Alien Vs. Predator [Jaguar – Proto]

Alien Vs. Predator [Jaguar – Proto]

Thanks to Robert Seddon we got a scan from an old issue of Retro Gamer, were they shown a screen from a prototype version of Alien VS Predator, in which there were lives rather than an healt bar, an early HUD and slighty different character models.



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46 thoughts on “Alien Vs. Predator [Jaguar – Proto]

  1. Matt

    The Beta for this game was released last year (through a deal with Rebellion), I have a copy myself. The gun graphics in the beta are much different then the final artwork. The beta shotgun looked more like a modern day double barreled shotgun.

    1. monokoma Post author

      Interesting.. is the beta available somewhere for download? Probably i’m not going to play it, but i hope that it can be preserved somewhere

  2. Ross Sillifant

    Talking of earlier versions:

    Andrew Whittaker has been quoted as saying that before all of the objects and creatures were placed,the 3D engine was running at about 50-60 frames per second. Due to the tracking and AI of all of these creatures (not all at once mind you) the engine slowed down to its present pace and he was willing to sacrifice speed for more realistic (and devious) AI…..

  3. Ross Sillifant

    Andrews also quoted as saying (in an interview which i can link to if you want?) that he also slowed the frame rate down on purpose, to make players think a bit more, ie did’nt want people rushing about like they did in other FPS, so it looks like the reduced frame rate was a result of 2 factors:Hardware limitations and game design.

  4. Ross Sillifant

    :-) As is always the nature with looking into why changes were made on various games, if you asked each of the team involved, i’m sure everyone would have their own version of events.

    Here’s Lance Lewis talking about the speed reduction in AVP:

    Greg: Was it really faster in a prev version than the final?
    Lance: As long as there were no objects in the game, the engine was FLYING. As soon as the sprites were there…. Ugh. ;)
    K3V: Yeah it’s rumored to have been slowed down on purpose… Was that true?
    Peter: I thought it was so slow because it had to calculate all those aliens running around
    Lance: K3V, I don’t think that was totally true, only that the alien had faster speed, that was about it.


  5. Ross Sillifant

    Any truth to claims earlier/proto version had a slightly different looking Xenomorph and the Predator had a few more, maybe even a lot more frames of animation?.

    It’d be nice to see a side by side comparison video of the 2 as it’s been so many years since i played AVP, let alone saw the inital footage of the rolling demo.on Gamesmaster TV show.

    It’d be great to see just how much changed and if game was better for all the changes.

  6. Ross Sillifant

    Apparently Rebellion claimed Gamesmaster TV show reviewed a Beta copy of AVP, some 3 months before the retail version and they were not at all happy:
    Statement from Rebellion at the time:

    ‘ Gamesmaster [the television program] is produced about three months
    ahead of time – so the version they were reviewing then was three
    months old. What they had at that time was a pre-alpha version of
    the game. We told them what else was going to be put into the game,
    but the reviewers were, for some reason, not given this information
    by the people who run Gamesmaster.

    In fact, large areas of the map were not populated at that time;
    the game was only two meg rather than four, so the majority of the
    samples were absent.’

  7. Ross Sillifant

    :-) Last info burst on this one:

    Developers talked of the Aliens+Predators fighting each other in the early versions of the game, but as the graphics ate into the processing ‘budget’ (as they refer to it) along with fact that, once the 2 species had gone at each other hammer and tongs and killed each other off, the player would be left walking around a very empty base looking for something to fight.

    Also they wanted more ‘faces’ for the Alien, but there simply was’nt room on the cart.

  8. Ross Sillifant

    Regarding the proposed Jaguar CD version…

    Forwarded Atari internal documents to you, but…

    Atari put forward list of suggestions for features, likes of Alexandria and Beyond Games asked to submit proposals, though given how coder from Alexandria doing Jaguar Return Fire hated Jaguar hardware and Beyond Games never got far with Battlewheels on Jaguar, no surprise project was terminated.

  9. R

    On one of the RetroGamer magazines, you can see the unused Alien model from the proposed sequel. In fact, even before RG reiterated it, AVP was never planned to be a FPS, it was going to be something like a beat’em up similar to the SNES game. It’s on a old magazine besides RG…

  10. Ross Sillifant

    The model shown in RG was just a standard Xenomorph action figure model, available for anyone to buy..

    (Unlike the resin and femoral Predator model, Rebellion built for the Jaguar title or those built for Legions Of The Undead.)

    Not something built specifically for proposed sequel.

