Console Cameo

A console cameo is where the game system on which you're playing (or another by the same company) appears in some form in the game you're playing. Developers, when looking for inspiration for a fictional gadget, enjoy modeling amazing pieces of technology on the console that the player is using. This not only makes the interface really easy to design, but also makes the game just a bit more immersive in that respect. Less common is modeling an object off another console by the same company.

This has to appear in a video game for it to count; systems appearing in other media don't count unless it is based on a video game (Pokémon for example). PCs don't count unless the program is made exclusively for a single operating system and the game makes it clear which operating system (or a parody thereof) is being used. Finally, it doesn't count if the game system only appears in order to demonstrate controls or in something like the Wii's safety screens.

A sister trope to Product Placement, the main difference is you need to own the placed product in the first place, or is a call back to an outdated piece of equipment they no longer sell.

Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Nintendo Hardware 
  • Adventure Island - Killing a coyote from behind in the NES version rewards you with an NES controller granting points. The Game Boy versions replace these with Game Boys.
  • Animal Crossing - The player can collect NES control decks that run specific titles.
    • Animal Crossing: Wild World - There is a furniture item called the "game shelf" that, if you look hard enough, has a GameCube on one of the shelves.
  • Another Code (aka Trace Memory) - Ashley's Dual Another System (or Dual Trace System in the US localization) resembles a Nintendo DS. The sequel, Another Code R: A Journey into Lost Memories, replaces the old DAS with a new model that resembles a DSi and also has the TAS, which resembles a Wii Remote.
  • Banjo-Kazooie - The 3rd file on the file select screen is a scene of Banjo playing the main theme on a Game Boy.
  • Choro Q 64 - An N64 controller can be unlocked as a racing vehicle.
  • Conkers Bad Fur Day - One of Conker's idle animations has him playing Killer Instinct on the Game Boy Color, with an 8-bit rendition of Jago's theme from Killer Instinct II.
  • Crash Bandicoot The Huge Adventure - One of Crash's idle animations involves playing a GBA.
  • Devil Survivor - The COMPs look remarkably like the Nintendo DS. In this instance, every main character there has it. In the Updated Re-release, they are 3DS'.
  • Donkey Kong series
  • EarthBound - A cop in Onett says to Ness: "At times like this, kids like you should be playing Nintendo games."
    • "I can't wait for EarthBound to come out on the Super Nintendo!"
  • Elebits - Various Wii consoles and remotes appear as objects scattered throughout the game.
  • F-Zero GX - The Port Town circuit has a giant ROB. This also applies to the Port Town stage in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, as it directly recycles assets from that circuit.
  • Gotcha Force - A GameCube and several controllers can be seen on the main menu.
  • Hyper Zone - The third boss is a vehicle shaped like the front buttons of the SNES controller.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - The Stone of Agony, a device that lets the player use the N64's Rumble Pak, is shaped like... a Rumble Pak.
    • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker - Similarly, the Tingle Tuner, which lets the player interface with the Game Boy Advance, is basically a Game Boy Advance. Concept art published in the Hyrule Historia book also reveals that the developers were considering the inclusion of a "GameCube Island" in The Wind Waker, but it was never put in.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass - The aforementioned GameCube Island was seemingly resurrected as Dee Ess Island, an island shaped like an original Nintendo DS, complete with holes for speakers, a dock shaped like a stylus protruding from the DS's stylus port, and clues on the island pointing to locations on the actual DS hardware instead of on the island.
  • Lego City Undercover - The police communicator resembles
  • Luigi's Mansion - Luigi uses a Game Boy Horror, a modified Game Boy Color that allows him to communicate with Prof. E. Gadd. The sequel uses a modified DS instead.
  • Mario Party 7 - There's an orange GameCube in the Neon Heights shop.
    • Mario Party DS - After completing Story Mode, a special mini-game ( Triangle Twisters) is unlocked. It appears on the main menu as an item roughly in the shape of a Nintendo DS.
  • Mario's Picross - One of the puzzles in the original game is designed after the original Game Boy. Its later sequel, Picross DS, features even more puzzles based on various Nintendo hardware.
  • Mario Kart: Double Dash!! - One of the stages in Battle Mode set is a top a giant Nintendo GameCube.
    • Mario Kart DS - Likewise, this game features a stage set on a giant Nintendo DS. It also features R.O.B., an NES robot accessory, as a playable character.
  • Mega Man 7 - One of the "junk" items that Rush can occasionally dig up is a Game Boy. Also, several Famicom consoles appear in the background at the beginning of Junkman's level in the same game.
  • Mega Man Battle Network and Mega Man Star Force - In these games, the Wii, GameCube, Super NES, and DS all make appearances at certain points. The Game Boy Advance also shows up in Battle Network 5.
