Contra Spirits 64 [N64 – Cancelled]

Contra Spirits 64 [N64 – Cancelled]

Contra Spirits 64 is a cancelled shooter / action game in the contra series that was in development by Konami Computer Entertainment Osaka for the Nintendo 64. There are just a few info about this unreleased project as Konami never shown any official screenshot or concept art, but the title was in many list of games to be released for the N64 and the hopes went up for many Nintendo gamers that wanted a new and fun game for their 64bit console. Unfortunatly it seems that as the Nintendo 64 sold poorly in Japan, Konami decided to stop the development of the project and disbanded its team.

As we can read on IGN64:

Contra was planned, but the original team was disbanded and all team members now work on different projects,” said a company spokesperson. [Contra] has pretty much been shelved. […] There is concern over the poor N64 console sales in Japan […]

Contra 64 would have been a sidescrolling 3D game, with some sessions in which the camera would have switched angles or move behind the characters, possible for boss battles. There are some rumors that say that the Contra Spirits 64 concept was resurrected and became Contra: Shattered Soldier for PS2, but as Contra N64 was in development in 1998 and Contra PS2 was announced and released in 2002, it’s hard to say if the 2 project have anything in common.

Below you can see some scans from old magazines that wrote about Contra Spirits 64 (if you have Next Generation Issue 29, Volume 3 May 1997 and can make a bigger scan of their N64 article, please let us know!).

Thanks to Celine and Contrapedia for the contributions!


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2 thoughts on “Contra Spirits 64 [N64 – Cancelled]

  1. Ross Sillifant

    I interviewed Neil Casini, who pitched another reboot of Contra to Konami:

    . I worked on a prototype for a Next Gen Contra. Eurocom was in
    talks with Konami and another internal team had made an attempt at a
    visual style but it didn’t go anywhere, they gave me a crack at it. I
    threw it all away (sorry lads!) and started from scratch, focusing in
    on the fundamental mechanics of a run’n’gun game. I decided to take
    inspiration from Geometry Wars and utilise a twin-stick control system
    whereby you steered your character with the left stick and aimed and
    fired your gun with the right stick. It had a semi-auto lock-on that
    meant you just pointed the stick towards the enemy and it would handle
    the vertical aiming for you. It meant that we could author the camera
    to keep the action on screen and always look dramatic while you just
    jumped around looking cool. We thought it was awesome. As did the
    Konami producer when he came to see the demo. Sadly, we didn’t get the

  2. Ross Sillifant

    Sources at Konami, Japan, told
                    that the company is
                             preparing to revive yet another
                             classic series on N64: Contra.

                             Tentatively called Contra Spirits
                             64 in Japan, the sequel to the
                             critically acclaimed shooter will take
                             the original two-player action
                             concept and recreate it in a 3D
                             universe. Levels will still be
                             somewhat linear, like in the 16-bit
                             classic, but the camera will
                             sometimes switch angles or move
                             behind the characters.

                             Contra (or Probotector, in
                             Europe) made its debut in the
                             arcades and has since appeared on
                             numerous platforms, including
                             MSX, NES, Super NES, Sega
                             Genesis, Saturn and PlayStation.
                             Unfortunately, the PSX game,
                             Contra: Legacy of War, was
                             handled by an outside developer
                             (Apaloosa) and failed to live up its
                             predecessors in almost every way.
                             N64 owners will be happy to hear
                             that Contra 64 is being done
                             in-house by Konami in Japan and
                             promises to bring back the original
                             two-player gameplay and many of
                             the cool weaponry and aliens that
                             made the Super NES game such a
                             hit. Let’s hope that this one won’t
                             go the way of Mystical Ninja and
                             turn into a one-player game in the

                             The US branch of Konami would
                             neither confirm nor deny the
                             development of Contra 64, but
                             we’re sure the company will make
                             an announcement before the end of
                             the year both in Japan and the
                             United States.”

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