Catroots is perhaps one of the most mysterious projects ever created for the N64. The first (and only) video, a tech demo from which the pictures that you see in this page were taken, was shown at the E3 2000, but no informations were released at the time, and even the Nintendo employees at the stand didn’t knew anything about it.
Later, IGN was able to interview Miyamoto about the game. Mario’s creator revealed that Catroots was being developed at Marigul but an official announcement had yet to be made. Marigul (now known as Noise)was a second party created in 1996 to make games for the Nintendo 64 . In all these years, Marigul worked on very interesting projects, including Hey You! Pikachu, Doshin The Giant, Echo Delta (unreleased), Cubivore (Animal Leader) and Custom Robo. With such a curriculum, isn’t hard to image that Catroots was going to be very original, but after E3 the game got quietly cancelled.
From the video it seems that Marigul tried to recreate an episode of Tom & Jerry or Itchy & Scratchy: we see a rat that is trying in every possible way to eliminate a cat using hammers, ninja stars and a flamethrower. We do not know exactly what kind of game Catroots was supposed to be, although we can make some quick hypothesis.The eternal struggle between cats and mice might have led Marigul to develop an action game with strange weapons like Custom Robo, or an innovative simulation (see Cubivore) where the player,impersonating the cat, had to escape from a completely mad mouse.Unfortunately we can only guess. It is likely that Catroots will remain a mystery forever. The game was at end cancelled probably because of the forthcoming release of the Gamecube.
[English translation by Yota]