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Placement, the main difference is you need to own the placed product in the first place, or is a call back to an outdated peice of equipment they no longer sell.

Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Nintendo Hardware 
  • The final level in Super Monkey Ball 2 is an amazingly detailed Gamecube.
  • Mario Party 7 has an orange Gamecube in the Neon Heights shop.
    • Also, after beating Story Mode in Mario Party DS, a special mini-game ( Triangle Twisters) is unlocked. When unlocked, it appears on the screen as an item roughly in the shape of a Nintendo DS.
  • The Nintendo DS game Retro Game Challenge has the player playing video games on the Famicom throughout the 1980s in Japan.
  • The DAS/DTS in Another Code/Trace Memory.
    • 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.
  • NPCs in Pokémon often hold the system the game is on and comment on trading with a friend or offer to trade you.
    • The player character has the home console of the era in his/her room at the beginning of the game: In Red/Blue it was a SNES, in its remakes, it's an NES, and when visiting Red's house in Gold/Silver he has an N64. In Ruby and Sapphire, it's a Gamecube while in the DS games it's a Wii. In Pokémon X and Y, it's a Wii U, and at the start of the game your character is also seen holding a 3DS XL. In Gold, Silver, Crystal and Pokémon Stadium 2, it was possible to decorate your room and some of the items were all the Nintendo consoles released at the time, including a Virtual Boy!
    • The Pokédex is always loosely based on the current Nintendo handheld, going from Game Boy (Pokémon Red and Blue) → Game Boy Color (Pokémon Gold and Silver) → Game Boy Advance (Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire; Fire Red and Leaf Green's looked like the GBA SP)→ Nintendo DS/DS Lite (Pokémon Diamond and Pearl) → Nintendo DSi. Pokémon Black and White broke the tradition; the Unova Pokédex looks more like an iPod than any recent Nintendo handheld. Fittingly, the Pokémon X and Y 'dex looks like a tablet computer, so you can say it's equal parts iPad and Wii U controller.
    • The Pokémon anime had Meowth using a remote that looked suspiciously like a Wii Remote once.
  • A battle stage in Mario Kart: Double Dash!! is a giant GameCube. The DS version featured a giant original Nintendo DS.
  • In Crash Bandicoot The Huge Adventure for the GBA, one of Crash's idle animations involves playing a GBA.
  • The COMPs in Devil Survivor look remarkably like the Nintendo DS. In this instance, every main character there has it. In the Updated Re-release, they are 3DS'.
  • The Gamecube version of Tales of Symphonia has a GameCube in the Renegade's Base that you rotate to solve a puzzle. The PS2 Updated Re-release changed it to a black block.
  • The Trophy Room in Super Smash Bros.. Melee has a number of Nintendo consoles in the background, including a Gamecube.
    • If you set the language to Japanese while playing the North American version, any consoles that looked different in Japan will have their Japanese appearance, such as the two-tone gray NES being the red and white Famicom. Also the Virtual boy only appears in the background if the language is set to Japanese.
    • You can also obtain a GameCube trophy, whose description says "Rumor has it that Super Smash Bros.. Melee is a software title for this wondrous device."
    • In Brawl, the presents background of trophy hoard has a black Nintendo DSi in one of the boxes.
  • This often happens in the WarioWare series, since the plot of them is that Wario is a video game designer: Twisted features a specially adapted GBA; Touched has Wario get a DS; Smooth Moves has the Form Baton, which is a Wiimote.
  • A partial case occurs in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, where the Stone of Agony, a device that lets you use the N64's Rumble Pak, is shaped like... the N64's Rumble Pak.
    • Similarly, the Tingle Tuner in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, which lets you interface with the Game Boy Advance, is basically a Game Boy Advance.
    • Concept art from development released in the Hyrule Historia book reveals that the developers were considering the inclusion of a "GameCube Island" in The Wind Waker, but it was never put in.
    • The aforementioned GameCube Island was seemingly resurrected as Dee Ess Island, an island shaped like an original Nintendo DS, in The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass. The island was designed as a large copy of the DS hardware, 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.
  • In REmake, the MO disc readers look exactly like GameCubes.
  • The Game Boy Horror (a modified Game Boy Color) in Luigi's Mansion. The sequel uses a modified DS instead.
  • The resort on Sirena Beach in Super Mario Sunshine is shaped like a GameCube controller.
  • Populous DS has a tileset that straddles both examples - settlements start out as a Game & Watch and become more advanced Nintendo consoles as their population increases, culminating in the Wii. The second-largest settlement is an original Nintendo DS.
    • The SNES port did the same thing.
  • In NES Adventure Island games, killing a coyote from behind rewards you with a NES controller granting points. The Game Boy ports replace these with Game Boys.
  • NESes appear in Animal Crossing.
    • In 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.
  • In Mega Man 7, one of the "junk" items that Rush can occasionally dig up is a Game Boy.
    • Also, several Famicom systems appear in the background at the beginning of Junkman's level in the same game.
  • In 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.
  • In 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.
  • Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door has a palmtop device, "Mailbox SP", that looks exactly like the GBA SP.
  • Donkey Kong Country 3 has a Nintendo 64 in Wrinkly Kong's cave. You can even hear the castle music from Super Mario 64 playing in the background.
  • In No More Heroes, Travis Touchdown has a Nintendo 64-esque console in his apartment.
  • In the Mega Man Battle Network and Mega Man Star Force games, the Wii, GameCube, Super Nintendo, and DS all make appearances. The GameBoy Advance also shows up in Battle Network 5.
  • In the game Elebits, Wiis and Wii remotes appear as objects scattered throughout the game.
  • In the subway multiplayer map for Perfect Dark Zero, 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 how PD0 turned out, this may well be a Take That backfire.
  • F-Zero GX's 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.)
  • 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.
  • Picross DS has a series of puzzles that make pictures of Nintendo systems. Years before that, Mario's Picross included a puzzle that made an original Game Boy.
  • In Super Mario RPG you can buy a Game Boy off of a mushroom kid, and it even opens up a shooter-style minigame.
  • Pikmin 2 is loaded with these, most notably an NES D-Pad and a Game & Watch.
    • Pikmen 3 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.
  • Pushmo has a giant Nintendo 3DS puzzle.
  • One of the bosses in Hyper Zone, an early SNES game by HAL Labs, is shaped like the face button layout on the SNES controller.
  • There's sort of an example of this in EarthBound, in the form of something 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!"
  • The Prepper Pad from ZombiU was deliberately designed to look like a Wii U GamePad.
  • In Conker's Bad Fur Day, one of Conker's idle animations is him playing Killer Instinct on the Game Boy Color, with an 8-bit version of Jago's theme from Killer Instinct 2.
  • In Banjo Kazooie, the 3rd file on the file select screen is a scene of Banjo playing the main theme on a Game Boy.
  • For the Mii Plaza in the 3DS, you can acquire hats for the Miis shaped like the 3DS, NES, and the Famicom by playing Find Mii multiple times. The update that added the plaza ticket games also added hats for Nintendo's other hardware, including different hats for the SNES and Super Famicom.
  • A Gamecube Console and several controllers can be seen on the main menu of Gotcha Force
  • In The Wonderful 101, Wonder-Red holding 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.

