Development for Final Fantasy XII began in 2001. Final Fantasy Tactics creator Yasumi Matsuno, originally announced as producer and director, was forced to bow out of both roles midway through the creation of Final Fantasy XII due to health concerns. In his place, Hiroyuki Itō and Hiroshi Minagawa took over directorial duties while Akitoshi Kawazu, of SaGa series fame, became the executive producer with Square Enix president Yōichi Wada. Matsuno’s departure was regretted by series creator Hironobu Sakaguchi, who declined to play Final Fantasy XII beyond the
Fallout 3: Van Buren [PC – Cancelled]
Fallout 3 was initially under development by Black Isle Studios, a studio owned by Interplay Entertainment, under the working title Van Buren. Van Buren was set to carry on the Fallout series, following Fallout 2, prior to being cancelled. Interplay Entertainment went bankrupt and closed down Black Isle Studios before the game could be completed, and the license to develop Fallout 3 was sold for
Dragon Quest 9 (IX) [DS – Beta / Debug]
When it was first announced, Dragon Quest 9 was meant to have real-time action battles, but later (maybe for the critics of die-hard fans of the saga), SquarEnix decided to retain the traditional turn-based system. It’s possible that there are even more differences in these old screens & videos, so if you notice some beta stuff, please let us know!
Also, Yosh93 found these debug items (and a debug mode with the original name of the profect : Xenelon) in the final game:
Thanks to Proto1 for the contribution!
Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time [DS – Beta]
A certain beta screenshot depicts Mario, Luigi, and their baby selves fighting two red-shoe-clad Blooper foes in the Vim Factory. The Blooper still exists in the game’s code under the name “Scoot Bloop” but it’s attacks in battle are unfinished. It has sprites for the overworld as well. Although the screenshot depicts that they were meant for the Vim Factory, it’s enemy data is grouped with the Yoshi’s Island enemies, and it’s stats make it comparable to the enemies in Yoob’s Belly.
Another early screenshot shows the gang using a Mix Flower on two Boo Guys in Hollijolli Village, while Boo Guys were not present in this area in the final game.
Finally, it may be notable that Baby Mario’s initial artwork erroneously depicted him as having red shoes rather than his normal blue ones (this mistake was eventually changed and the artwork was re-released), although his shoe coloration would appear to have always been consistent throughout all of the actual game’s programming. [Info from Mariowiki]
Mother 3 [GBA – Unused Boss & Sprites]
Mother 3 is the latest (and some say last) installment in the Earthbound saga. Released 12 years after the previous game in the series, Earthbound, it offers a radically different story and presentation than the other games it shares its name with, all the while retaining the same combat system and quirky sense of humor.
Creator Shigesato Itoi initially conceived mother 3 to be released for the N64 when it was announced first in 1996. However due to both the teams inexperience in developing with 3D graphics and the commercial failure of the N64 DD drive (which would have been required to play the game) the project was cancelled in 2000, even though the game was quite far in development. For an interesting comparison between the original N64 version and the GBA version, check this nice article by Starmen.net (warning for spoilers).
The next time anyone would hear about Mother3 it would be in 2003, when it was redesigned for the Game Boy Advance. Graphically the game looked closer to its predecessors, a league away from the blocky, early-3D look that it first appeared with. When it finally shipped in 2006 anticipation was high, so high in fact that when Japanese gaming magazine Famitsu polled its readers on what games they wanted most, Mother3 was on top of the list. Sadly, to date Mother3 has never seen a western release. Fans wishing to play the game are left with importing it and using fan-made guides to finish it. Recently however a dedicated group of fans has translated the entire game and made the patch available for the public. So those that never got to experience this hidden gem can now enjoy it in English.
Below are unused sprites (like a taxy, a bus and an UFO) and a video of unused backrounds. Many people said this was Giygas, but it is not:
From Earthbound Wiki:
Although, even if said by fans that the unused boss is Giygas, it has been said by Shigesato Itoi himself, that they were simply unused backgrounds depicting Lucas’s thoughts over the battle with the Masked Man. Although it makes a huge resemblance to Giygas, it is not. As told by Shigesato, the screaming faces of Claus show that Lucas is recognizing Claus and seeing his pain, even the red deformed face of Claus. This makes much more sense, because hackers have used programs to see where some of the unused music’s events originated from, and the “Lucas’s nightmare” music was going to originally be the Ultimate Chimera’s approach, but was later scrapped because it was too scary for a younger audience.
For more info check:
[spoiler /Sweden translation/ /Hide/]Sve: Giygas skulle egentligen vara i Mother 3, men var raderat från datan, antagligen pga. att bossfighten var för skrämmande för nyare, ungare spelare (fast ironiskt nog så var Mother 3 mycket mer mörkare än Mother 2/Earthbound), eller pga. att Giygas var förstörd för evigt. [/spoiler]
Some sprites from: www.spriters-resource.com