Disclaimer: This is mostly a backup of an old page created by ATMachine with details about the beta differences in the early versions of Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis. It seems that the original page does not exist anymore, so we re-posted this to archive all the interesting details and changes. Enjoy!
The game was developed by LucasArts and released in 1992 as a sequel to “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: The Graphic Adventure”. Originally Fate of Atlantis was meant to be a tie-in to Indiana Jones and the Monkey King/Garden of Life, a rejected script written by Chris Columbus for the third, lost movie. In the end Hal Barwood and Noah Falstein wrote an original story and chosen the Atlantis setting for the project. Many beta screenshots were released in gaming magazines at the time and below you can see all the differences spotted by ATMachine:
A scan of an old copy of Computer Gaming World, showing off the MI1-style interface.
The very earliest versions of Fate of Atlantis that were compiled in-house at LEC had green verbs and a text inventory!
Also, notice the knife thrower’s dart board; it has the ominous outline of a body instead of the five-pointed star seen in the full game.
Another scan of an old box. The inventory arrows shown are the same ones from Monkey Island 1, and a “sharp wood thing” is in Indy’s inventory. (That’s actually what the Sentence Line calls the ship rib while Indy’s in the dark in the full game.)
Check out the backgrounds, too. In the submarine cockpit, the depth lever isn’t drawn in, the top and bottom of the ladder aren’t connected, and the bottom half of the ladder is a bit to the left of where it lies in the game. Plus, check out the Sentence Line. Apparently using the periscope was originally part of the “steering the submarine” puzzle.
In the Algiers rooftop, the balloon ride vendor isn’t visible, and the Sentence Line calls the craft “balloon” instead of the final game’s more impressive “hydrogen-filled balloon”. Plus, the ballast sandbags are missing from the sides of the balloon, and the balloon fabric doesn’t extend down to the hydrogen jet. And Indy is following Sophia into the balloon, whereas in the actual release she gets in after he does.
Another scanned image of the same screenshot, with the top half intact. You can see here the original design of the balloon.
Placeholder dialogue in the scene of Kerner’s introduction.
Here Kerner doesn’t ask what took Indy so long, so we don’t get the mention of his dubious alias “Mr. Smith”.
Also, look carefully at the fan atop Indy’s mini-refrigerator. It’s rotating, an animation cut from the finished game.
On the back of the White Label box, there’s an odd picture of an early fighting GUI.
The health bars are much longer than normal, and surrounded by black, as in Indy 3.
Here is the standard fighting GUI from Fate of Atlantis.
Besides the interface, the layout of the newsstand is slightly different than in the scan above, and a phone booth and streetlamp have been added. Also, the light from the lamp above the theater’s back door is less sharply defined.
A German magazine featured this image in its report on Fate of Atlantis.
This early version of the National Archaeology magazine has a much less photo-like image of Indy and Sophia, standing together.
Also, notice that there are four tiny illegible words at the top of the left page. They’re the perfect size to read The National Geographic Magazine, the name National Geographic used in 1939. Further proof of LEC’s lawyers dodging potential legal trouble.
Compare it to the actual in-game National Archaeology, this one looks much more like a modern magazine.
The original version of the hotel room in Monaco featured a fire extinguisher, as well as a light switch by the door.
Even after the icon inventory was implemented into the game, a few objects weren’t quite drawn in their final forms. In this scan, for instance, one of the locking stones (possibly the Sunstone) looks a bit different, and appears to be on a blue background.
Two different Fate of Atlantis hintbooks provided these scans; they’re both here to demonstrate how hard it is to keep hintbooks in good shape!
But my real reason for putting them here is the inventory in that screenshot.
An alternate Lost Dialogue of Plato shows up, as well as a strange necklace, a non-final version of the mayonnaise jar, and a slightly different National Archaeology.
(The National Archaeology has black text on a white background with a yellow border–just like the original covers of National Geographic. But the person on the front is anachronistic; in 1939 the magazine had no pictures on its cover.)
