Google is well known for having fun and unexpected features hidden within its search engine. One of the most popular of these is the “do a barrel roll” Easter egg. Typing this phrase into Google search results in the page spinning around 360 degrees like a barrel rolling in the air. It’s a quirky trick that has delighted Google users for years. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about the history and features of the “do a barrel roll” Easter egg.
What Does “Do A Barrel Roll” Do on Google?
When you type “do a barrel roll” into the Google search bar and hit enter, the page will quickly spin around 360 degrees, imitating the motion of a barrel roll airplane stunt. The background of the page blurs as if you’re looking at it while spinning around, adding to the effect.
Once it completes the roll, the results page stops moving and goes back to normal. The only difference is a slight wobble or jitter to the page for a second or two once the roll ends. The trick works on both desktop and mobile, though the motion is smoother on desktop.
This fun hidden feature has been around since 2010, delighting Google users who happen to discover it. It’s inspired by the famous barrel rolling move from the Star Fox video games, known for having space fighter ships that can flip and roll through the air with ease.
When Was “Do A Barrel Roll” Added to Google?
The “do a barrel roll” easter egg was added to Google in 2010. It was originally created by Google engineer Mo Haghighi as an homage to the popular Star Fox video game series.
In Star Fox, barrel rolling is a special move that allows the player’s ship to quickly spin laterally to avoid enemy fire and negotiate tight spaces. Haghighi decided to sneak it into Google as a hidden feature users could activate for fun.
At first, Google only allowed the easter egg to work on specific keywords like “Z or R twice.” However, it quickly became popular enough that Google enabled it to work for “do a barrel roll” as well.
The easter egg has remained a fun hidden surprise within Google’s search engine for over a decade since its inception. Typing the words into search still activates the nostalgic video game barrel roll to this day.
20 Best Google Tricks & Easter Eggs
Beyond “do a barrel roll,” Google search has dozens of other fun tricks and Easter eggs for users to discover. Here are 20 of the best to try out:
- Do a barrel roll– Make the page spin 360 degrees.
- Askew– Tilt the results page slightly.
- Bletchley Park– Play a codebreaking minigame.
- Zerg rush– Avoid the O’s or click them all.
- Google in 1998– View a retro version of Google.
- Pac-man– Play a game of Pac-man on Google Maps.
- Spinner– Activate a fidget spinner you can spin.
- Breathing exercise– Pull up a breathing/mindfulness exercise.
- Solitaire– Play solitaire directly on search.
- Flip a coin– Flip a virtual coin.
- Roll a die– Roll a virtual die.
- Metronome– Pull up an online metronome tool.
- Timer– Set a timer for any duration.
- Play tic-tac-toe– Play tic-tac-toe against Google.
- Google gravity– Reverse Google’s gravity.
- Thanos– Watch Thanos erase half of your results.
- Baba Yaga– Fly around on a magical broomstick.
- Watch Ken Burns– View a Ken Burns-style video.
- The Wizard of Oz– Follow the yellow brick road.
- Loch Ness Monster– View the monster on Google Maps.
There are many more Easter eggs than just these to uncover when you’re searching Google creatively.
Step-By-Step Instructions to Do a Barrel Roll on Google
Doing a barrel roll on Google only takes a second. Just follow these steps:
- Go to Google.com on any desktop or mobile browser.
- Click on the main search bar at the top of the page.
- Type “do a barrel roll” without the quotes.
- Hit enter or click the Google search button.
- Watch the results page spin around 360 degrees.
- Enjoy the dizzying Easter egg and search as normal once it stops spinning.
The key is typing the exact phrase “do a barrel roll” into the Google search bar. You’ll know it worked if the page blurs and spins around once before stopping. It happens almost instantaneously after hitting search.
How Many Times Can You Do a Barrel Roll on Google?
There is no limit to how many times you can do a barrel roll on Google. You can activate the spinning search results Easter egg over and over by typing “do a barrel roll” repeatedly. Each new search will spin the page around.
