Satoru Iwata can be described as the father of some of our most beloved games. The Nintendo CEO who passed away on July 11, 2015, was responsible for setting the foundations of future gaming.
Despite his high in the company, people often portraited him as a humble businessman who truly enjoyed making games. During his last moments, Iwaka continued to work on his bed before he died due to the tumor.
Iwata had made a name for himself on his “Iwata Asks” section on Nintendo’s website. He was also famous for his signature gesture on Nintendo Directs.
For this, it is reasonable for Nintendo to hide small references to tribute the deceased CEO. One of them seems to be a secret game in the console’s system that people can only activate on a certain date.
The name of the game is Golf and it’s a reference to Iwata’s unreleased game. The 80’s video game was successful in terms of concept. However, it didn’t live long enough to make its way into the market due to its big memory size.
Nintendo had planned to release the Golf Game but several software companies declined because they couldn’t fit an 18 hole course into such a limited memory. So, Iwata compressed the game all by himself.
Back in Summer, 2017, various hackers were able to gain access inside Switch’s system and found out about a hidden game named “FLOG”. At first, it seemed like an accident in the manufacturing procedure.
However, it is obvious that “FLOG” backward is spelled “GOLF”, clearly a referencing Iwata. The NES emulator supports Joy-Con motion control, allowing the player to swing with a physical motion. Reportedly, when launching the game, you can also hear a voice clip of Iwata.
Getting access to the game is quite tricky. First of all, the only way to activate the game is by performing Iwata’s Nintendo Direct gesture. Also, the game may only appear on July 11th, the day that Saturo Iwata passed away. But there’s a catch.
When Nintendo’s Switch gains WIFI access, it syncs to the current date. If that’s the case, users can’t trick the system by manually changing its date. Despite that, many consoles that haven’t connected to the internet may still access the secret game.
One of those lucky people is Fiskerdin, who was quite aware of the Golf Rumors. Luckily for him, he happened to have an unopened Switch at his disposal.
During a conversation with Kotaku he said: “I booted the unopened Switch up, did the setup procedure, and decided to try it out the gesture which was posted,”
“I simply put both Joy-cons parallel to each other and pointed towards the ground, then raised them in a vertical position and waited,”
“The screen turned blank, an audible cue was played, and then I was greeted with the Golf menu.”, he continued.
Many others have tried themselves in order to taste the early creation of one of the industry’s greatest programmers. Nintendo has yet to make any official statements regarding the hidden video game. Apart from that, it’s unclear of whether it will still be there on July 11th, 2018. Nonetheless, several lucky people who gained access to the secret tribute, have shared their experience with the world.
One of them is the Youtube user, fire3element, who recorded himself successfully attempting to gain access into Golf. Below you can you the video:
Be it just a manufacturing mistake or an intentional tribute to Iwata’s accomplishments in the past, the secret video game certainly brings back nostalgia to one of greatest inspirations that helped Nintendo thrive.