Nintendo’s new $60 game console, the NES Classic Edition, is an adorable, inexpensive, easy way to play a ton of classic Nintendo games. The entire original “Super Mario Bros.” trilogy, the first two “Legend of Zelda” games, and much more — they’re all on the console out of the box.
It’s quite a system!
But for some folks — namely, hackers — that wasn’t enough. By plugging the system into a computer via USB, they started digging in. First, they added a ton more games to the console.
One hacker more than doubled the number of games on the system:
Then, hackers discovered a hilarious message hidden within the system’s code. This one’s a bit of a deep reference, so bear with us:
“This is the hanafuda captain speaking. Launching emulation in 3…2…1. Many efforts, tears and countless hours have been put into this jewel. So, please keep this place tidied up and don’t break everything! Cheers, the hanafuda captain.”
First and foremost, you should know what a “hanafuda” is. It’s a Japanese playing card used for a variety of different games — think of it like a standard playing card used for, say, poker, but these are covered in flowers and used for different card games.
They’re common in Japan, and Nintendo’s got a long history of making them. Here are some that Nintendo still produces today:
Since Nintendo is a very old Japanese company (founded in the late 1800s), it didn’t get its start in video games. Instead, it got started by making hanafuda cards, then toys, then — eventually — video game consoles and games.
So this message is intended for the most hardcore Nintendo fans among the hackers breaking into the NES Classic Edition. More directly, this message is intended to appeal to those fans to “keep this place tidied up.”
Perhaps they should have received that message before forcibly adding dozens of games to the console, eh?