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X-Men (NES)

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Title Screen

X-Men

Developers: Unknown (possibly Pixel)
Publisher: LJN
Platform: NES
Released in US: December 1989


DevMessageIcon.png This game has a hidden developer message.


An overhead action game based on the popular Marvel series, featuring very questionable game design such as being very cryptic in what to do, having very useless AI-controlled companions, and a final stage that is not accessible by being skilled at the game unlike what one would expect.

Hidden Message

The game has a hidden final stage accessed with an obscure input combination on the mission select screen. The clue to this code is hidden in the post-stage text, which would explain the kooky wording as well as a glaring typo.

The message is disguised via a secondary lettering set that shares the same white color as the main text. Killing 30 special enemies in a stage causes the hidden text to be displayed in red, as shown below (the counter that keeps track of how many special enemies you've killed is stored at $513 in NES memory). The special enemies may be displayed in a different color throughout the level, but not always.

Combining the red text gives a message of:

THE LAST MISSION. CAN BE REACHED FROM THE MISSION. SCREEN BY PUSHING SELECT
AND SEEK THE ADVICE OF THE LABEL TO MAKE IT TO THE FINAL MISSION.

(Yes, the hidden message is just as wonky as the regular post-stage text.)

Regarding "the label", the remainder of the code, "+ B + UP together with START", was printed on the lower-right corner of the game's cartridge label, among the copyright and trademark info.