Action Adventure

ODT [N64 – Unreleased]

ODT, Or Die Trying, is a video game created by Psygnosis for the PlayStation and PC. Its style of gameplay is a 3D action adventure, with some RPG elements. Playing as 1 of 4 characters, your goal is to explore the “Forbidden Zone” to look for gas canisters to reinflate your balloon, which had crashed on the roof of a mysterious tower. Along the way you solve puzzles, battle monsters, and so on. A N64 version was completed but never released, though it has somehow been leaked online. [Info from Wikipedia]

In 2020 PIKO Interactive have announced that they have acquired the rights to the game, which includes the unreleased Nintendo 64 version.

Thanks to Henrique Resende, Vaettur and Vitas Varnas for the contribution!

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Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness [PS2 – Beta]

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The overall result suggested that the development of The Angel of Darkness had been rushed, despite numerous delays prior to its release to possibly improve the final product; difficult-to-overlook plot inconsistencies (or leaps) and frequent continuity errors added to the belief that significant ‘cuts’ were made from the original design. While it was not the first (or last) game to suffer such abridgment, the results were especially jarring and confusing. For example, in the final encounter between Lara and the overall perpetrator, they appear to  

Three Tribes [GBA / DS – Cancelled]

Three Tribes was announced in November of 2004 in a press release by its Dutch developer Two Tribes as an action puzzle game in an overhead perspective designed for all ages. I could only retrieve the Dutch version of the announcement, archive.org unfortunately didn’t cache a page of the English version. The game was designed for the Gameboy Advance and possibly the Nintendo DS; no release date is given for the game and the company had no publishing partner for the game at the moment of the announcement.

Three Tribes sets the player in control of a shaman whose purpose is to help out the natives he meets with their problems. Interaction between the characters, animals, objects and tools found in the game and with the environment itself would be a central part of solving the various puzzles. The game would be set in the same visual perspective as the 2D Zelda games but with a lot more freedom allowing the player to climb, swim and fly anywhere they wanted to. The game also promised a wide variety of mission objectives. The NDS version would differ from the GBA version in having a multiplayer game editor. The editor would allow players to design their own multiplayer levels and create their own objectives and later share them with friends.

Unfortunately Three Tribes was quietly cancelled; the company never found a publisher for the game. The main cause could have been the declining GBA market but I also cannot retrieve how far development of both versions was. I could find only a couple of GBA screenshots and two promotional videos (see below) and absolutely no information on the Nintendo DS version. On the current site of Two Tribes the game is briefly mentioned:

„In the meantime, we’d spent two years developing a physics puzzle adventure game called Three Tribes for Game Boy Advance, though it turned out to be impossible to find a publisher for such an ambitious concept.

The game was stated way into 2010 on the Two Tribes website as a Gameboy Advance title “In development”. After a refreshment of the website later that year the game vanished of the radar and was no longer mentioned. The game still hasn’t vanished completely as its promotional website is still (partly) online. But I think we can consider it cancelled.

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Two Tribes teaser trailer – 2004 – GBA:

Three Tribes – GBA video: 

Prince Of Persia: Prodigy [Beta – Xbox 360 PS3]

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Prince of Persia Prodigy (also know as Prince of Persia Zero in its early beta days) is an action-adventure and platforming game developed by Ubisoft Montreal. It was released on December 2, 2008 for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Proof of conception for this new title was found in September 2006, when a file that was leaked to the internet was found to contain concept art for the game, although Ubisoft didn’t announce the game until May 2008. [Infos from Wikipedia]

In january 2008, Surfer Girl released some screenshots from an early prototype of this new Prince Of Persia, in which the main character was followed by a mysterious flying girl. As you know, the final game has not flying-girls that follow the prince. As we can read over at GameSetWatch, thanks to “David Pettitt” we learn that this version was “a target render that the team pitched the game with”. It seems that Ubisoft showed the full Target Render at a Vancouver SIGGRAPH event. Below you can see the full video!

Some other rumors even say that originally Assassin’s Creed was meant to be part of the Prince of Persia series. Probably Ubisoft created a lot of different ideas for the project, before choosing the final one.

Even the released game has some differences from the official beta screens that we can find online. As noticed by FullMetalMC:

  • Different colors for the Hunter
  • Elika’s clothing is a bit different
  • A removed  enemy
  • Prince’s sword has a alternate design
  • Different Tree
  • Elikas magic has less detail

In an interview with Prince of Persia Producer Ben Mattes, we can read more about Elika’s development:

To further answer your initial question of how her design evolved, at the beginning of the game, one of the things we were thinking about was — should she have more of an autonomous personality? Should she have a little bit more autonomy as a gameplay mechanic?

So we developed ideas of her sometimes taking the lead, or her sometimes wandering off and looking at key game points, or her basically just taking initiative. Some of them only got as far as concepts and brainstorms, some of them actually got as far as prototypes, but what we quickly realised was there was a lot of design that had to be done in terms of simplifying Elika’s involvement to make sure we delivered on that promise that she never gets in the way and she’s never a negative.

