2017 action role-playing game Nier: Automata is full of secrets. Multiple endings, hidden rooms, EXP-boosting exploits - over the past four years, determined fans have discovered each and every one. Now, what fans have already begun calling "the final secret" has at last been discovered - and it's not something anyone was expecting.
Discovered by dataminer and modder Lance McDonald, the "final secret" is a cheat code which allows players to skip from immediately after the first boss battle to the final ending of the game.
Known as "Ending E," this final ending typically requires having played through the game at least three times. It also requires completing a tricky shooting mini-game with the game's credits itself as the enemy which must be destroyed. Upon reaching this ending, players are given the option to delete their save file in order to help other players reach the same ending.
McDonald explained that discovering the secret required hundreds of hours of reverse engineering the game. On Twitter, he showed off a short demonstration of the code, which seems to involve performing a specific series of moves when standing near some barrels in the area where the first boss is fought.
I found a cheat code in NieR Automata that allows you to skip to the last ending immediately after killing the first boss and unlock the bonus modes. I'll do a full video soon. It's not a glitch, it's an actual cheat code hard-coded into the engine. @yokotaro pic.twitter.com/FtuNPovq6F
— Lance McDonald (@manfightdragon) January 3, 2021
Later, he released a video on YouTube detailing his discovery of the ending and how to execute it.
Both Nier creator Yoko Taro and the official Japanese Nier Twitter acknowledged McDonald's discovery. In their response, the Nier Twitter also confirmed the fan speculation that this was the "final secret" remaining to discover.
Nier: Automata is currently available for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. It features multiple endings and plenty of other secrets to explore. A remastered version of the original Nier game, entitled Nier Replicant Ver. 1.22474487139, is currently scheduled to release on April 23, 2021, also for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.
Will you be trying this cheat out for yourself? Let us know in the comments below!