Skip to main content

Konami Code creator Kazuhisa Hashimoto has died

Kazuhisa Hashimoto, the created of the famed Konami Code—up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A—has died. Konami announced Hashimoto's death in a brief tribute on Twitter.

Hashimoto created the Konami Code in 1985, to assist with testing during the development of Gradius for the NES. "I hadn’t played that much and obviously couldn’t beat it myself, so I put in the Konami Code," he said in a 2003 interview available on Siliconera. "Because I was the one who was going to be using it, I made sure it was easy to remember."

For some reason, the code was left behind when the game was released, and when its presence was discovered Konami made the fortuitous decision to leave it in place. From there, it grew into a phenomenon, in videogames and beyond: It's been used in dozens of games since, including multiple PC games like Fortnite and BioShock Infinite, it's embedded into GOG's website, and in 2017 the Bank of Canada stashed a Konami Code Easter egg in its announcement of a new $10 bill.

The cause of Hashimoto's death wasn't provided. He was 61.

Andy covers the day-to-day happenings in the big, wide world of PC gaming—the stuff we call "news." In his off hours, he wishes he had time to play the 80-hour RPGs and immersive sims he used to love so much.