Pro tip: Changing your ball in On The Ball

Have you ever been playing On The Ball and got tired of seeing that blue marble hurtling through the mazes?

Well, you could go to the Password screen and put in the password: GFXJF

Done right, you'll be whisked to a screen where you can pick alternate balls... even though they don't look particularly ball-like

But they behave just like the ol' blue marble does, so don't worry about that

Yeah, they look kind of funny, but it's nice to have a change of scenery once in a while.

Pro tip: Starting with slightly higher stats in Dragon Warrior

In Dragon Warrior, like most Role Playing Games, your guy starts out pretty weak.


If you start a new quest and use the name "TEST" instead of something good

You'll find that your starting statistics are slightly higher!

Making the game a bit easier.

Pro tip: Seeing the end of Krusty's Super Fun House any time you want

Krusty's Super Fun House, like pretty much all the Simpsons games, is pretty tough. You have to take Krusty on a tour of the rooms in his Fun House to rid it of an infestation of purple mice. It's a puzzler, of sorts.

But say you get tired of the puzzles, or you just give up. You could start the game over and change the default password of "HI KIDS"

to the much less obvious " JOSHUA " (with a space at either end)

Which will let you enter any door in the Fun House you want. So just enter and immediately leave all of the different areas to instantly clear them. Then, head to the exit and marvel at how such a tough game could have such a lame ending.

I warned you!

Pro tip: Controlling the number of energy tanks you have in Mega Man 3

Mega Man 3's password system may look pretty complicated, but it's actually pretty easy to figure out. For example, it uses the placement of a single red dot to record how many Energy Tanks you have, and you can totally use this to your advantage.

For example, take this code that I got for having beaten no Robot Masters and having no Energy Tanks.

Consulting the chart below, I know that a single red dot in square C5 means 0 Energy Tanks. From there, it's a simple matter of moving that dot up to A6

To start the game with 9 Energy Tanks, the maximum!

From there, it's a simple matter of recording your password, moving the dot, and continuing on each time you need a refill!

And here's the list of dots and their Energy Tank attributes

      #   Dot Position
0      C5
1      E6
2      E4
3      B4
4      A5
5      C1
6      D2
7      C3
8      F2
9      A6

Pro tip: Accessing the Pro levels in The Adventures of Lolo 2

The Lolo games are pretty tough, but maybe you've gotten pretty good that them. You've practiced enough and can finish the levels backward and forward without batting an eyelash. You're ready for the Pro levels.

The second Lolo game has four Pro levels, accessible by going to the password screen and using the password PRO*, where "*" is either A, B, C, or D, depending on what Pro level you want to play.

And these levels are doozies, check 'em out.

Pro A:

Pro B:

Pro C:

And Pro D:

And, yeah, there's only four of them, but they're tough. But you're up to the challenge, right?

Pro tip: enabling Arcade Mode in The Guardian Legend

The Guardian Legend is a kind of weird game. You have stages that alternate between spaceship shooting (kind of like Gradius) and foot-based action adventure (kind of like The Legend of Zelda).

But what if you don't have time to (or just don't want to) play the adventure stages?

Well, you could go to the Password Entry screen and enter the super-hard-to-remember password, "TGL"

And hit 'END'

Then start the game as normal. After making your way through the first stage and beating the boss

Instead of going to the Adventure Mode stage, you'll just mosey on to Stage 2

Greatly speeding up this game!

Thanks to reader J for this tip!

Pro tip: Fight the last boss from Actraiser any time you want... in Actraiser 2

The first Actraiser was a unique game, it had side-scrolling action stages interspersed with Sim-City-esque building stages. Which mostly means that if you want to get to the Big Bad at the end of the game, you've got a lot of work to do.

Or do you?

You could fire up the sequel, Actraiser 2, go to the Password screen, and enter this password

If you do, you'll be whisked away to the final battleground of the first game!

Where you can fight the final boss from that game while in the second one. Why would you do that? To see if you still have the chops to defeat it. What happens if you do?

Uhm... I don't know. I wasn't actually able to do that...


If you can, let me know!

Pro tip: Seeing the ending to GI Joe whenever you want

So let's say that you're playing through the G.I. Joe game for the NES and you're getting frustrated at it. But before you give up on it, you want to see the ending sequence for some reason. Maybe to complete your collection of NES game endings.

So you go to the Password screen and put in this password

Which, if you take out the Z's, says "1ST NDG", is kind of like it saying "First Ending"

Which makes it way easier to remember.

But does that mean that there are multiple endings for this game? Well, no, not that I was able to discover.

Pro tip: Selecting your stage in Darkman

Darkman is another of those games based on a movie that I'll never see. But maybe you saw it and bought the game for some reason, and if so, were probably wondering to yourself, "Boy, I wish there were some way I could pick what level I started on instead of schlepping through the whole game every time."

If that's the case, today's your lucky day!

First, toss in your Darkman cartridge and on the title screen, highlight 'High Score', hold down Right and press the A Button.

Done right, you'll be whisked away to the 'Control Screen'

Enter the password DERMA (which sounds vaguely skin-related... clever, I guess) and you'll have lots more options available

Which means that you can start on any stage that you want!

Which is good for: starting a new game where you left off last time, practicing those annoying Photo Stages, or hitting 'W' and just jumping right to the ending.

Pro tip: Playing as the Grim Reaper in NBA Jam Tournament Edition

The first NBA Jam game had a few hidden characters, but it has nothing on the Tournament Edition of the game, which went way over the top.

For instance: if you enter your initials as GRM

And your birthday as OCT 31

Your player turns into the Grim Reaper! Who looks kinda funny rather than scary.

Just be aware that this doesn't work on all revisions of the game, just v.1 and v.2.

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