The Sharkbyte Keycards were a pair of Memory Cards released by InterAct in 1998. What made these memory cards so interesting was that they came with pre-loaded save files. There were two released, one for Quest 64, and one for Mortal Kombat 4.
Mortal Kombat 4
The first Sharkbyte Keycard we have to look at is the one for Mortal Kombat 4. The size of the memory card is closer to the official ones, and it comes in a black shell. There's just a single save file on it which takes up 8 pages and 1 note, so there's plenty of space for your own saves. Due to this memory card already having a save file on it, you won't need to format it first.
There's several things unlocked when loading the single save file. The first is the ability to have more continues. Normally you can adjust your number of continues in the options menu to anywhere from 0-9. This save allows you to have 127 continues. You can lower this number as much as you like, but you can't increase it back up due to you not being able to have this many continues normally. Another thing unlocked is the ability to fight only 1 round to win. Normally you can only adjust this in the options menu to anywhere from 2-9 rounds to win. Just like with the previous cheat, once you change the number of wins off of 1, you can't put it back down to 1. If you made a bad adjustment with either of these cheats, you can always reset and pick them correctly the next time.
There's one more thing unlocked with this save file. The last one is Easy Fatalities. Sounds pretty decent no? Well you don't even need the sharkbyte keycard for this. If you go to the options menu, highlight the number of continues, and hold C-DOWN & C-LEFT for 10 seconds, you'll be taken to an in-game cheat menu. On this menu are several options for Easy Fatalities. All the Sharkbyte Keycard did was turn one of those options on. Those 3 cheats are everything that's unlocked from this save file.
The Sharkbyte Keycard for Quest 64 might be a little more useful. The Quest Keycard came in a grey shell and looks exactly like the memory cards that Performance made. It features 16 different save files, all with various types of abilities and at different points in the game. If you planned on having your own saves along with the pre-loaded saves then you'll be disappointed with this one. A total of 32 pages and 16 notes are taken up. N64 memory cards allow up to 16 notes and 123 pages on them. Even though there are plenty of free pages, there are no notes and you won't be able to save anything onto this memory card in less you delete some of the Quest saves.
While the Mortal Kombat memory card was more about cheating, this one is more about saves. Simply pick one of the original saves, and you'll start at a point in the game already over-powered. Here's a scan of part of the original instructions which shows what's on each save:
Although the Sharkbyte Keycard is a great idea, it's pretty well obsolete when you have a Gameshark or DexDrive, both of which were released also by InterAct. With a Gameshark there are many more games and many more options to cheat with. Why have large amounts of Hit Points in Quest when you can have infinite with a Gameshark? Being able to back up these saves with a DexDrive is useful, but it also makes the Sharkbyte obsolete because you could just download these saves off someone else and not need to purchase a Sharkbyte Keycard for yourself. It was a cool idea back then, but I'd pass on these today.
For the full scan of the Quest 64 instructions click here. For the Mortal Kombat 4 instructions click here.
Written by Kevin Ames
February 2 2013