The ’90s was the golden era for urban legends concerning video games. The creators of games like Mortal Kombat and Pokémon Red & Blue included secrets that seemed unconceivable at the time, such as hidden characters that could only be unlocked through archaic means or creatures that could not be encountered without cheating, which sparked the imagination of a generation of gamers and led to false secrets that were spread around the playground.
The late ’90s also saw the Internet being introduced into homes across the world at an unprecedented rate, which meant that fake rumors and secrets now had a global playground to be shared in. The most popular video game myths have been debunked for a long time, while websites like The Cutting Room Floor have revealed the secrets within games that were never meant to be discovered by players, which means that there are precious few mysteries left in the world of gaming. There are times when a new secret is revealed about a classic game that was released over twenty years ago, which leaves you wondering how many other secrets there are out there that have yet to be uncovered.
We are here today to unearth the ’90s gaming secrets that took decades to uncover. From the disturbing boss that was removed from Silent Hill to the truth about two of the most prominent Pokémon trainers in Johto, here are the 20 Hidden Things In ’90s Video Games That Weren’t Found For Years!
20 Silent Hill Had A Cut Chicken Boss
One of the oldest fan theories about the original Silent Hill is that all of the creatures in the game are meant to be twisted interpretations of things that children are scared of, such as wild animals, doctors, and other kids who gang up on you.
It wasn’t until 2017 that more animal monsters were discovered in the files of Silent Hill, which include creatures based on frogs, monkeys, and snakes. There is also a model for a scrapped boss monster, which is a human-sized chicken that looks like its skin has been removed. Silent Hill had some areas removed during development of the game (one of which involved piloting the boat), so it’s possible that these creatures were planned to appear in locations that were cut.
19 Goldeneye 007 Had A Cut Multiplayer Level
Goldeneye 007 for the Nintendo 64 was filled with cheats and unlockable modes, which made it a popular choice for urban legends. Fans discovered names and elements for a level called the Citadel within the files of Goldeneye 007, but no one could find out how to access it. The developers stated that the Citadel was an early test level and that it was never finished.
A playable version of the Citadel wasn’t uncovered until 2004 when a fan named Kristian Burgess managed to load the assets of the stage into the Cradle level, which finally allowed players to access the unfinished Citadel stage.
18 Tofu Was Due To Return In Resident Evil 3: Nemesis
The developers of Resident Evil 2 created a character model that was just a white block that was used to test collision detection and was given the name Tofu, due to his resemblance to the food of the same name. You could play as Tofu in a bonus mode in the Resident Evil 2, which involved running from every enemy, as Tofu had no ranged weapons and had to rely on his extra health in order to survive.
Fans discovered that Tofu was planned to reappear in Resident Evil 3: Nemesis but wasn’t finished in time. It’s possible to add Tofu back into the game as a playable character with the help of a Gameshark or similar cheating device.
17 Final Smashes Were Meant To Debut In Super Smash Bros.
The first game in the Super Smash Bros. series had some strange sounds that could only be accessed in different versions of the game through the debug mode, which included Ness shouting “PK” and “Starstorm” and Captain Falcon calling for his Blue Falcon vehicle.
The truth behind the mysterious audio was revealed when Super Smash Bros. Brawl was released, as this was the first game in the series that included Final Smashes, which were ultimate moves possessed by each character, including Ness summoning a PK Startstorm and Captain Falcon summoning his F-Zero so that he could crash it into the enemy. The Final Smash attacks were planned to appear in the first Super Smash Bros. game but they couldn’t be finished on time and the tight production schedule of Melee prevented them from being included until Brawl.
16 The Urban Legends About The Tomb Raider Series Were True
The most persistent urban legend of the 32-bit era of gaming was the idea that there was a cheat in one of the Tomb Raider games that allowed you to see Lara Croft without her clothes on, which wasn’t helped by how provocative the marketing for the games was.
It turns out that there is a lady in her birthday suit hidden in one of the Tomb Raider games, but it isn’t Lara Croft. There is a palace hidden in Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation that consists of textures made up of images of a woman from Egypt. The palace cannot be accessed through normal means and requires the aid of a cheating device or level editor to find.
15 The Developers Left Notes About Dark Maria In Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night
There was a port of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night that was released for the Sega Saturn, but it never left Japan. The Sega Saturn port of Symphony of the Night contains notes written by the developers of the game, which weren’t translated for years.
The notes state that there were a set of unique graphics was created for an evil version of Maria, but that they went unused. The references to an evil version of Maria line up with cut content that was discovered in the PlayStation version of the game, as there is audio of Maria intervening in the battle between Alucard and Richter, which causes her to become possessed by Shaft and summon four demons to aid her in battle.
