Kazuhisa Hashimoto, the person behind the legendary Konami Code, has died, aged 61.

Hashimoto joined Konami, then a primarily coin-op focussed firm, in 1983, quickly coming into its console division, the place he would work on the likes of Track & Field, Goonies, and the Mystical Ninja sequence. It was right here that Hashimoto applied his famed Konami Code, whereas creating the 1986 NES port of basic side-scrolling shooter Gradius.

By his personal admission, Hashimoto discovered the arcade authentic “really tough”, and so created the code – up, up, down, down, left, proper, left, proper, B, A, Start – so as to grant himself a full collection of power-ups and extra simply take a look at the house console model.

The code, apparently inadvertently, remained in Gradius’ remaining launch, and gained fame because it started to resurface, usually as a welcome lifeline, in additional and extra Konami-developed video games through the years, showing in sequence as numerous as Castlevania and Metal Gear Solid.

Image supply: Konami.

It’s maybe finest identified to a sure technology, nevertheless, because the cheat that made 1988’s ultra-challenging NES run-and-gunner Contra manageable, granting gamers with 30 lives.

Since then, Hashimoto’s Konami Code has gained near-legendary standing in online game circles, even coming into wider popular culture because the years have gone on. What began out as a secret private play support has now been reverently squirrelled away in every thing from Rocket League to a Marks & Spencers on-line Christmas marketing campaign. It even saved Fortnite gamers amused final 12 months, after your complete sport was memorably sucked right into a black gap.

News of Hashimoto’s dying was first shared on Twitter by composer Yuji Takenouchi, and Konami later provided its condolences in a separate statement.

“We are saddened to hear about the passing of Kazuhisa Hashimoto, a deeply talented producer who first introduced the world to the ‘Konami Code’,” the corporate wrote, “Our thoughts are with Hashimoto-san’s family and friends at this time. Rest in peace.”

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