In the Youtube Channel of GamesThatWerent we can see a video from Sanxion, a cancelled shoot ’em up that was in development in 2001 by Thalamus Interactive for the GameBoy Advance. The original Sanxion was a Commodore 64 game released in 1986 and this GBA remake was going to have updated graphics and new features, like two-player mode and end-of-level bosses. A playable prototype was developed, but the game was perceived too financially risky and ultimately canceled. [Infos from Wikipedia]
Recently a beta version of Fire Emblem the Sacred Stones has been found. It is a very early version of the Sacred Stones and contains many differences. This pre-alpha ROM uses many things from the previous game as placeholder; even the title and menus from the Blazing Sword are still there. The game opens up with a debug menu that is identical to the one from the Blazing Sword prototypes. Although the game does have some of the stages programmed in it many of these still need much work. Some do not yet have enemies and have a level two Cavalier as the only enemy. The game’s own music has not been implemented and certain moster enemies are missing battle artwork. Many character portraits are absent; those that do exist were changed in the final. These alterations are mostly minor but some characters were changed quite a bit. Also Ephraim’s name was originally Izark.
Below you can see a bunch of scans from Fire Emblem: Sacred Stones beta, before it came out. You can see its earliest scans (first reveal scans) where the first couple chapters are different and there are different animations and mugshots for some characters. The stolen prototypes (they were stolen from Intelligent System’s network) seem to have some content from this earliest version, but also content that wasn’t present in the earliest OR the final version.
Today Luc Bernard announced Eternity’s Child 2: Retro Child for Wiiware. This sequel won’t use the same engine we saw in the first episode (that will be published soon); instead, it will be like a GBA/SNES game, because it was planned to be realeased on Nintendo’s old handled console. Wiiware-World has a video of the cancelled GBA version.
Golden Sun is the first installment of a series of RPG games developed by Camelot Software Planning and published by Nintendo. It was released in November 2001 for the GBA, with a sequel, Golden Sun: The Lost Age, in 2003.
Golden Sun underwent a development cycle of between twelve and eighteen months by Camelot, which is considered quite a long period of time for the development of a handheld video game, and was described as a “testament” to the positive results a long development cycle can bring to a game. It was shown in early, playable form at the Nintendo Spaceworld Expo in Japan on August 2000. North American previewers received the game a few weeks before the release, and IGN noted that the experience of developing Shining Force for Sega helped Camelot develop a gripping RPG for the handheld.
Originally, Camelot planned to create a single title instead of a series, and in the extremely early stages of their project they had created a game design document for the one Golden Sun game to be on the Nintendo 64 console. When it became apparent the N64 was on its way out because the Nintendo Gamecube was coming in, Camelot shifted their focus to making a game on the handheld Game Boy Advance. [Info from Wikipedia]
In these old screens we can see a beta version of Golden Sun, with differences in the graphic style, in the characters design and in some weird places. The Kusanagi is a Light Blade that is found in the Debug Menu of the original Golden Sun. This weapon is impossible to access during normal play and can only be seen using a hacking device. Ironically, this weapon’s graphic is officially used in Golden Sun: The Lost Age for the Light Blade artifact Masamune. If it had been in the original game it would have been the most powerful Light Blade surpassing even the Kikuichimonji. You can find more info at The Adepts of Weyard website and at GoldenSun Wikia!
Fire Emblem: Fuuin no Tsurugi (The Sealed Sword) early beta screens from the game show different characters and graphic style. Different HUD and graphics are present, as well as Roy’s very different portrait. The weapon and item icons seem to be placeholders, as they’re all what look to be Iron Swords, but their names are different.