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The Official 2600 Easter Egg and Programming Mysteries Thread


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#76 shadow460 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 5, 2015 11:17 PM

It's probably on the main page's entry for Subterranea, but here goes. Fight your way to the third Hexuplex and wipe out all the Aerobots. When the crystal appears, shoot it a number of times (either 33 or 43 I think) and it will change to the initials MK for Mark Klein. If you shoot it again, it'll change back, keep shooting it a LOT and the initials will re appear then disappear again on the next shot. I can't remember right off, but I vaguely recall reading that Subterranea's difficulty will reset at a certain point.

Dragonstomper: Find the flashing castle and unlock it, then defeat the two maniacs inside to receive a Paper. This item will let you cross the bridge without paying 600 in gold. (It actually serves as ID that the guard is asking for).

Tunnel Runner: Some of the doors have a weird symbol beside them. If you face one your score will increase but this only works the first time you look at it. The symbols are actually the letters db on one side and cb on the other, for the programmer Dick Balaska and his wife Cindy. Also rotating the joystick in a full circle will teleport you to a random location, but this only works once per maze. If you lose a life, it'll work again. I honestly thought this was a bug when I first found it. Oh, if you're missing the white insert, read it for some updates to the game.

 

Yars Revenge: I can confirm through gameplay that the HSWWSH is triggered by the Ghost of Yar, NOT by repeatedly tagging the Swirl.

No Escape: Again, I'm not sure if this is a bug, but notice how the Furies move when you throw a stone. Use this to guide them into falling bricks. Also, after so many waves, the difficulty resets.

 

Demon Attack: I have a picture label and a text label version. One ends at wave 84 and the other doesn't.

Robot Tank/Space Shuttle: We discussed it a while back and found that one or the other (or both) has two different bankswitching schemes.  One version works on a 7800 while the other doesn't.

River Raid II won't run on a six switch console.
 



#77 Chris++ OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 16, 2015 2:31 PM

Yars Revenge: I can confirm through gameplay that the HSWWSH is triggered by the Ghost of Yar, NOT by repeatedly tagging the Swirl.

 

All you have to do is blast the Swirl, then push Game Select. You don't have to bother with the line. So the Swirl certainly has something to do with it, although you're right that repeatedly shooting it doesn't trigger the Easter egg (I admit I've never heard that one before).



#78 wiseguyusa OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Dec 11, 2015 8:58 PM

Were the cheats in Combat intentional or bugs?



#79 Foxsolo2000 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Dec 15, 2015 2:20 PM

Were the cheats in Combat intentional or bugs?

 

I believe they were bugs rather than intentional easter eggs ;)



#80 MarcAtari OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Oct 13, 2016 10:55 AM

I'm not sure if this qualifies as an "easter egg"or not, but I discovered a hidden room in Superman (for the 2600).

It was in the disassembly of the game, called the Null Room, where the game puts all the items that wind up out of play (like when you drop a bad guy into the jail for example)

 

If you use Stella or other emulator, you can change the room number to number 0, which puts you into this hidden room.

 

I posted two videos here...

 

and

 

I also found similar things in Adventure and Haunted House...if anyone is interested...

 

Marc

 



#81 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Oct 13, 2016 11:11 AM

Looks like the developers simply set the room number to 0 to hide invisible items. I don't think its a deliberate EE.

 

But a nice find. :)



#82 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Oct 13, 2016 12:24 PM

Neat!   I wonder what else is hidden in some of these old games?  



#83 enthusi OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Oct 13, 2016 12:53 PM

Well. they were probably not “put into room 0“, but each object has a byte pointer where it is. 0 for nowhere which can also nicely be checked. The room display code then happens to parse the 0 objects for the 0 room. Not using that screen ingame was likely the fastest way.

#84 MarcAtari OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Oct 13, 2016 1:24 PM

def not an EE, but the room is not an accident either.

it's defined as an actual room, called the null room, and the exits are all pointed to itself. and, when an object is supposed to be put out of game play, it is assigned to that room. the object continues to do what it does (like bad guys still walk around in it, etc) you just can't ever get there. and, the objects can't ever leave on their own either. so it really is a "jail" in a way.

 

when you overwrite location $9B with the number 0, you assign Clark's room number to the null room. It is given the graphics pointer of Subway, and color orange, so it is definitely a deliberate choice of the programmer to make it a room.

