Video games are a part of every child’s upbringing. They are the one common thread kids can relate to each other with, no matter which click they hang-out in. Video games, however, weren’t as innocent in content as they appeared to be on the surface. Full of grown-up humor and innuendos that went over most of our heads, the games we played as kids were an educational bridge into a new world of hilarious and perverted humor.
Even after the ESRB ratings came out in 1994, developers were still trying to slip in adult jokes wherever they could. Some scenes were censored while others games were outlawed completely. Japanese developers, mostly Nintendo ones, had a disturbing humor they insisted on sharing with kids around the world.
The best was when a parent would catch the joke or innuendo that we often missed as kids. Unless they decided the game was no longer appropriate for you to play, then the joke was no longer hilarious or ground-breaking. Unlocking one of these hidden jokes before your friends did, and the reward was larger than life. Not only were you able to show off your gaming proficiency, but you knew something they didn’t.
To honor these great childhood moments, we’ve put together a list full of jokes, innuendos, and other assorted material you may have missed as a kid. From arcade games and classic gaming systems to the modern era, here are 15 adult jokes you might have missed in video games growing up.
15 Crushing Ingredients
For decades gamers have been wondering if Nintendo knows what they’re doing when not-so-kid-friendly material ends up in their video games. It’s possible they’re ignorant of it, but we’re not buying that poor sale of goods. Take Pokémon Sun and Moon on the 3DS, for example. It may seem innocent to a young gamer, but when put in context, it’s a disturbingly raunchy joke.
Moon needs you to grab a thick club and crush ingredients for the totem Lurantis fight. The task is simple ─ find ingredients, then press A to crush. But why is she so excited and encouraging about you’re crushing technique? Let’s also not forget when Lana says, “The flavor from the rare bone seems to fill my whole mouth.”
If you’re mind went there ─ then you got it. Instead of writing in dirty jokes, Nintendo should’ve figured out how to correct the slowdown during double battles.
14 Hanging At The Club
Who can forget Candy’s Music shop from DK64? While this clip is more about innuendos than jokes, the implications are relatively the same.
Candy (as she’s known in the game) enters the room with a strut to turn eyes, if you’re Donkey Kong, anyway. Her proportions are above average and her clothes are ─ let’s say provocative. “I’ll take real good care of you Donkey Kong.” Candy says as she approaches him. “Just 3 coins and you get to see a musical instrument and a melon too.”
As if kids might miss what the reference was all about, a very kind and lovingly giggle played in the background when Candy was talking to Donkey Kong. So what kind of musical instrument did you get? Bongos of course. Candy even offers you to stand closer so she can show you how to play them.
13 Creepy Doodles
Remember sitting in class, bored out of your mind and desperately looking for something to help you stay awake. For most of us, that meant doodling on our books, notebooks, desks ─ or just about anything.
In Grand Theft Auto III, the pedestrians must have been bored out of their skulls too. They walked around throughout the game carrying little yellow legal pads with them. Thought they were taking notes? Guess again.
If you zoom in on the pad, you’ll find the simple immature doodling’s of "parts" (think Clerks the movie in video game form). Yep, and if you look real close, you can see it’s performing an action.
We wonder if female pedestrians doodled the same things on the game or were their drawings more innocent based?
12 Taking A Ride
If you never figured it out when you were younger, Onix is a reoccurring Pokémon that is used in Nintendo jokes to represent a male appendage. Now that you’re aware of this fact, think back to all the times Onix was mentioned in Pokémon.
This conversation starts off with two girls talking about things that are big. The first says, “I love really big things!” To which the other replies: “Onix is so big, riding on Onix would be so much fun.”
Notice she doesn’t say riding an Onix, but riding on Onix. If Onix is all it’s cracked up to be, we’re willing to bet she’ll have a good time indeed ─ unless she’s not into Onix. Then hooking up with Lickitung from the anime is a better bet for a good time.
11 Enticing Spells
The Secret of Mana was an interesting game for its time. Launched in the early 90s, this role-playing game allowed you to pause in the middle of a battle to make decisions. However if you had a keen eye, you might have seen something that would’ve made your parents flip out.
While turning pages of the spell book containing magic you needed to gather for casting, an image of a bare woman would sometimes appear instead of your spell.
No, we’re not talking about Naruto’s special Technique. This apparent spell had no useful qualities in the game. Much like the image discovered on The Little Mermaid cover, this was added for other purposes.
It’s a wonder Hugh Hefner never sued for infringement rights on this one.
10 Grab-A-Sailor Night
Bajo-Tooie contained a bunch of great innuendos, but nothing beats the conversation regarding Grab-A-Sailor night. Merry Maggie Malpass requires saving after being eaten by Glumbo. Banjo and Kazooie come to the rescue by firing grenade eggs at Glumbo’s teeth so that Merry Maggie can escape his stomach.
Maggie then tells Banjo and Kazooie about Grab-A-Sailor night at Jolly’s (where she works). To hook them into coming, she mentions how one doubloon gets them five tankards of a drink called Seaman's Brew.
We probably shouldn’t be surprised by these references though, as the game was designed by Nintendo in the early 2000s for the N64. With a weak story about the resurrection of evil Gruntilda, the writers apparently made the game seem more interesting through alternative methods.
9 Daxter Roasting Jak
Comedy Central turned roasting celebrities into a work of art, but Jak and Daxter showed how true friends roast one another and those around them. Jak and Daxter was full of great one-liners as Daxter took advantage of every opportunity available to say something slick.
While Jak is being challenged to beat the best score, Daxter can’t help himself and responds: “Oh don’t worry, Jak beats things all the time.”
