I know what you're thinking, and stop it. "Hey, Lisa, what makes you think you are an authority on such a hard-hitting journalistic subject like breakfast cereal? Redheads are unreliable sources 65% of the time, plus they make up statistics."
Well, let me quell your fears by opening with this: I have, in my lifetime, consumed so many bowls of Cheerios that not only should I never have heart problems, I've surely developed some sort of super-heart by now.
Plus, I'm not a real redhead.
Cereal has been a staple of my diet since at least the womb. It doesn't take a rocket surgeon to deduce that after three kitchen fires, including one that set off every smoke alarm in my apartment complex causing patrons to flee the premises, I should probably stick to processed oats and 1% milk. But don't get me wrong; I don't just eat boxes upon boxes of cereal each month (Count Chocula specifically, if it's October) simply because I have the cooking skills of a mentally-handicapped sea sponge. Nay, I genuinely enjoy it.
But look at you. You're still not sold on my cereal prowess. Okay, here: Last month, I was featured in a special edition playing card for the customizable card game, "Geek Fight!" The featured artwork depicts me in an attacking stance wielding a box of cereal, which everyone knows is my weapon of choice whenever guests come over to my home without texting first, or bringing fruit snacks.
Cereal is just like video games: New ones come out every year, but most of them are just sequels. Back in the 80's, a few debuted with video game tie-ins, as mentioned in the video: Donkey Kong Crunch (1982), Donkey Kong Jr. cereal (1983), Pac-Man cereal (1983) which eventually added Ms. Pac-Man, and of course, the Nintendo Cereal System (1988), the best example of video game cereal with the stupidest name. All of these were, in my educated opinion and according to my experienced palate, giggle-inducingly delicious.
[Editor's note: You did watch the video up top, right? If not, go watch it before you read the rest.]
How come this trend hasn't continued through the years, especially now that video games are so wildly popular? Surely these first video game-themed products were intended to spark children's interest by plastering their favorite characters all over the packaging. Like Mario? Think he's pretty cool? Here he is in marshmallow form—eat up! Any kid would rather eat Goombas than boring old squares, loops, or flakes.
These days, the best we get is Guitar Hero featured on the front of Frosted Flakes as an advertisement for the game, when we'd rather have Guitar Hero Crunch with edible drum sets and whammy bars. (And, I don't want to push it, but a mini Guitar Hero controller toy inside that doubles as a squirt gun would be nice, too.)
I can only imagine the veritable mirthquake I would experience today if my favorite game characters were not just slapped on cereal boxes as advertisements, but in actual crunchy, marshmallow form. Imagine a Saturday morning gaming session with Assassin's Creed 2 while chomping on a bowl of EziO's. That. THAT is a world I want to live in.
The funniest part to me is that gamers, being the nostalgic, gimmick-lovers we are, clearly are yearning for video game cereal. Try Googling your favorite game combined with the word "cereal." You'll find Halo Puffs, Call of Duty Modern Cereal, Falcon Crunch, Demon Souls Flakes ("They're Worth Dying For… Over and Over"), and best of all, Grains of War, the G4 spoof.
Look at the astounding number of horribly done Photoshops! Really, they are just awful. All of them. Could have been done in MS Paint. But that's not the point.
The point is that this is what gamers want. We don't ask for much: fast servers, no framerate issues, functioning Xboxes, multiplayer, and swiftly-delivered pizza. So, would it really be too much to ask to give us…
- Grand Theft AutO's!
It's a DUI in a box! More enjoyable if you shoplift it.
- Mega Man Energy Tanks and 1UPS!
A cereal to get you PUMPED, but one bowl would be surprisingly difficult to finish. Every box would contain at least one real screw!
- Claptrap Sugar Smacks, with over a million different Marshmallow Guns!
One of the best cereals you'll ever have, and a variety that's even more fun to eat with a friend! Unfortunately, the very last bite will leave you feeling angry and unsatisfied.
The only benefit of not releasing video game-themed cereal that I can possibly think of is that it greatly reduces my chances of being featured on Hoarders. I would, without a doubt, collect every box of gaming cereal I could get my hands on. They'd go on the same shelf as my OchoCincO's with the phone number printed on the side of the box that leads to a sex hotline. I don't care what anyone says, one day that gem is going to be worth at least double my Record of Agarest War mousepad.
Kotaku columnist Lisa Foiles is best known as the former star of Nickelodeon's award-winning comedy show, All That. She currently works as an actress/web host in Hollywood and writes for her game site, Save Point. For more info, visit Lisa's official website.