Arnie Contra 3
Image: Arnold Schwarzenegger

Back in the '80s and early '90s, video game box art was a very different beast to that which we know today. CGI renders were the stuff of a madman's dreams, and crude, hand-drawn covers were commonplace.

When you consider how many console and arcade titles were released on a yearly basis, it's perhaps forgivable that the illustrators responsible for the art that would grace the covers of these releases were really up against it - and therefore started copying poses from the popular action movies of the period.

Hardcore Gaming 101 has a stunning gallery of this mimicry, most of which is focused on the one and only Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger – famous film star and former Governor of California. Konami appears to have had quite a thing for the ex-Mr. Olympia, having used him more than once for its Contra series.

Don't believe us? Check out the examples below.

Arnie Contra
Image: 20th Century Fox / Konami
Arnie Navy Moves
Image: 20th Century Fox / Dinamic Software
Arnie Golden Axe 3
Arnie in a Conan press shot (left), Golden Axe III (middle), Warrior Blade: Rastan Saga Episode III (right) — Image: Universal Pictures / Sega / Taito
Arnie Contra Spirits
Image: De Laurentiis Entertainment Group / Konami
Arnie Streets of Rage 2
Image: Sega / Alinamin

But hey! Arnie wasn't the only '80s action star this kind of thing happened to, although he may have been the most copied. Fellow '80s icon Sylvester Stallone is a close second when it comes to having his persona ripped off by video game companies, as you can see from the examples below.

Sly Contra
Image: Orion Pictures / Konami
Sly Sega
Image: Orion Pictures / Sega

Do you have any memorable covers from this period which are clearly based on real-world stars? Let us know with a comment.

This article was originally published by on Thu 11th October, 2012.

[source, via]