    Fox Entertainment went out of their way to assist Rebellion with props to be used for the game,including the Alien Slime, It’s called Methacel :-D

    This was detailed in several UK magazines, scans of which have been sent to Yourselves here on Unseen 64, Atarimania, AVP Galaxy etc.

    I’d been sat on some of them for over 20 years,finally decided to pay Mort to scan them so they could be shared with the greater community.

    GTW have already put up the C+VG coverage.

    If the images appear anywhere else online from now on,other than sites listed above, they are done so without my permission.

    These are images from my own personal collection i paid to have scanned so i am protecting my own property here.

  11. Ross Sillifant

    Rebellion talked about how Atari had wanted Jaguar AVP to be similar to the SNES title..a side scrolling 2D affair, in numerous interviews before and after games release and how it had been them who had convinced Atari otherwise.

    Seemed something they were rightfully proud of doing..

  12. Ross Sillifant

    Regarding the RG feature on Beyond Games and AVP II..

    Kris Johnson briefly talked of Atari inviting them over to gauge interest in doing a sequel to AVP, but this time on Jaguar CD.

    Project became studios main focus..all other projects put on hold

    Beyond were progressing towards a contract when Tramiels exited the games industry.

    So it just confirmed what Edge magazine had reported on, way back in the March 1996 issue.

    As for the Xenomorph model shown…
    Small photo of Alien Warrior on black base agains’t a green background.

    It’s not wort trying to track a copy of the magazine down just for conformation of what was already known and a stock Alien Warrior model.

    Scott Stilphen’s internal Atari documentation showed AVP CD as Terminated on 12/11/95

  13. Ross Sillifant

    There has been misleading information appearing online of late, suggesting there was a custom version of AVP built to run on VR Headsets..not quite ????

    This from Jane Whittaker:

    There was no coded for VR headsets version of AVP, Just VR headsets modified to work WITH Jaguar AVP.

    This from Jane Whittaker:
    There was also a lot of VR equipment modified for AvP by Virtuality labs in the UK (Doctor Robert Waldren) including a virtual reality headset which could sense head movement and rotate your world view accordingly and various input devices and gloves. They were a lot of fun to use too, but unfortunately also never went into mass production.

    End of story.

  14. Ross Sillifant

    Dan Mcnamee talking about the original 64×64 grid designs for Jaguar AVP:

    Dan:They were random as in large, wandering,
    pointless mazes that were little more than frustrating…game became boring very quickly.

    There is a fine line between challenging and frustrating.
    And when everyone who picks up the controller puts it back down within
    20 min because they feel they are not getting anywhere at all since they don’t know where they are, what is going on, why there appears to
    be nothing to fight, and the point of the game appears to be to walk
    around corridors forever with nothing at all to do, I think that qualifies as frustrating. There was nothing challenging at all about
    the original mazes.

    As for Beyond Games AVP 2:Atari cancelled the contract as soon as the deal with JTS was signed and the Jaguar discontinued.

    Allowing Beyond Games to start work on AVP II for the Jaguar would of been a total waste of time and money.

  15. Ross Sillifant

    Regarding the potential of using the Atari Lynx as a motion tracker on Jaguar AVP:

    I am lead to believe Hand Made Software said the concept of using the lynx as an intelligent game controller on Jaguar games was simply far too flawed to actually work in real life?

    Great concept with lynx being used as a display device, Jaguar handling the code ) but ..

    The Jaguar serial port never worked as it should have and in the majority of games, it was the processing of the display which took the most time, so a game would be limited by the restraints put on it by the Lynx and not the Jaguar

  16. Ross Sillifant

    Found a few soundbites from:

    Andrew Whittaker, who described Dan Macnamee and Lance Lewis as being the real backbone of the team working on the game,really helped it come to fruition and it’s development involved a lot of blood,sweat and tears.

    Dan Macnamee describing the efforts as a group effort,with the team pouring their hearts into it,as they cared about the game and wanted it to be as good as it possibly could be.

  17. Ross Sillifant

    Found an old John Carmack quote, where he discussed Jaguar AVP:

    J.C: First off, let me say that I hope AvP is a great game and sells very  
    well.  I want the Jaguar to be successful.

    I haven’t seen AvP in a long time, but the early version I saw was  
    only running about 12 fps.  I’m sure they have improved it, but I  
    doubt very much that it runs 30 fps.

    The jaguar can only generate about two million textured pixels a  
    second, even if it does nothing else.  This is because the blitter  
    cannot take any advantage of the wide bus or fast page mode cycles  
    when performing single pixel operations (it can do about 10 times as  
    many gouraud shaded pixels).