    Sega Hardware 
  • One of the E-series in Sonic Adventure had visible Sega Dreamcasts built in it.
    • And in the opening cutscene of Sonic Unleashed a Dreamcast can be seen in Eggmans pod when he fires at Earth to awaken Dark Gaia.
    • Likewise, a Sega Genesis/Mega Drive appears in the Hub Level in Sonic Generations (X360 and PS3 versions only). It lets you play the original game once you get enough skill points.
    • In Sonic Chronicles, a Model 1 Sega Genesis can be seen alongside an Egg Robo in the Metropolis level. Also, while the console itself does not appear in the Kron Colony level, a Sega Genesis controller can be seen hanging from a beam in Nestor's home.
  • Phantasy Star Portable has most of the Sega consoles as weapons: the Mark III, the Master System, the Genesis, the Saturn and the Dreamcast.
  • In Shenmue, Ryo Hazuki has what appears to be a Sega Saturn console in his house; odd, considering that the game takes place in the mid-1980s.
  • Pulseman has a picture of a Mega Drive in the background of the first stage.
  • The Genesis version of Aladdin has tons of said systems in the background of the level taking place inside Genie's lamp. Justified, considering The Genie Knows Jack Nicholson.
  • In The Typing of the Dead, the player character has a Sega Dreamcast strapped to his back.
  • In the Sega CD version of The Adventures Of Willy Beamish, Willy's Game Buddy looks like a Game Gear.
  • In Virtual-ON, the original Virtuaroids had drive engines shaped like Sega Saturns in their backs. The original game was quite popular on that console. In Oratorio Tangram, they were upgraded to Dreamcasts.
  • In 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.
  • In Hatsune Miku Project DIVA f, a PS Vita/PS3 game by Sega, the music video for "Remote Controller" features a Dreamcast controller.