We had instances where we had interest points in the world — little objects that would attract her attention, and if you idled for a few minutes she would wander over to one of those objects to look at it, but then the player would, y’know, haul ass to the left and Elika’s wandering over there looking at that thing and then he has to stop and wait and go and get her and bring her back, and it was these things that detracted from that overall core message, which is more important than anything else.

[…] initially we kicked around the ideas of Elika being a young girl, but that brought up the whole babysitting thing, and then we toyed very briefly with the idea of Elika being a partner like a brother or a father figure or something, but it didn’t have the kind of sexual tension that’s fun to play with. And then within a couple of months we had the design of Elika almost fully fleshed out as it exists now.

Thanks to Surfer Girl & Grahamx227 for the contribution!

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Zelda: Twilight Princess Beta Analysis – Characters & Items

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[Warning: this article is just a translation from the original one in italian, there are some “lost in translation” parts, so the original version was more complete, but at least now we have an english version too. If you find some errors or some weird use of the english language, please send us a mail so we can fix them, thanks!]

[original article in italian by monokoma, english translation by Yota]

[Thanks to Evan & Sba sb3002 for the english corrections!]

OverworldTowns & Dungeons – Characters & Items

Beta Characters & Items

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Beta twilight enemies from the 2004 trailer. Their polygonal models are still inside the game, and you can see them using some GameShark codes.

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Beta design of the Gale Boomerang. Also, in the beta you obtained the boomerang inside a chest. In the final version, you get it after beating the monkey boss.

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A beta Moblin enemy, completely removed from the game.

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The HUD was changed during the development of the game. In the beta version, it seems that it was possible to crouch and possibly crawl using the R button.

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A beta cutscene from the 2005 trailer, where Colin crawls through the secret passage that leads in the village’s spring. You can still go through that passage, but the scene was removed from the final game and the player needs to find it by himself.

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A beta sumo match from the 2005 trailer. This area was completely removed from the final game. In the occasions in which Link fights the Gorons, none of the battles match the one in this scene. In the final version, the rooms where the old Gorons are found have sumo looking platforms. Perhaps in the beta a sumo battle was necessary to win the key parts.

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In this screen from the CDG 2005 video, we can see another interesting scene: Links is escaping from a giant spider, through a dark cave. This scene was removed from the final game, but it was probably just a different Armoghoma Boss Battle from the Temple Of Time. This could even be the boss battle for the removed beta temple, that it was later changed and reused as Armoghoma; infact, in the same video we can see a lot of parts were Link explores the removed dungeon.

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The magic bar was still in the game in the pre-release build, as you can see in this screenshot taken from the backcover of the final package. The bar is similar to the one found by using the lantern, only in green. It’s strange that in Twilight Princess there is no magic system to limit how much magic you can use. This image is a proof that in the beta version there was one, or at least they wanted to implement it. As you can see below, there are even more proof of the removed magic system from the game:

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A green chu chu jelly. As those who finished the game should know, you can mix the chu chu’s jelly in order to make potions with various effects. The green one is completely useless since the developers removed the magic system from the game. Normally, the green chu chu would recharge some magic. Unfortunately, Nintendo removed the green jelly in the PAL version of Twilight princess.

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With the GameShark, you can unlock the magic potion item. It was probably ment to be for sale in the Hyrule stores. [Source: SnakeGuy Album]

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Another beta item unlockable with the GameShark: the fire arrows, that could have been enabled with the help of the removed magic system. [Source: SnakeGuy Album]

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Black chu chu jelly, unlockable with the GameShark but removed from the final game. [Source: SnakeGuy Album]

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Another strange beta item unlockable with the GameShark. It’s very similar to the blue fire of ocarina of time. [Source: SnakeGuy Album]

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Yet another beta enemy. it was unused in the game but was left in the memory code. It’s unlockable thanks to the GameShark. It was probably used in the temple of time or in the Twilight palace.

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Beta design of the Imp Poes [Source: Youindia @ YT]

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Another strange beta enemy, it could be a different version of the flamed snails. Thanks to Funkymicio for the contribution! [Source: Youindia @ YT]

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This is certanly the strangest beta object still in game’s memory. A really odd-looking giant that was probably used just to test the dimensions of the various characters. [Source: Youindia @ YT]

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With the gameshark we can even use the beta design of the bombs. They’re much more simple and similar to the ones used in previous games.

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A really odd scene, where many gorons create some sort of a super goron. This enemy was removed from the final game. Maybe in the beta this boss blocked the access road to the Death Mountain. [Source: Quartoxuma @ YT]

For more beta images and videos, you can see our Zelda: Twilight Princess Beta Archive

OverworldTowns & Dungeons – Characters & Items

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