Glossary Entry: Konami Code

Quick Definition

One of the most famous cheat codes in gaming history is the Konami Code. According to rumor, the code was first designed for the Konami's Gradius. One of the developers wasn't good at the game, but still needed some way to debug it. His solution was to create an elaborate sequence of inputs that would give him all of the game's powerups. It was left in as part of the game, and later it began to appear in many of Konami's games. The game Contra made a notable use of it, and is credited with cementing the Konami Code in gaming history.

Nowadays, may games and even some websites recognize and respond to the Konami Code, either as an unoriginal cheat code or as a nod to the piece of gaming history. The Konami Code is so well known that the video game themed movie Wreck it Ralph included a reference to it at one point!

The code itself is the following series of inputs:

up up down down left right left right B A (start)

Note: some games required this to be followed by START or SELECT START, but most games triggered the code's effect when the A button was pressed.

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