  • Metroid Fusion - The X-infested fans in the tropical zone are bordered by a mishmash of metallic-looking objects, including one that looks like a GameCube.
  • No More Heroes - Travis Touchdown owns a Nintendo 64-esque console in his apartment.
  • Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door - The "Mailbox SP", a palmtop device, looks exactly like the GBA SP.
  • Perfect Dark Zero - Although released for the Xbox 360, in the subway multiplayer map there appears to be a suspiciously boxy video game console in a trash can. PD0 started off as a GameCube game before Microsoft purchased Rare. Of course, considering given the game's critical reception, this may well be a dig that backfired.
  • Pikmin - The second game is loaded with references to various Nintendo hardware, most notably an NES d-pad and a Game & Watch. The third game features a much more blatant usage: Each member of the crew carries a Kopad, which in universe, has all the non-charcter control functions the game pad has. When playing on the TV with the game pad, cut scenes featuring the using their pads as communication devices show the the character holding their pad (as seen from their point of view) and the other charcter appears on the screen of said pad, along with their dialogue boxes, much too small to read. A message tells players to look down at their gamepad, which now shows the same scenes as the Kopads. When using just the gamepad or one of the alternate control schemes, the cutscene doesn't feature the hands and pad border.
  • Pokémon - NPCs throughout the various games in the series often hold the platform the game is on and comment on trading with a friend or offer to trade you.
  • Populous - The SNES version features a map called "8-bit Plain" that features a tileset based on various Nintendo hardware. Settlements start out as an original Famicom console and then evolve into other pieces of Nintendo hardware, not just consoles like the NES and Super Famicom, but other devices too such as controllers, Game & Watches, Disk Systems and even a Twin Famicom. Populous DS features an updated version of this map with more recent Nintendo platforms, culminating with the Wii and the Nintendo DS.
  • Pushmo - One of the puzzles is a giant Nintendo 3DS.
  • Resident Evil - In the 2002 remake, the passcode transmitting devices in the underground laboratory are essentially black GameCubes. The design of the devices were altered in the HD versions released for PC, PlayStation and Xbox platforms, although they still retain their cubic shape.
  • Retro Game Challenge - This Nintendo DS title features the player's avatar playing video games on the Famicom throughout the 1980s in Japan.
  • Shadows of the Empire - The supercomputer which Dash Rendar is tasked to steal from the frigate ship Suprosa is modeled after an N64 with the Shadows cartridge plugged in.
  • Street Pass Mii Plaza - You can acquire hats for the Miis shaped like the 3DS, NES, and the Famicom by playing the "Find Mii" minigame multiple times. The update that added the plaza ticket games also added hats for Nintendo's other hardware, including different hats for the Super NES and Super Famicom.
  • Super Mario RPG - The player can buy a Game Boy off of a mushroom kid, and it even opens up a shooter-style minigame.
  • Super Mario Sunshine - The resort on Sirena Beach is shaped like a GameCube controller.
  • Super Monkey Ball 2 - The "Nintendo" stage at the end of the Story Mode features an amazingly detailed render of a purple GameCube. This stage was replaced in Super Monkey Ball Deluxe for the PS2 and Xbox.
  • Super Paper Mario - Francis owns pretty much every Nintendo console out there, including the Virtual Boy. Also there are recipe systems that look like the Nintendo DS.
  • Super Smash Bros.:
    • R.O.B. is an old NES accessory made a playable character.
    • Some Game & Watch trophies feature Game & Watch hardware itself. "Flat Zone" stages also take the form of Game & Watch systems.
    • The Super Scope light gun from the SNES era is a usable item.
    • Super Smash Bros. Melee - The Trophy Room has a number of Nintendo consoles in the background, including a GameCube. If the language setting in the American version is set to Japanese, then the NES and Super NES will be replaced by a Famicom and Super Famicom respectively, and a Virtual Boy will be added to the set as well. A GameCube trophy can also be won, whose description says "Rumor has it that Super Smash Bros. Melee is a software title for this wondrous device."
    • Super Smash Bros. Brawl - The presents background of trophy hoard has a black Nintendo DSi in one of the boxes.
  • Tales of Symphonia - There's a GameCube in the Renegade's Base that you rotate to solve a puzzle. The later PS2 version changed it to a black block.
  • Tom & Jerry - An NES control deck appears at the very beginning of World 4 Stage 1.
  • Wario World - The last treasure in the second level of each world is a Nintendo console. The consoles Wario can find are a NES, a Nintendo 64, a Game Boy Advance and a GameCube.
  • WarioWare - Since the plot of the series involves Wario as a video game designer, many of the games in the series feature a cameo by the platform they were released on: Twisted features a specially adapted GBA; Touched has Wario get a DS; Smooth Moves has the Form Baton, which is a Wii Remote.
  • The Wonderful 101- Wonder Red holds a Wii U gamepad in different positions of reclining is a representation for the difficulty settings, and Wonder Black is never seen without a Game & Watch in his hands.
  • ZombiU - The Prepper Pad was deliberately designed to look like a Wii U GamePad.