 

The clever part is that with only 4 or 5 lines of definition code to make the null room, the programmer gets the advantage of saving quite a lot of game play code by just throwing items in there that put out of play...then it doesn't matter how they walk around, they never interact with anything anyway...kinda slick.

 

anyway, hope you enjoy.

 

in Adventure, there is a similar room...it is the game select screen which has a number 1, 2, or 3 in the center. If you overwrite the player's game position to this room, you wind up in it and can't leave.

 

I wonder if Raiders has this...I haven't looked at it yet.

 

Haunted House has one, but it is not a deliberate programmer null room for that purpose...it is just a quirk that if you set the floor to 4 (which is actually floor 5), you wind up in a weird place.

 

fun stuff...



#85 bradhig1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Dec 7, 2016 10:50 AM

According to 2600connection website.  There is an easter egg in the original Haunted House.  An extra object can be revealed when solving the game!  Get the urn, and go right against the exit wall (w/o ending the game).  Push up against the wall and drop the urn.  With a match lit, move DOWN+RIGHT, grabbing the urn and ending the game instantly. 

 

I can't trigger it and I think it has something to do with the Ultimate Easter Egg in HAT. 



#86 Deteacher OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 2, 2017 12:53 PM

The only "easter egg" I've ever discovered was in the game "Turmoil."  Not much of an egg, but I found out if you went down a tunnel to grab the prize, then hit reset as soon as you grab it, the game will start over, but you will still receive the points for the prize as soon as the game starts.

 

Nothing fancy, but I was proud to have discovered it, nonetheless.  :)



#87 MayDay OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Mar 12, 2017 8:10 PM

Someone was asking about Pole Position recently, but I figure this is a good place to discuss it since that thread is locked.  First- a bit of backstory.  I got a second-hand Atari as a kid, but the left joystick button never worked.  Later figured out the input needed resoldered a bit and got it working.  But as a kid, there are only so many games you can play without the button on controller one, and Pole Position was one such game.  Because of that, my Dad, brother and I play it constantly without using the brake and basically could play through perfectly nearly ever time.

 

The mystery of the extra car isn't that much of a mystery really.  On certain playthroughs, you will pass a car right at the end of the lap one.  At the end of the game, you have an extra 50 points if you have a perfect playthough.  What is a mystery to me is why it plays differently in emulation than it does on hardware.  Specifically, late lane changes and double lane changes are rather rare on hardware, maybe one or two each per game.  On emulation, I just had a double change happen on 7 of 8 consecutive cars.  It also appears to send cars through slightly faster in emulation- I think it might be possible to score slightly higher in emulation than on hardware, although I can't seem to play a perfect game because of the increased difficulty.  Another difference is controls- it seems harder to move right than it does left in emulation, and makes squelching the tires far more likely.  This was never an issue on hardware.

 

The imperfect 0 for speed is a known emulation error, but I've never heard anyone speak to the rest of this.  Does anyone have further insight?



#88 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 13, 2017 12:45 PM

It's odd that the game would be behave that differently in emulation.  I wonder if Pole Position isn't using some odd undocumented behavior that works on a real 2600 but isn't properly emulated?  



#89 Arenafoot OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 13, 2017 6:15 PM

What is a mystery to me is why it plays differently in emulation than it does on hardware.  Specifically, late lane changes and double lane changes are rather rare on hardware, maybe one or two each per game.  On emulation, I just had a double change happen on 7 of 8 consecutive cars.  It also appears to send cars through slightly faster in emulation- I think it might be possible to score slightly higher in emulation than on hardware, although I can't seem to play a perfect game because of the increased difficulty.  Another difference is controls- it seems harder to move right than it does left in emulation, and makes squelching the tires far more likely.  This was never an issue on hardware.

 

The imperfect 0 for speed is a known emulation error, but I've never heard anyone speak to the rest of this.  Does anyone have further insight?

I've noticed this too. Especially later on in the game, when the enemy cars are switching lanes - indeed it is much harder in emulation than on real hardware. I dunno why.......and would like to know why.

 

It's odd that the game would be behave that differently in emulation.  I wonder if Pole Position isn't using some odd undocumented behavior that works on a real 2600 but isn't properly emulated?  

It seems as if it is.



#90 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 14, 2017 1:21 AM

And I would be very surprised if it is.



