The Secret Message Hidden On Sega's Arcade Bags

For the past two years, Sega Japan has been hiding a coded message on the plastic bags it gives out to those who win crane game prizes. Nobody realised they contained a secret message. That is, until now.

[Image via raika0510]

Sega's crane games are called UFO Catchers, and they are typically located on the arcade's ground floor as way to entice people into arcades.

There are hardcore UFO Catcher players, but most people try to win prizes for their kids, their date, or, yes, themselves.

They don't always win! Though, in some arcades, the staff will help make the prizes easier to nab, especially if you've been feeding the machines loads of money, but not always.

As pointed out by IT Media (via RocketNews and Sega Nerds), a Japanese Twitter user named Sendou realised that the dots and bars on the bags weren't only design elements, but Morse code.

The Morse code on the bag reads, "UFO Catcher is not a vending machine." Meaning? Just because you put money in a UFO Catcher, that doesn't mean you are going to get a prize!

This bag has been in use since 2014, and Sega's official Twitter account confirmed that this was the meaning, writing that the bag's graphic designer purposely added this message because when you play a UFO Catcher, there is suspense as to whether or not you are going to win a prize.

Or, maybe, figure out the secret message.


    So Sega can still be cool... then come back and make some games!

      I miss cool guy Sega. They had some great output back in the Wii days.

        Like the Sonic fairy tales games?

          More thinking in a general publishing sense, how they were bringing out stuff like MadWorld, Conduit, Bayonetta, HotD Overkill, Vanquish, etc. Good times.

            Hehehehe. I knew what you meant. I just couldn't resist having a Sega.

            You look at Sonic these days and basically gives another meaning to "Sega does what Nintendon't"; Nintendo don't kneecap their franchises and release games that turn out to be abominations of humanity....

            ....oh wait, they did that too....

            [Remembers the CD-i games]

            Last edited 26/08/16 11:48 am

              Well to be fair, it was Philips that released those :P

                Wasn't even them. It was a company called Animation Logic and another that did the third one.

                  Released or made? I figure it's the publisher who has the final say before it's thrown out into the wild, so it's mostly on them.

                  @mrtaco: I think back in the 90s and before, publishers were not as over bearing as we see them now (looking at you, EA!). So they basically ran on faith/honour systems while still holding the purse strings.

                  But then again most of knowledge is looking at things in a historical manner; never had the money as a kid for a lolly at the tuck shop let alone a video game, so I am open to being wrong on their role back then.

    Oh thank god. I got scared and thought it was gonna be just a string of swears, like those Sims guys did....

    I'm kind of surprised it took two years for someone to notice. Morse code was the first thing that came to my mind when I saw those dots and dashes. Although I can't really say if I did that on my own or whether it's because the article title primed me to look for a hidden message.

    Last edited 26/08/16 11:37 am

    I disliked the crane games, the claw is constantly flaccid

      Every crane game has a specific way of winning but they're designed to make you think it's done a different way. They're so much better than western claw machines. Snagged a few prizes myself when I went to Japan.

    my one vulnerability is claw machines.... whenever i see them I work out if I can claw something

      Damn, you're impervious to bullets, lazers, fire, pain, kryptonite??

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