Street Fighter Alpha 2 (also known as Street Fighter Zero 2) is a 1996 fighting game originally released for the CPS II arcade hardware by Capcom, and later ported to the SNES. Israel has found some beta SFA2 screens for the SNES/SFC version. These were published in the “Club Nintendo” magazine in Mexico.
According to the magazine, SFZ2 was going to include “an special chip to aid in data an sprite processing to make the game more fluid”. The description matches Nintendo’s SA-1 chip but there are no confirmations if it was going to be an SA-1 game.
There is some evidence that it could have been the case, thought:
1. The characters seem to be bigger in the beta, at least in the Rolent vs Vega shot. In the Sakura vs Sakura shot you can tell by the size of her thighs.
2. In the final build, the shadows flickered while in the beta they don’t (both can be seen in the shots). Why is this relevant? In the finalized game the flicker doesn’t look good. Why didn’t they just leave them like in the beta?
Israel thinks that they were indeed aiming towards a SA-1 cartridge but late in the development cycle they switched to a SA-1 + S-DD1 because of space constrains and maybe in the last few weeks decided to settle for a S-DD1 only cart due to costs concerns.
The screenshots were published in August 1996 so that means the the screenshots were taken in June or July. SFA2 was released in November so it must have gone gold in October at least.
Some differences noticed in the screenshots:
- The game used to have a custom font for the character names. This was changed to a default SNES font.
- Win icons were red (Sakura vs Sakura screenshot)
- Shadows didn’t flicker, both are visible in the screenshots.
- Characters seem to be a little bigger than their final iterations.
Thanks to Israel for the contribution!