This version appears to be the same as the final, but the rom tests
differently. It is unknown what exactly is different about this
version, but there is a hidden message in the ROM code that says:
Karateka, The Atari 7800 Version, By Jack Sandberg, Sr. Software
Engineer, ibid inc., Hartford, CT. -- Version 1.0 10/15/86--- Security
String Do Not Remove"
This message was removed from the final version of the game (although
it specifically stated not to do so).
Also hidden in the game code is the message "Mommy and Me
are one". This is actually a mangled reference to a subliminal
message experiment that took place around the time the game was coded.
In the experiment researchers flashed messages on a screen and monitored
the results. Apparently the message "Mommy and I are one"
(note that it was I and not ME), was the most effective because it made
people think of their mothers and being safe in her arms. It is
unknown why the programmer put this in the code, as it is a very obscure
This prototype also has a minor coding change that makes it unplayable
in 7800 emulators. All 7800 games set two bits in a register to
enable the joystick buttons and then reset another register. This
prototype does not perform the reset on the second register making the
buttons not work in emulators.
Man I hate those games were you have to read
That looks like it hurts!
Get up wimp! I ain't done with you
The evil Akuma
The beautiful Princess Mariko