But let’s not forget about Daxter getting drunk at Krew's place, or when Jak is having a moment and Daxter says: “Sheesh remind me not to piss you off.”
Nothing beats our favorite though: “Hmmm. Stay fuzzy, save the world... Choices. Oh alright fine! We'll save the world! But do it quickly before I change my mind!”
8 Secret Healing Behind Closed Doors
Link always had a thing for pretty ladies, especially those that could heal him in mysterious ways. In Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, he comes across a healing lady wearing a scandalous dress who tells Link she can restore his life if he follows her inside the house.
While this sounds natural, we never get to enter the home with Link. He comes out of it fully healed, leaving gamers to wonder ─ what exactly took place and how did she heal him? Apparently, an afternoon with a woman of the night was all he needed to have his health restored back to full power.
The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening for Game Boy also had some deleted scenes for the American version which included a naked hippopotamus posing for an artist and a mermaid who lost her top.
We got your number Link.
7 Don't Let Megaman In Your House. Please.
There's a wildly inappropriate scene hidden in Mega Man Legends. As it turns out, Megaman is a super creep. The 14-year-old character, Roll Caskett, apparently catches Mega Man's eye in the game. Mega Man walks in on her while she's trying to get changed — but it gets worse. Instead of feeling embarrassed and ashamed for invading his friend and co-hero's personal space, Mega Man does a little fist pump as if he was proud to be a little creeper. Of course, this is all made worse because of her age. Clearly, this is supposed to be a goof, but it's in bad taste and any grown-up knows it. Kids, on the other hand, are just concerned with getting to the next action section. Did you remember this one?
6 Surprise Bombs
Wario Land 2 for the Game Boy Color was a fun spinoff game to play, which also included a puzzling side effect when you were hit by bombs from the enemy.
If hit by these mystery thrown objects, Wario would become disorientated and drowsy. The joke went over our heads as kids, but thanks to an unlimited amount of data available at our fingertips, we’ve discovered that those bombs were an inside joke from developers.
Originally the enemy should have poured beer over Wario, causing him to act intoxicated. For obvious reasons, the beer was taken out of the equation but the effects were left alone. So instead of bombs blowing you up, you got the adult privilege of having free drinks thrown your way.
For the record, enemies rarely serve free drinks during battle.
5 Celebratory Drinks
Super Mario Kart for the Super Nintendo had an interesting way of celebrating a victory after a race. If you won the race, your character would celebrate the win by holding a giant bottle of what we assume to be champagne.
The American version, however, was toned down from the original as the Japan version showed your character of choice downing the whole bottle and then getting very red in the face. Too bad we couldn’t watch them stumble off the podium.
At least the Japanese Nintendo version had them drinking after the race, but it still left open the possibility that they could be in the next one driving hammered.
Why wasn’t the bottle shared with the other victors? Perhaps they're not celebrating but are shouting “we want some too, don’t be greedy with the goods!”
4 Bad History Lesson
There’s a section in Assassin’s Creed III where you get to be the character Haytham. As you wander around Colonial Boston, you can take a moment to visit Ben Franklin’s print shop, where Ben Franklin decides to give you a history lesson like none other before.
Instead of talking about founding fathers, Franklin goes into great detail and depth about his love for cougars (not the kind you find in the jungle). He even admits that he prefers cougars with kids because hot moms were apparently his thing.
The conversation goes on for five whole minutes, making you wonder if the history lessons you’ve been taught in school have been seriously censored. The lesson was educational, but very disturbing as they were delivered from an old balding man wearing glasses that were too small for his face.
3 Not So Subtle Innuendos
The original Ratchet & Clank was on the innocent side, but the sequels were chalked full of jokes and innuendos that went over most of our heads. Game titles like Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal, Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters, Quest for Booty were just the beginning of a glorious innuendo education.
After spending time looking for booty, it was only natural that the next game would be A Crack in Time. The titles weren’t the end of the jokes as they continued into the game too.
Ratchet and Clank meet Lombax Bill Clinton, and he says “My daughter tells me you're a man who's good with his hands, Ratchet.” To which Ratchet replies “Sir, I swear I never.”
And let’s not forget the famous line from Ratchet & Clank 3 which has Quark stating he spent time with a monkey.
“It was mating season, how could I've known she was your sister?”
2 Packing Heat
With a new Lara Croft in the making for a new generation of Tomb Raider lovers, we had to add the gun problem from Tomb Raider 3. Through a cheat code you could unlock all the existing weapons in the game. The downfall to this cheat was the space on Laura’s body was obviously limited as to what she could hold.
Rather than having the gun mysteriously disappear on her body, the creators had the gun hang from Laura’s lower waist and swing between her legs as she moved.
It didn’t help that the gun was enormously huge and moved in a provocative manner. The image was disturbing, and it wasn’t something we needed to have stuck in our heads when thinking about Lara Croft. It did, however, give a whole new meaning to firing a large gun.
1 PokéPark Wii: Pikachu's Adventure ─ Entering Puberty
Mastering the Iron Tail was a weird concept in PokéPark Wii, considering most of the Pokémon didn’t even have tails. Such Pokémon included Primeape, Alakazam, Goomy, Lopunny, and a handful of others. Was this upgrade available to all of them, or just Primeape?
This left us to wonder if Pokémon have a “secret tail” that forms when they enter puberty. Are they on the front side? Perhaps using a leg can count as a tail.
Considering this version is made by Nintendo, we’re sure there is more than meets the eye regarding mastering the Iron Tail. Which then leads us to question: What’s the Japanese version back-story of the Iron Tail? Sadly, we’ll never know. But like we did when we were kids, we can still use our imaginations.