Released way back in 1972, the Magnavox Odyssey was the very first home video game system on the market. The console is obviously very primitive by today’s standards, only serving up simple moving squares as lines as images. Built with closed-circuit electronic technology, rather than as a computer with written software programs (as seen later with the Fairchild Channel F and Atari VCS), its options were quite limited. The backgrounds were applied with plastic overlays that players would physically place on the TV screen. It was a much different time, but nobody had ever seen anything like it.
And here we have the very first television commercial for the product, which, in turn, is the very first video game commercial to ever hit the airwaves. It goes back to before they were even called video games; the narrator instead refers to it as “the electronic game of the future”. You can hear him go out of his way to explain exactly what the device is, and it’s clear they tried to make it look as action-packed as possible with its simple moving shapes. But to be fair, users were simply amazed that they were in control of those moving shapes, as basic as it was. So, here we have it. Does this clip make you want to own a Magnavox Odyssey?