Ready Player One is absolutely packed with pop culture and video game references; that's kind of the point, right? Going into the screening I knew that I was going to see a ton of video game characters, shoutouts, and cameos, but I was actually taken by surprise more than once. I didn't think it was possible, but Steven Spielberg and his producers actually managed to catch me off guard with some hilarious, and truly epic, video game Easter eggs.
I'm going to go over my favorite video game Easter eggs from Ready Player One below, and needless to say, there's going to be some serious spoilers. If you haven't been able to make it out and see the movie yet, just be aware that we're going to talk openly about some major plot points and key moments from the film.
Even if you have seen the movie, we're willing to bet that you missed a couple of these Easter eggs in amid the chaos. Keep scrolling to see them all!
Goldeneye 007 (N64)
This is one of the best laugh out loud moments I had in the entire movie. Wade is being drilled about Halliday's (the man who invented the oasis) favorite things, just to see how loyal he is to Halliday and his ideals. When asked what Halliday's favorite shooter was, Wade confirmed that it was Goldeneye. When asked what Halliday's favorite mode was, Wade points out that it was slappers only, and that his favorite character was Oddjob.
Oddjob! Can you believe that shmuck? Only the true cheapos picked Oddjob, because he was shorter than everyone else, and when he crouched, he was impossible to hit unless you manually aimed down at him or crouched yourself. You will all no doubt remember that this was long before we had dual analog sticks, and we all remember those hectic rounds of slappers only.prevnext
In the opening scenes of the movie, as Wade is narrating and showing off the Oasis to viewers for the first time, one of the first worlds you see is a Minecraft inspired world that none of us saw in any of the trailers.
This place is absolutely huge, and if you see this movie in IMAX, it will make your jaw drop. Even though you know that a team of producers and artists rendered this city, even though you know that real-life Minecraft players could never create something so large, beautiful, and sprawling, it still manages to ignite your imagination and impress you. It was the strangest thing. It's the most impressive Minecraft creation you'll ever see, and no one even created it.
For those of you who think you can do anything in Minecraft, this will give you a new goal to shoot for.prevnext
Street Fighter characters appear multiple times throughout Ready Player One. In fight sequences, both Ryu and Chun-Li can be seen taking part in the battles, and they actually play a significant role. Ryu especially, since he's seen delivering a massive dragon punch to big baddy during a climactic fight sequence.
During a scene inside of a night club, Blanka can also be seen walking with a few escorts. Sagat is also briefly shown in a large fight sequence.
There's also a huge moment toward the end of the movie when Wade is having a final showdown with the CEO of the corporation attempting to take over the Oasis. At the climax of their fight, Wade brings his hands back a delivers a massive, crowd-pleasing "hadouken!" It of course shoots out a massive blue ball of energy which sends the CEO's avatar flying. In my theater the entire crowd broke into applause, and it was an incredible moment.prevnext
Terraria / Monty Python / Worms
This one was a bit of a double-whammy. When Wade and his allies are surrounded by IOI troops, and things are starting to look dire, Wade whips out one of the most powerful items he ever purchased: the Holy Hand Grenade. He tosses it over a bunker, and when it explodes, it sends out a powerful wave of glowing white energy which utterly destroys everything in the room.
Terraria players will recognize the Holy Hand Grenade very well. In the game it's something you construct by combining dynamite and water, and it's much more powerful than dynamite -- it can even destroy items typically immune to explosives.
Of course, the Holy Hand Grenade has its origins in Monty Python, so this gag turned out to be a real crowd-pleaser in the audience; almost everyone had some kind of attachment to that crazy relic. The Holy Hand Grenade also appears in multiple Worms games.prevnext
This was one of my favorite moments in the entire movie, and probably the best gaming Easter egg, in my opinion. After Wade takes an early lead in the hunt for the three keys, he becomes a celebrity of sorts. When entering a public social hub, he gets swamped by people trying to take his picture and talk to him. Suddenly, Goro from Mortal Kombat appears, huge and hulking, to drag him away.
Goro takes him into a hidden room and warns him that he can't just go wandering around in public anymore. As he's speaking, a bulge begins to swell in his chest. Without warning a xenomorph from Alien explodes from his chest stunning Wade (and shocking the audience).
It's soon revealed that Goro was really Artemis all along, in a clever avatar disguise. It's a hilarious moment, and there's something so surreal about seeing Goro with a xenomorph coming out of his body.prev