Posted on September 19, 2011
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game (NES)
Though the actual TMNTII arcade game was much flashier, the NES edition was definitely the superior game with more content.
The cartridge came with a coupon for free pizza, which didn’t hurt giving this game an edge over its competitors.
Although I have nothing but great memories gathered from playing this game with friends as a kid, the one I share today is rather embarrassing. Epic, but embarrassing.
I’ve mentioned it a few times before, but I was an avid collector of video game magazines. There was no internet to rely on, so flipping through the pages of Electronic Gaming Monthly or Nintendo Power to get the latest tips and cheats was a common practice. With every month came a new issue, and with every issue came new cheats… it was always something fun to look forward to.
In the April of ’90 issue of EGM, one cheat in particular caught my attention.
Simon Belmont (from the Castlevania series) would be perfect to fight with! The cheat was complimented by two screen shots, one of them showing Belmont lashing his whip at a Foot Soldier. My best friend who lived around the corner owned the game, so with the magazine in hand, I rushed over to give the code a try. It seemed like quite a long process, but it would be worth it!
Well… it was indeed quite the process. For about 30 minutes, we tried to get the code to work as described. We convinced ourselves that, due to the complicated nature of the code, we were messing something up. We gave up, deciding to instead just play the game normally.
As the years went by, TMNTII would inevitably come up in any conversation related to the NES. It was a fantastic game, and it pretty much erased any memory of a somewhat disappointing first title. I would mention this code, and though people wouldn’t remember hearing about it, I was “in the know” because of the magazine.
Last year, I found the issue in question when digging through old piles of gaming publications. Just for fun, I started flipping through pages, and eventually landed on the familiar code.
I then read the caption next to the screenshots.
A.P. Rilphuuls? Is he Danish?
It then hit me like a ton of bricks. April F***ING Fool’s.
For 20 years, I believed it to be an actual cheat for TMNTII. I passed it along as fact to everyone else who mentioned anything about the game. It’s all quite hilarious, but I do blame the gag working on me (oh so well) on a few things;
1. I was still learning how to read in English.
2. Even if I did know how to properly read in English, I was just way too excited to even care about what the caption said.
3. A.P. Rilphuuls? Seriously? I still don’t find it that obvious. “Eh-pee Rilfuels” is what I initially though it pronounced when I re-read it last year.
4. The Fromegem, HA is perhaps an error on the editor’s part, or maybe another attempt at spelling something differently to get the same phonetic sound. Had it been Fromegm, it could have possibly clicked. As it was, I thought perhaps Fromegem was some kind of cheese.
5. I am the most gullible person on the planet. I’ve been burned over the last couple April 1sts, but for the other 364 days of the year, I can be pretty dense.
So, there you have it. I’m hoping a current EGM editor will see this someday and get a chuckle out of it.
Pretty straightforward… I promise these will get more interesting as the consoles they’re played on evolve. Though, you probably already knew that.