Google has hidden a ton of Chrome easter eggs up its sneaky, robotic sleeve. And you’re about to see ‘em all in one list. Woot.
Google was probably programmed by a bunch of hardcore nerds (kind of like you and I), that left a lot of hidden objects within Chrome OS and other platforms, including their own search engine. This makes sense, as most videogame lovers would show their passion for games in their work. Many top websites do the same thing.
They reference the best video game era ever (the 1990s, hands down) with memes and even “expressions” that the browser indirectly implies for your nerdy side’s pleasure.
In this complete list, you’ll find all of the Chrome easter eggs it has to offer. Try them all out for yourself and have a Chrome-filled party. What does that mean? I have no idea.
Anyway, here’s the full list of ’em.
Last updated: 4/5/17. I’m constantly updating this as more discoveries are found so you get the most complete list on the whole interwebs. Ohyas.
A word of caution: Note that as the platform updates, this list may change or may get outdated. I’ll constantly update it when necessary to ensure that you get all the latest offerings and hidden secrets it has hidden away.
Some of these easter eggs also apply to more than just the web browser only, as they work on other platforms as well. They’re more like tricks that you can do to impress your friends (or yourself).
Go through the list and see what tempts you. And then try it. Get amused. And then try another.
Do a barrel roll
One of the most popular and well-known tricks. You don’t need anything special to perform this one.
What it does: Chrome will literally “do a barrel roll” right in front of your screen- before your very eyes.
How to do it: Go to Google and type in “do a barrel roll.” As you finish typing it in, your screen will do a 360-degree screen rotation.
What it references: A quote from the popular Star Fox 64 video game for the N64 console. Your squadmate Peppy says this to you so you can avoid enemy attacks by pressing “Z” or “R” on the controller twice in succession. This move made you temporarily invulnerable and would deflect attacks from oncoming enemies. You could dodge lasers, missiles, and even debris. From this line, it spawned a crazy amount of memes following the same formula. This line became an instant meme and you can easily find variations of it within other memes, like this for example:
Bonus: If you have a Chromebook, you can press “Ctrl + Alt + Shift + Refresh” and you can make your Chromebook’s screen rotate no matter if you’re on Google’s search engine or not.
Smiling tabs (or winky tabs)
To show off Chrome’s efficiency, they’ve coded in an emoticon when you open 100 tabs in the browser.
What it does: The tab icon button in your top navigation bar will switch into a smiley-face “:D” rather than the default tab icon.
How to do it: Open your browser and open 99 tabs. If you’re on a desktop, laptop, tablet, or Chromebook, you can spam “Ctrl + T” and quickly open them up. When you reach the 100th tab, watch the icon on your tab button change into a smiley.
What it references: Nothing, really. It’s just there to show off how Chrome is efficient enough to handle that many tabs simultaneously. However, there’s a difference between blank new tabs and tabs that have something running, like YouTube. It also depends on your computer or phone’s specs, like CPU and RAM. Some users have reported that your browser will give you this signal when it knows you’ve been viewing the naughty stuff in incognito mode. It’s watching.
But still, it’s pretty awesome that they coded this easter egg within Chrome :D.
Konami color show
If you don’t know what Konami is, you probably don’t play games. They’re one of the most popular companies known for their amazing arcade-style games. It’s apparent that some coders at Google dig Konami and have incorporated this into their Pixel Chromebook.
If you own one, you can trigger the lightbar to show a dazzle of colors. These colors are basically a light show that’ll show off the different colors the Pixel is capable of rendering. It’s pretty awesome to watch, but you do need their laptop in order to trigger the event.
What it does: Makes the lightbar on your laptop go crazy.
How to do it: If you own a Pixel, press the following keys on your keyboard in any window:
“up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A”
And then watch your lightbar show off all these colors in reference to Konami.
If you don’t have a Pixel laptop, you can watch the following video to see it in action:
What it references: The colors are an effect use in many Konami games, and the keyboard combination you punch is actually a popular cheat code in many Konami games (and even some other games), so it’s an easter egg of itself. It gave the player anything from a full set of powerups (Gradius) to unlockables to all weapons to invincibility. Even some websites use the code as well. As you can see, Konami is a legend to more than just Google. Their games were that amazing. Amazing enough to make a meme of them.