Notice too that the anaconda is red instead of green as in the finished game.
Also, the wax cat has a circular backdrop instead of a square one, as in the final game.
And Kerner’s passport was an inventory item! It was probably removed due to its having no real use.
This scan from the manual shows the orichalcum-making machine in Atlantis operating differently than it does in the full game. Specifically, all three tiers of the device seem to be functioning at once, as opposed to descending in a sequence from the top layer down.
In this scan the balloon operator is wearing a reddish-brown robe and a white headdress, like the nomads in the desert. Also, the mask appears different than it does in the full game; if you look closely its horns are pointier and the sides are visibly lit. In the actual game the sides of the mask are darker than the front.
According to this screenshot the National Archaeology cover was redrawn a bit between its initial and final forms. Its original look had a white background on the cover and two lines of tiny black “text”; this has what appears to be a gray cover and two lines of light gray text. The final version has only one line of text.
An advertising poster for Fate of Atlantis. Some things are notable even at this size. In particular, notice how Sophia’s auburn hair hadn’t yet been drawn into the close-up of her necklace.
Also, after the name “Maze Path” was nixed, the Wits Path was then redubbed the “Puzzle Path.”
A close-up scan of the screenshots in the ad. In the left image, notice that Indy and Sophia’s sprites are not yet scaled down from their true size, as they are on this screen in the final release.
On the far right, notice that the Atlantean scepter and microtaur are drawn differently than in the actual game; the scepter is more elaborate here, while the microtaur’s proportions are different and the green background behind it is missing.
The eel statue is different as well, lacking the blue background it has in the finished product. Also, the eye holes of Sophia’s necklace are still green, the color used in the original background image to indicate where the glowing effect should take place.
Many thanks to Eriq of the Adventure Gamers forums for sending me a copy of this ad!
Some more interesting differences were found by reading the game text files. You can see a lot of unused sprites in The Cutting Room Floor page.
According to the game text files, Indy’s escape from the submarine on the Wits Path was at one point conceived a bit differently. Indy was to be shot out of the torpedo tube while still wearing the German Kriegsmarine uniform. When he washed up on Crete, though, he’d have changed back to his normal IndyWear. Kerner was to have found the charred sailor’s clothing and shown it to Sophia, claiming that Indy must be dead. (I guess the scene where Kerner, Sophia, and Ubermann leave the sub before Indy escapes hadn’t been written yet.)
Originally the orichalcum was displayed as “1 bead”, “2 beads”, and so forth (plus “3 beads in box” once Indy puts them in the lead-lined gold box). That notation still exists in the FoA text files.
The team also thought about the format “orichalcum (5 beads)”. The idea was that when the player had multiple orichalcum beads, the parentheses with the exact number would show up.
Eventually they just gave up, called it “orichalcum” all the time, and just had Indy count them when the player said “Look at orichalcum”.
At first the puzzle of obtaining the balloon ticket involved purchasing the squab-on-a-stick from the grocer for 20 rupees. In the final game it was modified to have Indy trade an item of Omar’s for the squab, and the “rupees” (which are actually the currency of India) were corrected to “dinars.”
According to the FoA text files, if you picked up Omar’s map in his shop via debug commands, it was named “Al Jabbar’s map.”
In the original builds of FoA, the Team Path was called the Trust Path, the Wits Path was the Maze Path, and the Fists Path was known as the Action Path. (That early name for the Fists Path lasted so long it was accidentally used in one place in the game manual.)
At first in the Team Path, when Indy needs to put Sophia’s necklace in the lead-lined box, the developers had him carry the necklace in his inventory. But later they decided it made more sense, given Nur-Ab-Sal’s true nature, to have Sophia take possession of the box and put the necklace in herself.
The game files at one point label the cup found in Atlantis as a “clay cup,” a description never used in the finished game (as far as I know).