arcade shooter

City Diver [Arcade – Cancelled]

City Diver is a cancelled arcade 3D shooter that was being developed by Taito in 1994 / 1995. A demo of the game was shown at AOU Show 1994. According to an article published on Edge 8 (may 1994), City Diver was supposed to feature a glasses-free 3D display:

Sanyo – in conjunction with NHK Engineering Services and Toppan Printing – have developed an LCD projector and lenticular lens array which splits the picture into right- and left-side images, providing the viewer with full depth perception.

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The same article described this title as a “stunning four-player 3D shoot ’em up with a mixture of gorgeous rendered images and 3D polygons“.  Virtua Cube-x was another game that was going to use the same technology, but it got probably cancelled as well or converted into a ridefilm for Taito IDYA.

City Diver was apparently planned to be fully unveiled at JAMMA show in September, but it’s currently unknown if the game was present at the arcade exhibition in any form.

Two videos of the game surfaced on niconico in 2013. Thankfully, the clips’ description was translated by lostlevels.org user Boco:

“From a promotional video I received as a gift. Canceled arcade game from Taito in 1995. I played this when it was out for a location test in Shibuya. It was a helicopter flying game similar to “Air Inferno“, with a singleplayer “Mission mode” and a 2-player “battle mode” that used two linked cabinets. I think after it was canceled it got turned into one of those CG movie games used by the Taito IDYA. “

Going by this description, a playable build of City Diver must have existed at some point, then. Unfortunately, we don’t have any additional information about this location test or the IDYA ride film version. The two niconico videos were joined together into a single Youtube clip that can be seen below.

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Virus [PS3 – Cancelled]

Virus was a downloadable PSN arcade shoot ’em up for PS3 that was in development in 2007 at Factor 5 before its cancellation. It was to be published and funded by Sony Computer Entertainment, who had struck an exclusivity deal with the developer at the time they began to collaborate on Lair. When Lair turned out to be critically and commercially unsuccessful, Sony terminated their contract with Factor 5 and cancelled all of their joint projects. Along with a 3D Turrican reboot, Virus was one of the casualties of the two companies splitting. Both were cancelled in October 2007.

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The logo of Factor 5’s Virus.

Virus is believed to have only been in development for no more than a few months and was planned to be a unique take on the arcade shooter genre. The game would have placed the player in control of tech support employees of various real life companies (including AT&T), as they endeavour to prevent oncoming viral threats from corrupting their networks.

This quirky, miniature sci-fi narrative was represented by a blue bar travelling down a hexagonal tunnel, revolving around it to shoot oncoming viruses. The player would have had to destroy these enemy forces to prevent the respective company’s network from going down. As you can see in the images below, the health of the network was represented by an icon on the HUD which turned from green to red.

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House Of The Dead 3 [Cell Shading Proto]

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House of the Dead III in cell Shading?!? It seems impossible, but let’s take a step back in time … It was 2003 and House of the Dead III, the famous Sega shooter, raged in the arcades, like previous episodes of the series.

Sega decided to port it to a home console, and since it was based on the Sega Chihiro hardware, they decided on the Xbox. So, SEGA announced the development of a port for Xbox was under way and showed some screens to the public. The early screens had a special feature, using the technique of Cell Shading which made ​​the game look like a color cartoon, with characters drawn with a black marker.

However, the idea was soon abandoned. The causes of abandonment are still unknown, but it is thought that the idea of a graphic “cartoon” in a game as violent as HOTD III would not satisfy the fans, who would definitely prefer “normal” graphics.

Thanks to UK Boogie for the english translation!

[spoiler /Clicca qui per la versione in Italiano/ /Nascondi la versione in Italiano/]House of the Dead III in cell Shading?!? Sembra impossibile, ma facciamo un salto indietro nel tempo… Era il 2003 e il gioco House of The Dead III, il famoso titolo sparatutto SEGA, imperversava nelle sale giochi; come per i precedenti episodi della serie, si era deciso di realizzare un porting per una console casalinga, e dato che il Sega Chihiro, la scheda su cui girava HOTD III, era basata sull’ Xbox, si decise per quest’ultima. Così, SEGA annunciò al pubblico che lo sviluppo di un porting per Xbox di HOTD III era stato iniziato e mostrò al pubblico alcuni screen. Quest’ultimi, avevano una particolarità, utilizzavano la tecnica del Cell Shading, un particolare sistema che faceva assomigliare il gioco a un cartone animato, grazie a colori un po’ più carichi e al contorno dei personaggi, che era tracciato con un pennarello nero, proprio come un disegno di un cartone.

Tuttavia, l’idea fu presto abbandonata. Le cause dell’abbandono sono ancora sconosciute, ma si pensa che l’idea di una grafica “cartoonesca” in un gioco violento come HOTD III non abbia soddisfatto i fan, che preferivano senz’altro una grafica “normale”.[/spoiler]

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