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Sega's April Fool treat still going strong, 13 years on

Christmas NiGHTS, Sega's 1996 Christmas giveaway to Saturn owners, included calender-activated features on the run-up to December 25. But it wasn't limited to Christmas - on April 1, there was a sinister surprise in store. And it still works today...

Above: I wasn't really up at 5am playing Christmas NiGHTS today, honest

You head to NiGHTS' palace to dualize with him as usual... only he's not there. In his place is Reala - NiGHTS' nightmarish sibling. Reala flies around with exactly the same moveset as NiGHTS, but while the gameplay may be the same, the feeling is not.

Above: Yup, that's right folks.This used to count as 'graphics' in 1996

Above: Fun fact: Reala was the only character to speak in the original NiGHTS into Dreams, saying:"There is no NiGHTS". That's very true today

This is such an easy thing to put in your game and I'm amazed calender-specific functions aren't used more. As it is, it's just one of the many ways this game keeps giving, year after year.

Above: Still going strong,some 15years old. Anyone else still play Saturn?

01 Apr, 2010

Justin was a GamesRadar staffer for 10 years but is now a freelancer, musician and videographer. He's big on retro, Sega and racing games (especially retro Sega racing games) and currently also writes for Play Magazine,, PC Gamer and TopTenReviews, as well as running his own YouTube channel. Having learned to love all platforms equally after Sega left the hardware industry (sniff), his favourite games include Christmas NiGHTS into Dreams, Zelda BotW, Sea of Thieves, Sega Rally Championship and Treasure Island Dizzy.