Remember the BattleToads? Created by Rare and published by TradeWest, this little video game became quite the phenomenon in the early 1990’s. Surprisingly this ad for the original BattleToads tries to talk up how the BattleToads are cooler than the Ninja Turtles, then follows it up with a bunch of Turtle-esque phrases like “radical”. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, or at least the quickest way to make a buck.

Turtles fans had to put up with this for years, starting around 1989. If you loved the TMNT surely you’d love anything that said surfer catchphrases and was a gross out anthropomorphic creature, right? As a kid I could always tell when someone was trying to market to the Ninja Turtles fans. From the character designs, to the colors of the logo and the packaging, you could see when someone was trying to copy the Turtles. As if saying Cowabunga and being a reptile was the only thing that made the Green Machine work.

BattleToads didn’t make it very far on being a TMNT clone. They never had any toys (although the GamePro contributor “Major Mike” who used a BattleToad’s avatar in the magazines did). They had a cartoon show that ran for all of one episode and pretty much were relegated to staple of comic book ads. That in itself worked well enough though, as comics and game magazines well into the mid 1990’s featured the BattleToads in full page spreads like the one above.

Despite trying to tap into the TMNT following and failing, BattleToads managed to survive on it’s own for a bit. The original game was hard as hell, but the BattleToads/Double Dragon crossover game was such an awesome concept. It was like the Smash Brothers of it’s era… Only not as good or fun. Still the concept was cool and it helped give both franchises a little extra life. This ad also has a bunch of other games shoved in on the side. Never let it be said that TradeWest wasn’t trying to get the most bang for their ad buck.

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