
    present gamers with a consistent experience across all games … like
    making the home button functionality work everywhere, in game chat etc. etc. blah blah

  • Chris Traill

    Well technically speaking it is misleading

    “#2 No More Fighting Over The TV” is what it says.  Now try to keep in mind Nintendo are trying to appeal to gamers as well as family friendly audiences.  While gamers will get that not every game will be playable on screen, the family friendly audience may not.

    It also makes no mention of how many games can be played on the Screen and so a lot people not in the know would assume every game especially with how the advert has been worded by the narrator.

  • gangsta_dog

    hahaha stupid nintendo

  • SoulSilverZero

    *facepalm* -_- Why do they have to ban commercials where they mislead a tiny little thing on a commercial; yet they don’t ban commercials that are misleading all over the place…

    Hey UK ASA, it’s not like people are going to throw an temper tantrum because they can’t play all games on the gamepad.

    Also if you wanted to ban this ad because not all games are playable on the gamepad, why can’t you just ask Nintendo to modify it to say so?

    Why are people blaming Nintendo for not mentioning that not all games are on the gamepad? It was just a tiny little mistake…

    Rant done.

  • If this product was made by a UK company they would allow it and defend it.  

  • LaidbackENT

    I said it before and I’ll say it again, their is a conspiracy out to destroy Nintendo in whatever way they can. Banned commercials, then last month 2 millions dollars worth of Wii U’s stolen out of a warehouse. Every single Nintendo dedicated site has had a recent influx of trolls bashing Nintendo with the same generic theme of “Nintendo is kiddy, Nintendo is crap and doomed, they should become 3rd party and make games for “other platforms”. Certain video game sites only post news in which then can twist perception to make it seem like a bad thing while not reporting and good things for the Wii U. Mark my words, this looks like a powerful well connected organization is out to sabotage and destroy Nintendo.