We all know that video game developers absolutely love to design games with Easter eggs and unlockable secrets. They've been doing it for nearly 50 years and it's always fun to figure them out. We've seen everything from a turkey assassin in Assassin's Creed 3 to a dinosaur roar in Battlefield 4. Finding the various hidden characters, areas, interactions and everything else is almost as fun as playing the games themselves.
But not every rumored easter egg or hidden secret turns out to be as valid as the last. Over the years there have been countless rumors of a hidden secret to be discovered only to find out that it's absolute rubbish after devoting hours to discovering it. Here are 8 total hoaxes that we all fell for.
1. Nude Raider - Tomb Raider (1996)
The original Tomb Raider features Lara Croft as designed to appear as a pile of blocks, but for many gamers she was the sexiest game character they had ever seen. So it's easy to imagine how so many gamers clamored to find the "nude code" that would render Lara as playable in the buff. The internet was full of gamers who claimed to have found the code and that it worked, but the code never truly existed, and considering the graphics at the time it's probably good that it didn't.
2. Jump Over the Flag - Super Mario Bros (1985)
Before you scream that it's possible, yes 'officially' it can be done but only on World 3-3 and that's because of a glitch, not an actual programming effort. The only thing you discover is that Mario gets stuck in an endless loop until time runs out and he dies. Not sure about you but that doesn't seem like a very good reward to me. But for years there were rumors of being able to jump over the flag at the end of every level and doing so would result in extra lives, new levels, warp zones, coins and everything else. Yet, none of it was true.
3. Secrets of the Island - GoldenEye 007 (1997)
GoldenEye 007 was one of those classic games that even though nobody was sure about it at the beginning, it turned out to be an incredible success (third best selling N64 game behind Super Mario 64 and Mario Kart 64). On the dam level, there is an island visible off in the distance. Through regular gameplay it's impossible to reach (although using a GameShark code you can reach it). Rumors swirled about it being a secret stash or even a mysterious mission, but it turns out that the developers just forgot to remove it when they changed the mission objectives for that specific level.
4. Reviving Aerith - Final Fantasy VII (1997)
Back in middle school, this was the rumor to end all rumors. Aerith was one of the most beloved character and made her untimely death all the more heartbreaking. Even though her death is a fairly pivotal piece needed for the progression of the story, it was believed that having the entire party (including Yuffie and Vincent) at level 99 would allow Cloud to confront Sephiroth and ultimately save Aeris or even more ludicrously waste 4 hours of gameplay to creating a resurrection spell. Ultimately Aeris must remain dead.
5. Catching Mew - Pokemon Blue & Red (1996)
I'll be the first to admit that I wanted to catch Mew, I still have dreams about it. So back when Mew was revealed as the 151st Pokemon I was incredibly excited, because I needed to be the greatest trainer among my friends, and capturing Mew would prove my superiority. The rumor was that you could catch Mew by moving a delivery truck parked near the S.S. Anne ship. What made this so difficult is that you couldn't finish the S.S. Anne mission and earn the HM Surf, because once you did that the ship would sail away and you wouldn't have access to the truck anymore. Except the only way to reach the truck was to use surf - thus we, myself included, devoted hours into figuring it out and just wound up frustrated and Mewless.
6. Cross platform Sonic - Super Smash Bros. Melee (2001)
Sonic the Hedgehog is Sega's most pivotal character, so it's easy to imagine how so many gamers would love to finally see the blue speedster face off against a certain beloved plumber named Mario. In EGM magazine, around April Fool's Day, a rumor began circulating that Sonic would in fact be a secret, unlockable character in the upcoming Super Smash Bros. Melee game. It proved to be a hoax (but appeared in other Smash Bros. games) as you can imagine considering it was put in print around April first.
7. Playing as Akuma - Resident Evil 2 (1998)
This hoax started out as an April Fool's joke, but many gamers truly believed that they would be able to play as the Street Fighter character in Resident Evil 2. Some gamers devoted countless hours attempting every scenario - even going so far as to play through the entire game with only the handgun. Not only does this seem like a lot of work to achieve, it's even worse when the developers confirm it to be a hoax and gamers still try.
8. Sheng Long - Street Fighter II (1991)
Speaking of Street Fighter, there was a rumor that after playing through the entire tournament without taking a single hit, then while facing M. Bison you needed to wait for time to run out while taking no damage for either player. Doing this would result in a secret character, Sheng Long, appearing. It turned out to be a translation error coupled with an EGM April Fool's joke. The original Japanese translation should have been "You must defeat my Rising Dragon Punch to win" but the English would up becoming "You must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance."
Lives were ruined, quarters were wasted and tears were shed when we discovered that all of our time was spent on achieving or discovering these unlockables - only to discover that we had wasted our time. How many rumors did you follow for your favorite games?