Musicians pop up in the oddest places: movies, tv shows, cereal boxes, and even games. We already know several artists we have their own video games, but there have been a few who were happy with a cameo. The thing is, they pop up in the weirdest places. Either is has nothing to do with their career or they randomly show up for no reason. Here are ten if the most unexpected musician cameos in video games.
10. Bon Jovi & Christina Aguilera – The Sims Superstar
After a couple of hours feeding and grooming your sim it can get boring, so why not make them a celebrity? This was the premise of the sixth expansion for the original Sims game. With a new town to explore and new career paths, your sim could follow their wildest dreams. And if you were lucky enough you would find Bon Jovi, Christina Aguilera, or Marilyn Monroe in the new town. You can’t control them, in fact you can’t really do much with them except ask for their autograph. When you think about it the only one that’s even remotely recognizable is Monroe.
9. Avenged Sevenfold – Call of Duty: Black Ops II
You don’t expect to see many celebrity faces in this shooter, but in the 2012 installment of the franchise players can complete the game once and get an ending where two of the characters play a concert with Avenged Sevenfold. No, it has nothing to do with the plot. Digitized version of the band members come on stage and perform their song “Carry On” in its entirety. Just imagine the confusion of fighting your way through snipers and people who want to kill you to end up at a concert with Avenged Sevenfold. Not what you expect in the middle of a battle.
8. Fred Durst – Fight Club/Smack Down: Just Bring It
It’s no secret that Fred Durst isn’t well liked and maybe this is why he’s featured in two fighting games. Either Durst or the creators figured their games would sell more with the promise of kicking the shit out of the Limp Biskit frontman. Their plan failed. If anything these games serve as reminders that there was a time when people actually liked Durst and the band. The promise of playing him in a video game was a joy to some people and not a sad attempt to remain relevant and cool as we may see it now. Don’t be surprised if he pops up in obscure games in the future. It seems like the kind of career move he would pull just to stay in the spotlight.”
7. KISS – Tony Hawk’s Underground
Kiss are no strangers to video games. In 2000, they starred in Kiss: Psycho Circus: The Nightmare Child, a poor excuse for a first person shooter. But the thing that gets them on this list is their inclusion in Tony Hawk’s Underground. Not only are Gene Simmons and the other Kiss members unlockable skaters, they also perform a bonus concert for collecting the letters K-I-S-S in a bonus level called “Hotter Than Hell.” Collect all the letters the first time and an actual clip from one of their concert DVDs will play. Collect them a second time and the band will get on stage and do a song for you.
6. Beastie Boys – NBA Jam On Fire Edition
The NBA Jam series has become known for their odd cameos usually featuring presidents, but this one was a bit unexpected. On the 2010 release, you could select Adam Yach and Mike D from the Beastie Boys as playable characters. They end up looking like poorly cut out figures similar to those found on Cartoon Network’s Mad, but that’s what makes it even funnier. Who was the one who looked at the game and said “It needs more hip-hop. How about the Beastie Boys? They must love basketball!” The guys are pretty strict when it comes to their likeness or music being used, so it’s interesting they let it be used here. It’s odd, but pretty cool cameo from one of the best hip-hop acts ever. There’s nothing better than trying to score some freethrows with a swollen headed Mike D.
5. Snoop Dogg – True Crime Streets of L.A.
If you’ve ever played GTA and said to yourself “This game needs more Snoop Dogg” then look no further. This game is similar to the GTA experience, but instead of causing trouble you’re the one making sure it doesn’t happen. This means you can play as Snoop chasing down criminals and upholding the law. To get him you have to either use a cheat code or collect 30 Dogg Bones, but it’s well worth it to hear him say things like “I’ma make you scream like ya mama last night,” “Bam!,” and “This is the Snoop-dizzle in pursuit of another dumbass motherfucker.” He even has his own minigame to play once you unlock him. Based on those one liners maybe they should include him in more open world games.
4. Kurt Cobain – Guitar Hero 5
By the time Guitar Hero 5 was announced people were tired of music games and those who weren’t moved on to the superior Rock Band. As an attempt to get people interested again, the developers included several musicians as playable characters with the most controversial being Kurt Cobain. Even though they manage to get his look right, with his iconic cardigan sweater and Daniel Johnston shirt, there’s still something creepy about the hollowed eye figure trying sing “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” Courtney Love and the surviving members of the band were upset that Cobain could be used to play all the songs meaning he could sing tracks like “YMCA.” Of course no matter how many celebrities Guitar Hero 5 added, it didn’t get anyone excited for more of their games.
3. Phil Collins – GTA: Vice City Stories
Rockstar are no strangers to outlandish plot lines, but this is even ridiculous for them. One of the missions has you protecting Phil Collins because for some reason people are trying to kill him. They really hate No Jacket, No Service I guess. Once you complete the mission you are treated to a complete concert performance of Collin’s hit “In the Air Tonight.” I get the plot line takes place in the ’80s, but Phil Collins? He doesn’t even seem like the type of guy who would go for a role in the GTA series. It’s one of those bizarre moments that reminds you why Rockstar games are much fun: they always give you the unexpected.
2. Michael Jackson – Space Channel 5 Part 2/Ready 2 Rumble Boxing Part 2
Michael Jackson is no stranger to video games. He has starred in several games like Moonwalker and The Experience and has even worked on the music for Sonic the Hedgehog 3, but he had a role in the sequel game to Space Channel 5. In this rhythm action game, he plays Space Michael who helps Ulala defeat her rivals. The game features many of Jackson’s iconic dance moves, such as the moonwalk, the scary bear, and his pop and lock skills. The same year he allowed his likeness to be used for a secret character in the Ready 2 Rumble Boxing sequel. It’s a little strange since Michael himself has said he’s a lover not a fighter.
1. Ozzy Osbourne – Brutal Legend
Brutal Legend was an unexpectedly awesome game. It’s fun, interesting, and has a kick ass soundtrack. Some of metal’s biggest names play different characters, like Lemmy of Motorhead playing a healer named Kill Master (get it?) and Rob Halford voicing General Lionwhyte. But the best cameo in the game was Ozzy Osbourne in the role of the Guardian of Metal. Not only did he voice the character and have his likeness in the game, but he hangs out in the pits of Hell. How metal is that? He upgrades your car in the game and is even quite the wise cracker. Sure, Ozzy’s made another cameo on Guitar Hero World Tour, but that game was shit.
Billie Joe Armstrong – Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland
Travis Barker – Tony Hawk Project 8
Matt Bellamy – Guitar Hero 5