Guys! So, we got this comment on our Hogwarts Mystery Easter eggs post today…
I think I found another Easter egg: in the list (of who has collected how many house points) there’s a very special name: Chloe Price. It could be an allusion to “Life is Strange”.
And it got us thinking…
Are there secret Easter egg names from other fandoms hidden in the game?
We checked (of course), but Chloe Price wasn’t in our house points leaderboard. We had a Jack Price, Noah Price… no Chloe Price. So at first we thought, “Okay, the game’s generating names randomly using a list of first names and a list of last names and mixing them together. It doesn’t mean anything.”
But what if that’s what we’re supposed to think?
Let’s say you’re a developer on what’s expected to be one of the biggest mobile games EVER, and you want to pay tribute to some of your favorite fandoms of all time. Books, games, movies, TV, anime, actors… But you have to be tricky about it because they might not let you do it if anybody figures out what you’re up to. What do you do?
Well, here’s what you could do. You could make an Easter egg list of actors, directors, and characters from your favorite fandoms (Chloe Price, Samuel Jackson, John Carter, Ron Howard) and then break those names up. Put all the first names in a first name list, and put all the last names in a last name list. You write a simple randomizer to spit out new names, choosing a random first name and putting it with a random last name. Ron Price. Chloe Carter. Etc.
Now all the Easter egg names are hidden!
Most of the time Chloe ends up as someone else. Maybe Chloe Carter or Chloe Howard. Put enough names in each list, and she’ll almost always have a different last name. But every once in a while, the computer will pick Chloe from the first names and Price from the last names, and then there she is, your golden Easter egg: Chloe Price, on the Hogwarts leaderboard. Probably down at number 285, where no one will ever see her. But she’s still there.
And you got away with it.
Even if some sharp-eyed player like the commenter on our Hogwarts Mystery post happens to notice (good job, by the way!), the developer can still brush it off. “Nah, it’s just a coincidence. We used a random name generator. Doesn’t mean anything.” As long as you used enough names to seed the list, nobody could ever prove it. But the names would still be there, hidden forever in plain sight. Like Ready Player One in real life. (Only without the billion-dollar prize. But still.)
So now the obvious question is: What Easter egg names were on that original list??? Or, better yet…