Classic SEGA Ads: Take a peek above deck at these Japanese Skies of Arcadia commercials

When it comes to Japanese games being localized for the West, I tend to like it when they stick as closely to the original release as possible. I like to hear the original Japanese dialogue, have the names of characters and locations retained, see the original cover art used, and I hate it when they change the game’s title (hey, I just noticed that Jet Grind Radio broke all of these rules!). Skies of Arcadia, however, is a rare exception. When it was revealed in the pages of The Official Sega Dreamcast Magazine that Eternal Arcadia was to be retitled Skies of Arcadia, I was not only okay with this, I actually much preferred it.


While “Eternal” lends itself nicely to an RPG epic, the localized title truly evokes the game’s sense of adventure on the high seas skies. Despite my praise for the name change, SEGA really dropped the ball on marketing the game in the West. I don’t recall commercials for the game, and the print ads were nothing special. Meanwhile, over in Japan they had these fun 15 second spots for the game. The first ad, seen above, has some kids going above deck to discover the amazing world of Arcadia. The second, seen below, does a good job with showing off several shots of the game. It’s just a shame the West didn’t get a great ad for the game.


6 responses to “Classic SEGA Ads: Take a peek above deck at these Japanese Skies of Arcadia commercials

  1. cube_b3 says:

    You work in advertising what was the logic behind the name change?

    Eternal is perceived as immortal where as Skies are vast.
    Skies is also more relevant to the game mechanics (just like Jet Grind Radio) and also show case the games unique selling proposition which were well animated Skies.

    I am still not sure which name is better, Eternal has a nice ring to it and it is a more powerful word, but I suppose may be a tad bit cliche. Would love it if Sega West released their focus group report.

    So even if the name change was good everything else was a disaster. What the fuck did they do the box art, as I have said many times the damn box art prevented me from picking up the game it made it look like a dating sim.

    That said, I do remember a nice print ad. It was a worn old picture of Vice with all his titles. The Ad read you can change your reputation but not your clothes. I thought it was funny. The fact that I remember it over a decade later says something…

  2. Trippled says:

    Despite this, Skies of Arcadia is probably way more popular in western terretories than in Japan.

    Sakura Wars, Valkyria Chronicles and Shining always beat in popularity…

  3. ricerictwice says:

    I actually preferred Eternal Acadia. I liked it because when I first saw it in the official Dreamcast magazine it looked very similar to the on foot portions of Panzer Dragoon Saga. I own the Dreamcast version which I had preordered prior to launch, the GameCube version that I bought and played through a couple years ago, the Japanese limited box and number 20 of First Four Figure’s Vyse exclusive edition statue.

  4. Tasteofink says:

    This game needs psn rerelease or something I love it on my cast if course but I’d still love a rerelease

  5. segaismysavior says:

    I recall the rumor at the time was that SEGA of America didn’t want to have a game on their system with the initials of “EA,” since publisher Electronic Arts was intentionally avoiding support of the Dreamcast. I think Eternal Arcadia sounds/reads more elegant than “Skies of.”

    If any SEGA property deserved an anime treatment, it was this one.

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