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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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Lufia 2 [Beta – SNES]

As we can read on Wikipedia, Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals, released in Japan for the Super Famicom under the name Estpolis Denki II, is an RPG developed by Neverland and published in Japan in 1995 by Taito, as a prequel to Lufia & The Fortress of Doom. In July 2012, Jackhead shared in the Assembler Games forum some screens and videos from an early beta version of Lufia 2, that has many differences from the final one.

The proto has many difference to the final Version! Complete other worldmap, other skills, many different screens. Awesome! I have to replace the battery, than i can show more from the proto.

The differents are big. The last two picture are the same dungeon. In the Final version Maxim has a bow and sword. In the proto you go complete different way without an bow.  In the Final Version you have a skill “GUT” in proto “FAI”. You also start with 50 elixier, and the difficult is much higher as in the Final version. Playtime on the proto also show seconds. And of corse the worldmap is complete different. Fighting animation, menue options… Thats what i see in the first 5 min off the game.

First bossfights never seen in retail version

While trying to dump the cart to preserve the game, something went wrong:

I was trying to dump the eproms with my willem. After that i replace it on the pcb but something is wrong… Game crash now after intro, sound is bad.
This is really really bad. The dumps also crashed after intro… All Dumps merged, nothing wrong with the dump itself.
I conatct a few persons, maybe the eproms are corrupt or a conection problem.
At this point i quit and give the cart away. I really hope someone out there can fix it. Im sorry…

Luckily Trevormacro with the help of JLukas from the Assembler Games Forum, were able to fix this problem and saved the Lufia 2 beta!

The prototype is way different from the final and a lot of different sprites, tiles, and possible music and sound

Thanks to Michel for the contribution!

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Panic Museum [Beta – Arcade]

Panic Museum is a on-rail shooter developed by Taito and GameWax, released in arcades in 2010. The game is a bit like a cross between the House of the Dead and the film Night at the Museum. Kieran played a beta version of Panid Museum at blackpool in the UK, and he noticed some differences:

The original name of the game was to be called haunted museum but was changed possibly due to copyright reasons (not sure why)
In the final version of the game the crosshairs was left out but was in the beta version.
Another difference is that you were set to go in a certain order starting with the mummy Egyptian level and then the library etc but in the final version you now have 3 stages to choose from in any order you like apart from the ones that need unlocking going upwards.
The aquarium level is the last level to be unlocked in the final version but wasn’t in the beta version
In the library level the deck of card monsters ran at you too quickly but now their speed have been reduced in the final version thus making the animation more in line with everything else.

Thanks to Kieran for the contribution!

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Super Dog Booby: Akachan Daibouken no Maki [NES – Cancelled]

Super Dog Booby: Akachan Daibouken no Maki (translated by mrdomino as Super Dog Booby: Baby Adventure Volume), is a cancelled platform / action game that was in development in 1990 / 1991 by Jaleco / Taito for the Famicom / NES. Some scans and info were posted in a japanese website, from which it seems that the game was also shown in a playable form at a gaming event in 1991 and it was also offered as a prize in a contest by a japanese magazine. In the end Super Dog Booby was never released for unknown reasons.

Thanks to Celine for the contribution!

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Elevator Action [DS – Cancelled]

Elevator Action, produced by Taito, was an arcade game from the 1980s. While never becoming as famous as other games of the time, such as Pac-Man, Galaga or Space Invaders, it became a cult classic, often remembered for its espionage themes. Unfortunately, the franchise never really went anywhere. In 1994, an arcade sequel, Elevator Action II, was only ever released in Japan on the Sega Saturn, and in the US as a Dexter’s Laboratory game.

In 2008, however, Taito planned to revive the series by bringing out a new game on the Nintendo DS, which would have played more or less the same as the first two instalments. The original illustrator, James Harvey, was set to design all-new characters for the game, while ensuring that the classic feel of the original was upheld. Harvey says that he was asked to redesign the principal characters (three anti-terrorists), but to “keep one eye on the present and one eye on the past”. Soon after he submitted his designs, however, the game was scrapped for an unknown reason. Harvey’s characters have now appeared on the Internet, and an overview is provided below:

Kim Min Ji, a North Korean, is the first member of the team. She is armed with a laser pistol, which is charged from a tea kettle full of battery acid, which she can also hit people with. She wears a North Korean military uniform.

Brussels Tibia, the second member of the group, wears a black outfit, with a human skeleton drawn all over it. Harvey describes him as a “crazy white kid in a Halloween suit”. His special power would have been his lethal flying kick.

And, finally, Rakim Al Taff (whose name is a play on the original Elevator Action II character Jad the Taff) is a tough Muslim radical who dons a pink cap and pants, and would have had a running clothesline special move.

It is very unfortunate that this very promising revival never saw the light of day. We can only hope that Taito will one day re-open the file, and consider bringing this game to the public.

Information, and pictures of characters, were shared on Boing Boing.

Article by Franklint, thanks to Robert Seddon for the contribution!

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Video (from the original 1983  Elevator Action):