Hey Everyone, Prodaj here! Started out with an idea and it grew into a huge article. So for the sake of the medium that this piece will be on, I will break it up into 3 or 4 parts. Here’s part one:
What Ever Happened to Cheat Codes? pt.1
What ever happened to cheat codes? If you have been gaming as long as I have you would notice that presently video games do not offer secret cheat codes for players to achieve feats easily anymore. Now if you want to get an advantage you have to pay money to download unlockables like skins, alternate weapons, and other utilities that will provide enhanced play. With the advent of the internet and online play, the cheat culture has for all intents and purposes, died a quiet painful and for my case a sad death. There was something even better than playing the hottest game to hit shelves: discovering the cheat code. I recently dusted off my old PS2 and showed my son the cheat code for Sonic the Hedgehog 2. As a child of this generation, he had never heard of cheat codes, so I was happy to enlighten him. Now, I do NOT under any circumstances condone cheating in professional sports, the business world or in academia. But there is nothing like speeding past any and all obstacles with impunity as a golden invincibility-clad Sonic. This slice of nostalgia I served to my son made me wonder: what happened to cheat codes, Game Trainers, walkthroughs and the like? What happened to this thriving culture that seemingly died quietly almost overnight?
I’m not allergic to hard work but I do appreciate a helping hand to get a leg up in a game. I know that others cheated with an abandon that made some detractors of it cry out in unfairness. But I was simply looking for an enhanced gaming experience. The first cheat code I “discovered” was for Mortal Kombat for the Sega Genesis. Did you know that before the internet, information was passed around by word of mouth? I mean sure somebody probably read about the cheat in a magazine and just spread it all over like a 2 year old slathering himself up in peanut butter, but that’s how I found out about the cheat code for MK. I was at the Metro bus stop on my way home from school, and started a conversation with another kid that was waiting for the bus too. We started in like any other kids do: talking about stuff we like. It quickly went from movies and music to video games. Now back then, you were either Team Sega or Team Nintendo. As you already know I was obviously Team Sega. My mom didn’t buy me a Nintendo but a Sega. It was that simple. I became a torch- bearing representative for Sonic the Hedgehog and woe to those who said that Super Mario was better. Thankfully the kid was Team Sega too and that’s how we got on the subject of Mortal Kombat.
Around that time, MK was garnering some negative press for its violence, something that made most of the kids in the United States want to play it even more. I was no exception. I begged my mom to get it for me and she finally did (well after it was released most likely due to the price decrease). So this kid at the bus stop asked me if I knew the cheat code for Mortal Kombat. I said no I had no idea there was one. He replied that yes there indeed was one that let you do the fatalities. At the time the aforementioned blood and gore was a hot topic in Washington as censors rallied to make the creators of MK tone down the violence. The developers did so by making a version of Mortal Kombat that was bloodless and boring. I don’t know if they themselves let the cheat code leak, but I thank whoever’s loose lips let that one out. So the kid tells me the code: “ABACABB”. I went home and powered my Genesis on with hopeful thoughts. I entered the code and it worked! I was killing my opponents in the goriest fashion. I was hooked from then on; I searched video game magazines and talked to a lot of kids and eventually I found out about another cheat code that was even better. I met the kid who told me the ABACABB cheat at the Metro bus stop again and couldn’t wait to see if he knew the other code. I asked him and he replied that he didn’t to my delight. Now I can pass on something I learned to the guy who got me on to cheat codes. I told him the cheat code to enable the debug mode and after I told him felt proud that I could give back. That code was “down, up, left, left, A, right, down” or spelled out as DULLARD. Now I don’t want to toot my own horn or anything but I am proud to say that I actually knew what dullard meant. Webster’s define the word as “a slow or stupid person”. Now I would like to think that Netherrealm, the developers of MK, really didn’t think their customers were actually dullards but it is an interesting cheat code all the same. On the other side of that coin there is a Youtube video that I recently stumbled upon that shows that Netherrealm probably didn’t think we were dumb, but they knew we were gluttons for punishment. The video details all of the things you had to do in order to unlock certain characters in later versions of MK. It deserves a look-see down below.
This is the end of part one of What Happened to Cheat Codes. Please like and reply and come back next week when I unveil part 2! Stay Critikal!!