    Sega Hardware 
  • The Adventures Of Willy Beamish - Willy's Game Buddy was redesigned to resemble a Game Gear in the Sega CD version.
  • Aladdin- The Genesis version has tons of said systems in the background of the level taking place inside Genie's lamp. Justified, considering The Genie Knows Jack Nicholson.
  • Hatsune Miku Project DIVA - The music video for "Remote Controller" features a Dreamcast controller.
  • Phantasy Star Portable - Most of the Sega consoles appear as weapons. Namely the Mark III, the Master System, the Genesis, the Saturn and the Dreamcast.
  • Pulseman - A picture of a Mega Drive can be seen in the background of the first stage.
  • Segagaga - In addition to the usual cameos of the actual consoles (given the game's nature as a parodic simulation of running the SEGA company), the finale turns the game into a shoot-em-up, with the various Sega consoles serving as the bosses.
  • Shenmue - Ryo Hazuki owns a Saturn in his home (which is a somewhat anachronistic choice for a console, given the game's 1986 setting), which the player can use to play home conversions of Hang-On and Space Harrier after winning them in a raffle.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog
    • Sonic Adventure - One of the E-series robot has a visible Sega Dreamcasts built in it.
    • Sonic Unleashed - In the opening cinematic, a Dreamcast can be seen in Eggmans pod when he fires at Earth to awaken Dark Gaia.
    • Sonic Generations - A Genesis/Mega Drive appears in the Hub Level in the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of the game. It lets you play the original Sonic once you get enough skill points.
    • Sonic Chronicles- An original model Genesis can be seen alongside an Egg Robo in the Metropolis level. A Genesis control pad can be seen hanging from a beam in Nestor's home during the Kron Colony stage.
  • Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed - One of the final unlockable characters is AGES, the SEGA-bot. Its boat transformation turns it into a sea-worthy Dreamcast Controller, its map icon and victory screen shows that AGES itself is a Dreamcast VMU, and some of its sound effects are pulled directly from Sega console BIOS (such as the Japanese Sega Saturn booting, the Master System booting and the VMU "no battery" beeping).
    • Also, when the first place racer begins the third lap on the Race of AGES level, Segata Sanshiro, the Sega Saturn's Memetic Badass Japanese Mascot flies by, still holding on to the rocket he rode into space during his last commercial, and still holding a Sega Saturn.
      • On that note, the plane path of the Race of AGES is filled with ghostly holograms of every important Sega system, and at the beginning of the track, we can see a Megadrive hologram too.
  • Toy Commander - A Saturn can be seen in the attic, and a Dreamcast in the living room.
  • The Typing of the Dead - The two protagonist wield keyboards with Dreamcast consoles strapped on their backs.
  • Virtua Fighter 5 - The R and Final Showdown revisions allow players to accessorize characters with certain Sega consoles as backpacks (namely the Genesis, Saturn and Dreamcast). In the arcade versions, they were purchased with in-game currency at roughly the same price they were sold in real life in Japan.
  • Virtual-ON - The original Virtuaroids had drive engines shaped like the Sega Saturn in their backs. In Oratorio Tangram, they're upgraded to Dreamcast consoles.