#91 Power_Slider OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jun 16, 2017 1:42 PM

Not sure if this has been answered anywhere, but is the Adventure invisible pixel Easter egg on the emulated version of the game or just the cartridges/consoles?

#92 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jun 16, 2017 1:46 PM

Why should the emulator remove it? It doesn't even know about its existence.



#93 Supergun OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jun 20, 2017 8:08 PM

It's odd that the game would be behave that differently in emulation.  I wonder if Pole Position isn't using some odd undocumented behavior that works on a real 2600 but isn't properly emulated?  


Either way, even the possibility of something like this, is yet another reason why emulators SUCK. If it's not a real cartridge on a real system, then it sucks. Period! They will NEVER be perfected. They will NEVER be identical. Because...
THEY SUCK!

#94 MayDay OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:11 PM

Either way, even the possibility of something like this, is yet another reason why emulators SUCK. If it's not a real cartridge on a real system, then it sucks. Period! They will NEVER be perfected. They will NEVER be identical. Because...
THEY SUCK!

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Edited by MayDay, Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:12 PM.


#95 Freeway OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:34 PM

Been flicking through some old gaming mags (1982/83) and rediscovered some old (suppossed) easter eggs in certain games.  At the time (and to this date) these eggs were never proved so I am wondering if anyone ever heard of them or discovered why they were in the game.

 

Raiders of the Lost Ark - Most of my questions were answered by Nukey in another thread but one question always remained was when Indy walked up and down the side of the Mesa Field a mysterious dot can be seen in the Mesa Field and can be controlled to a certain extent i.e on one occassion I actually managed to make it move down the screen and disappear off the bottom of the screen.  Was there any purpose to this dot?

 

Night Driver - Back in 83 some guy claimed he had found the designers initials in the game but he never said how he found it.  Are the initials in the game?

 

ET - In 1984 a gamer actually posted a pic of a bizarre scene he had found in one of the pits.  It was the scene from Close Encounters of the landing site from the film.  Again no explanation was offered as to how it was found save that the player fell into a pit and there it was.

 

Defender - In 1983 another gamer (with no proof) claimed that he had been playing the game and had dived into the city to suddenly discover a room he had never seen in which a green wall blocked his way.  He blasted through the wall to find himself in a room with the initials BPPB slap bang in the middle of the room.  Can this be proved?

 

Dodge Em - Is it possible to make the 2nd crash car on game 3 to make a sudden right turn and disappear?

 

Any input would be appreciated ;-)

Hi, regarding 2600 Defender I played it a lot in the early 80's and did once see a rectangular gap in the city at the foot of the screen, like a narrower version of the wall openings in Adventure. My ship was destroyed before I could investigate and the 'entrance' never appeared again.

At the time I thought it might have been an easter egg (I'm not the magazine poster..) and tried in vain to find it again. It's interesting to read that people have since examined the code and not found any evidence for a secret room (Nukey Shay's reply).

I was playing normally (no frying or anything else) and assume it was just a graphical glitch.
Maybe someone else spotted the same glitch and embellished their tale?



#96 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 24, 2017 2:11 PM

That Defender one sounds like a rumor that kids make up at school.



#97 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 24, 2017 2:33 PM

That Defender one sounds like a rumor that kids make up at school.

Since the graphics data for BP is in the code, this may be the result of an unwanted glitch. But the code for the city is very simple (just four code locations: one for initial pattern load, two for scrolling back and forth and one for displaying) and I cannot see anything which could create a gap in the city.



#98 Freeway OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 24, 2017 3:19 PM

Since the graphics data for BP is in the code, this may be the result of an unwanted glitch. But the code for the city is very simple (just four code locations: one for initial pattern load, two for scrolling back and forth and one for displaying) and I cannot see anything which could create a gap in the city.

Thank you for the info. I realise something needs to be repeatable to be believable.

Is it possible I was tired from playing the game endlessly and saw something that wasn't there? Yes, but I'm pretty certain what I saw. Maybe the console overheating, something wrong with the TV..

I don't know and probably never will unless others spot it too.



#99 bradhig1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 24, 2017 2:58 PM

what about easter eggs in homebrew games can they be mentioned here?



#100 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:21 AM

what about easter eggs in homebrew games can they be mentioned here?

Sure I suppose.  Why not?






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