14 The Developers Of Jurassic Park Had A Few Choice Words For Pirates
The Amiga line of home computers used floppy disks for their games, which meant that piracy was rampant on the system, as it was easy for people to copy the contents of a game or program onto another disk. The piracy of the Amiga scene prompted developers to start adding DRM and copy protection to their games, which resulted in groups of hackers forming to break the protection.
The developers of Jurassic Park for the Amiga hid a profanity-filled message within the game that was aimed at two of the most prominent cracking groups of the time (Fairlight and Paradox) that insulted their botched attempts to hack one of their previous games.
13 WWF War Zone Almost Featured A Dinosaur Hunter
The games that are developed using the WWE (formerly known as the WWF) license are notorious for their cut content, due to the fact that professional wrestlers have a tendency to quit without notice, forcing them to be removed from upcoming games.
WWF War Zone for the Nintendo 64 and PlayStation had an unusual character buried within their code who wasn’t discovered for several years: Turok the Dinosaur Hunter. Turok was likely included in the game due to the fact that it was being developed by Iguana Entertainment, as they also worked on the Turok the Dinosaur Hunter series. It’s possible that he was removed at the last minute at the request of the WWF.
12 Dungeon Keeper Had A Secret Message That Took Seventeen Years To Find
The Dungeon Keeper name has been sullied by the terrible smartphone game that was released a few years ago, but there are still those who cherish the original two games in the series and their fresh take on the strategy genre.
You would think that a PC game that was released in 1997 would have had all of its secrets revealed, but Dungeon Keeper had a message that wasn’t discovered until 2014. The message was written by Jonty Barnes, who worked as a programmer on Dungeon Keeper and would go on to work on the Halo series. Barnes’ message talks about how exhausted the Dungeon Keeper team was and how the game was a labor of love for them.
11 The Mystery Of The Elegant Flier In Final Fantasy Tactics
There is a single battle in Final Fantasy Tactics were Teta (Delita’s sister) is part of the conflict. If you add Teta to your party using a cheating device, then her character model will change to that of a young dark-skinned girl wearing blue and yellow robes.
The fans of Final Fantasy Tactics originally thought that the mystery sprite was an early design for Rapha, who is the only other dark-skinned girl in the game. However, the director of Final Fantasy Tactics explained on Twitter that the unused design was for a separate character called the Elegant Flier, though he did not explain what her role in the game would have been.
10 The Cut Warriors Of Virtua Fighter
Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter II were notorious for rumors surrounding fictional secret characters, such as Ermac and Sheng Long, but the Virtua Fighter series seemed to skip all of the bizarre urban legends, despite its popularity in the arcades.
It’s a shame that people weren’t interested in searching Virtua Fighter for secrets, as the game was released in 1993, but four previously unknown characters weren’t unearthed until 2016. One of the four characters (Majido) had been seen in prerelease screenshots of Virtua Fighter, but there were three new characters in the form of Jeff (a soldier whose hat could be knocked off), a beta design for Akira, and an unnamed boss character.
9 Legacy Of Kain Had A Pirate Ship That Remained Hidden For Fourteen Years
The first game in the Legacy of Kain series isn’t as well-remembered as its sequel, but it’s still a fun game and an excellent choice for anyone who wishes they could play as a vampire in a Legend of Zelda game.
The members of a fan project that wanted to recreate the first Legacy of Kain game into 3D discovered a cut scenario involving a pirate ship in 2010, even though the game came out in 1996. The pirate ship is called the HMCS Bitter and it appears in two maps, one of which is out on the open seas and another in which the ship has crashed into a small cove that contains treasure. We still don’t know why the HMCS Bitter scenario was cut, but it may have been due to it not gelling with the gothic atmosphere of the rest of the game.
8 The Creators Of Diablo Loved Natalie Portman
The Diablo series has had its fair share of secrets that were based on Internet urban legends, such as the secret cow level, but it turns out that the installer for the Windows version of Diablo had a secret that wasn’t discovered for several years.
There are two subliminal messages hidden in the picture of Diablo that appears when you load the installer for the first Diablo game, which you can see with the aid of MS Paint or Photoshop. The first message says to “BUY WAR II,” which is likely a reference to Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness and the second says “NATALIE PORTMAN ROCKS,” which is correct.
7 The Impossible Goomba In Super Mario 64 Still Hasn’t Been Defeated
The Goomba enemies in the Super Mario Bros. series have always been the weakest creatures in Bowser’s army, with Mario usually being able to dispose of them with a single jump. There is one Goomba, however, that has eluded Mario for decades and has yet to be defeated in a legitimate way.