    Playstation hardware 
  • Army Men: RTS - One of the stage features a giant PS2 console that provides the player with electric energy for buildings and units.
  • Dead Rising 2 - In the PS3 version, Katey uses a PSP to play Mega Man Powered Up, which was only released for that platform. The Xbox 360 version replaced the PSP with a generic portable and just mentions that she's playing Mega Man, without specifying the version.
  • God of War III - A rhythm puzzle features the four shape buttons of the PlayStation controller that Kratos has to press in-universe.
  • The Last of Us - The PS3 itself is a recurring item that shows up in several place, usually in shelves.
  • LittleBigPlanet - The DualShock 3 controller is used to control the player's 'pod'. Sackboy even copies the player's button presses. In the PS Vita version, this was naturally replaced with, of course, a Vita.
  • Me and My Katamari - One of the rollable people is a kid playing with his PSP. The sequel, Touch My Katamari, features portable game systems shaped like the Vita, but the actual devices are unbranded.
  • Playstation All Stars Battle Royale - Sweet Tooth's Level 2 Super has him control a missile with a PS3 controller. Also, the wavy lines in the menu background and the background of the boss arena are meant to resemble the XMB (the PS3's system interface).
  • Star Ocean: The Second Story - Some of the enemies are murderous PlayStation controllers that attack the player's party with their cords.

    Xbox hardware 
  • Alan Wake - Emerson owns an Xbox 360 in his apartment along with a copy of the fictional "Night Springs" game, based on the Show Within a Show.
  • Banjo-Kazooie Nuts & Bolts - A whole stack of 360 consoles can be seen on the file menu screen.
  • Beautiful Katamari - The Coolhouse stage has numerous Xbox 360 consoles and controllers scattered around as household items, including a row of controllers arranged to spell 360.
  • Breakdown - One area features an original Xbox.
  • Condemned - Xbox 360 consoles appear throughout the game as collectible items and they're all decorated with a faceplate featuring the game's logo. There are various achievement for collecting them.
  • Midtown Madness 3- Certain pedestrians can be seen carrying boxes branded with the original Xbox logo.

