Have you ever been playing a video game, minding your own business, when something so awesome happens that you want to tell everyone you know about it? But then you come to find that no one gives a shit? Well, we feel your pain, and as a result, we have compiled this list of ten of the most awesome things that ever happened in a video game. Feel free to peruse the list an take solace in the fact that there are, in fact, other people that are nearly as nerdy as you are!
10. NBA Jam Tournament Edition– Play as Bill/Hillary Clinton, George Clinton, Al Gore, Prince Charles, the Beastie Boys, DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince
Bill "The Thrill" Clinton taking it to the proverbial hole yet again.
Never before and never again since has there been a secret character list that includes a cast as diverse as the President, Vice President and First Lady of the United States, George “P Funk Clinton”, and the GD Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. While playing as these characters doesn’t dramatically change the overall experience, there is a certain surreal quality to seeing Hillary Clinton perform a windmill slam-dunk from the free-throw line in DJ Jazzy Jeff’s face while Al Gore sets the pick on Will Smith.
9. Resident Evil 2 – Alternate play-through
I would rather eat a glass bottle of tobacco juice than enter a town full of zombies.
Resident Evil games are known for their secret weapons and characters, but perhaps the coolest secret ever in an RE game has to do with the alternate play-through in Resident Evil 2. After completing the game as either Claire or Leon, you can then play a whole new scenario as the opposite character following in the footsteps of and occasionally crossing paths with your original character. This made for four totally unique gameplay experiences in an already awesome game, something that is still unprecedented today.
8. GTA San Andreas/Tomb Raider – Hot Coffee mod, Nude Raider patch
This is offensive, but carjacking, stealing and murder is significantly less so. I guess.
Both of these cheats require a little bit of work on the part of the gamer, and as a result, only the horniest of gamers have ever gone to the trouble. But that doesn’t change the political shit-storm that resulted from the discovery of these two cheats, one that unlocks a cartoony and relatively harmless sex minigame, and one that unclothes what was at one time the biggest sex symbol in gaming. It’s funny that people would take such great offense at a little bit of nakedness in lieu of the graphically violent and depraved cop-killing, gang-banging gameplay of GTA, but we live in a repressed nation. And as for Lara Croft, it’s not as if Tomb Raider was the success it was because of the gameplay.
7. Final Fantasy VII – Ultimate weapons
This one right here is a real controller-snapper.
Challenging boss fights are nothing new to Final Fantasy enthusiasts, but the optional Ultimate Weapon battles in FFVII may go down in history as one of the most ridiculously impossible fights in gaming history. Each of the three Ultimate Weapons is capable of decimating your entire party in seconds, if you can even find them in the first place. You have to be so overpowered and prepared that the awesome rewards you get for defeating the Ultimate Weapons aren’t particularly useful in the end, as even the game’s final boss will seem like a bitch in comparison. But the sense of accomplishment you will get from taking them on and winning is priceless. Your hours, perhaps even days of hard work will be well worth the effort, despite having virtually no value or importance in the real world.
6. Double Dragon – Billy Vs. Jimmy
Two emo pansies having a slap fight at the Good Charlotte concert.
Double Dragon was one of the earliest brawlers that let you and a friend work together to beat the shit out of wave after wave of mindless enemy thugs, hell bent on stopping you from saving the babe from the evil criminal mastermind. (Nearly every game in the 1980s was about saving babes, you’ll remember.) Billy and Jimmy really had to work together as a team to make it to the end, so imagine your surprise when there’s only one babe to go around and she’s not into the whole tag-team thing. This forces you to face off against one another in a battle for Marion’s love and the coinciding bragging rights that come along with being the ultimate Dragon Master. So much for the whole “bros before hos” thing.
5. Metal Gear Solid – Psycho Mantis reads your mind
Yes I do, thanks for asking. Wait, HOW THE F**K DO YOU KNOW THAT?!
