The formula setup by Super Mario Bros. 3 established the foundations for the SNES successor Super Mario World. Thanks to these uncovered beta photographs, the evolutionary connections from Super Mario Bros. 3 to Super Mario World are a bit more apparent. Interesting enough is that “World” once started out as simply Super Mario Bros. 4. Its “World” subtitle did not come development had actually progressed into planning and pre-production stages.
The images in this article represent a starting point as Nintendo journeyed from Super Mario Bros. 3 on the NES to what would eventually become World. The structure of the geography, different icons, alternative floor on the castle entrance and castle texture, the flying fortresses and even mushroom houses show some serious evolutionary ties to its Mario Bros. 3 roots.
[Original description in italian by Sig. Bakke, english translation by MajorTom]
Would you like to play the Super Mario World beta? Check our Super Mario World Beta Remake Project!
Test map e Unused Characters from: www.themushroomkingdom.net
Thereʼs very little to say regarding the over world map. The beta version seems to have accommodated a much smaller adventure than what was produced in the ﬁnal version. In this article, there are two opening screens. One of which shows “Super Mario World” against a “beta” world map. This opening showed a very muted color scheme and a 1989 copyright date. This opening screen could have been one of the earliest known builds Nintendo made during its transition from the NES to SNES hardware. The second title screen does not show any copyright date but what is notably different from the ﬁnal version is that Nintendo excluded “Super Mario Bros” from the title in the ﬁnal build.
On screen elements during game play have changed. Notably, there used to be Yoshi sign that disallowed the usage of a Yoshi (or speciﬁc colored Yoshi) after the player walked past that sign. Signs similar to these would reappear in the semi-sequel Yoshiʼs Island (with signs limiting Yoshiʼs power-up as it walks past them). In the Donkey Kong Country 2 & 3 games (which share various similarities with SMW), silimar signs appear for animal buddies – a possible influence for Rare.
Other small differences to note are beta sprites. Mario and the Koopas look slightly different from how they turned out in the ﬁnal release. Mario tends to look more like his “Mario All-Stars” Super Mario Bros. 3 counterpart. The Koopa shells have a more rounded look to them. Some coins also had a look slightly larger and more oval (maybe they were a beta version of the Yoshi’s coin).
Raccoon Mario, who debuted in Super Mario Bros. 3, was either a place holder for the eventual cape/feather power-up or the concept of Cape Mario never came to fruition until much later in development. For a time, the leaf and resulting Raccoon Mario may have been the “de-facto” ﬂying power-up for Mario in “World”. There are many screenshots that show Raccoon Mario in various parts of the game. For readers that frequent Unseen 64, you might want to check out the “SNES Hardware Test” in the SNES section. One speciﬁc image from that section has a Mario sprite that appears to be from “World” but with what appears to be ears on top of his head that look VERY similar to the raccoon ears similar to those in Super Mario Bros. 3 and beta shots of “World”.
As Sammy has noticed, there was a Sears commercial that showed 3 Super Nintendo games; they were Super Mario World, F-Zero, and Pilotwings. On that commercial, it showed the title for SMW but with a little difference. Right next to the little beta “Super Mario Bros.” text of the beta title, there was a blue “4″ on the right of the text. You can check the video below thanks to Youssef!
Thanks to Jamie and Assjerk for the contributions!