Konami Code Creator Kazuhisa Hashimoto Has Died

Konami Code Creator Dies At 61
Konami Code Creator Dies At 61 Twitter

Kazuhisa Hashimoto, who was popularly known as the creator of the fabled "Konami Code" that gave players superpowers in games like Castlevania, Contra, Gradius, and other Konami games, died on Tuesday at the age of 61.

The news was first shared by a composer who has worked for Konami games and later Konami itself confirmed the news of Hashimoto's demise via a Twitter post.

Hashimoto worked with Konami as a programmer and producer for Gradius, which was the first game to ever use the famous Konami Code. The code was put into the game to aid Hashimoto in playtesting as he couldn't beat the games. For some reason, the code was left in the shipped products. The same code was later used to playtest other Konami titles.

The Konami Code became even more popular when Contra launched on the NES in 1988. Several gamers happened to discover this secret cheat code - up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A, start, which granted players with 30 lives.

The code became so popular that it has also been adopted by several developers, including the Google Stadia website, and was available as an Easter egg in Fortnite in October 2019.

Hashimoto's early works include a landmark sports video game called Track & Field that was launched in 1983. The game quickly gained interest among the US crowd following the 1984 Olympics. Even in Track & Field, Hashimoto managed to hide some Easter eggs, one of them being a UFO that could be speared with a javelin.

Hashimoto was also assigned to port several arcade games to the NES, which involved a team of four people that took six months to complete the project. He chose this particular code as it was easy to remember, yet hard to be repeated accidentally when playing the game normally. Hashimoto also stated he gained inspiration from the hidden commands found in 1983's Xevious by Atari.

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