Every once in awhile a game will break the fourth wall and address the player directly, though never in such a bizarre and initially unnerving way as Psycho Mantis, a boss character in Metal Gear Solid. When I first encountered him, he said something to me about liking Castlevania and Suikoden, as well as making mention of how wise I was for saving often. I was completely weirded out until I realized that he had “read” this information off of my memory card. Just to be more of a dick, he then proceeds to “read” your controller inputs, dodging your attacks nine times out of ten, although switching controller ports mixes him up and makes him a sitting duck. To this day, I haven’t been as taken aback by a game as I was the first time I battled Psycho Mantis, an experience that made me question the amount of time I was spending playing games in the first place.
4. Mortal Kombat – Challenged by Reptile
You have officially earned the honor of being torn in half by a cheap-ass opponent!
Back before the internets were as commonplace as they are now, secrets traveled by word of mouth in the schoolyard, and required one to see with one’s own eyes before believing them. One such secret involved a character called “Reptile” that would randomly challenge players in the game everyone was already talking about for its insanely gory “fatalities”, Mortal Kombat. Basically, you’d get little hints here and there that didn’t make much sense at first, like one that read “Look to la Luna”. Later, when one was fighting on the “The Pit” stage, you might see an object pass by the moon (La Luna, duh). This was your cue to perform a double flawless fatality (no easy task) so you could have the pleasure of getting your ass kicked by a poison spitting lizard man. Awesome! Then you get to go tell all your nerdy little friends about it, who of course will not believe you.
3. Metroid – Suitless Samus
I still don't understand what the shoulder pads are for. Image By Ivan Flores
Try being a young boy and finding out that your badass missile-launching bounty hunter that just pwned the space pirates and rid the universe of Metroids was A F**KING CHICK! This kind of thing just didn’t happen, and the fact that there was no mention of it prior raised many a question, not the least of which was “Is it cool/fun to pretend to be a hot babe for a few hours out of the day?” How many tyrannies in their late twenties are there out in the world today that are still searching for the answer to this question, all thanks to Nintendo and Samus Aran? Also, just who in the goddamn hell is “Justin Bailey” anyway?
2. Castlevania: Symphony of the Night – Castle Flip
Dancin' on the ceiling like a vampire Lionel Richie in Hell.
A few sad losers may have missed this one, which would have resulted in missing out on half of the entire game. Essentially you have to equip an item called “holy glasses” before entering the final boss fight, which will allow you to see the evil force that is secretly controlling your enemy. Defeat this and you unlock an inverted version of the entirety of Dracula’s castle, which is really a marvel of modern game design to work both right side up and upside down without the player having ever guessed that it was built that way. The inverted castle is no repeat either, but rather, a more twisted version with different, tougher enemies and bosses to battle against. The day this secret was discovered, the collective nerdgasm was so powerful that the very Earth trembled, causing minor tremors worldwide and making a vase fall off the fireplace mantle at Bobby Wilcox’s mom’s house in Long Island, New York, which was, according to Bobby, “totally not his fault”.
1. Super Mario Bros., Super Mario World, Super Smash Bros. Brawl – Warp pipes, minus world, Mario masks, Mario Vs. Sonic/Snake
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention some of the many secrets that have been brought to us by our dear old friend Mario. Warp zones may not seem like anything special today, but back in 1985, stumbling across the warp pipes to new levels was a particularly thrilling experience. In particular, the warp pipe leading to the mysterious and ultimately unbeatable “minus level”. By the time Super Mario World came out for the NES, the non-linear formula had been perfected to allow for greater exploration. So much so, in fact, that if anyone actually went to the trouble of mastering 100% of the game, you would find that all the koopas in the game are now wearing Mario masks! Creepy.
Mario & Sonic: Responsible for more crappy fan art than anything since Star Wars!
As for the upcoming Super Smash Bros. Brawl, it’s no secret that Mario and Sonic will finally get to battle it out against one another, something that gamers have been waiting years for. (And no, Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games does not count for reason of sucking horribly.) Not to mention the fact that Snake from MGS will also be playable. But since Nintendo has never been known to blow their wad of secrets before the game is on the shelf, what other surprises remain to be found? Pray to J it isn’t another nude code/patch, because as lovable as fat, mustachioed plumbers and hedgehogs with “attitude” may be, most people have little or no desire to see them naked. I hope.