Nintendo 64 & 64DD

Banjo Tooie [N64 – Beta / Unused Stuff]

Banjo-Tooie, for Nintendo 64, is a game that really needs no introduction. The sequel to the landmark platformer Banjo-Kazooie, Tooie achieved huge popularity in its own right for its immersive gameplay, huge worlds and charming characters. The game, set two years after the events of Banjo-Kazooie, didn’t receive the same amount of media interest as its predecessor because, as a sequel, it was not seen as being as revolutionary or new as Kazooie. From what we can tell (from the limited screenshots made available), a few cosmetic changes were present in the game before publication:

1) the warp pads, instead of spirals, were adorned with large “B-T” logos

2) Humba Wumba used Mumbo tokens instead of Glowbos

3) her talking head sprite wore a mask of some kind under her eyes

4) she wore a red dress

5) the large bottle of “Jolly’s Juice” was once titled “Dud Beer”

As far as the press is concerned, these are the only BETA clues available.

However, Banjo-Tooie also contains perhaps the most infamous hidden development content of any video game: Bottles’ Revenge. This was planned to be a multiplayer component of the game, in which the second player used “Devil Bottles” to take control of enemies and attempt to hurt and/or kill player one (who controlled Banjo and Kazooie as usual).

However, Rare states that it ran out of time to debug the mode, and it now remains accessible only by using a cheating device such as a GameShark. Although Devil Bottles was originally planned to be capable of possessing bosses, Rare has said that only Old King Coal was programmed for this when Bottles’ Revenge was dropped, and Old King Coal is not controllable in the version that is present in the retail game.

Further delving into the game’s code has discovered a few other sections of the game that were abandoned, but remain in the cartridge and accessible, again, through the use of a cheating device. The first of these is a large ceiling object, and the second consists of three doorways which, based on their position in Banjo-Kazooie’s memory, were probably intended to form part of Witchy World. There is one other unused area, but it is very small and contains no visible object. The first two rooms are viewable in the video below (from Runehero124’s YT Channel):

There is more information on the unused rooms at Rare Witch Project Forum

VX Vampire XDV-7 [N64 – Tech Demo]

VX Vampire (aka Vampire XDV-7 or Ultra Copter 64) is a flight simulator that was planned to be ported to the Nintendo 64 by Paradigm Simulation / Entertainment. Previously Paradigm worked on realistic flight simulation for space, military and aviation clients, but  in 1994 it was contacted by Nintendo to aid in the creation of one of the Nintendo 64’s launch titles, Pilotwings 64. It seems that VX Vampire was originally one of Paradigm’s military simulators, that they though to convert to a more “arcadish” game to enter in the mass-entertainment market.

In 1995 Nintendo / Paradigm send some screens of Vampire XDV-7 to magazines (that you can see preserved in the gallery below), claiming that the Ultra 64 would have been able to achieve similar level of graphic details. In reality, VX Vampire was running on the Silicon Graphics Onyx Reality Engine, the same engine used for the Magic Edge Hornet Simulator Hardware, a technology much more advanced (and expensive) than a normal Nintendo 64.

When Paradigm had to finish Pilotwings 64 in time for the release of the N64 in june 1996, they probably had to shift resources to Nintendo’s project and the VX Vampire XDV-7 port went on-hold. In the end Pilotwings 64 was a critical and commercial success for the developer, causing the simulation and entertainment divisions of Paradigm to separate and focus on their respective products. The newly independent Paradigm Entertainment continued to develop for Nintendo’s 64-bit console. [Info from Wikipedia]

Some years later, Paradigm Entertainment announced Harrier 2000 / 2001 for the Nintendo 64, a new flight game that sadly was never released. It’s possible that their plan to port VX Vampire XDV-7 changed when they understood that it would have been too difficult to convert an Onyx simulator to an N64, so the project evolved into a new, different title: Harrier 2000.

Thanks to jorcyd and Celine for the contribution! Scans from Cd Consoles #4, Console Plus #49 and Edge #29

Images:

Videos (@ 04:10)

 

SimCopter 64 [N64DD – Cancelled]

SimCopter 64 is a cancelled Nintendo 64DD remake of the original SimCopter developed by Maxis and published by Electronic Arts for PC in 1996. It’s unclear if this version for the 64DD was going to have some substantial differences from the PC one, as happened with SimCity 64. As we can read on IGN, SimCopter 64 was officially canned in 1999:

Sim Copter 64 was even previewed at a very early stage at the Tokyo Game Show. Onlookers were not impressed with its foggy, first-generation graphics and the game’s US release was soon cancelled in favor of a Japan-only release for the disk drive system.

