10 Memorable Video Game Cheats4
By Thomas Chandler
10 Memorable Video Game Cheats
Let’s be honest. Being a cheat is fun. There’s something so unscrupulous about it. Something sinister. Like the boys from the comedy series The Future Machine, who build a time machine to settle an agreement over a bear suit, there is nothing more satisfying than literally bending time and space on a mere whim. And what a better whim than the desire to claim victory over Contra or lay claim to seeing Lady Lara Croft naked? None.
When it comes to video games, cheating isn’t very glamorous and the stakes are, well, nonexistent. Cheating at video games is a harmless activity – especially if you’re playing games by yourself. Slipping an ace out of your cuff in the middle of a heated poker match is fun and all, but in a video game you bend time and space for your personal enjoyment – and bragging rights.
Sadly, more often than not, video game designers don’t give much thought to their cheats. Clearly they’re too focused on the quality of the game to dwell on how to break it. There’s only a handful of cheats in our twenty-plus years of gaming experience that we remember with any clarity and fondness. Lucky for you, we collected a few of the most memorable.
The Future Machine – Episode 1
1. The Konami Code – Contra
The original Contra was hard. We’re talking hard hard – not hard like the watered-down games of today. Contra was hard in a way that you’d have to really master the game to play it. It’s almost like Konami, the game’s publisher, knew most people wouldn’t have the time to get Contra down to an art; so they included the Konami Code. In fact, it might be the most-used cheat code of all time. Without it, the player never gets past level two. Okay, maybe that’s just me. But it is hard!
Cheat Code: ↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A start
2. Missing No. – Pokemon Red & Blue
I was in junior high when the first Pokemon came out. I remember the moment when one of my friends ambled up the bleacher stairs with news that he’d caught the elusive “Miss Ingno.” Turns out, that kid was totally stupid, and “Miss Ingno” was actually Missing No., a bug in the system that popped up only under very specific conditions. Missing No. didn’t have a whole lot going for him, seeing as how he was one of God’s more minor mistakes. But, he WAS the most dangerous Pokemon in a game filled of them. He didn’t have many moves, but he was capable of corrupting your save data in the blink of an eye.
- This form appears through the old man glitch if the character in the third, fifth, or seventh slot of the player’s name is the end-name marker, G, H, J, M, S, T, :, ], a, b, c, m, o, p, or v.
- This form appears through the Mew glitch with a Special stat of 31, 32, 50, 52, 56, 61, 62, 63, 67, 68, 69, 79, 80, 81, 86, 87, 94, 95, 115, 121, 122, 127, 134, 135, 137, 140, 146, 156, 159, 160, 161, 162, 172, 174, 175 or 181
3. The White Treasure Ship – Mario Bros 3
The best kind of secrets are the ones with such specific conditions that you have to wonder how anyone ever figured it out. In Super Mario Bros 3 for NES, it’s possible to turn a Hammer Bros. into the fabled ship by meeting the following conditions:
- 1. End a stage with an even number on the clock
- 2. Your number of coins must be a multiple of 11
- 3. The tens digit of your score must be a multiple of 11 that corresponds to your number of coins
- 4. You have to be in worlds 1,3,5 or 6
What do you get for all this trouble? A ship filled with tons of coins! But really, it’s not about that. It’s about all the gloating you get to do on the playground/water cooler the next day.
4. Blowing up the Sheep – Warcraft 3: Tides of Darkness
Blizzard Entertainment, the publisher of the MMOG Warcraft, puts a lot of time and energy into each of their games. It’s the kind of thing that shows up in the little details – like the cheat that allows a player to detonate a sheep after clicking on it one too many times. Is there any practical application for splattering blood and wool all over the soil? Of course not, but it’s incredibly satisfying to do so after you’ve failed the current mission over twenty times and just need something to be murdered right away. Click that little bugger into oblivion, and suddenly you’re recharged and ready to take on the Horde for a couple more hours.
