Documenting unreleased, cancelled and prototype games.
Welcome to Games That Weren't (Also known as GTW), a site dedicated to unreleased/incomplete/cancelled games and prototypes on both consoles and computers. As well as news, reviews and features, we have platform specific projects with downloads, photos, scans, screenshots, videos, reviews and interviews. Our main platforms consist of the C64 and Amiga, where there is a full digital archive of games being preserved for both machines.
Please note - we are a non-profit digitization project, aiming to digitally preserve history of unreleased/incomplete/cancelled software 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.
Following on from the release of Mirage, we are pleased to announce the preservation and recovery of yet another title in the form of Make My Day. A full diagonal scrolling Western game which was intended for Power House back in 1988.
After providing a copy of Mirage for the site, Mark Clements very kindly sent a copy of Make My Day down via post the other day. Thankfully the disk preserved first time without any issues at all.
The additional bonus of the recovery is the inclusion of a previously unheard Matt Gray tune on the title screen. Enjoy!
Brian Flanagan has been in the games industry for over 30 years, working on well over 40 shipped titles. He once worked at Ocean Software for around 10 years, working (uncredited) on Operation Wolf and then infamously on the first version of Operation Thunderbolt on the Commodore 64, which saying was a bit of a mess is a slight understatement.
We chat with Brian (with some added input from Dawn Hollywood) regarding an intriguing SNES platformer called Cold Steel. Not really covered in any depth or detail as far as we know, apart from the odd mention online and in the press. Developed back in 1992, and which could have been one of Ocean’s early SNES releases following the likes of The Addams Family, had it been completed.Continue reading →
A surprise to kick off the weekend for you all, with the full and unreleased Mirage game that was never released by Mark Clements. Mark was better known for his Summer and Winter Camp music, but also did a lot of coding work too, including a few games.
Not seen for over 30 years, this is a neat single screen shooter with some cool end of game bosses to shoot.
Elric: The Almon’s Mission was an RPG title being developed by Psygnosis way back in 1995, based on the character by Michael Moorcock. The game was intended for release on both PC CD and Sony PlayStation, and was brought to light to Games That Weren’t by contributor J.M. Ratkos, who found details of the game from an old E3 press kit from Psygnosis. Continue reading →
Many of you growing up with Codemaster’s 8-bit budget games may remember a quirky title called Tilt, where you control a 3D maze and rotate it in various directions to guide a ball to an exit point, whilst avoiding a range of obstacles. Continue reading →
Recently, we were kindly invited to write a guest article for www.GOG.com on some of the PC/Mac games that we have covered in the book, as well as talk about the work involved in the writing of the book.
You can check out the article Good Old Games That Weren’t over at:
To give a bit of background to regulars of the site (as well as new visitors)… Primarily my aim was to produce something special to mark 20+ years of the Games That Weren’t archive. Originally I thought it may only take a year to write such a book way back in 2013, but I had completely underestimated. It was really important throughout the creation to try and make something special and enjoyable to others, and not just rush it out for the sake of it – so 7 years later here we are today. Continue reading →
Ken got in touch with GTW yesterday and informed us that the game was recovered from the archive of a retired programmer who used to work for Roklan. It was found on an 8-inch CP/M disk that was labelled “Popeye” and had the full source code and hex image to be able to create a CRT image.
We learn that the game was coded by Joe Hellesen at Roklan Corporation, and Ken plans to show the game in public for the first time since 1984, at the VCFMW/ECCC show in September (if it goes ahead). The CRT will be released after the show, or earlier if the show doesn’t happen and will be added to the GTW64 site.
For now, enjoy the screenshots and a massive thank you to Ken for preserving another piece of gaming history.
Thanks to contributor Ken Knight, it has been highlighted that the preview of puzzler Cubic, called Cubic Maxi contains some differences in the game play compared to the final release. Otherwise it looks pretty much the same as the final game, but worth checking out:
Thanks to Dan Warren, here is yet another pre-release screen, this time from Palace Software’s 1988 Troll game.
There are some very minor graphic differences compared to the final version, including the score being on the opposite side and some slight differences in the main area. Scan courtesy of Stephen (Mort) Stuttard.
A few more updates to the site, which includes a number of new entries and various updates. Batman Returns in particular has been tidied up a bit, and i’ve added some much better and high quality screenshot scans, thanks to the amazing Stephen Stuttard.
There are some concept sketches from Ned Langman too for a few entries and details about yet another Lemmings conversion that was intended. Full updates are below:
Thanks to Dasse Evertsson for the heads up, but at the end of the fantastic Amiga game Traps ‘n Treasures, there is a little hint of a sequel with “Redbeard’s Revenge”.
Due for release it seems in 1996, we are guessing that Starbyte had left the Amiga scene by that point. The last Amiga games from the company were in 1995.
@DillyDylan on Twitter commented that there was a Super Nintendo version of the game planned and was being programmed by Simon J. Francis. Below is a magazine article, but showing a screenshot from the Amiga version unfortunately:
Developer of the Amiga game Roman Werner was not aware of any SNES materials existing, and wasn’t involved directly. When asked about the sequel, Roman suggests the sequel was more of a “good will” mention rather than actual plans. They had ideas and graphics left over that couldn’t be implemented in the 1993 game, so there was potential for a sequel. Sadly though, it never happened and nothing was ever started.
Flicking through the last issue of Zzap!64 back in late 1992, I rediscovered an early screenshot and the first to be shown of the Commodore 64 version of Lemmings. It would be a year until the final game saw release.
Scan courtesy of Stephen (Mort) Stuttard (Click for full size)
Looking at the constructed screenshot, it seems this was a test level, as I think there are more lemmings on the screen than the C64 version eventually allowed, plus usually you only get the floater icon on this level. Also at this stage the shading is quite simple, and the graphics may have been quickly wired at this stage from the Amiga. Or is it even just a quick mock up?
Contributor Mathew Chakko flagged up that “The Sporting News Baseball” game by Epyx Software in 1988 was advertised with a panel area that had a number of differences compared to the final game. Here it is:
Thanks to Ross Sillifant for the heads up, a short clip of what seems to be the unreleased PlayStation version of Aliens vs Predator can be found in this fascinating video of the E3 show back in 1997:
It should start at the right place, but if for any reason it doesn’t – skip to 2:05:29.
The entire video (which has been online for a few years) is worth checking out, as it features a number of unreleased titles within. The game was also planned for release on the Sega Saturn, which also saw cancellation. The PC version was delayed and eventually released in 1999.