Since then, Nintendo has again delayed the debut of the 64DD to later this year and Maxis, apparently losing faith in the viability of the title on the DD, has abandoned the project completely.

Thanks to Celine for the contribution! (Scans from Console Plus #79 and Mega Console #44)

Images:

Video (Nintendo 64):

For comparison, a video from the PC version:

 

Conker Bad Fur Day [N64 – Beta / Unused Stuff / Debug]

As we can read on Wikipedia, Conker’s Bad Fur Day for the Nintendo 64 was originally going to be titled Conker’s Quest and was later titled Twelve Tales: Conker 64. Early beta screenshots suggested the game would feature cute characters and colorful settings. Rare had a long history of making games of this sort, such as Banjo-Kazooie and Diddy Kong Racing, and at first Conker did not appear to be any different. However, Rare started to fear that the game would simply get lost in the platforming crowd, and critical mockery of “yet another cute platformer” caused the original game to be drastically overhauled.

The promotional videos and pictures from Electronic Entertainment Expo (at the time when the game was still called Twelve Tales) revealed objects and characters which have influenced the released game. Objects such as the flower and mushroom sprites were seen in the promotional video and a character closely resembling Buga the Knut was seen chasing Conker (who was wearing a knight’s helmet) in a promotional picture. Conker’s Bad Fur Day is considerably a far different game from the original plans despite the small influences it had on the release game.

Even if the differences with Conker’s Quest / Twelve Tales beta are more obvious, Cubivore10 noticed some little beta differences in the early Conker Bad Fur Day too.

Here we can see that with the exception of Conker the whole screenshot has different textures, maybe be even reused from Twelve tales. The barn (pink roof) looks like it might even be shaped differently. (beta at the top, final at the bottom)

This one’s a bit odd. The only time the fire imps appear in any cutscenes are during the Bat’s Tower chapter. From what little I can see of the background its the boiler room still, but I NEVER recall the fire imps acting like this (I play that chapter on a regular basis FYI) It seems like something has shot off smoking and a fire imp is freaking out. Whatever is on fire by him appears to be burnt. The imps do become grey when Conker urinates on them, however, they don’t shoot off like that.

At about 4:36 in the video below, there is the scene with the fire imps :  it seems to be catching something in his mouth, whatever the smoking thing was.

This beta / unused cutscene was found still hidden in the final game by Goomther and ConkerGuru:

As wrote by Cubivore10:

This short scene was in an earlier trailer. I’m assuming, judging by the way it grows, you would have fought a giant Fire Imp as opposed to the Boiler at some point during development.

As wrote by Fuzzy, it’s quite short but in Goomther’s video it looks like the imp is eating another imp, but in the original it seems the imp is eating something like a burned rat.

Nothing much here, but unless he’s over more to the right than I recall, Birdy the scarecrow isn’t outside the bar.

Another minor detail, but in the final version of the game Gregg’s voice bubble is a dark gray color

The gray squirrel that Conker talks to is holding a walkie-talkie in the beta version (also the changed “tedizs” to “tediz”).

In the video below, at about 1:25 when Conker has to use his slingshot to open the vault, it doesn’t seem to be moving.

Also, Goomther found a weird / unfinished level in the game’s code, that could be an half-removed debug room! Check the video below for a look at this strange area. More unused models and development stuff were found by ConkerGuru in the game’s code (check his website for more!):

The tail of an very popular mouse pokémon. This tail was, according to an post on Chris Seavor’s twitter page, used for an cutscene they were forced to cut on nintendo’s request. When the cutscene played, the tail, obviously, would be placed on the back of the Pikachu model. Whatmore, Conker was also to interact with it during the scene, as there’s some unused animations remaining in the game of Conker sitting on his knees, and petting some creature.

Thanks to Cubivore10 and Goomther for the contributions!

Images (unused / beta models):

Videos:

 

Kyle Petty’s No Fear Racing [N64 – Tech Demo]

Kyle Petty’s No Fear Racing is a racing game developed by Leland Interactive Media and published by Williams Entertainment for the Super Nintendo in 1995. When Nintendo announced their Ultra 64, Williams created a Nintendo 64 tech demo based on Kyle Petty’s No Fear Racing, with the “same” Silicon Graphic Workstation power that the U64 would have used. In the end Williams never released any game for the Nintendo 64 and only few screens (found on Cd Consoles issue #4) remain from this interesting N64 demo.

Thanks to Celine for the contribution!

Images (U64 demo):

Video from Kyle Petty’s No Fear Racing SNES: