Sega

Timmy Time [Sega 32X – Cancelled]

Timmy Time is a cancelled platform game / shooter that was in development by Domark for the 32X add-on for the Sega Mega Drive / Genesis (with a rumored Saturn conversion planned too). The main character was able to travel through time, so we can assume that the game had different levels based on various time-periods (as the old west and the space in the future). The game was canned for unknown reasons.

Some images of the project were found by Celine (scan from Supersonic magazine issue #25) and Ryo Suzuki (scan from Mean Machines Sega magazine issue #25).

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The Lawnmower Man [SNES GEN MD – Beta]

The Lawnmower Man is a platform / action game based on the 1992 film of the same name, developed by Sales Curve (SCi) and released for the Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis / Mega Drive (with different versions on PC, Sega CD and Gameboy). As we can read from Wikipedia, player takes control of either Dr. Angelo or Carla Parkette (the mother of Jobe’s best friend) in a typical side-scrolling shooting action. A Lawnmower Man beta was somehow leaked online, and you should be able to find it easily with Google.

Some screenshots from a supposed “Lawnmower 2” project were published in Super Pro magazine (scan by Retromags) before “Lawnmower Man 1” was released, but it seems that they are really beta images from the first game. As 90’s Gamer wrote in our Forum:

The Lawnmower Man II is of course the actually released Lawnmower Man for SNES, one of my fav’ titles on it, created by Simon Pick. A beta version of the game is also brought into the open. It contains another soundtrack, different sound effects, other intro sequence, the order of levels was altered, some level designs were changed, and it seems a harder game. Unfortunately i could not find any footage of it. The upper screen however seems a unique one, as i didn’t encounter a gigantic head of the antagonist ‘Jobe’.

Those screens published in Super Pro are probably from an earlier beta version than the leaked one.

Thanks to 90’s Gamer and Celine for the contributions!

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Spinny and Spike [GEN MD – Cancelled]

Spinny and Spike was a Genesis game, produced by Sega Technical Institute, that got cancelled relatively early on in development. It was unique in that it was one of the first games to be made up exclusively of boss battles, with no segue levels between them. Two characters (presumably named Spinny and Spike) were to fight through various nightmares.

This would have allowed for a great deal of creative flexibility and extremely varied characters.Two of the known enemies were Snake, a robotic snake with two stages of combat and a fake “natural” snakeskin that had to be blown away by the player, and Junkyard Dog, a vicious canine, the defeat of which required the player to abuse the occasional raising of its metallic head-plate.

Not much more is known about this game, apart from a wealth of old production artwork. However, there is a fair bit of interest surrounding it, and the story of its demise is of particular note.

The story goes that the game was originally conceived and planned by the trio of Steve Woita, Jason Plumb and Tom Payne (two programmers and an artist, respectively). It was soon given the go-ahead by Tom Kalinske (then-CEO and president of Sega of America), along with two other games, Comix Zone and Sonic Spinball. However, not long into its production, the three members of the team were reassigned to the Sonic Spinball project, which needed extra assistance in order to reach completion in time for the holiday rush.

Upon returning to Spinny and Spike, the three were rudely surprised by the apparent instigation of a completely new producer and lead artist, who had been hired to continue work on the game. The new team had sent it off in a completely different direction, and had not stayed faithful to the original design, according to Woita. Both he and Plumb decided to leave Sega in disgust, after receiving offers to work at Ocean of America.

While development of the game was meant to continue in the absence of these two key players, it was soon decided that its completion would be impossible without the input of Woita and Plumb; their code was too individual and unconventional, and its efficient use would have first required a complete rewrite. As this was too costly, Sega simply canned the project.

You can see many pieces of concept art, and read more about Spinny and Spike, in the Select Button Forum!

Article by Franklint

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Savage Heroes [GEN MD – Cancelled]

Savage Heroes was a fighting game, produced by Electronic Arts, planned for the Genesis / Mega Drive, that was originally conceived as a hybrid between brawler Streets of Rage and 1-on-1 fighting game Street Fighter II. The game would have handled this fusion by utilising two similar, but different, control schemes: for the multiple-enemy-based combat, the controls would have mimicked Street Fighter II’s control scheme, but been more efficient and general to allow for quick disposal of multiple opponents.

During boss fights, however, the controls tightened up so as to increase precision, and the view changed to a smaller arena, resembling a typical 1-on-1 fighter game. The game included two-player support, and also would have contained an exclusively 1-on-1 mode to provide a more traditional experience if players required it.

The game’s original designer, Scott Berfield, outlined, in an interview with Sega-16, some of the reasons he believes the game was eventually canned. As well as the project being too ambitious and advanced for the Genesis (and better-suited to a more powerful console), the developer responsible for creating the prototype game was not of a high quality and, as a result, enthusiasm and, therefore, sales forecasts, decreased. EA finally pulled the plug, sending the Savage Heroes finances over to a different game (Shaq-Fu).

This game is interesting not only because of its unique style, but also because of its setting. Savage Heroes would have been set on another world, populated entirely by intelligent, humanoid animals. A crime-fighting team of four heroes would match wits with the crime lord Teeg, a Bengal Tiger. Of the four protagonists, different ones would be controlled by the player at different places in the game. The four members of the team were:

  • Bruno, a bear and kung-fu master, the group’s leader
  • Lucy, a wolf and kick-boxer
  • Reno, a rhinoceros and brawler
  • Leon, a lion and karate expert, who was very street-smart.

In order to make the game properly, the Savage Heroes team planned to use stop-motion animation in order to get the characters to look as lifelike as possible, and about a dozen 12-16” figures are, according to Berfield, probably still sitting in storage at EA. These figures were made by a Texas special effects business exclusively for the game.

Berfield also notes that the levels in the game were planned to be entirely seamless: each one led directly into the next one, separated by a level result screen superimposed over the transition sequence. Berfield says that he is very interested in eventually getting Savage Heroes finished, because he still has a personal connection to the created characters. You can find pictures of the characters, and other production material at Sega16.

Article By Franklint

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Citizen X [Sega CD – Cancelled]

Citizen X is a cancelled side-scrolling action game, made by Digital Pictures, which was supposed to be released for the Sega Mega Cd in 1993. Like many other titles for the ill-fated add-on, it featured many clumsy FMV cutscenes. The gameplay was even less exciting, because of the very limited moveset available for the main character and the repetitive locations. An almost complete beta of Citizen, missing just one of the videos, was commercially distribuited by Good Deal Games in 2002.

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