Today, I briefly revisited Dirty Harry for the NES. Here’s a screenshot of the start of level 3:
Unless I miss my guess, Dirty Harry is on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay (though I have not seen the movie, I know that Dirty Harry is supposed to be set in San Francisco). That would be the Golden Gate Bridge in the background, not to mention a little of Sausalito to the right of the bridge. Quite accurate. I really should make a category for games featuring San Francisco in some way.
And look! I even figured out how to jump (A+B). I reasoned that it must be possible to jump since there are some spots early in this stage where jumping is an absolute necessity lest you fall into the bay. And since there aren’t that many NES input options, that pretty much leaves the (A+B) combo.
The reason I made it all the way to level 3 is that I thought to open the ROM file and scan for plaintext strings. WildKard pointed out that this yields useful company data for certain games. I was dubious since, in my limited explorations, there is not a great deal of plaintext to be gleaned from NES ROMs (English strings can be encoded much more efficiently with fewer than a full 8 bits per character). However, for certain games — Dirty Harry included — there is some plain ASCII text, passwords in this case. Level 2 = ‘misty’, level 3 = ‘bird ‘ (with a space at the end). ‘clyde’ gives infinite lives. There seems to be a fourth password, ‘gunny’, but I’m not sure what it does. It’s not infinite ammo.
- Disney’s Chip ‘N Dale Rescue Rangers 2
- Dirty Harry
- The Terminator
- The Untouchables