TSA Advent Calendar: Day 7

Is it really a week in already? That’s seven whole days. Which also means that there are only 18 days to go! 18 days till I can bite into a large round lump of chocolate, brought to me by one of God’s most magical creatures. The easter bunny. Yep. I sure can’t wait for easter! And to celebrate, here are some fun stories about easter eggs in the gaming world.

If we start at the beginning, we’ll discover that gaming’s first easter egg was an incredibly dull one. It was simply a hidden square in Atari’s 1980 adventure title.. Adventure which would transport players to a room with the words “Created by Warren Robinett” scrawled (well, about as scrawly as you can get with 1980’s text) across the floor. However, I wouldn’t have told you this if there wasn’t something mildly interesting to accompany the fact. The credit was placed there because Mr.Robinett felt that designers just didn’t get the credit they deserved and decided to do something about it. Not only that, but because of the size of games back then, his little easter egg made up around 5% of the total game! Don’t worry though, he claims that he only inserted it after the rest of the game was finished.
The points are gone now! You’re too late. Go away!
It appears that developers love doing their own thing and sneaking their own little ‘flair’ into a game here and there. Take for example, Jacques Servin, a character animator on Maxis’ SimCopter in 1996. Servin’s ‘flair’ was fabulous and is seen in the way that he replaced some of the game’s saucy, scantily-clad women with saucy, scantily-clad men. Not only this, but if it was Friday the 13th or his own birthday, the men would appear much more often than the other NPCs and would share a kiss or two with each other. Unfortunately, they began appearing more than they should have and Will Wright, the man who created the Sims, found out about it. Jacques got fired.

Then there’s the fact that Yoshi is hiding on the roof of the castle in Mario 64. By shaking the SIXAXIS in Metal Gear Solid 4 whilst Rose is on screen, her boobs will shake along with you. There’s the text written on the Gant Bridge in San Andreas that simply tells you that there are no easter eggs up there and that you should go away. There are the evil cows which will attack you in Diablo II if you can find its secret cow stage. There’s also the real way of beating Doom II which can only be done by killing John Romero, one of the games designers who can only be found by using the no-clip cheat and fly to him. Maybe somewhere in your head you knew that. That’s because a distorted and reversed voice tells you all of it when you shoot him.

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Hold on, it’s Christmas.

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