Sunman is an cancelled NES action game made by Sunsoft which was supposed to be released in 1992. The most interesting aspect about this game is that originally Sunman was going to be a Superman game, and playing it is not hard to spot the resemblances: both heroes have a similar costume and the same powers. We don’t know why in the end Sunsoft didn’t get the official license from DC comics but probably the software house thought that it was a bad idea to spend a remarkable amount of money for a game planned for a rapidly aging console.
Other than that, Sunman was just an anonymous side-scroller game with below-average controls and only five stages, not exactly an appealing new entry for the NES market of the time. Nothing too strange, then, that Sunsoft decided to shelf it for good.
However, Sunsoft’s Superman survives as a Genesis game, as reported on Wikipedia. The game was published in the same year of Sunman’s prototype, 1992. While the graphic is better so that it can fit a 16bit console like Genesis , the game concept is still quite the same as the NES version. In fact, Superman/Sunman’s moves are the same (except that in the Genesis version he can also fire beams from his eyes) and some maps’ design is very close to the NES version. We can actually say that Genesis’ Superman is what we could’ve seen on NES.
John Doom is trying to make a complete Superman NES game using Sunman, creating and replacing Sunman’s sprites with Superman. You can try the game on John Doom’s space. It runs on vnes, an applet nes emulator (You need Java in order to play the game).