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Jackie Chan endorsed Guangdong-made Super Nintendo ripoff

Posted: 11/5/2013 10:04 am

Many people living in China are aware that the government has enforced a video games console ban for many years now, which was recently “lifted” — well, kind of, but that’s another story.

I am almost certain, however, that nobody reading this knows that Jackie Chan was once the face of a Guangdong-based Super Nintendo clone sold under the guise of “study aide”.

According to a report by popular gaming website Kotaku today, “Chinese netizens have been going over some of Chan’s earlier product endorsements, including ones that should’ve been banned.”

Kotaku explained:

It was basically a console built into a keyboard that took in game cartridges. The keyboard also supported NES/SNES styled controllers. The system was effectively a Nintendo or Super Nintendo Clone depending on the model number. The games that the Subor played were often variations of Japanese games translated to Chinese, or sometimes even really weird homegrown Chinese versions.

If I was a Chinese kid growing up in Guangdong in the early 90s, I would have probably given anything for one of these Nintendo “rip-offs” endorsed by Jackie Chan. Wouldn’t you?

The company that built the “study aide” console, trading under the name “Subor” in English, is still in existence today and operates out of Zhongshan.

It’s also quite an interesting case study on how Chinese companies have been getting around government restrictions in the marketplace for decades.

Be sure to check out the photos below, and see Kotaku’s article for the original video advertisement of the console, featuring Jackie Chan himself.

Photo credit: Kotaku

  • Ray

    That’s so great. If one really digs in the urban villages, its still fun to find some of these bootleg video games. Makes me nostalgic for the pre-DVD shop era of China which I never even saw.

    • Michael de Waal-Montgomery

      China is full of hidden gems… :)

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