Nier: Automata’s last secret has been found

Some games just keep on giving, and Nier: Automata is one of those games, or at least, was. The ominous final secret in the RPG game has been discovered, an exploit that allows you to skip the entire story, and get a special ending.

Nier: Automata spoilers to follow – you have been warned.

As part of the open-world game‘s ‘E’ ending, you’re asked if you’d like to help other players who are struggling to complete everything. If you respond yes, your save data is erased to create an AI companion that will help another random player when they reach the final sequence. The cheat that’s just been found allows you to jump right to that question, bypassing hours and hours and hours of playtime in the process.

Lance McDonald, an expert in hacking games and finding strange mechanics, made the discovery, and put together a video explaining the trick. Reverse-engineered from a cheat command in the game’s code, after the first boss, you move to the back of the play area between two sets of barrels, hold R2 and press up, down, up, right, left, square, circle, triangle, cross (or your control equivalents), you’ll be brought to the ending screen as described above, and get access to chapter select and the debug menu.

Here’s Lance’s video:

The director of NieR: Automata, Yoko Taro, gave his blessing with a retweet:

Taro mentioning three years and ten months, the length of time since Nier: Automata’s release, confirms this is the fabled last, undiscovered secret the community’s been pondering, as announced by the official Twitter account. Nier: Automata crossed the five million copies sold mark as of last Christmas.