In sad news for a generation that grew up playing Contra, Kazuhisa Hashimoto, video game developer and creator of the Konami Code, has passed away after apparently blowing through all 30 of his extra lives. He was 61. How to Konami code came to be in the first place:
The Konami Code was created by Kazuhisa Hashimoto who was developing the home port of the 1985 arcade game Gradius for the NES. Finding the game too difficult to play through during testing, he created a cheat code to give the player a full set of power-ups (normally attained gradually throughout the game). After entering the sequence using the controller when the game was paused the player received all available power-ups. The mistake was discovered after the release, but developers decided to leave it there, as removing it could result in new bugs and glitches. The sequence was easy enough to remember for testers and simultaneously sufficiently hard to enter accidentally during the gameplay for unsuspecting users.
You can view the Wikipedia page with a list of all the games the Konami code works in and what its effects are HERE if you're interested. Or, if you're like me, you can pay your respects by committing to beating Contra this afternoon while on the clock using an online emulator. *covering head and monitor with blanket* It's what Kazuhisa would have wanted. Rest in peace.