Cheat: Start clicking on a sheep and don’t stop. After a bunch of clicks it’ll blow up.
5. Switching the Controller Slot – Metal Gear Solid
In a game full of weird-ass villains, Pyscho Mantis takes the cake. Dressed like an S&M aficionado, he probes the mind of our intrepid hero while tossing statues and generally being a grade-A pest. He’s so good at knowing what you’re going to do next that it seems like there’s no way to beat him using conventional methods. This is why you have to try something really unconventional. If you swap your controller from the first to the second slot, it confuses the hell out of Mantis and gives Snake, you, a chance to take the gimp down for good.
6. The Warp Tube – Super Mario Bros
Kids, don’t try this at home. Mario is a professional plumber. He knows the ins-and-outs of the sewer system. In fact, he’s been in the business so long, he knows where the pipes are that allow him to skip about 30% of his journey. They’re a little out of the way, but not so hard to get to if you completely ignore the laws of gravity.
7. Give Me a Tank – Grand Theft Auto 3
If there’s one thing Grand Theft Auto is known for, it’s the complex storylines woven together by dozens of different characters. If there’s two things it’s known for, it’s giving the player the power to hop in a tank and end thousands of innocent lives in a murderous rampage. Sure, you could wait until the end of the game – where the tank shows up on an army base, but that takes too much time. It’s better to enter the code that makes it appear out of thin air. Suddenly, you’re no longer a petty criminal. You’re a petty criminal that can conjure up magic tanks. Someone get this guy his own gang!
Cheat: To get a Rhino (the tank) to drop from the sky, enter this code during gameplay: CIRCLE, CIRCLE, CIRCLE, CIRCLE, CIRCLE, CIRCLE, R1, L2, L1, TRIANGLE, CIRCLE, TRIANGLE.
8. Nude Raider – Tomb Raider
Lara Croft was the first character in a video game “fleshed-out” enough that she could inspire an erection; so it makes sense that hackers set to work finding a way to get her out of her skimpy dungeon-diving attire. The cheat is only possible with the help of a third-party peripheral, but that doesn’t cheapen the magic of it one bit. Having Lara bounce from deadly trap to deadly trap bra-less, shirt-less, and totally liberated is a playing experience unlike anything else. A real sense of tension is added to the game when you’re constantly worried that your mom will walk in the room.
Cheat: Click Here
9. The Secret Players – NBA Jam
What would NBA Jam be if not for the roster of secret characters at our disposal? Answer: a really fun game. But it’s an even better game when you can play as the mascots, or the president, or a cartoon character. In a game that prizes itself on being cartoonish and over-the-top, the inclusion of fantasy characters only seals the deal. There’s no amount of trash-talking comparable to what comes out of your mouth after you dunk as Tweety Bird.
Cheat: Click Here
10. Play as Master Hand – Super Smash Bros.
Master Hand is the Deus of the Super Smash Bros universe, which is why I wanted so badly to take control of him and finger-drive my friends into a frustrated frenzy. At first I thought it was impossible; but after almost a decade, the cheat finally surfaced. It was definitely worth going back to the ol’ cartridge and giving it a shot, though it wasn’t as rewarding as it might have been years ago. Still, the feeling of taking control over what I thought was uncontrollable all those years ago is downright cool.
Cheat: Have the controller that will play as Master Hand in the 3rd controller port, and a second controller in the first or second port before it. As you are on the character selection screen in regular VS. mode, you select any character with the 1st/2nd port controller, although be sure that the one that is Master Hand doesn’t go over the character selection screen. Have the 3rd controller go down to “Name Entry”, and the 1st/2nd controller go to “Back” at the top right of the screen. Have both controllers press “A” at the same time, which will bring you to the Stage selection screen.
The Future Machine – Episode 2
The Future Machine – Episode 3
Tom Chandler was born and raised in a small town outside Seattle. He’s currently writing a screenplay about two robots striving to reform the American educational system.