Running since 2001!

 

I'm on the hunt for some missing Easter eggs!  Typically, these would be ones that a player can trigger to appear during a game.  Below is a list of unsolved mysteries waiting to be solved by someone - perhaps YOU!  Answers can be derived by most any means necessary (straight-out playing, translating the actual code, contacting the programmers, etc.).  Those marked with a (VT) require recorded video proof of someone playing the game (on an actual Atari system – no emulators!), whereas the others simply require either step-by-step instructions on how to reveal it, or a screenshot as proof. How much each solution is worth depends on what color the title is in:

Answers for RED titles are worth $100 each

Answers for GREEN titles are worth $50 each

Answers for BLUE titles are worth $25 each

There’s a $50 bounty for any as-of-yet undiscovered hidden names/initials/messages (i.e. those not already in our Easter egg database) that can be revealed while playing a game - be sure to check our Easter egg section for a current list of known Easter eggs (Note: new or "homebrew" games are not applicable). If you have an answer to submit, or any questions about the contest, please email me.

Good luck and happy hunting!

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Apple II

PILGRIM QUEST
According to programmer Steve Baker, there are hidden secret pictures and animations, but he doesn’t remember how to trigger them.

THE SPORTING NEWS BASEBALL
According to programmer Steve Baker, there are hidden secret pictures and animations, but he doesn’t remember how to trigger them.

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Arcade coin-op

DELUXE SPACE INVADERS / SPACE INVADERS
● Leave at least one of the bottom invaders (either the first or second) in each column. This means shooting around them to destroy the others above them. Nearly impossible, but it can be done. What happens is, if you destroy all but at least one of the bottom two row invaders in each column, the invaders stop marching. They become sitting ducks. You can then blast mystery saucers to your heart's content. Both SI and Deluxe SI have this trick. (VT or MAME inp file required)

FOOD FIGHT
"hi Jon" is coded as graphics in the program. It's currently unknown whether or not they can be triggered to appear onscreen. 

ORBIT
The initials “LR” (for Lyle Rains), “OR” (for Owen Rubin), “Ly” (for ?), “Mh” (for Morgan Hoff), and “PM” (for Paul Mancuso?) can be found in the program, coded as graphics. According to programmer Owen Rubin, it’s quite possible these can be triggered to appear on the screen!

SKYDIVER
The initials “OR” (for programmer Owen Rubin) can be found in the program, as graphics. It's currently unknown whether or not they can be triggered to appear onscreen.

S.T.U.N. RUNNER
According to programmer Ed Rotberg, the prototype version has a somewhat risqué ending sequence that can be triggered to appear, but this was completely removed from the release version.

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Atari VCS/2600

BOB POLARO's missing egg(s)
Do any more of Bob’s games have Easter eggs left in them?  The remaining titles are Holey Moley, Rampage, RealSports Volleyball, Road Runner, and Stunt Cycle (inc. the Dukes of Hazzard variant).

CALIFORNIA GAMES
Are M. Peter Engelbrite’s initials hidden in the game, and if so, is there a way to trigger their appearance?

 

CROSSBOW
Does this contain a hidden name/initials?

 

CRYSTAL CASTLES
It's very possible that the initials for programmer Peter C. Niday are hidden somewhere.

 

DOUBLE DUNK

Need recorded video of someone scoring 199 points against the computer (and revealing the programmers initials).  Tips: play a 15-minute game with all options on. (VT)

 

FATHOM
● Rob Fulop
claims that the “escape” ship (shown at the end of Atlantis and Cosmic Ark) is hidden somewhere in the game somewhere, but he doesn’t recall how to uncover it.

 

HAUNTED HOUSE

Is there a way to trigger the hidden staff object? (see the Easter egg entry for more info)

 

QUADRUN

● Steve Woita revealed/confirmed that there is a way to change “CRAZED WAVE” to “WOITA WAVE” (picture #1) but he doesn’t recall how to do it.

 

RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK
● According to an interview with programmer Howard Scott Warshaw (in the Winter 1999 issue of Classic Gamer Magazine) a Yar will fly up through the treasure room (inside a mesa) when you start digging.  It depends on the right configuration of (three?) items in your inventory.  Chances are the flying Yar doesn’t exist, but is it possible that “something” happens with the right inventory?

 

SECRET QUEST

● Programmer Steve DeFrisco mentions his initials might be hidden in the game, but he doesn’t recall how to trigger them.

