Easter eggs

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Old Man Murray

Not really an easter-egg but somewhat related: a Penny Arcade comic about crates and Oni

Old Man Murray is an online gaming magazine, which developed a well-known game-rating criterion : the time (in seconds) until the first crate (or barrel) is sighted when playing the game.

This criterion is referred to as STC ("start-to-crate" or "seconds to crate") or TTC ("time to crate") : the smaller the time, the worse the game, as the moment you see a crate accounts for the lack of inspiration on the part of the developers.

Oni's first level is a warehouse and it is literally full of crates, barrels and containers. You can see a crate right from where you start the level (there are also crates in the training course, but not in the first room).


On the first crate you see in the Warehouse, there's a label saying "-OMM- TTC 1.1",

meaning "Old Man Murray : 1.1 seconds to first crate" (pretty bad, needless to say).

The label on that crate also features a reference to the Developer Mode:

"THE DAY IS MINE!!" is written along the lower side of the label.


Marathon symbol

The first Oni trailer featured Marathon symbols on the crates (yes, it was also taking place in a warehouse full of crates :) ).

Ingame, the Marathon symbol can be seen on the hull of the TCTF computer Damocles in CHAPTER 06 . COUNTERATTACK and CHAPTER 13 . PHOENIX RISING.


Who did the first Oni trailer? The one yanked from the web rather often.
I did the direction for it, Steve [Abeyta] and Chris [Hughes] did all the animation.
And the crate with the Marathon logos. A nice touch...You made Hamish [Sinclair] really paranoid with that one...
(grinning) That was our goal.
That's why that picture of Damocles has a small Marathon logo on it, huh?
Yeah (laughs) It kicks up some dust.
Any significance to the name?
It's kind of cool name.
It's not gonna drop on your head or anything...
No, heh. Although it is kind of neat; it's a giant supercomputer which has all these cables going through the ceiling.

Additionally, Oni's inventory icon for the Screaming Cannon looks like an inverted Marathon symbol (with a little imagination). ^^

Wave Motion Cannon

A weapon called "Wave Motion Cannon" was cut from Marathon

(adapted from answers.com)
Upon examining the game's code, it appears that there is another omitted weapon, the "Wave Motion Cannon". Like the Copland beta, it is unusable. However, it does not appear in the demo version. Very little is known about it, or why it did not make the final cut.

As we know, the Wave Motion Cannon is the biggest weapon in all of Oni, and the only one to support 2 firing modes. It's the weapon of choice of Barabas, and Konoko can't run, jump, kick or creep while wielding the WMC.

Frog blast the vent core!

Comguys occasionally say "OK, OK, don't frogblast the vent core!", which is a reference to suicidal enemies (A-BOBs) in Marathon, who'd scream "Frogblast the vent core!" while running at you.

Comguys can also scream "She's everywhere!" (referring to Konoko) : another phrase screamed by A-BOBs was "They're everywhere!"

Doug Zartman was the voice actor for both Marathon BOBs and Oni's Comguys... so the reference is double.

(adapted from answers.com)

This is a phrase synonymous with the [Marathon] series. Explosive BOB "simulacrums" occasionally shout the phrase, trying to blend in with the regular BOBs and explode around a large amount of humans. Since sometimes they are merely only piecing together random words, their nonsense can give them away.

Doug Zartman, the man who performed the BOB voices, described the inspiration for the quote in the Marathon Scrapbook
The idea was that some of the assimilated Bobs become insane from their conversion and run around yelling nonsense. Alex said to me ‘say something random’, and that phrase tumbled from my lips. Totally spontaneous. While I could have sat down and thought up something more random than that, it worked out well, since it sounds close enough to a real sentence that it kept people guessing and generated some fascinating (and totally wrong) discussion about what the phrase was and its meaning. One popular theory was ‘God bless the Marine Corps!’, which was a fair guess, but still wrong.

It is very popular to say in the text chat of a networked Bungie game; meant more as a joke than anything; the sheer randomness of this phrase means it can be used at any time.


The world rampant had existed before Bungie, but the specific concept of rampancy was coined and subsequently developed by the Marathon team (this concept was revisited by 343 Industries for Halo 4). The three/four stages of a rampant (abnormally self-aware) AI are Melancholia, Anger, Jealousy, Meta-Stability. An egotistical level of self-awareness accompanies the development of the AI's personality. The (subtitle-only) tirades of the Deadly Brain are a reference to this, as well as Shinatama's statement, "Clearly, it's gone rampant". However, a Rampancy in Marathon takes place when an AI (not a human mind) is exposed to large amounts of data for a long enough period of time. Here, the Deadly Brain is essentially just going crazy because Konoko "decoupled its core logic".



Forklifts in the Warehouse are labeled BALOR, after the celtic god Balor, or more probably after the name taken by the incarnation of "the Leveler" in Myth.

(adapted from Wikipedia)
Balor is also the name Connacht the Wolf adopts when he becomes the new Leveler in the Myth computer game series. During the seventeenth year of the Grear War, he interrogated Alric, who was previously captured by The Deceiver. In that event Alric learned by chance that the Fallen Lords were bound to Balor. Towards the end of the war, Alric and the Legion went to Rhi'anon, Balor's fortress, and planted the Myrkridian standard they had found inside the Tain, an act that was meant to enrage The Leveler. During the Last Battle, the Avatara immobilized Balor with the aid of the Eblis Stone, thus allowing the barbarians of the Legion to behead the warlord. In the end, Balor's head was thrown into the Great Devoid, ending his life and his sway over the surviving Fallen.