    I expect AvP to have a greater pixel rate than DOOM on the jaguar,  
    because it was designed exclusively for the jag’s capabilities, and  
    it has a simpler engine with single floor / ceiling heights, strictly  
    diminishing light, and orthogonal walls (once again, they may have  
    improved it since I saw it).

    I expect they will both run simillarly.  DOOM will run at a lower  
    resolution, but with a more complex world (and it will network).  Buy  
    both of them!

  18. Ross Sillifant

    More from Andrew Whittaker:

    The “Lance Lewis” name mentioned for the marine at startup was in honour of
    a very dedicated tester at Atari who really went a long way to make the game
    the quality it is.

    And if you read all the medical and logs on the computers, most of those
    have in-jokes based on other developers in the industry. For instance, the
    planet “Brabenso” mentioned on one of the logs is a contraction of Brabens
    World, as a side joke to David Braben, author of Elite, Frontier and many
    space games. The Dr Whittaker, Chief Medical officer, contrary to popular
    belief doesnt refer to me, rather my father. I got him to type all that log
    text into ascii files for me!

    I have a version of the game that I will probably release on AVI at some
    time where the predator gets tired chasing you, stops and says “Im tired
    from all this running”, leans against a wall and starts smoking a cigarette!

  19. Ross Sillifant

    There a quite a few voiceovers in the game. The Predator voices were derived
    from all the predator movies, lifted straight from the movie. The voices for
    the marine were used in all the Alien movies and script (not all of them
    translated from first script to final movie cut). We used those lines, but
    they were spoken by James Grunke, at that time Head of Music and Sound
    Effects for Atari.

    And to complete the sound effects info :), the alien screams are actually
    digitised from Richard Miller’s (hardware head at Atari) at that time,
    newborn baby!

    Source:Andrew Whittaker

  20. Ross Sillifant

    More cut content”
    If I had the hd space of the PC and graphics resolution, oh and the speed
    too , then I would maybe have done things differently. What you got in the
    Jaguar was literally a cartridge full of game. There was no space left to
    add any features or any more graphics. Everything was compressed as far as
    it would go and it filled the cartridge, excepting 3 bytes!

    I did develop a version with Aliens climbing walls, predator nets etc, but
    it just wouldnt fit the cartridge, and at the time I used the biggest
    cartridge that was available for the machine. Something had to give, and it
    was features such as those, as much to my disappointment as anyone.

    However, I hope the game made up for it in atmosphere, gameplay and AI.

    Andrew Whittaker

  21. Ross Sillifant

    Having looked a lot closer into the games development, it’s become clear it had a tortured development cycle to say the least.

    Andrew Whittaker has said coding AVP was hard work having to contend
    with a tumour, major burns and a bereavement during the course of development!

    There is clearly little love between him and Jason Kingsley. ..

    And Andrew went onto make a claim Atari hadn’t paid him for AVP sales at one point, something Atari’s Don Thomas strongly denied.

  22. Ross Sillifant

    Atari’s Bob Brodie explaining why game was delayed:

    Atari delayed the game’s release when the “final” version from Rebellion
    didn’t feature enough interactivity between the player and the environment
    they were in.

    For example, you’d walk into a room of face-hugger
    eggs and there wouldn’t be much going on. (no Face Huggers scurrying around, eggs didn’t peel open etc).

  23. Ross Sillifant

    Jeff Minter talks about his experience :

    Just got AVP at a show in London, it’s on
    me Jag now. Cool game… got a sore thumb trucking around that training
    maze…the map going away is a *pain* but overall I like it so far. My
    dad was playing last night, quite fun to watch him backing down a
    corridor blazing away at the xt’s, he’d actually roll back his chair
    right across the room with a look of terror on his fizzog… great

  24. Ross Sillifant

    Rebellion putting paid to claims of a CD version of AVP:

    Um, all these people who seem to think AvP is due out on the JagCD would
    : appear to know something we don’t — just to squash rumours before they
    : get out of hand. Sorry, folks.
    :  — dan @ Rebellion

  25. Ross Sillifant

    More from Dan @Rebellion on why Fox wouldn’t grant them a licence for a Jaguar CD version:

    “Fox has their own software division, and at the time had decided to do Alien and Predator related games themselves so they could get the
    whole profit instead of just royalties.  Don’t know what happened to any game plans they might have had.


    And it was ST Format who incorrectly claimed the games speed was reduced because it was making people sick at earlier,faster frame rate.

