My wife bought a toy game controller for our baby girl. I couldn’t have been prouder. Our six-month old already loved to drum her feet on my DualShock 4 — a born gamer.
I started absentmindedly fiddling with the so-called “Fisher-Price Game & Learn,” impressed by how many sounds they’d managed to cram into one toy.
Then, a funny idea struck me. I started pressing the buttons in that infamous sequence — the one that’s become such a must-have easter egg in the video game community, it’s worth punching into practically any game to see if developers decided to pay their respects.
Up. Up. Down. Down. Left. Right. Left. Right. B. A.
By the time I got halfway through, I’d convinced myself it was folly. The controller’s audio wasn’t keeping up with my taps. Then, I noticed the last button in the sequence — you’re supposed to end it by pressing “Start” — didn’t even exist. No Start button. I was hunting in vain.
That’s when the controller erupted into sound. A Mario jump. A Mario mushroom power-up. A Mario coin. “You Win!” it declared.
The Konami Code worked.
When I hopped on the internet, of course, I quickly discovered my discovery wasn’t remotely new — several people spotted it back in 2018, which appears to be the same year Fisher-Price introduced the toy.
But it was new to me. Perhaps it’s new to you?
And it makes me smile to think that Kazuhisa Hashimoto’s easter egg lives in a practically indestructible gadget designed to bring babies joy. He was the original programmer of the Konami Code, and he died earlier this year.