Make Chrome flip out
If you own an Android smartphone, you can make your browser do an awesome flip effect.
What it does: Makes your browser flip out. Literally. There’s nothing else to say.
How to do it: Open up your browser, then swipe up with one finger five times in the tab switcher screen.
What it references: Nothing that I can think of. If anyone knows, let me know in the comments. It’s pretty much just a cool effect.
Here’s how it looks like if you don’t have an Android phone (or just don’t feel like trying out this one):
Play with your camera
This is pretty cool one. You can watch videos within the Camera app (on Chromebooks it’s the webcam mode which is built-in).
What it does: Makes your videos go crazy with a bunch of different filters, and allows you to capture a screenshot of it.
How to do it: It’s easy. Launch the Camera app and make sure it’s focused. Then type in “CRAZYPONY” in all caps.
After you do this, a directory browser will appear. You can choose any video and it’ll start playing within the app. You can use the filters that the app has to offer and apply them to the video itself.
You can also take screenshots of it to show off as well. “Look what I made.”
“Look what I made.”
What it references: Not sure. Probably nothing.
Here’s a video demonstrating the “CRAZYPONY” code:
Teleport some goats
If you want to see something really weird, try this one. This only works on Chrome OS for the desktop, laptop, or tablet. I don’t even know if you can call it an easter egg.
What it does: If you open up the Chrome Task Manager, you can click on the display columns, pop open the menu, and look at the very last one. It’ll give you a “Goats Teleported” column.
How to do it: Open up the Task Manager by pressing:
- “SHIFT + ESC”
(Want to master all the keyboard shortcuts? Check it out.)
Right-click on the column headings and tick “Goats Teleported.” A new column will appear and will give you a numeric value to each one.
What it references: I have no idea. This is a weird one.
Google Chrome has crashed
This one looks pretty cool. It makes Google get a facelift in a crashy way- whatever that means. It works on all devices too.
What it does: Makes Google’s homepage look like it fell apart.
How to do it: Go here and just try to search for something. It’ll fall apart. The links still work though as if it never fell apart.
What it references: Nope.
This one’s pretty cool. It works on any device and only the nerdiest will understand it. Well, not really. It’s a very popular game so if you’ve ever even played it, you know exactly what a Zerg Rush is.
What it does: It makes Google’s “O” attack your search results while you have to defend it.
How to do it: Go to Google and search for “zerg rush.”
You’ll see a series of “O’s” appear all over the screen and start to attack your results. You have to defend them by clicking on the attackers. They’ll keep coming until your results (your “base”) is destroyed, and then it’ll display “GG.” This is one of the coolest memes that I’ve found so far and probably my favorite. Out of all the stuff, you can find on the results page, this one is probably the nerdiest one.
What it references: StarCraft. It’s one of the most popular games ever made in the real-time strategy (RTS) genre and is still popular to this day, so it’s no surprise that they made an easter egg out of it. Players of the Zerg race would create their low-tier units as fast as possible and attack their enemies’ bases, in an attempt to defeat them before they got up and running. The “GG” stands for “good game,” a common phrase used before and after a match as a sportsmanship demonstration. It wasn’t always used with any truth though, as it’s mainly just spammed now.
Here’s a video of the Zerg attack on your search results:
Super Mario’s hidden block
For all the Mario fans, you know how Nintendo likes to hide coins in blocks and hidden blocks. It’s a neat, secret easter egg Google has hidden in their search results.
What it does: It hides a coin on Google’s search results and throws out a coin when clicked.
How to do it: Search for “super mario bros” and you’ll get a results card on the right-hand side of your screen. Click on the question mark box “?” and a coin will pop out.
What it references: Mario. If you’ve never played any Mario game with a coin block (hidden or not), you’ve been under a rock. This is a very popular easter egg not just with Chrome, but for many different devices, operating systems, websites, memes, and more. It’s probably one of the most popular easter eggs ever, so it only makes sense that Google would add it to Chrome OS. Many other popular websites reference the Mario series because of the legendary status of it.
