Software Creations

Conscripts [N64 – Cancelled]

Conscripts is a cancelled game that was in development by Software Creations for the Nintendo 64. There are not much info on the project and no images are left, as it was canned in early development, but we know that it was going to be an action / strategy game in which we had to guide to safety some soldiers, with helicopters and tanks, through various battlefield.

The idea was to have many little soldier characters on the screens (swarms of them) in a huge world, but they never got as far as creating the main 3D landscape. The gameplay could have been like a 3D Lemmings, but with a war theme. The Conscripts 64 team was composed by Marc Dawson (director), Weston Samuels (concept arts), Allan Findlay (3D engine) and Francis O’Brien (3D Artist).

Conscripts by Software Creations for N64

The game was cancelled along with many others Software Creations projects for the N64, as Space JellyForever Dragonz, Dead Ahead, Blade & Barrel and Creator, as they moved their resources onto other projects that were paid for by publishers. Even with various teams full of talented developers, probably Software Creations at that time had too many original prototypes in development and they had to cut some of them to switch resources to those project that had more chances to be profitable.

In the end, the only games developed by Software Creations that were released on the Nintendo 64 were Carmageddon, FIFA 99, Hexen, World Cup 98 and a couple of Wayne Gretzky’s 3D Hockey: all their more interesting and original games (like Conscripts 64) were never released.

Thanks to Francis and Allan for their help in preserving some info about this lost game! 

Space Jelly [N64 – Cancelled]

Space Jelly, also known as Moon Jelly (and originally called “A Fist Full of Credits”), is a cancelled game that was in development for the Nintendo 64 by Software Creations. The game’s world and settings were created by the Pickford Brothers as an original game concept, with concept arts by Steve Hanson. Initially Space Jelly / Moon Jelly wasn’t really a platform-specific game, it was more about designing a main character, their world, backstory and art style, with the intention of creating a franchise which would lead to a series of games. Ste and John Pickford put together a reference book of characters, art, locations, while Richard Kay (Software Creations managing director) was trying to sell the concept to various publishers, before any actual game development began.

In 1995/1996 the Pickford Brothers left Software Creations and were no longer involved in Space Jelly, but Software Creations continued to work on the game, with Steve Hanson taking over as game designer. With only some concept arts and a design doc, it seems that Software Creations was not able to find a publisher for Space Jelly yet. In 1995 Nintendo of America announced that Software Creations entered in their “Dream Team” and as SC’s knowledge of the N64 hardware became more and more deep (SC also created the sound tools for the N64), they started to work on a Nintendo 64 prototype using the Space Jelly concept, with 3D models done by Deborah Graham.  In the gallery below you can see one Space Jelly character, Johnny Forbidden, modeled by Francis O’Brien in his spare time inbetween other Software Creations projects.

Space Jelly became a self-funded Nintendo 64 project, a 3D platformer / action game, with ingame graphics tailored to the strengths / weaknesses of the N64 hardware. As we can read from the comments by journalists that saw a video of Space Jelly when Software Creations was showing it at gaming expos, the graphics were great, like a colorful Tim Burton game, with animations done by ex Cosgrove Hall staff.

Sadly Space Jelly was later cancelled, along with many others Software Creations projects for the N64, as Forever Dragonz, Dead Ahead, Blade & Barrel and Creator. Even with various teams full of talented people, probably Software Creations at that time had too many original prototypes in development and they had to cut some of them to switch resources to those project that had more chances to be profitable. In the end, the only games developed by Software Creations that were released on the Nintendo 64 were Carmageddon, FIFA 99, Hexen, World Cup 98 and a couple of Wayne Gretzky’s 3D Hockey: all their more interesting and original games were never released.

Thanks to Francis O’Brien and Ste Pickford for their contributions! Thanks to Celine for some of the scans!

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Equinox (Solstice 2) [SNES – Beta]

Equinox, also known as Solstice II, is an isometric 3D action / puzzle game developed by Software Creations and published by Sony Imagesoft in 1994 for the Super Nintendo. In some early beta screens (1991?) published in EGM issue 27, we can notice that the sprite of the protagonist was completely different from the one in the final version.

Final Game:

equinoxfinal

Beta:

equinoxbeta01

Thanks to Celine for the contribution!

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Batman (SC) [SNES – Cancelled]

In november 2008 Sample_Seller opened an auction on Ebay for a Batman prototype that was in development by Software Creations for the Super Nintendo.

BATMAN super nintendo SAMPLE/DEMO US NTSC version

Very early 2 level demo, no sound… undiscovered batman game!!

Devoloped by SOFTWARE CREATIONS.

Original development sample game direct from Nintendo !!

Rare unreleased/unannounced game !! Only a few were made, unique item for any collector !!

As we can read on Wikipedia, Software Creations were primarily known for their video games based on movie and comic licenses like Marvel Comics, Cutthroat Island, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast and original titles Solstice and the sequel Equinox.  Their Batman project was never released for unknown reasons.

As Yakumo as noted, this Batman demo has been on the scene for years, infact since the begining of the Super Magicom, Wildcard, profighter and so on. A rom of the demo was leaked and should be easily findable with google.

You can read more info on this beta at SNES Central!

Thanks to Yakumo and Celine for the contributions!

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Plok [SNES – Beta / Concept / Unused Stuff]

Plok was a Super Nintendo game developed by Software Creations and published by Tradewest Games in 1993 in the United States, and later by Nintendo in Europe and Activision in Japan. The game is a traditional platform game starring a character named “Plok.” [Info from Wikipedia]

At the Pickford Bros’s website they have an interesting archive with many info and concept arts from the development of the game, in which we can see some unused costumes and characters. The Plok project started out as another game called “Fleapit” a coin-op developed while Pickford Bros worked at Zippo Games, for Rare’s custom hardware ‘Razz’ board. The game was fully playable and about half complete when it was put on hold and eventually canned by the closure of the studio.

Retrogamer96 has let us known about three unused / test levels that were found in the game code. If you use an action replay you can acces to some glitched up stages called “Bedream Fens”, “Bredanni Bog” and more “Test Drive” levels. One interesting level includes all of Plok’s costumes including the ones used in the Fleapit stages.

Thanks to Adrien Baptis we found out more info about these removed levels (check the video below!). For the Test Drives, only the first one is playable and let you test all the vehicules and costumes of the game (the code is 7E084A28). The others Test Drives will drop you in an invisible water.

For the three beta/secret levels, they are “Brendammi bog” (the codes is 7E084A1D), “Badream fens” (the codes is 7E084A1E) and “Breezy beach”(the codes is 7E084A1F). Actually, we can see where those levels are on the map. All you have to do is to go in a regular level without the code, put the code on when you’re in the level, then die. With that, Plok will not return in the level but will be on the map : he acts like he just beat Rockyfella and wants to go in the fleas’ hole. But instead of jumping in, he walks forward and stops on the bogs. That’s where the level “Brendammi bog” is. With the other two levels, Plok walks through the bog and go to the south beach.

Thanks to Retrogamer96 and Adrien Baptis for the contributions!

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