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Boom Shaka Laka! Michelob Ultra and NBA Jam Team Up For Retro Cans

by Rudy Sanchez on 02/17/2022 | 2 Minute Read

In an era before gaming was driven by in-app purchases and advertising, as well as a load of invasive data collection, there were video arcades and stacks of quarters. In player vs. player, the winner stayed, and every arcade had its top gamers, who would draw a crowd of competitors and spectators. There was no Twitch, no YouTube; you were either there or didn’t see it, with the occasional videotaping of a game.

The over-the-top Midway game NBA Jam debuted in 1993 and featured 2-on-2 arcade-style basketball, with no fouls, superhuman moves, and Easter eggs, including unlocking a playable Bill Clinton. According to Guinness World Records, the arcade game generated over a billion dollars in its first year, setting a revenue record.

Editorial photograph
Editorial photograph

Michelob Ultra is now partnering with NBA Jam to host a 90s nostalgic experience at the All-Star game with the “Boom Shaka Laka” barcade featuring the 1993 record-breaking game. The party will include appearances by musicians DJ Jazzy Jeff and Fat Joe, as well as former NBA players Clyde Drexler, Dikembe Mutombo, Dominique Wilkins, and James Worthy—all of whom appeared in the game.

Editorial photograph

Additionally, Michelob Ultra has designed a trio of cans that visually pay homage to the original NBA Jam. Sprites take jump shots with the ball on fire, a three-pointer, or getting air for a dunk. The backgrounds are also retro, with each can featuring a different catchphrase from the game, such as “He’s on fire,” “From downtown,” and “Boom shaka laka.” Michelob Ultra’s logo gets cleverly rendered in a 90s video game start screen aesthetic with NBA Jam cobranding and the nutritional information laid out like video game stats.

Editorial photograph
Editorial photograph

The limited-edition cans will only be available in select Cleveland-area bars, Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, and Boom Shaka Laka during the NBA All-Star. The retro-designed EnjoyItLikeIts1993.com is already open and where themed merchandise and NBA Jam cabinets are available for purchase.

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