Game developer Amir Rajan was feeling good. His text-based RPG “A Dark Room” had just launched on the Nintendo Switch’s eShop. Originally created in 2013 for mobile devices, the game would surely find a new audience…..and when they discovered the hidden easter egg, it could blow up in popularity!
But maybe people might need a little help discovering it. So Rajan went to the boards on Mastodon and revealed what he’d done….
Last week I released A Dark Room to the Nintendo Switch. Within the game, I also shipped a Ruby interpreter and a code editor as an Easter Egg.
*This Easter Egg effectively turns every consumer spec-ed Nintendo Switch into a Ruby Machine.*
1. Download A Dark Room from the US/EU.
2. Connect a USB keyboard and press the “~” key.
3. Follow the onscreen instructions.
Yes, you would now be able to code in Ruby on a Nintendo Switch through Rajan’s app. Surprise!
Was it possible to hack the Switch through this editor? In theory, no. Rajan hadn’t included the full Ruby language in the Switch port; just enough to utilize the resources within the game. Nintendo was not pleased regardless, and immediately upon catching wind of this secret mode, removed Rajan’s game.
Rajan later said he added the editor as a bit of “last-minute inspiration” and feels crushed about the whole incident. Circle Entertainment, “A Dark Room”‘s publisher, hasn’t mentioned yet if they plan to resubmit a version of the game with the editor removed, but “we’re liaising with Nintendo to clarify on the next steps and will deal with the matter accordingly.”