Rock Arcade: 6 Musicians Featured In Video Games

Green Day as green pigs. The resemblance is uncanny!
Green Day as green pigs. The resemblance is uncanny!

Recently Green Day have been trying to promote their latest album by infiltrating all forms of mainstream media and somebody in the band must have realized that Angry Birds is a thing so why should it be left out?

That is, presumably, how the world came to see Green Day members immortalized as green pigs for an Angry Birds cartoon spin-off and the Facebook version of Angry Birds, because if you're going to combine Angry Birds and Green Day, why not mix it up with Facebook as well?

Then this video of Freddie Mercury as an Angry Bird came out too. It would seem no one wants to be left off the Angry Birds train, not even dead people.

But the idea of musicians being awkwardly stuck into video games for the sake of promotion and capitalism is nothing new at all. In fact, it's been around almost as long as video games themselves, just like all those horrible video-game adaptations of movies. Have musicians fared any better in the gaming world than films have, though? Well, you be the judge.

6. Fred Durst in WWF SmackDown! Just Bring It

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This one was a bit of quid pro quo rather than a marketing scheme. Back in the long-ago days when "World Wrestling Entertainment" was the "World Wrestling Federation," the Playstation was on its second incarnation, and Limp Bizkit was still a cultural sensation among much the same people who watched professional wrestling, The Undertaker was doing a badass biker gimmick and coming to the ring to the tune of Limp Bizkit's "Rollin'," because that is the kind of music badass bikers listen to.

When the WWF wanted to use "Rollin'" in its latest video game, Durst agreed but had a request: To put him in the game as a playable character. So they did, they just made it extremely difficult to unlock him, presumably in the hopes no one would actually do it and find out what horrible, dirty things they had to do just to secure the rights to a song. For what it's worth though, they at least made him a decent wrestler to use in the game.

5. Ronnie James Dio in Holy Diver

This one is just bizarre. In 1989, Nintendo made a game based on Ronnie James Dio slaying dragons and doing generally badass things like that. This really shouldn't come as a surprise considering Japan's deep obsession with '80s metal. Actually, it's probably more surprising that there isn't an Yngwie Malmsteen game.

Anyway, the game itself only came out on the NES in Japan, but you can find it on the Internet to play on an emulator. I did it when I was 16 and firmly in my "Dio is God" phase. The truly strange thing about all this is that the game itself is pretty good. It's a total rip-off of Castlevania, but putting that aside it's a lot of fun.

4. Aerosmith in Revolution X

Like Holy Diver, this arcade game was pretty much a rip-off of another game, specifically the Terminator 2 arcade game. Revolution X takes place in a dark, dystopian future where something called the "New Order Nation" has taken over the world. This New Order Nation may or may not have featured ex-members of Joy Division, but either way one of their goals was apparently ban all forms of music, which doesn't sound particularly out of character for Peter Hook, come to think of it.

Long story short, New Order Nation captures Aerosmith and it's up to you to a) kill the NON and b) rescue Aerosmith. If you succeed, you get to be a VIP at an Aerosmith concert. Honestly, I'd be a little disappointed if I saved the entire world and that was my reward, but that's just me. From what I understand, this game was absolutely awful, which sounds par for the course for Aerosmith in the '90s.

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