    Multiple Hardware families 
  • Banjo-Kazooie - On the file select screen, Banjo will be playing a Game Boy if you select the third file.
    • Banjo-Tooie - The multiplayer mode on the main menu is represented by an N64, with some game cartridges next to it. The N64 is still there in the Xbox Live Arcade version, but the games are replaced by copies of B-K: Nuts & Bolts. The camera that Chris P. Bacon is using for underwater photography is actually a Game Boy Camera.
    • Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts - Kazooie is seen playing both, an Xbox 360 and a Nintendo 64. Later, one of the levels is called LOGBOX 720, which is modeled after the interior of an Xbox 360.
  • Metal Gear:
    • Metal Gear - When the player reaches the final building in Outer Heaven, Big Boss will become desperate and orders Snake to abandon the mission by shutting down the MSX. In the later versions included in Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence and HD Edition, Big Boss will instead mention whatever console the game is running on (namely the PS2, PS3, Vita or the Xbox 360).
    • Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake - Dr. Marv's OILIX is stored inside an MSX game cartridge and Snake uses a real MSX computer at the end of the game to uncover the content of the cartridge.
    • Metal Gear Solid - A PlayStation-like game console and controller can be seen on a desk in Hal Emmerich's lab. In the remake, The Twin Snakes, the console is replaced by a GameCube with a WaveBird wireless controller.
    • Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots - A PlayStation 3 console can be seen inside the upper deck of the Nomad (Snake and Otacon's plane), and the controller for the Mk. II/III is a DualShock 3. The original PlayStation can also be seen in a flashback as part of the encounter with Psycho Mantis, and Sunny herself is seen playing Penguin Adventure (the first game Kojima worked on as a rookie Konami employee) on the PSP a few times.
    • Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain - Previews of the game shows Snake covering his head with the packaging of either, a PS4 or an Xbox One. Likewise, the PC version will feature a Steam-branded cardboard box with a valve that literally causes steam to appear.
  • Snatcher - The computer in Jean-Jack Gibson's home differs between versions. Originally it was an NEC PC-88 or an MSX2, depending on which of the two 8-bit versions you're playing, and then an MSX turbo-R in SD Snatcher. Later it was changed to a fictional PC-6800 CoreGrafx in the PC Engine version (the CoreGrafx being one of the many PC Engine models in Japan), which became the similarly named PC68 Genesis in the Sega CD version (no mystery as to what the Genesis refers to), before ending up becoming just a nameless old computer in the PlayStation and Saturn versions.
    • In the expanded ending of the CD-ROM versions, the Metal Gear Mk. II loses its original body and is later rebuilt into the console that the game is running on (namely a PC Engine Duo, a second model Sega CD, a PlayStation or a Saturn).
  • The Simpsons: Bart's Nightmare - In the original SNES version, some of the angry tenants in second Bartzilla stage will toss away Sega Genesis consoles at Bart while he's climbing the building. Naturally, when the game was ported to the Genesis, the console that the tenants throw away became an SNES.

    Other Hardware 
  • Bomberman - The TurboGrafx 16 version feature various PC Engine models (namely the PC Engine Shuttle, CoreGrafx and SuperGrafx) as hidden bonus items.
  • The Dungeon Of Doom - The original and its remake had the current state-of-the-art Apple Macintosh as a rare throwable object, which smashed on contact for tremendous damage.
  • Glider - Most of the games in this series feature the built-in-monochrome-screen Macs where the series got its start.
  • La-Mulana - The original freeware version of the game was filled with references to the MSX, as the game was designed as a homage to the system's game catalog. The MSX BIOS appears during the booting sequence and the protagonist even uses an MSX laptop - with its screen border visible on the game window - to view his inventory. He can also find various Konami cartridges and combine them to gain special effects. The remake removed all MSX and Konami references and replaced the protagonist's laptop with a Brand X.
  • Sonic Dash - The Android robot appears as a playable character. Play 50 times with this character, and you unlock Andronic. This is exclusive to Android systems.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I - The iOS version includes an unique idle animation where Sonic pulls out an iPhone and brings it to his ear.
  • Spellbound Dizzy - One significant in-game item is a Sinclair ZX81.
  • Star Parodier - An anthropomorphic PC Engine appears as a playable character. Its weapon powerups come in the form of HuCards, one of which gives it the Tennokoe battery backup attachment and another which makes it shoot CDs, and it has options shaped like the system's controllers. There is also a giant SuperGrafx base that appears in the ending cutscene.