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Restoring Satoru Iwata's 39 Year Old VIC-20 Easter Egg

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  • Restoring Satoru Iwata's 39 Year Old VIC-20 Easter Egg

    Before he was President of Nintendo, before HAL Laboratory, Satoru Iwata was a Commodore fan who programmed games on his Commodore PET 2001. When he started with HAL, he made a Galaxian clone called Star Battle for the VIC-20 which was released in 1981. In that cartridge he hid a credits screen which hasn't been fully revealed until now, 39 years later.

    Big thanks to Darren Foulds for help with the thumbnail:

    Also thanks to Jason Compton for wording suggestions!

    Become a patron:

    One-time donation:


    Ward Shrake's VIC-20 document where I probably first learned of the hidden text in Star Battle:

    Gaming Historian's video about Satoru Iwata:


    0:00 A brief history of Satoru Iwata
    1:58 Star Battle: Iwata's first commercial game
    3:58 Using a RAM Expander and SuperMon to analyze the ROM
    6:23 The easter egg text
    9:24 Triggering the easter egg
    10:22 How I found it: 1) The print routine
    13:25 2) Finding the easter egg code
    16:04 3) How to trigger it: keyscan routine
    21:59 4) How to patch to restore key combo
    24:05 How it was intended: the egg
    25:44 Thanks to my patrons

    The Hackmaster