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The touching tribute to Satoru Iwata inside every Switch

1 min read


Earlier this week, hackers and homebrewers discovered that there’s a hidden game on every single Nintendo Switch system. It’s an emulated version of the NES game Nintendo Golf, complete with motion controls.

Since then, there’s been a scramble to discover exactly how to unlock the game. Apparently, folks over at Switchbrew have done just that, with video evidence to prove it. Touchingly, it all appears to be a tribute to former Nintendo President Satoru Iwata, who was vital in conceptualising the Switch, then known as the Nintendo NX.

During his tenure at HAL Laboratory, Iwata was the sole programmer on Nintendo Golf. On July 11 2015, he passed away following complications from a bile duct growth.

Unlocking Golf requires that the Switch’s system date is set to July 11, but there’s a caveat. Since the system time is gleaned over the internet, setting the clock date has no effect, except on systems that have never been connected to the internet. It then requires undocking the Joy-Con and emulating the gesture that Iwata infamously used in his incredibly popular and personable Nintendo Direct videos.

Given how roundabout this all is, it’s unlikely to be an Easter Egg that users are meant to stumble across, as that would all be rather morbid. Instead, it’s likely to be an omamori; a Japanese lucky charm that’s meant to guide or protect. Via Eurogamer:

Last Updated: September 20, 2017


  1. fleshtwister

    September 20, 2017 at 13:26

    That is awesome 🙂


  2. Kaz Miller

    September 21, 2017 at 14:28

    May actually be one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen. Wow…


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