 

STAR RAIDERS
● Is it possible to save the star base in any version?  (VT)

 

SURVIVAL ISLAND

● Are Scott Nelson’s initials hidden as well?

 

WARLORDS
● 2 bugs are rumored to be in the game: (1) In any 3-player games, it will occasionally not give the ball back to continue after a point is scored, and (2) You can literally "catch" the ball by jamming it between your shield and the edge of the screen.

 

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Atari 8-bit/5200

ATARIWRITER
● According to some Analog magazines, one of the Easter eggs hidden in the program is a game. To date, 2 color demos and a method to revealing two names have been found in some early prototype versions. The released cartridges with the Easter eggs were rumored to have been recalled, but we've heard approximately 80k carts were made before Atari found out about it and had them removed. 

 

THE LAST STARFIGHTER
● Programmers Gary Stark and Bruce Poehlman admit to putting a few hidden extras in the game, but they don’t recall how to trigger them. One that’s been seen is the Star Trek's Enterprise ship will sometimes make a brief appearance (by the sun) when recharging.  The graphics for it may be at bytes $3a46-3a48.  Each hidden extra is being paid separately.

 

SPACE INVADERS
● According to programmer Eric Manghise, there’s a way to turn the invaders into his initials, but he doesn’t recall how.  It may involve shooting invaders in a certain order. 

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Atari 7800

IKARI WARRIORS
According to the May/June 1989 issue of the Atarian
magazine, there’s a secret code that lets you select different stages to start at, but the article doesn’t mention what it is.

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Colecovision

GALAXIAN
● The manual mentions to look for special surprises during a game.  What are they?

 

MOUNTAIN KING
● Does an Easter egg similar to the ones in the Atari versions exist?  Note the blue “pathway” through the spider’s lair.  By using a Super Action controller (and pressing all the trigger buttons) you can fall through the bottom floor, but is there a way that's intentionally programmed?

 

WING WAR
The programmer’s initials appear in the sky, but it’s unknown what triggers them.

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Commodore VIC-20 & C-64

MOUNTAIN KING
● Does an Easter egg similar to the ones in the Atari versions exist?

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2017
German Gonzalez-Morris
figured out how to trigger Steve Mundry's initials in Atari VCS/2600 SURVIVAL ISLAND!

2012
Frantisek Houra
found hidden messages in Atari 8-bit/5200 STAR TREK: STRATEGIC OPERATIONS SIMULATOR, DAN STRIKES BACK, DIAMONDS, and GALACTIC AVENGER!

2011
Frantisek Houra
found hidden messages in Atari 8-bit AIR STRIKE II and CAPTAIN STICKY'S GOLD!
Don Hodges deduced how the Solar Sailor's appearance works in arcade TRON, and analyzed Atari VCS/2600 GUARDIAN and - despite the manual saying otherwise - found there's no code for awarding bonus planets (at 50,000 points).

2010
Frantisek Houra
discovered how to trigger the hidden names to appear in Atari 5200 BALLBLAZER and RESCUE ON FRACTALUS, found the hidden invincibility mode in Atari 7800 PLANET SMASHERS, found out how to trigger the "Pete 'kid' Gaston" Easter egg in Atari 7800 JOUST, and found the programmer's name in Atari 8-bit SUBMARINE COMMANDER!
Rick Skrbina uncovered the method to revealing the hidden names in Atari VCS/2600 PICNIC!

2009
German Gonzalez-Morris
solved the cryptograph message for Atari 8-bit THE SPY STRIKES BACK!
Don Hodges
solved the Easter egg for Atari 8-bit DONKEY KONG and SUPER PAC-MAN!
Kirk Iler figured out how to correctly trigger Pengo to appear in round 5 of arcade UP 'N DOWN (since the method described in MAME is wrong), figured out how to trigger the strange blue creature on round 7, and found another hidden creature on round 12!
Frantisek Houra discovered how to trigger the hidden names to appear in Atari 5200 MEEBZORK, found the hidden sequence to trigger the jackpot in Atari 8-bit VEGAS POKER, and found some of the Easter eggs in Atari 8-bit ATARIWRITER!

2007
Kristine Roper solved the Atari 8-bit SPY'S DEMISE cryptic message!
Robert DeCrescenzo figured out how to trigger the Atari 7800 ASTEROIDS Easter egg by analyzing the code.

2006
Kurt Howe
is the first contest winner!  With a little programming "trickery", he was able to uncover the special display in Atari VCS/2600 SPACE SHUTTLE. Excellent work!


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