A number of ambient themes from Myth: The Fallen Lords and Myth II:Soulblighter were reprised in Oni

  • Heart of the Stone (from Myth, reprised in Myth II as Gonen's Bridge)
  • Smiths of Muirthemne (from Myth)
  • A Traitor's Grave (from Myth)
  • The Deceiver (from Myth II)

(see HERE for details)


Not really an easter-egg but somewhat related: a comic about Konoko and Master Chief

Actually a back-reference here. Oni doesn't refer to Halo (YET), but Halo features an entity called ONI. It stands for Office of Naval Intelligence.

A military intelligence service called the Office of Naval Inteligence actually exists in the real world:

it's the oldest continuously operating intelligence service in the United States (in operation since 1882).

It seems likely that Halo develops on that longevity and tries to imagine what influence today's ONI would have in the 2550's.

There has been a lot of speculation around Halo's ONI, most of which you can see HERE.

You can directly access the entry which draws the parallel between Halo's ONI, the Japanese oni, and Bungie's "Oni" HERE.


Hidden stuff

There are quite a few more-or-less hidden items or characters in Oni. However, few of them qualify as Easter eggs... as most of those are uncovered with a systematic exploration of the level, or by careful observation.

Secret Striker

A special mention goes to the secret Striker in Syndicate Warehouse ( CHAPTER 01 . TRIAL RUN ). If you pass the first door, then take the stairs to the top floor, and jump onto the cabin of the forklift, a Striker will appear ( see, for example, the YouTube podcast Serious Konoko Ep. 4 - Happy Easter!). When killed, he drops 3 items (hypo spray, phase cloak, force shield). The phase cloak and the force shield are otherwise not encountered before CHAPTER 03 . PUZZLE PIECES, and the secret Striker comes before the first Striker you see normally (after you find Chung). The very improbable encounter and its extraordinary reward qualify this secret Striker as one of Oni's few Easter eggs.

Mad/Happy Bomber

Normally Mad Bombers have a neutral facial expression, but at the "medium" level-of-detail (LOD) of the character geometry, the texture coordinates are inconsistent with the other LODs, and the bomber appears to be smiling (the helmet is a bit messed-up too).

Bipolar Bomber.jpg
The value of the LOD is normally 4 but the game engine can reduce it to 3, 2, or 1 if there are too many polygons in the scene. From the console, you can force the LOD to a fixed value, by setting the chr_lod variable), in which case the engine will always use that LOD, no matter how complex the scene is. You can also reduce the Quality setting of Oni's Options menu, but this doesn't force a specific LOD: if you use the lowest Quality setting, then most of the time you will indeed see LOD 2 (i.e., the smiling bomber), but higher LODs will not be completely ruled out, so in very simple environments the engine will switch to LOD 3 (which for the bomber is the same as LOD 4).

It is not clear whether this is an actual Easter egg intended by the modeler, or just some careless texturing that was never noticed or fixed by the developers. Then again, if it was noticed, but not fixed, then it qualifies as intended. ^_^

Scripts and binaries

The day after

In CHAPTER 03 . PUZZLE PIECES, there's this console right before the acid room:

VAGO BIOTECH - Life is for Everyone
A power station blows up after Konoko reads this,
with particles called dayafter and day264.

Lab Management is pleased to announce that this facility has gone 263 DAYS without an accident!

This safety achievement is just one of the many reasons why VAGO is THE industry leader in employee satisfaction.

Remember: Work hard, but work safe!



A trigger volume in CHAPTER 02 . ENGINES OF EVIL has the name "febtober", which is a reference to a Saturday Night Live "Celebrity Jeopardy" sketch where "Sean Connery" guesses that the month starting with "Feb" is "Febtober". Any possible additional in-joke at Bungie concerning this "month" is unknown. Triggering "febtober", which is done by jumping off the walkway with the turret at the end, spawns a Striker with a plasma rifle who patrols the corridor near the turbines seen in the level's splashscreen.

Unused resources

Though not Easter eggs because they weren't deliberately hidden in order for players to discover them, resources unused in the actual game can sometimes be found by looking through the level scripts and game data. For instance, a music theme called "The Hunt" is available in CHAPTER 13 . PHOENIX RISING but was supposed to play in CHAPTER 12 . SINS OF THE FATHER, and additional characters can be spawned for the boss battle in CHAPTER 14 . DAWN OF THE CHRYSALIS. A more famous example is an undressing animation for Konoko that was intended to be used in a cut feature where Konoko could go undercover by changing into different clothes. This was found before Oni was even released, by inspecting the demo's data. More unused animations HERE.

Iron Demon

The Iron Demon's walking sounds can be found in Oni's global resources.

Developer Mode

A reference to the Developer Mode (cheatcode thedayismine) is found on a crate label in CHAPTER 01 . TRIAL RUN, along with the Old Man Murray reference.

Developer Mode was believed to be absent from beta 5 and later of the game builds, but was eventually unlocked in the retail game applications in 2006.

More features

Stuff like breaking glass with combos and throws, or glass shards causing damage... that wasn't in the original Oni, and wasn't really "locked" either: they are all-new features (supported by the engine, but which Bungie didn't use). Various mods exploring the possibilities of the engine can be found in the Anniversary Edition.

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