As technology progresses cheat codes become more and more a thing of the past. But in their heyday, they were sought out and used by nearly anyone. What makes this even more amazing is that this was all done before the internet was commonly used. Cheat codes were read about or discovered and then passed from friend to friend by word of mouth. The most popular cheat codes were memorized by hundreds of thousands of kids and used on a daily basis. Most kids had the cheats written out by hand and saved along with the game for later use. I say most because I had one friend that would call me all the way up to 2008 asking me to look up cheat codes for GTA III.
Top 10 Most Popular Cheat Codes
#10 – Level Select Cheat from Super Ghouls ‘n Ghosts
The Level Select Cheat from Super Ghouls n’ Ghost feels more like a developer menu. After entering the code, the player gains access to a new menu will various features. Including level selection and the ability to hear any of the game’s music and sound effects. Because Super Ghoul n’ Ghost was such a difficult platformer game, we can assume most of you used this cheat too.
How To Use The Level Select Cheat In Super Ghouls ‘n Ghost
To enter into the Level Select menu you have to follow the following steps. On the Options screen and move down to select EXIT. Instead of pressing the normal button you hold L + R + START on Controller 2 and press START on Controller 1.
#9 – Fight Mike Tyson Right Away from Punch-Out!
Punch-Out was undeniably a fun game. And while some of the characters were fun, most people just wanted to fight Big Mike. By using this code on the main menu, the player was able to skip all the lesser fighters. You would think this would lead to short gaming sessions, but Tyson was incredibly tough.
How To Fight Mike Tyson Right Away in Punch-Out!
To skip right to the big guy all you have to do is go to continue on the home screen. When the code screen opens enter ‘007 373 5963‘.
#8 – Your Always ‘On Fire’ from NBA Jam
The best part of NBA Jam was the ability to perform insane dunks. Nothing can explain the joy of lifting off from half-court and flipping through the air like a windmill. The problem is you could only perform the coolest moves when ‘on fire’. This code allows you to remain ‘on fire’ for the entire game, allowing for insane matchups. Bonus points if you manage to break the backboard.
How To Enter The On Fire Cheat Code in NBA Jam
To enter the “On Fire” cheat code you have to wait for the “Tonight’s Match-up” screen to appear. Then you hit any button seven times and hold B + C + Up until the tipoff.
#7 – God Mode from Doom
It’s no secret that the original Doom was a hard game. Most players at some point were probably forced to use this code to get to the next level. I remember using it on confusing maps, allowing me to scan ahead for a door without taking damage. Doom had a lot of cheat codes available but the most important was always God-Mode, closely followed by ‘noclip’.
How To Enter The God Mode Cheat Code in Doom
To turn on god mode in Doom, all you have to do is enter ‘IDDQD” when playing. After that point, you will be invulnerable to damage.
#6 – Give All Weapons from GTA III
Grand Theft Auto III was an action-packed game from start to finish. And one of the funniest parts of the game was just running around causing mayhem. The ‘Give All Weapons’ cheat code allowed for you to cause as much destruction as you wanted. By giving you every weapon in the game with maximum ammunition, you could really give the cops something to chase. It wouldn’t be unreasonable to think that more kids spend their days playing using this code, than following the storyline.
How To Enter The Give All Weapons Cheat Code in Grand Theft Auto III
To get all weapons in Grand Theft Auto III all you have to do is enter R2, R2, L1, R2, LEFT, DOWN, RIGHT, UP, LEFT, DOWN, RIGHT, UP at any time during gameplay. Bonus Tip: The health cheat code is R2, R2, L1, R1, LEFT, DOWN, RIGHT, UP, LEFT, DOWN, RIGHT, UP. You are going to be needing that also if you plan on breaking out the big guns.
#5 – ZELDA from The Legend of Zelda
For its time, The Legend of Zelda was a long game. But by using the ‘ZELDA’ cheat code players could skip a fraction of the game. This was great for people that are trying to finally beat the game for the first time but having difficulty. Rather than repeating the first portion of the game they could enter ‘ZELDA’ and skip the entire first quest.
How To Enter The ZELDA Cheat Code in The Legend of Zelda
To use the ZELDA cheat all you have to do is enter your name as Zelda when creating your player. When you start the game you will be on Mission 2.
#4 – Blood code from Mortal Kombat
The Blood Code for Mortal Kombat was something that once discovers, all real gamers had to always use. Seemingly simple, the code would add(or remove) blood from the game animations. This allowed you to really feel the violence and brutality that was at the heart of Mortal Kombat. And yet, quickly turn it back off in case your mom entered the room. It is said that when the developers were told to remove the blood they decided to take a different route. Something appreciated by gamers everywhere to this day.
How To Enter The Blood Code in The Mortal Kombat
From the Code of Honor screen, press A, B, A, C, A, B, B. If entered correctly, the text will turn yellow and you will hear Scorpion say “Get over here!”
#3 – JUSTINBAILEY from Metroid
Justin Bailey is a famous cheat code that comes in the form of a password for the classic Metroid game. By entering ‘Justin Bailey‘ in the password screen players and unlock the ability to play as Samus without her suit. Additionally, gamers would still have all the added benefits of the suit despite not wearing one. Samus’ color would change depending on which weapons you have unlocked, but the most known variant has green hair.
How To Enter JustinBailey in The Metroid
To enter the cheat code JustinBailey the player just needs to enter it on the level password screen. On the main menu select the continue option. Here you would normally input a random combination of letters and numbers to skip levels. But if you enter ‘Justin Bailey” instead the game will restart, with you not wearing Samus suit.
#2 – Rosebud from The Sims
Rosebud was a secret cheat code for The Sims that spread like wildfire after the game release. When entered, the code would add $1,000 to the player’s bank. In a game that revolved entirely around making and spending money, this meant all the difference. Another cool part of the code was the ability to add “;:” multiple times after the word rosebud. Each time you would enter it, it would add an additional $1,000 to your bank. I remember entering it a few times and then just spamming Ctrl + C to paste it hundreds of times.
How To Enter Rosebud in The Sims
To enter the code in The Sims the first thing you have to do is open the Cheat Menu. You do this by pressing Ctrl + Shift + C. You then type in the word ‘rosebud’ and press enter. Your money will then be added to your bank.
#1 – The Konami Code
The Konami Code is without question one of the most popular cheat codes ever made. The cheat code was originally debuted in Gradius for the NES was also used in many other Konami video games. The code has also found a place in popular culture leading it to be used in non-Konami games as well. As of today, the Konami code has been used in more than 150 different games. Being seen in popular franchises like Metal Gear and Castlevania as well as less popular games like Drum Mania.
How To Perform The Konami Code
The Konami Code is nothing more than pressing “Up-Up-Down-Down-Left-Right-Left-Right-B-A‘ in the right order and at the right time. The trick was knowing when to enter the code in the different games it appeared in.
Did you use any of the popular cheat codes listed? Do you have a cheat code that you think we should have included? If you answered YES to either of these questions we would love to hear about it in the comments.