Whether you’re a Jesus nerd like me or a candy freak like 99.9% of the population, today’s a pretty fun day. And it’s a great day, as Rainbow MMO reminds me, to contemplate some of the better easter eggs we find in games.
Easter eggs in video games is a long-standing tradition that dates back to 1979, when Atari’s Adventure (an RPG, natch) had a secret room that you could unlock, wherein was the message “Created by Warren Robinett” (see picture). Warren wasn’t too pleased that Atari refused to let programmers get credit for creating the games, so he went and threw this secret into the game without their knowledge. Ever since, easter eggs have popped up left and right in various titles, rewarding the diligent, deranged mind that didn’t think twice about clicking everywhere and trying everything.
Of course, reminiscing about easter eggs means that I’d have to actually remember them all — which I certainly don’t. I have a horrible memory for names, easter eggs and that other thing I can’t remember. You know, that thing. With the guy? We’ll always have the secret cow level in Diablo, of course. Or Paul Barnett’s gravestone. Oh, the C-L-U-C-K! quest in World of Warcraft.
In a way, easter eggs are the predecessor to the current trend of achievements/unlocks/perks/deeds/badges in MMOs — silly, often fluff items that reward the curious explorers among us. Although I’ve seen people pish-posh achievements (hello backlash, goodbye common sense!) as of late, the fact is that if you don’t like them, then they aren’t made for you. But that doesn’t mean they don’t have a purpose — they validate playstyles that diverge from blunt-force trauma or the basket-weaving crafters among us. They encourage us to keep exploring, because isn’t that what RPG adventurers are supposed to be doing in the first place (y’know, when they take a breath from mass genocide)? I love ‘em. Keep them coming, I say!
And if you’re bored today? Champions Online challenges you to find all the easter eggs (literal ones) hidden all across their site.