Bean Ball Benny is a cancelled beat ‘em up / action game that was in development in 1990 / 1991 by Nuvision Entertainment for the Mega Drive / Genesis. Nuvision is a rather obscure company that only released Bimini Run before closing up shop and cancelling their 2 projects (Bean Ball Benny and The Swamp Thing), but with some researches it’s possible to find out some more info.
Thanks to an interview with Charlie Heath (who worked at Parker Brothers and Activision’s Boston office) at GDRI we can read more about the studio:
Nuvision was formed by a couple of Parker Brothers people, one an executive, the other a designer/artist. They had some venture funding, but got trapped in the credit crunch of 1990.
We had two additional games in the pipeline almost ready to ship, one called “Beanball Benny,” which was an original theme (baseball player/vigilante goes cruising around the city – streets, subways – trying to bean criminals and dodge obstacles. Modeled a bit after the old Keystone Kapers theme, but advanced by a decade), and the second, I believe, a licensed property called Swamp Thing.
Nuvision got caught with a bridge loan for the production of Bimini Run cartridges coming due at the same time that new credit was required to get the other two games from Alpha to release and into cartridge production.
In October 2009 The Red Eye shared the Bean Ball Benny’s CES flyer in The Lost Levels’ Flickr account. In March 2010, Bmpedrums from the Digital Press Forum found a playable prototype of the game and shared some screens and a video:
Beanball benny: playable, but very incomplete. The cutscenes even have developmental notes in them, like “Subway: trains not yet implemented”. Hit detection seems good, but instead of restarting the stage when you die, you actualy progress further in the game. There are also numerous places where the stage just simply cuts off and you’re walking in pitch black.
Thanks to Jason for the english corrections!
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