Some fun variants you can try include:
- Do a barrel roll 10 times
- Do a barrel roll 20 times
- Do a barrel roll 100 times
To save time, you can also click on the search bar and press the up arrow key to recall previous searches rather than retyping each one. The endless spinning can make you dizzy fast!
What Happens When You Search “Do a Barrel Roll Twice”?
When you search for “do a barrel roll twice,” unfortunately Google will not do two consecutive barrel rolls. It will only perform the standard single 360-degree spin.
There are no known keywords that can make Google do more than one barrel roll at a time. Even searching for something like “do three spins” or “triple barrel roll” will just cause a single roll.
However, you can replicate the effect of multiple rolls simply by conducting consecutive searches for “do a barrel roll.” This allows you to do as many sequential rolls as you like, essentially achieving the same result.
Can You Make Google Do 200 Barrel Rolls?
Yes, it’s possible to make Google do an absurd number of barrel rolls by repeating the search query. To make Google do 200 spins, just type “do a barrel roll” into the search bar 200 times in a row and keep hitting enter.
Or, type it once, then click the up arrow key to repeat your last search over and over. Each new search will activate one roll, so with enough repetition, you can roll the page hundreds of times.
There is no limit or cap to how many times you can roll Google, so feel free to see how dizzy you can get! For efficiency though, it’s easier to use the up arrow key shortcut to repeat the effect.
What Happens When You Search “Do a Barrel Roll x200”?
Unlike manually conducting 200 searches, typing a multiplier like “do a barrel roll x200” will not cause 200 spins. Google does not detect or respond to multipliers added to the “do a barrel roll” search.
No matter what number or mathematical operator you add, such as “do a barrel roll x1000” or “do a barrel roll * 50”, Google will still only perform one standard 360-degree roll.
The only way to do multiple rolls is to manually repeat the search query by typing it completely or using the up arrow key repeatedly. But numeric multipliers themselves don’t work to increase the effect.
Does Reversing “Do a Barrel Roll” Work on Google?
If you try searching for the reverse phrase “do a rolling barrel” instead of “do a barrel roll”, the Easter egg effect will not activate. Google’s algorithm only recognizes the exact original wording to trigger the spinning animation.
Reversing the order of the words causes Google to simply do a normal web search for that phrase instead. The words “do a barrel roll” must be typed properly to work.
This applies to any variation like “roll barrel a do” or “roll a barrel do.” Minor changes to the phrase prevent the easter egg from going into effect. Proper spelling and word order are required.
Why Does Google Have the “Do a Barrel Roll” Feature?
Google included the “do a barrel roll” Easter egg both as a fun hidden feature and to pay homage to Star Fox. The barrel roll move originated in the classic 90s Nintendo series, which involved piloting sci-fi fighter jets through intense air combat and aerial stunts.
The Google engineer who created the Easter egg was a fan of Star Fox growing up and wanted to hide something related to it in search for others to find. Barrel rolling was the perfect fit, since it was an iconic move from the games.
It also served as an innocuous but unexpected trick similar to how other Easter eggs lightened the mood of using Google search. While Google’s had many gags and jokes over the years, “Do a barrel roll” remains one of the most beloved.
Funny Reactions to the “Do a Barrel Roll” Google Trick
The “do a barrel roll” easter egg has produced many amused and delighted reactions from Google users over the years:
- “Whoa, I wasn’t expecting that at all – I jumped!”
- “I laughed for a solid 5 minutes – easily one of the best easter eggs out there.”
- “So simple but so unexpectedly funny. I’ve shown all my coworkers!”
- “It’s like Google is doing a cute little trick just to entertain you for a second.”
- “How have I never tried searching this until now?? It’s awesome and just made my day.”
- “Now I’m going to randomly try and surprise people by making them Google barrel roll when they least expect it!”