The final level in Super Mario 64 has a platform that is meant to spawn three Goombas, but the small size means that one of them spawns below the barrier at the bottom of the stage for a fraction of a second before disappearing. The impossible Goomba was discovered by a YouTuber named pannenkoek2012 in 2014, where he released a series of videos explaining why the creature spawns so far away and speculates on methods for interacting with it.
6 Yoshi’s Island Had Three Cut Transformations
Yoshi isn’t exactly known for his shapeshifting ability, but the first Yoshi’s Island game included several sections where Yoshi could transform into different forms (such as a helicopter) in order to traverse different stages.
The developers of Yoshi’s Island wanted to include more transformations, as three more of them were programmed into the game in a fairly complete state, even though they have no stages meant for them. Yoshi was originally going to be able to transform into a large mushroom that had the ability to jump, a plane that could fly around the screen, and a tree that lacked any kind of special abilities outside of the capacity to walk.
5 The Secret Kirby In EarthBound
The characters in the EarthBound/Mother series are now better known for their appearances in the Super Smash Bros. games, which is fitting when you consider the fact that EarthBound was hiding a crossover within its own files for years.
Fans discovered the presence of a debug menu in the files of EarthBound, but no one could work out the codes to access it until 2003. When they did, they discovered that the menu pointer is actually Kirby from the Kirby series. EarthBound was developed by a company called HAL Laboratory, which is the same company that continues to develop the Kirby games to this very day, hence the reference within the files of EarthBound.
4 Super Metroid Had A Cheat That Wasn’t Discovered Until 2010
The cheats that appeared in a lot of old video games were just repurposed codes used by debuggers in order for them to more easily reach different parts of the game. There is a mysterious code within Super Metroid that wasn’t discovered until 2010 that many people suspect was a leftover debug code that the developers forgot to remove.
If you enter the Golden Torizo boss room while holding the A, B, X, and Y buttons, then your inventory will be filled and you will receive every weapon and special ability, except for the Screw Attack. It’s possible that similar codes once existed for every boss fight in the game, but the developers forgot to remove the one for the Golden Torizo fight before the game was shipped.
3 The Mysterious Underwear In Final Fantasy VII
Final Fantasy VII has several items buried within the files of the game that were tied to cut storylines, including one involving a traveling salesman. One of the unused items is referred to as the “Mystery Panties,” which some fans suspected were related to the quest where Cloud has to dress like a woman.
The mystery was finally solved in 2012 when the fans discovered unused scenes in the version of Final Fantasy VII from Japan involving the Honey Bee Inn, which had to be cut due to their explicit nature. It was revealed that the underwear had been stolen from the washing line outside of the 7th Heaven bar, which the thief believed belonged to Tifa, but actually belonged to Marlene — the young daughter of Barret.
2 The Cut Super Saiyans Of Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiya Densetsu
Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiya Densetsu was a Japan-exclusive RPG for the Super Nintendo, which had a story that started with Raditz stealing Gohan and ended with Goku transforming into a Super Saiyan and battling Frieza on Namek.
It seems that more Super Saiyans were planned to appear in the game, as there are some intriguing unused sprites within the files of Super Saiya Densetsu. There is a menu portrait for a Super Saiyan version of Gohan, which is odd when you consider that he had yet to transform in the Dragon Ball manga. There are also menu portraits for Super Saiyan versions of Gohan and Vegeta’s Great Ape forms, which is a concept that would only appear in the non-canon Dragon Ball GT series.
1 The Answer To The Mystery Of Bugsy & Will’s Gender In Pokémon Gold & silver
It’s not unusual for anime characters to have an androgynous appearance, which is why Bugsy the Gym Leader and Will of the Elite Four in Pokémon Gold & Silver could be mistaken for being female at first glance. Pokémon Crystal listed all of the characters in the game by gender, yet fans discovered that Bugsy and Will were grouped in with the females, which most took to be a programming error.
The leaked beta of Pokémon Gold & Silver from 1997 finally shed some light on this mystery, as Bugsy had swapped positions with Whitney and was the third Gym Leader fought in the game, while the first Elite Four member was supposed to be Misty, as Will did not exist yet. It’s possible that the gender confusion comes from an earlier point of development where Bugsy and Will’s positions were filled by female trainers and the developers never bothered to update the internal files of the games, as they were never meant to be seen by players.
Are there any other secrets about ’90s video games that were only recent discovered? Let us know in the comments!