Breath of Fire 3 (III) is a RPG developed by Capcom Production Studio 3 and published in September 1997 (Japan) for the PlayStation. The project went through a lengthy development phase with numerous delays, mostly due to several writing and design changes mid-progress.
Character artist Tatsuya Yoshikawa went through numerous preliminary beta designs for each character, only settling on a finalized set of drawings after many character sprites and portraits were already completed. As a result, some character’s in-game appearances differ from official promotional material, such as child Ryu having a different hairstyle and wardrobe than his final design. [Info from Wikipedia]
In EGM #83 (from June 1996) there was a small article about the initial development of Breath of Fire 3, in which they shown some of the earliest character designs for Ryu and Nina, with a style more similar to Breath of Fire 2’s one.
Early Beta Concept Art:
More concept arts can be found in the Breath of Fire III Memorial Book and other Capcom’s official Art books. Some of these can be seen in the Dragon Tear gallery!
The left character in the top image is most likely Teepo (Ryu’s foil from BoF3), not Nina. Cool find.
Interesting, thanks for the info Dragon! :)