Sega

Witchwood [Cancelled – Playstation, Saturn, PC, Jaguar, Amiga]

Witchwood is a cancelled action adventure game that was in development from 1994 to 1996 by Team 17, the studio best known for the Worms series. The game would have been published by Ocean for Amiga and PC, but in 1995 moved to PC, Playstation, Saturn, and Jaguar. As noted by Hallfiry of the Betaarchive Forum, while working on Witchwood, Team 17 was also developing Speris Legacy; another action adventure similar to the Legend of Zelda games that was released on Amiga in 1996.

Witchwood-Team-17-joystick-64

The reason for the project’s termination is as of yet unknown. One possibility is that Team 17’s publishing partner, Ocean, elected to drop the game’s funding in light of Speris’ apparently lacklustre sales; rather than risk making another loss.

Despite the game’s cancellation, its soundtrack was released by Team17 composer, Bjørn Lynne, in 1996, and a playable demo of Witchwood was leaked online some years ago: you can download it from Kult Game.

Thanks to Tom Barker for the contribution!

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Vectorman 3: Ultra [Sega Saturn – Cancelled]

Vectorman Ultra is the cancelled third game in the Vectorman series, started with the first one developed by BlueSky Software and published by Sega for Sega Mega Drive / Genesis in 1995. Vectorman 2 was released in November 1996 and after it went gold it seems that BlueSky started to pitch a new sequel to Sega (Next Generation magazine published a rumor about it in their website that year), planning to develop it for Sega Saturn, the “new” Sega console that was released in May 1995 in USA.

Ellis Goodson, the artist that worked on the original Vectorman and other cult games as Skullmonkeys and Shadowrun, drawn many concepts to be used in the design doc for Vectorman Ultra created by Jason Weesner. It’s interesting to notice that these concept arts were sold sometime ago on eBay and in some of those auctions they described the game as planned for the Nintendo 64, but it’s possible that they got confused because of “Ultra” in the title (N64 was known as Ultra 64 before its final name).

It’s currently unknown if Sega Saturn’s Vectorman would have been in 2D or 3D, but looking at those awesome concept arts it seems that at least this lost game would have had some side-scrolling levels. We hope to be able to see more from this project sometime in the future, it would be interesting to know if any actual prototype was started at all. Some years later Sega tried to revive the Vectorman IP with a new PS2 game developed by Pseudo Interactive, but that was also cancelled.

Thanks to eSPy, Youloute, S.J. Reed and Ellis for the contributions!

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Hammer Away [Arcade – Cancelled]

Hammer Away is an unreleased arcade shoot ’em up game for the System-18, which was being developed by Santos in partnership with SEGA in around 1990-1991. It was intended to be launched in ’91, but ultimately never made its way to arcades for unknown reasons.

The title was a military-themed vertical scrolling shoot ’em up in which the player controls a helicopter, facing off against all manner of hostile army forces, like stationary turrets, tanks, battleships and other choppers. There were two modes of attack available: rapid-fire machine guns for ground targets and missiles for air ones, in addition to a powerful bomb attack which instantly wipes the screen of all enemies.

It featured music that is believed to have been created by former Santos composer, Hirofumi Murasaki, who also worked on other SEGA project such as Clockwork Knight and Shinobi III.

Despite never being released officially, a prototype version of the game was recovered in Portugal by three savvy arcade fanatics towards the start of November 2014.

A month later, the ROM was extracted and made readily available online. There is a total of five different levels in the build found, including environments such as a railroad and an oceanic section. There is a checkpoint system in place and in the event that you lose a life, you are sent back to one of these; as opposed to resetting the game. Once the five stages are over, the game restarts itself from the opening stage.

Images (Courtesy of Sudden Desu): 

Lufia & The Fortress of Doom [Genesis / Megadrive – Cancelled]

Lufia and the Fortress of Doom is a rpg developed by Neverland and released by Taito for SNES in 1993. A (north-american only?) port for Sega Genesis was supposed to be released in 1994, but it got delayed and Taito America eventually closed down in 1995.

However, in 2014, the western programmer that worked on the port leaked a tech demo, featuring just the title screen and a testing dungeon, of the Genesis version of Lufia on the internet. According to him, he had just six months to finish the project:

Well, one of the reasons it was cancelled was because they told me to complete the port in 6 months.. there was no way in hell I could have done it since all the original SNES code was fucking indecipherable and the Japan programmers weren’t any help..

lufia genesis

For more informations check the original opa-ages topic.

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Gutherman Project: Toy Commander [Beta – Dreamcast]

Gutherman Project was the working title of Toy Commander, a Dreamcast action game developed by No Clichè and published by Sega, released in North America on September 1999.

Several magazines and online publications mentioned Gutherman as one of the launching titles (along with Agartha) for the Dreamcast. According to futuregamez.net:

No Cliché have released some details about 2 Dreamcast projects on their site. Firstly, they have an action game called Gutherman where “aim of the game is to drive vehicles through several breathtaking missions“. The second title is an horror-adventure game called Agartha which apparently will use “a new innovative character control”. Both titles will be launched with the Dreamcast in August.

The magazine Computer And Videogames (issue 212) mentioned (with the title Gutherman: Toy Commander) “some kind of Mario-style kids platforming game“:

gutherman-cvg212

Through the archived version of No Clichè’s website (everything is in the News archive 98/99) we can have a glimpse of the development process of Toy Commander:

Mercredi 30 Septembre 1998:
La photo mystere du projet Gutherman 
Lundi 1 Mars :
Les beta-tests du Projet Gutherman ont commencé
Mardi 27 Avril :
Le “Projet Gutherman” sortira sous le nom de “TOY COMMANDER”
Mercredi 12 Mai :
“TOY COMMANDER” sera présent à l’Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) sur le stand de Sega.

If you know where we can find the mysterious screenshot of Project Gutherman drop us an e-mail!.

Magazine Scans:

Computer_and_Video_Games_Issue_211_1999-06_EMAP_Images_GB_0068 Computer_and_Video_Games_Issue_212_1999-07_EMAP_Images_GB_0075