Zelda 64: Ocarina Of Time [N64 – Beta / Tech Demo / Proto]

Zelda 64: Ocarina Of Time [N64 – Beta / Tech Demo / Proto]


The first 64-bit version of Zelda, was originally conceived as a way designed to use the features of 64DD. Internal Clock, rewritable discs with a size double what had ever been used on the cartridge, internet connection and tools for editing images, Zelda 64 was presented by Nintendo itself as a title so huge that it would be impossible to implement on a normal N64.

All this because of the possibility of 64 Disc Drive. But there was only one small problem: the 64DD was not greeted with much interest from professionals, remembering the bad purpose made by all previous add-on for console, the DD was growing slowly postponed, Nintendo itself lost confidence in the project and it was not clear if it ever really left. At this point, Nintendo had no other choice, because of low sales of the N64, they announced that Zelda 64 would have been ported to normal cartridges, so hoping to renew interest in the console market. But this change meant they had to remove all those interesting features that would have been only possible thanks to 64DD and part of the game and history had to undergo an extream cut.

From an interview with N-ZONE magazine (translated with google and reported by GoNintendo) we can read that Aonuma admits that Ocarina of Time originally had more temples and magic abilities that were cut.

Eiji Aonuma: Yes, you may be absolutely right, although I can not remember exactly all the details. There really is a difference between the temples, which we wanted to integrate and those that exist in the final game. And that had something to do with magic. We thought of integrating some actions, some plot threads, and some puzzles that have something to do with magic abilities.

We have come to the conclusion that other, already existing, just regular items to be a worthy replacement. So we had originally three temples, which would capture the young Link, three temples for the adult Link and three in which he was to learn each spell – but instead we have eliminated a temple of it. In the final game is now so 3 plus 3 plus 2, or 8 temples to find.

Also, some more interesting info from the early beta / prototype version of Zelda 64 were shared in the Iwata Asks dedicated to the Ocarina of Time 3D remake:

Iwata: Oh, he wanted to make an FPS (first-person shooter).
Koizumi: Right. In the beginning, he had the image that you are at first walking around in first-person, and when an enemy appeared, the screen would switch, Link would appear, and the battle would unfold from a side perspective.


Iwawaki: But…I do think we tried out a first-person perspective a little.
Osawa: I think we made something to try it out, but decided it wasn’t interesting visually and abandoned it right away.


Iwata: You were originally developing The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time for the Nintendo 64DD.13
Koizuma: Yes. Miyamoto-san said he had some ideas, like leaving behind all of Link’s footprints.
Iwata: Yeah. (laughs)


Koizuma: That’s why he started saying that if Link was going to ride a horse, he wanted to include mounted archery and one-on-one battle. (laughs) We were able to include the mounted archery, but not the one-on-one battle.
Iwata: But later you included it in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.

For more info read this article: Project Zelda 3D – The Development of Zelda 64

Thanks to Superfun64, 8PM and thedragoonknight for the contribution!

You can find more info about Zelda: Ocarina Of Time in the Zelda Wiki!



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18 thoughts on “Zelda 64: Ocarina Of Time [N64 – Beta / Tech Demo / Proto]

  1. Ali

    There was so much in these betas that would have been amazing to have actually put in the game. Shame Nintendo excluded the triforce.

  2. Bumfacepik

    Look link fighting queen gohma as an adult! With the forest medalion equiped! There loooks like there was alot cut from the game… enough to make a second game out of it.

  3. Ragalshnagal

    I just don’t understand why they would remove so much good content!

    When Link swings his sword, he does it in a jedi-like way ( swinging from one side to the other. The sword even leaves trail marks after he swings.
    ( You can edit the debug rom, and be able to attack like that at all times)

    An on-rail type Hyrule town is stupid. I hate in Zelda 64, the backrounds look too real. They could have just left everything in 3D. After all, it would have looked so much better.

    I just wish someone with programming skills, could remodel the entire town, and take the game source code for link and let you play as him on a 64 emulator or something. Retexturing isn’t the same. :(

  4. Why hello there

    They’re actually remaking the whole beta version of OoT, and it looks pretty interesting.
    thats the graveyard scene

  5. David Warren

    The video of the great faery beta, its a cut from a longer video trailer. Ive been looking for that trailer for 10 years.

    Does anybody now where can i find it please??

  6. KuronoToriga

    The beta gave me goosebumps. I grew up playing OoT, and it was good, but the beta, just looked beautiful. The part where they showed the castle in one of the videos, while young Link was on that white bridge, gave me goosebumps. I really hope someday they make this game again, the way it was intended to be.

  7. Brendan

    I remember it like it was yesterday. Looking up cheat codes for the game (I did that a lot), I found images of a bunch of beta areas that I was supposedly able to access with a Gameshark. I nagged my dad about buying me one, but I never did get it (and now we will never have the pleasure of hacking our games again ;_;). But those images, man, they stuck with me. One in particular; it didn’t have any enemies or swordfighting; it didn’t have anything interesting at all, really — it was just a picture of Link standing on a sort of road, with Epona (I think) and with a few houses (maybe). It gives me chills thinking about it, because now it just seems creepy to remember. But I’ll never forget. And I never found that picture again.

  8. steph

    For those of which curious, the Unicorn Fountain was most likely part of the beta fairy fountain. The beta fountain was used in MM and the UF files can be found there, I can’t recall how. There was also some neat dialog I saw once that was found tha said
    Travel to:
    the past
    the present
    the future

    A more complex time travel idea maybe?

  9. Cosmosis

    Is there any news on this after the SpaceWorld Beta release? I asked some smartass if they’d make a full version of that game rather than the demo, he said “ya it released in 1998” smh. Was hoping to see a full alpha/beta restoration complete with graphics, sword-beams, etc. Seems like so much content was cut due to time or limitations.

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