  26. Ross Sillifant

    Andrew Whittaker doing some Q+A back in the day:

    Q)So, is it true that the original AI for AvP was so good that the Predators went around and killed all the Aliens, thus making the game too easy?

    A) I dont know as it made the game too easy having rampaging Predators, but yes
    thats quite true. It was fun tho. You could hear alien screams around the
    place all the time :)

    Q) How many objects/enemies are actually being tracked and updated in real

    A)Everything on the level you are currently on are tracked in realtime. This was the only way to maintain pack strategies wherein all the aliens, marines etc worked in defined groups with well defined objectives. There was over a
    couple of hundred strategies per character type. The first one people usually find is “stupid alien” where an alien mills around a room aimlessly,
    but is in reality there to distract you from all his pals being on route.

    There are loads more. I shall have to discuss them all one day. But the basic point is yes, this is not doom or quake,everything is alive all the
    time and plotting and scheming against you.

    Q) Why were body armor and the “jump over acid” abilities dropped from the

    A)The body armour didnt balance very well in gameplay. The jump over acid was
    dropped for two reasons 1) you really have to think about where you kill
    things 2) the cart was so full it would have meant dropping something else
    to include it.

  27. Ross Sillifant

    Fm: John Mathieson
    To: Jez San @ Argonaut

    Hi Jez –

    There are two significant differences between AVP on Jaguar and
    Wolfenstein on the PC.  First AVP has texture mapped walls, floors
    and ceilings; whereas Wolfenstein has only the walls.  Secondly AVP
    uses depth cueing, things get darker the further away they are.  These
    things are relatively trivial on Jaguar, but the depth cueing in parti-
    cular is very hard to do on other hardware.  Jaguar can rotate, scale,
    skew and lighten/darken in a single blit copy operation, with the pixel
    transfer rate effectively limited by DRAM bandwidth only.

    I agree that yaw only is easier, but you know as a games writer that
    “cheating” especially at things like 3D is the name of the game, and
    people playing AVP will not be aware of the yaw only limitation. AVP
    begins to look like real video (to some extent anyway) but Wolfenstein
    remains clearly a computer graphic. There is no comparison.

    – John

  28. Ross Sillifant

    Just so y’all know; Skyhammer is well-nigh finished; as ever, it’s in
    Atari’s hands, not hours, but it ought to be in production, um, real
    soon now. And I mean _real_ soon now. (but that’s just our opinion, of

     Plans: like this says (hey, someone got it right for a change), no
    plans for anything on the JagCd — no plans for JagAvPII, blah blah
    blah. Said it before, and I’ll say it again.

     — dan (@ rebellion,

  29. Ross Sillifant

    Fwiw — the Gamesmaster review is about as accurate a review as can be
    expected given the timescales of the review and ‘real’ (ie post 20th
    Century Fox) release dates.
    Secondly; the Aliens version of Doom is, um, all very well and good,
    but 3D Studio rendered aliens are /not/ the same thing as digitised
    images of models of aliens..

    — dan @ Rebellion

  30. Ross Sillifant

    A few things of note. Andrew told me that the speed had been intentionally
    held back a little, though it moves most rapidly when you’re controlling the
    Alien. With the Marine, it moves around the same speed as Doom but has a much
    smoother frame rate. You’ll note that the pictures in GP contrast nicely
    the pixelization of Doom and AvP; while both will be good, AvP was custom
    built for the Jaguar and even then it doesn’t utilize the system to its
    peak potential. Believe it or not, the texture mapping engine of Legions of
    the Undead has been refined over the one in AvP and will supposedly smoke
    all competition, including and especially the Ultima Underworld series.
    Doom’s sole advantage over AvP (as of the last time I spoke with Andrew,
    dunno if this changed since he started revising at Atari’s request) was
    that there were steps and the like in Doom and *not* in AvP. This was a
    feature that will certainly be in LOTU and perhaps they’ve added it in
    their most recent revisions of AvP. (I wouldn’t count on it, though, or
    even wager on it.)

    – Jer Horwitz

  31. The Crestfallen

    I would humbly suggest you remove any posts above quoting Andrew Whittaker (now Jane Whittaker) as they are under investigation by the BBC for being a fraud.

    Allowing such quotes just gives Jane credibility and all the claims now need substantial investigation

  32. The Crestfallen

    Jane whittaker and others who claim AVP was taken out of Rebellions hands should do some basic research.

    As Atari UK P R Manager, Darryl Still made clear at the time it was common practice for European development teams to be flown to Sunnyvale to finish the last stages of coding.

    Eclipse were another high profile team flown over to finish Iron Soldier.