    Playstation hardware 
  • One level of Army Men: RTS for the PS2 features a giant (in comparision to the units themselves, which are toy soldiers) PS2 that you can gain electric energy for buildings and units from.
  • Some of the weirder enemies you can fight in Star Ocean: The Second Story are murderous PlayStation controllers that whip you with their cords.
  • In LittleBigPlanet, the PS3 controller is used to control the player's 'pod'. Sackboy even copies your button presses!
    • The Vita version uses... a Vita instead of course.
    • Touch My Katamari has game systems closely resembling the Vita (though it's labeled genericly when rolled up)
      • Similarly, one of the rollable people in Me and My Katamari is playing a PSP.
  • In Playstation All Stars Battle Royale, Sweet Tooth's Level 2 Super has him control a missile with a PS3 controller.
    • Also, according to Word of God, the wavy lines in the menu background and the background of the boss arena are meant to resemble the PS3 system menu.
  • Katey uses a PSP in Dead Rising 2. In an aversion of Pac Man Fever, she even comments that she's playing Mega Man Powered Up, which was only released for that system.

    Xboxes 
  • XBox 360s appear as collectibles throughout Condemned. There are achievements for finding them.
  • One level in Breakdown contains an XBox.
  • Beautiful Katamari lets you roll up XBox 360s and controllers.
  • In Midtown Madness 3 for the original Xbox, you can see pedestrians holding boxes with Xbox logos on them.
  • Alan Wake contains an Xbox 360. The room also contains a copy of Night Springs: The Video Game, based on the Show Within a Show.
  • Given that the US Army's solution for operating its Bomb Disposal robots in Real Life was to buy a bunch of off-the-shelf Xbox 360 controllers, it's probably only a matter of time before a Call of Duty or Battlefield game uses this trope in some form, if they haven't already.
  • A whole stack of Xbox 360s appear on the file select screen of Banjo-Kazooie Nuts & Bolts.

    Multiple Hardware Families 
  • In Banjo-Kazooie, on the file select screen, Banjo will be playing a Game Boy if you select the third file.
    • In 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.
    • In Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts, Kazooie is seen playing both an Xbox 360 and Nintendo 64. Later, one of the levels is called LOGBOX 720, which is modelled after the interior of an Xbox 360.
  • Metal Gear:
    • An MSX computer and cartridge appears in Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake.
    • Metal Gear Solid has a developer's Playstation on a shelf. On the remake for the Gamecube, the PlayStation is replaced by a Nintendo Gamecube.
    • The PlayStation 3 makes a cameo in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. There's one on the upper deck of the plane, and the controller for the Mk. 2 is modeled after a PS3 controller. The original PlayStation can also be seen in a flashback as part of the encounter with Psycho Mantis, and Sunny is seen playing a PSP multiple times. Also, the in-game music player is an iPod.
  • In Snatcher, the computer used by Jean-Jack Gibson varies between versions. In the PC-88 and MSX2 versions, it is the same computer platform that the game is running on, whereas in the later console versions it is a PC-68 (a fictional model).
    • In SD Snatcher, Gibson's computer is specifically an MSX Turbo-R.
    • In the later versions of Snatcher, Metal Gear Mk. II is rebuilt at the end as the platform the game is running on (i.e. in the Sega CD version, Metal becomes a second model Genesis with a Sega CD attachment).

    Other Hardware 
  • Most Glider games feature the built-in-monochrome-screen Macs where the series got its start.
  • The appropriately named MSX in La-Mulana qualifies. Being a homage to that system, the game begins with its BIOS and the protagonist uses his own MSX - with its screen border visible on the game window - to view his inventory. He can even find Konami cartridges to combine and gain special effects. However, the remake turns it into a Brand X laptop.
  • The Dungeon Of Doom and its remake had the current state-of-the-art Apple Macintosh as a rare throwable object, which smashed on contact for tremendous damage.
  • In Spellbound Dizzy, one significant item was a Sinclair ZX81.
  • Star Parodier features an anthropomorphic PC Engine 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.
  • Sonic Dash has the Android robot as a playable character. Play 50 times with this character, and you unlock Andronic. This is exclusive to Android systems.
  • The iPhone version of Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I includes an unique idle animation where Sonic pulls out an iPhone and brings it to his ear.

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