Video Games That Secretly Reward You For Cheating

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Vote up the video game cheats you love exploiting.

The Metal Gear series includes some of the best games of all time. It also includes some low-down dirty cheats built into the game allowing you to skip all kinds of drudgery. This is just one example of the many video games that reward you for cheating. Is it technically "cheating" if the game allows you to do it, though? That's the million dollar question. And since these are built-in shortcuts, you can choose to tell yourself the game creators snuck them in so only those as brilliant as yourself can exploit them. 

These tricks, tips, and shortcuts will make some of your favorite games significantly easier. If you have a bit more gaming integrity, however, there are also a bunch of games that troll you for cheating. Be warned, there are major spoilers ahead for some of the most popular games of all time.


  • There Are Numerous Ways To Kill The End In 'Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater' Without Actually Fighting Him
    Photo: Konami / Amazon

    For some reason, Hideo Kojima really didn't want you to fight The End head-to-head. At least, one can reasonably conclude that considering the Metal Gear creator offered more ways to defeat the legendary sniper than just facing him in battle. There's an active way to defeat The End, and there's an extremely passive way to do so.

    You can actually defeat The End before you even meet him. The End makes his first appearance outside the Ponizovje Warehouse as you sneak through the jungle nearby. He holds a brief conversation with The Fear, and during this time you can snipe him, taking him out so you never have to face him later.

    There's another even less active (but brilliant) way to defeat the ancient soldier. This method requires you to actually enter into the boss battle against The End, but you don't need to finish it. You have two options to defeat him by doing virtually nothing at this point: you can either save your game and wait a week before returning to it, or you can save the game, exit it, set your Playstation's internal clock forward by a week, then return to the game. Either way, The End will die of old age while waiting for you. Snake will be forlorn with this approach, feeling The End deserved the glorious death of a warrior, but who cares? You just saved yourself a whole lot of bullets.

    • Released: 2004
    • Developer: Kojima Productions, Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo, Bluepoint Games
    • Genres (Video game): Shooter game, Action-adventure game, Action game, Stealth game
    • Series: Metal Gear
    • Designers: Hideo Kojima
    • Publisher: Konami
    • Platform: PlayStation 2
    1,523 votes
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    1,806 VOTES

    'Doom' Allows You To Kill Anyone With The BFG While The Game Is Paused

    'Doom' Allows You To Kill Anyone With The BFG While The Game Is Paused
    Photo: Bethesda / Amazon

    The 2016 Doom has one of the cheapest cheats you'll ever see. First, it requires the BFG, a gun so powerful it already feels unfair. Then, it requires you to be able to press the menu button. That's it.

    The way it works is that immediately after you fire the BFG, quickly pull up the weapon wheel. This will effectively pause the game, yet your shot will continue onward. Not only can you not get hit, but whatever you're fighting will freeze in place and pretty much just wait to get blasted in the face. You can beat the Cyber Demon boss with a single shot because the plasma missile does continuous damage, and if you pull up the weapon wheel at the exact right moment, you can watch it drain the frozen monster's health from the safety of your pause screen.

    1,806 votes
  • You Can Make It To The Final World Of 'Super Mario Bros.' After Playing Just Four Levels
    Photo: Nintendo / Amazon

    Each installment of the Super Mario series allows you to warp between worlds in one form or another, and it's something they established from the very beginning. The very, very beginning. In just the second level of the original Super Mario Bros. you can reach a warp zone quite easily by riding the last rising platform up a little higher than is necessary to beat the level in the traditional route.

    That will take you to the first warp zone, where you can skip all the way ahead to the fourth world if you so choose. Once there, the second level of World 4 offers the exact same thing, this time allowing you to warp to the eighth and final world. With almost no effort, you're at Bowser's doorstep.

    • Released: 1985
    • Developer: Systems Research & Development Co., Ltd., Nintendo, Nintendo Entertainment Analysis & Development
    • Genres (Video game): Platform game, Action game, Adventure
    • Series: Mario Series
    • Designers: Koji Kondo, Takashi Tezuka, Hiroshi Yamauchi, Shigeru Miyamoto
    • Publisher: Nintendo
    • Platform: Nintendo Entertainment System, GameCube, Game Boy Advance, Wii, Family Computer Disk System
    1,212 votes
  • 'Mario Kart 64' Has A Shortcut On Most Courses
    Video: YouTube

    Pretty much every game in the Mario Kart franchise is full of shortcuts - some by design and some unintentional - but Mario Kart 64 might take the cake with 12 of its 16 courses offering a shortcut in some form or another. On one end of the spectrum there's the relatively innocuous cave behind the waterfall on Koopa Troopa Beach, which requires using a mushroom off a conspicuously placed ramp.

    On the other hand, there's Rainbow Road, by far the longest (and arguably most treacherous) track in the game, but shortly after the beginning of the course, you can jump off the edge of the track, landing on it far below, virtually cutting out half the course. It's a risky maneuver, but if you pull it off, you pretty much can't lose.

    • Released: 1996
    • Developer: Nintendo Entertainment Analysis & Development
    • Genres (Video game): Simulation video game, Sports game, Racing video game, Vehicular combat game
    • Series: Mario Kart
    • Designers: Shigeru Miyamoto
    • Publisher: Nintendo
    • Platform: Wii, Nintendo 64, iQue Player
    790 votes
  • The Witness is a next gen puzzle game heavily inspired by Myst. The largely solemn experience is just a series of progressively more difficult puzzles. When you first start the game, you're introduced to the very easiest "puzzles" (which at this point is no more than tracing lines), allowing you to open a couple doors and walk out into glorious sunshine.

    This is one case when you should look directly into that sun, because if you do so from a certain angle, you'll notice it aligns with a gate, creating a similar traceable line puzzle. You can use this to unlock that gate and you immediately walk into the final area of the game. Less than two minutes later, you'll stumble onto the final scene. 

    • Released: 2012
    • Developer: Jonathan Blow
    • Genres (Video game): Puzzle game
    651 votes
  • Dead Space allows you to duplicate your items in Mission 3, effectively producing as many as you want, making the game infinitely easier. As IGN explains:

    This is one of a few places you can exploit the game's placement of items. In mission 3, you are tasked to restart the Ishimura's engines. On your way to the engine room, there is a node locked door next to a set of malfunctioning, fast shutting doors.

    Do not take items from the node locked room, but unlock the door and use the kinesis module to move the items (money, medikit, schematics, ammo) out of the secret room and leave them anywhere on the ground.

    Use stasis to bypass the fast-closing doors and go to the end of the hallway to a save point outside the engine room. You do not need to save, just touch the save point. This gets you far enough from the node locked room to duplicate the items.

    Travel back to the node locked room (past the fast closing doors) and some of the items in the secret room will be there, as well as the ones you used kinesis to move out last time.

    This exploit stops working if you take any of the items (i.e., if you take the medikit, the medikit stops respawning) or when there are too many items on the screen (about 30 or so). If you need more stasis to get by the door, use the "Restore Stasis Energy" code seen on this page.

    • Released: 2008
    • Developer: EA Redwood Shores
    • Genres (Video game): Survival, Horror
    • Series: Dead Space
    • Designers: Bret Robbins, Glen Schofield
    • Publisher: Electronic Arts
    • Platform: Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
    • Game Engine: Havok
    • Sequels: Dead Space 2, Dead Space: Extraction
    661 votes