You may or may not be surprised to learn that Double Dragon on the C64 could have been very different – or at least a lot better than it was!
We don’t know that for sure though – but we do know that the game was originally being developed by another team at Binary Design, but the developers had gone AWOL for reasons as yet unknown.
It left Virgin Mastertronic with no game to market, having already paid for all the marketing. With a very good reputation, Virgin went to Ash and Dave to see if they could help them salvage the conversion. After making them an offer they couldn’t refuse, they were snapped up to do a conversion.
However, Ash and Dave were only given a crazy 6 week deadline to complete the entire game – but the publisher told them that they just needed something to put in a box and sell. Regardless of that statement, Ash and Dave did their utmost best given the time-frame – but unfortunately it showed and the conversion was universally panned. Knowing this was likely going to happen, they did not add their credits to the game – as it could well have affected future work contracts at the time. Can you blame them?
But what of the game that was originally in development? How far did it get? Why was it abandoned? All questions that we do not yet have the answers to.
Contributions: Ashley Routledge