Friday, December 30, 2022
I'm not kidding you when I say out of all the articles we publish every year on this here site, this one is up there with my favourites. Easter eggs in video games are one of the true examples of love, application and dedication that a developer can instil into something that they've dedicated a significant portion of their lives to. In fact, most Easter eggs are only seen by a small fraction of players - if done correctly - so this is why we gather here every year, without fail, to countdown our favourite Easter eggs of the year. Some are wacky, some are insane, some are so complex that 99% of players will miss them naturally. And that's why we do it, folks. Ladies and gents, here are our top 5 Easter eggs of 2022.
Techland’s Dying Light 2 is absolutely chock full of Easter eggs - and really cool ones at that. For instance, we could have quite easily put the talking hen in this spot and the really cool Pan of Destiny you receive for helping the unfortunate space cock - it’s basically Thor’s Hammer but in frying pan form. But unfortunately, thanks to our rule of ‘one per game’ we had to choose the best, which is quite easily the hidden DOOM mini-game Easter egg.
In order to unlock it, all you have to do is find 5 black ducks, hidden all over The City - in some pretty obscure places as well! Then, when you have all 5 ducks, you need to make your way to the altar room in the basement of the VNC Tower. After attaching some cables, the secret DOOM mini-game commences. And what’s better is that when you’ve done it, you unlock a new ability, a Force Hold of sorts. So, not only do you get a really cool DOOM Easter egg, you also get a really handy ability to use. Win-win-win.
IO Interactive have to be up there with the best of the best when it comes to Easter eggs in their Hitman games. Whether you’re talking about unleashing the kraken in Sapienza, escaping Miami by flying out of the map as a Flamingo mascot, the crying elephant statues in Bangkok, spawning Godzilla into Hokkaido, or even triggering a volcanic eruption, IO Interactive clearly have fun with Hitman, packing secrets into every map since day 1. 2022 was business as usual for IO, with them dropping their Ambrose Island map for Hitman 3.
Like the volcanic eruption in Hitman’s Hokkaido map where you tracked down and destroyed Mini Ninjas statues to trigger the event, on Ambrose Island, if you destroy 5 lucky maneki-neko cat statues dotted around the map you’ll be able to trigger another special event. Once you’ve destroyed all 5 of the waving arm lucky cat statues, and returned to the pier and blended in, you’ll summon a ginormous maneki-neko statue who rises out of the water and proceeds to throw fish at you. Utterly pointless, yet utterly brilliant. Exactly how we love our Easter eggs.
As far as games go with the most secrets, references and Easter eggs, I actually can’t think of a video game with more of them than The Stanley Parable. 2022 saw the expanded version of the 2013 game hit consoles, with even more references, secrets and Easter eggs to discover. Not only were the Minecraft and Portal sequences updated and replaced with Firewatch and Rocket League sequences, but they also included a ton of new content and secrets too.
One of said secrets involves beginning a new game while standing in the brand new “jump circle.” Doing so will allow players to jump in their new game, and as such, that jump allows some new places to be accessed. One of those areas is in the large open room where you can jump off the moving platform onto the walkway. However, if you jump over the boxes on the left of the moving platform, and head through the duct down below, you’ll find yourself in a new area. Once in the new area, if you follow it around to the right and jump over the boxes, there’ll be a Dark Souls/Elden Ring rune on the floor, that if you interact with spawns one of the glowing silhouettes from FromSoftware games that points up, with the text reading “Praise the jumping.” Not only is it wonderfully self aware, but it’s also a reference to FromSoftware's Souls-likes which didn’t really have a designated jump button until more recently. In a game full of references and Easter eggs, we absolutely loved this one.
Coffee Stain’s Goat Simulator games are completely bonkers, and 2022’s Goat Simulator 3 is no different. There are so many secrets and really cool nods in Goat Simulator 3 that like Dying Light 2, we could have included more than one in this list, but alas, we again must abide by our 1 Easter egg per game rule! The coolest, for us, was clearly the game’s lightsaber that you can unlock.
Now, for us, it’s not so much the lightsaber itself, but how you unlock it that we actually adored this year - although the lightsaber is as cool as anything too. To unlock it, firstly head to the Brumehill Cemetery in Fairmeadows Ranch, and head to the top of the church. When up there, to unlock the mausoleum which holds the lightsaber, all you need to do is use the bells to play The Imperial March from Star Wars. Yes, you need to hit the bells in a certain order, so that it plays the iconic Darth Vadar anthem from Star Wars, which, may I add, is completely bloody brilliant. As we said, sure, the lightsabers connected to your pesky goat is great, but playing the Imperial March song on church bells to unlock is perhaps even better. Love it.
To celebrate the 40th anniversary of Flight Simulator 2020, Asobo dropped an update this year, with a whole host of goodies for players to get their hands on. One of those goodies, rather brilliantly, is a classic Flight Simulator Easter egg, allowing you to play the old Flight Simulator games in one of the cockpits on one of its displays, which is honestly pretty amazing if you ask us.
All you need to do to play Flight Simulators 1 to 4 in Flight Simulator 2020 is jump into the cockpit of the Diamond DA62. Once you’re in, look to your right at the display screen and next to that you’ll see a flip labelled ELT. If you flick said switch and turn it on, Flight Simulator 1-4 will now be able to be played on the small screen in front of you. As far as nice touches go, this is definitely one of them, and is a nice nod to one of the longest running franchises. 40 years is actually pretty nuts if you think about it.