Black Mirror: Bandersnatch’s Nohzdyve is a Real, Playable Video Game
A deeper easter egg in the interactive Black Mirror: Bandersnatch film allows viewers to play the fictional game Nohzdyve on a ZX Spectrum emulator.
Fans of Black Mirror gathered around their television screens yesterday to see what the hullabaloo over this new Bandersnatch interactive movie was. Through Netflix, viewers were able to choose between branching paths in a story that followed a video game programmer (Fionn Whitehead) working for a company called Tuckersoft in 1984 England. One of these “Tuckersoft games,” Nohzdyve, has emerged as an actual, playable ZX Spectrum game.
In a bit of viral marketing, a real website for the fictional Tuckersoft was found by Black Mirror fans. Not only does the website detail the “history” of the developer, comprising of several game titles that act as winks and nods to previous Black Mirror episodes, but the page for Nohzdyve, a game created by the character of Colin Ritman (Will Poulter), contains a real video game, playable through the help of any ZX Spectrum emulator.
The objective of Nohzdyve is to control the player character, who is falling down headfirst between two tall buildings, and collect floating eyeballs while avoiding a variety of harmful obstacles. It’s simple, but back in the day (according to the Black Mirror lore), it was enough to earn the game a five-star rating.
Millennials such as myself will certainly not be familiar with an older computing system like the ZX Spectrum, especially as it predates the Nintendo Entertainment System by a few years. It’s a deep cut that Black Mirror creator and writer of Bandersnatch took in an attempt to make the interactive film’s story sound as authentic as possible. In fact, one of the endings of the film had a series of eerie noises, that when loaded into a ZX Spectrum takes you to the Tuckersoft website.
Emulators like Fuse and Speccy can perhaps help those interested to try out Nohzdyve for themselves. In the meanwhile, we can keep having a pointless, philosophical debate on whether or not Bandersnatch is a film or a game.