Overall the spinning search trick tickles people’s funny bones thanks to how lightheartedly unexpected it is. Trying it out often brightens someone’s mood as they realize Google has a sense of silliness hidden up its sleeve!
“Do a Barrel Roll” on Other Search Engines
Google’s “do a barrel roll” easter egg is unique to its search engine. Typing the phrase into competitors like Bing, Yahoo, or DuckDuckGo will not activate a barrel-rolling effect on those sites.
These other search engines have their assortment of hidden tricks and jokes, but none specifically replicate Google’s signature 360-degree spin. It was originally coded by a Google engineer as a one-of-a-kind easter egg for their site alone.
That said, some alternate search engines do contain “roll” related easter eggs like page flipping or rotation effects. But the specific Star Fox-inspired barrel roll remains exclusive to Google.
So next time you’re searching Google, take a quick detour and enjoy a barrel roll trip back to the 90s. It’s sure to give you at least a few seconds of child-like wonder, even today.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the “do a barrel roll” Google Easter egg?
The “do a barrel roll” Google Easter egg is a hidden trick where typing that phrase into Google search causes the page to spin 360 degrees, imitating the aerial stunt from Star Fox video games.
How do you make Google do a barrel roll?
To make Google do a barrel roll, simply type “do a barrel roll” into the search bar on Google.com and hit enter or search. The results page will immediately spin around once mimicking a barrel roll.
On which devices does the barrel roll trick work?
Google’s barrel roll works on both desktop and mobile browsers, though the animation tends to be smoother on desktop. It functions on any device capable of running Google search like computers, phones, and tablets.
Who created the Google barrel roll easter egg?
The “do a barrel roll” Easter egg was originally coded into Google in 2010 by Google engineer Mo Haghighi as an homage to the popular Star Fox video games he enjoyed.
Is there a limit to how many times you can roll Google?
No, there is no limit to how many barrel rolls you can do. You can roll Google as many times as you want by either repeating the search or pressing the up arrow key to repeat the last query.
Does “do a triple barrel roll” make Google spin 3 times?
Unfortunately, no. Variants like “do a triple barrel roll” will still only cause Google to do a single standard spin. You have to manually repeat the search to stack multiple rolls.
Why does Google have hidden jokes and Easter eggs like this?
Google has included Easter eggs over the years to delight users and show the company’s sense of fun and whimsy. Small tricks like “do a barrel roll” help lighten the mood and spread joy.
Google’s playful “do a barrel roll” easter egg has cemented itself as one of the search engine’s most iconic and beloved hidden features. Since its debut over a decade ago, users have continued discovering and delighting in the Star Fox-inspired trick.
Beyond nostalgia and fun, it also represents the spirit of surprise and whimsy that has defined many of Google’s best Easter eggs. Simple and quick, yet unexpected enough to always raise a smile. It’s no wonder “do a barrel roll” remains one of the most popular Google secrets after so many years.
Mustafa Al Mahmud is the founder and owner of Gizmo Concept, a leading technology news and review site. With over 10 years of experience in the tech industry, Mustafa started Gizmo Concept in 2017 to provide honest, in-depth analysis and insights on the latest gadgets, apps, and tech trends.
A self-proclaimed “tech geek,” Mustafa first developed a passion for technology as a computer science student at the Hi-Tech Institute of Engineering & Technology. After graduation, he worked at several top tech firms leading product development teams and honing his skills as both an engineer and innovator. However, he always dreamed of having his own platform to share his perspectives on the tech world.
With the launch of Gizmo Concept, Mustafa has built an engaged community of tech enthusiasts who look to the site for trusted, informed takes on everything from smartphones to smart homes. Under his leadership, Gizmo Concept has become a top destination for tech reviews, news, and expert commentary.
Outside of running Gizmo Concept, Mustafa is an avid traveler who enjoys experiencing new cultures and tech scenes worldwide. He also serves as a tech advisor and angel investor for several startups. Mustafa holds a B.S. in Computer Science from HIET.