Retro Studios intended to give Metroid Prime 3: Corruption larger environments than Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, and enable the game to run at 60 frames per second. The developers were also interested in using the WiiConnect24 feature to provide additional content for the game that would be accessible from the Internet. A small Metroid Prime 3 Tech Demo was shown at E3 2005, created with the MP2 3D Engine. Nintendo then demonstrated how Metroid Prime 3 would take advantage of the controller’s special abilities with a version of Echoes modified for the Wii and shown at the Tokyo Game Show in 2005. The title Corruption and some of the first gameplay footage were revealed at Nintendo’s Media Release at the E3 2006 trade show.
From early screenshots we can notice that the Ridley fight in the beta did not have Meta-Ridley as in the final, different HUD, graphic details and thanks to some concept arts we can see various early character designs that were created before the final ones.
Also, thanks to a model viewer created by Interdpth and Revel8n, it is possible to find various unused models hidden in the game’s data. You can download the Metroid Prime model viewer (mpxviewer) in here. If you are able to find more unused models, please do let us know.
In January 2012, thanks to fundraising organized by user over on Assembler Games, a 2006 demo, which documented a beta version of the second planet of Metroid Prime 3, was dumped and released to the community. The proto was developed to run on Gamecube hardware with 128 mb of ram, so it’s playable only on a custom version of the Wii emulator Dolphin. Using the debug menu it is possible to active/deactivate the various power-up and to try the third-person camera. The map is still incomplete, so only a few areas are accessible. Apart from minor differences, the general layout of the location is remarkably similar to the final version. Cutscenes are unfinished, and of course the interface is still based on the gamecube controller.
Thanks to Dark_ViVi for the contribution!