  33. Ross Sillifant

    Rebellion talking Summer 1994

    I’m currently looking at the latest revision of AvP [oh the joys of being
    a developer] and I reckon it looks better and runs as fast as DOOM on a
    486 66MHx.  Can;t tell you much because its not far off launch, but it is
    looking seriously scary.
    [FX: screaming aliens dying in droves, smart gun blasting, Stuart the
    artist saying ‘Where the ***k did that come from !?!’]


  34. Ross Sillifant

    DHGF Magazine were claiming at games preview stage, you’d be able to climb the walls when playing as the Xeno and use your computer skills to out wit the Aliens and Predator when playing as the Marine..

    They must be one of the most unreliable sources of Jaguar Game info going ????

  35. Ross Sillifant

    Actually make that Game Pro Magazine ????

    Both as bad as each other for misleading Jaguar coverage.

  36. Ross Sillifant

    “The ultimate aim is to imagine a Virtual Reality helmet and just taking AVP as an example – each player chooses a character from the game, is in a V. R environment on the Nostromo, walking around with their own task and they can meet up, help each other out and stuff like that”

    ATARI UK’s Darryl Still not quite getting the concept of AVP it seems ????

  37. Ross Sillifant

    Rebellion are as bad as Jane Whittaker, when it comes to giving accounts on AVP:

    > Jason LIES about doing Atari Star Raiders, that’s Doug Neubar..

    > Tells story Atari approached them after seeing their 3D Engine on PC Eye Of The Storm.

    Chris Kingsley claims they went to Atari with a Dragons vs Viking Longboat tech demo, trying to secure contract to do a Falcon title, got given the Jaguar contract.

    Same claim made in Gamestm interview a while back.

    Get your stories straight, we know there was bad blood during games development, but please, don’t use press interviews to rewrite history.

  38. Ross Sillifant

    AvP:Tea Party?

    Casual RDT


    (DavidB367) writes

    >I’ve heard this argument before. Yes, it is a simulation, but it has


    >playability problems. Predators do get attacked by facehuggers if they

    >wander to close to an egg. Then why to grown Aliens and Predators attack

    >you instead of each other and you? It’s a bug. Even simulations have

    >bugs. The simulation excuse only goes so far. Rebellion (Dan) is very

    >good at making excuses (look at the Checked Flag posts.)

    Rebellion Developments :

    Why thank you ????

    I’d just like to point out at this stage that we

    at Rebellion have never posted any of these ‘excuses’ (or whatever you

    choose to call them) for ‘deficiencies’ in the gameplay; we’re simply

    giving out facts. How you choose to interpret the game is entirely up to


    Ask Andy Whittaker — the AI code is his baby, after all, so he’d be the

    one for the final word as to what exactly is going on there; I wouldn’t

    like to put words into his mouth.

    — dan @ Rebellion



    I apologize for stating that you had made this excuse. I read the manual

    thoroughly and did not get that it was a “simulation”. Many others have

    stated the simulation as the reason that of the AvP elements were surreal.

    I have sent Andy whittaker an e-mail and he never responded. It would be nice to

    have someone at Rebellion clear these points up.

    Rebellion :

    Unfortunately, as Andy wrote the AI code, he’s the only person who
    really knows how and why it works the way it does; we can’t speak on his
    behalf (doubly so now he’s no longer working for us), so if you haven’t
    had an answer from him, you’re unfortunately not going to get one at all.
    Sorry about that.
    — dan @ Rebellion

  39. Ross Sillifant

    Jeff Minter kindly proving Jane Whittaker Ancedote about coding AVP at Sunnyvale with Jeff to one side of him, John Carmack the other, is a complete lie:

    Hm, well T2K was pretty much all done in Wales, I used to upload builds to the Atari server in Sunnyvale using a pretty slow modem. I only went out to Sunnyvale with T2K for a few weeks of final test, IIRC for about 3 weeks before Xmas of 1993, then home for Xmas, and for a couple of weeks right after Xmas, finishing in Jan ’94. Don’t think I saw any of AvP at that time (I guess it would have been really early to see any of it anyway in Jan 1994). Don’t recall seeing Carmack there either.

    I *do* remember DOOM came out while I was in Sunnyvale pre-Xmas, and I couldn’t wait to get T2K finished off so I could go back to Wales and do nothing but play DOOM for a month. :D

    IIRC the next time I was in Sunnyvale was in June ’94, I’d been supposed to go back there in May to work on VLM, but I got ill with pneumonia and couldn’t fly until that had cleared up enough so I was delayed till June.

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