Covering unreleased and cancelled video games, plus prototypes and early versions of games on a variety of consoles and computers. We are a large archive dedicated to preserving games that were never released to the public. Sharing history and stories from the developers, assets and more before it is too late.

We are a non-profit digitisation project, aiming to digitally preserve software and history which would otherwise be lost for good. If for any reason there is anything that you do not wish to be on the website, please contact us for removal.

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Necromancer

1983 HES / Synapse Software

Platform: Commodore VIC-20

A short entry for yet another Commodore Vic-20 title that was reported on the Vic-20 Cartridge Rarity list and may well be unreleased, or otherwise saw a very limited release.

Necromancer was a popular C64 game released by Synapse, but a Vic 20 version was mentioned in an advert in December 1983 of Compute! Gazette in the US. Was it a printing mistake, and did they mean the C64? Or did a Vic-20 conversion really exist?

The game of course was released on the likes of the Atari 400/800 and Commodore 64, so its possible (as Avram suggests in the comments) that Bill Williams will know more of the Vic 20 conversion.

If you know anything more, please let us know.

With thanks to Fabrizio Bartoloni and Avram Dumitrescu.

Posted in Reviews, Vic 20 | 4 Comments

Panic Button

1984 First Star Software

Platform: Commodore VIC-20

An intriguing lost First Star Software game for the Commodore VIC-20, which did see a previously unreleased Commodore 64 edition saved some years ago.

The game was flagged up on Ward F. Shrake’s VIC 20 list as vapourware, and was reviewed in Compute! magazine in May 1984 along with the TRS-80 Color edition.

There is oddly no mention of a Commodore 64 conversion, so we wondered if there was a printing error in the magazine and if they meant to say Commodore 64 instead. Well, thanks to contributor Larry Cameron, it has been found that it isn’t vapourware at all.

An ebay auction with an 1983 advert, shows the game being advertised for both TRS-80 and the VIC-20. What’s even better is that the VIC-20 edition lists a coding credit to a Wayne Lam. We’ve added a photo from the auction of the advert below.

So what happened to the game, and could anything be found of the VIC-20 edition? Hopefully we’ll find Wayne at some point to learn more and see if anything may still exist after all this time.

With thanks to Fabrizio Bartoloni, Ward F. Shrake and Larry Cameron.

Gallery

Posted in Reviews, Vic 20 | 3 Comments

Slime

1983 HES / Synapse Software

Platform: Commodore VIC-20

A short entry for yet another Commodore VIC-20 title that was reported on the Vic-20 Cartridge Rarity list and may well be unreleased, or otherwise saw a very limited release.

We’re not sure exactly what the game was about, but it was listed in an advert in December 1983 of Compute! Gazette. With a bit of digging, it wasn’t long until we found a name in connection with the game.

The developer was Lawrence Holland, and it was their first ever development before working on games such as Star Wars: X-Wing and more. We hope to find out more from Lawrence soon about the title.

The game was also later renamed to Super Storm and was released on the Atari platforms, which apparently was also not released on the TI-99/4A, though a prototype has been since found.

It seems to suggest that this game may well have been released, but in limited numbers. We will update the page as soon as we learn anything more. If you know anything more, please let us know.

With thanks to Fabrizio Bartoloni and Ward F. Shrake.

Gallery

Posted in Reviews, Vic 20 | Leave a comment

PlatterMania

1982 Epyx

Platform: Commodore Vic 20

A short entry until we can confirm that there was indeed a Commodore VIC-20 conversion. PlatterMania was a plate spinning action game that was released by Epyx on the Atari 400/800 in 1982, some sites suggest that a VIC-20 edition was available or planned – but there is very little detail at present. Has it therefore just been incorrectly attributed as a platform? With thanks to Fabrizio Bartoloni and Ward F. Shrake.
Posted in Reviews, Vic 20 | Leave a comment

Welcome to Fabrizio Bartoloni!

I say “welcome”, but Fabrizio is already a very well known face to Games That Weren’t, and has been for many years now.

When looking at our team page and doing some tidy-ups, I realised that we have a number of regular contributors who should be recognised better for all their help. Fabrizio is the first, and one of the most prolific contributors our project has had.

Fabrizio loves all things to do with unreleased games, and has a very keen eye for any new items that surface via other sites and forums. If you check many pages within the archive, you’ll no doubt spot Fabrizio’s name credited somewhere.

Thanks Fabrizio for all your help over the years, and for also becoming part of the GTW family.

Posted in News | Leave a comment

System IIII game catalogue

1986-1990 Ghislain de Blois

Platform: Commodore VIC-20

A short entry to highlight a series of previously unreleased VIC 20 games from Ghislain de Blois that you may have missed and was posted originally in 2015:

Eight previously unreleased games for the VIC-20: THE SYSTEM IIII GAME CATALOG 1986-1990

system4 1986 1990

There is a wide variety of games to check out, including a Pac-man clone, boxing games and a RPG title – all showcasing the early talents of Ghislain before he went on to produce stunners such as Realms of Quest.

Enjoy!

With thanks to Fabrizio Bartoloni for flagging up and highlighting.

Posted in Reviews, Vic 20 | 1 Comment