Festivus for the rest of us
You can make a Festivus pole pop up in your search results.
What it does: Shows a graphic of a Festivus pole in your results.
How to do it: Search for “Festivus” on Google and look at your results. There’ll be a Festivus pole alongside the page.
What it references: Not sure on this one. It’s probably something from Seinfeld, which is a popular TV show.
Could you repeat that? Recursively?
You can make Google repeat itself…until it reaches Google.
What it does: Google will repeat itself by asking you if you meant “recursion” if you type “recursion.”
How to do it: Go to Google’s homepage and type in “recursion” and watch as it suggests “did you mean recursion?” If you click it, it’ll just take you back to the same page as before.
What it references: Recursion means to repeat. So you’re basically recurring to the same page, recursively. It’s probably just a play on words. This one’s another nerdy one.
You can have Google tilt your screen and make your experience a little more…lopsided. It’s a Google easter egg.
What it does: Google will tilt your screen. That’s about it. It’s a neat little effect and makes it more awkwardly enjoyable. It looks like your computer screen is having issues.
How to do it: Go to Google and type in “askew” in the search results. Your screen will instantly tilt.
What it references: Probably nothing. Just the word itself. It’s a good joke to play on others.
Don’t forget your blink blink
This one’s pretty cool. It makes you whole screen blink with words.
What it does: When you perform a search, your results will start blinking.
How to do it: Go to Google and type in “<blink>” and watch your search results blink.
What it references: Not sure. You’d think the arrow signs would make it a reference to some movie or line of code, but it’s probably just to differentiate from all the searches that include the word “blink” so it won’t start blink for regular queries.
If you’re not connected to any network, your browser will display an error message with a small avatar of a dinosaur. You can play a hidden dinosaur game when you’re offline. It works on any device with the browser.
What it does: It’s a minigame built into your web browser.
How to do it: If you’re on a laptop, disconnect from any network by turning off your WiFi connection. If you’re on a desktop, do the same and unplug your ethernet if you’re plugged in. Launch your browser and watch it detect nothing. You’ll see the error message.
Now, press the spacebar, or click on the dinosaur, and you’ll get transported into a game instantly.
It’s an endless running game where you have to dodge obstacles and rack up a high score. It’s pretty addicting and I found myself purposely disconnecting my Internet to play it, even though I don’ have the best connection and I get disconnected all the time automatically. Believe it or not, this game is seriously addicting and has attracted a crowd of hardcore gamers that take this game seriously.
What it references: Probably nothing. It’s just their own game for when you’re offline and waiting for a connection. Or you’re just addicted to it and staying offline purposely, like me.
In fact, it’s so fun that I wrote a whole post about how to play the Chrome dinosaur game.
You can play some old-school Atari games on Google, and it works on any device. This one’s a pretty neat easter egg and isn’t specific to anything.
What it does: You can play Atari games by doing a search and going to “Images.”
How to do it: Go to Google and search for “atari breakout” and then click on the “Images” tab. You’ll see different games. Click on one and you’ll start playing it.
What it references: Nothing. It’s just an easy way to play these awesome arcade classics directly on Google.
Spin the logo
You can make the Chrome logo do its animation it’s known for.
What it does: It spins the logo in a quick animation.
How to do it: On the web browser, open up the menu and find “Settings.” click on it and then click on the “About” tab.
A new window will open up that tells you some information about your version of your software. If you click on the colored Chrome logo, it’ll spin.
What it references: Nothing. It’s just a way to make the logo do its thing. You’ve probably seen this logo animation plenty of times before in all of their ad campaigns and such.
Did you find all of the Chrome easter eggs?
Well, there you have it.
Did you have your fill of fun? That makes the complete list of easter eggs- with more to be added as I discover them.
If you find any more, let me know in the comments and I’ll add them to this list.
As you can see, Google is just as nerdy as we are. They reference everything from games to memes to even words themselves sprinkled throughout their platforms and search engine.
It’s when a company is that well-made that it can afford to “play games” like these.
Wait…did you say…”play games?”
Great idea. Just let me disconnect my Internet connection…there. Internet off. There. Now, let’s pla-.