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Classic Games (Games) Entertainment Games

Vapor Trails - On Famously Unreleased Videogames 64

Thanks to GamePro for its article discussing formerly in-development videogames which never actually got released. Some of the more unconventional include Data East's Tattoo Assassins ("2D video-captured fighters, whose tattoos come to life and whack on other players. Characters included a Nancy Kerrigan clone and a giant running hot dog"), Sega's Virtua Hamster ("...[involving] polygonal rodents with rocket packs and skateboards swooshing through a huge hamster habitrail, collecting popcorn kernels to spit at enemies"), and Runandgun!'s partially resurrected Duelin' Firemen! ("...[an FMV] game about singing, dancing firemen [starring Rudy Ray Moore].")
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Vapor Trails - On Famously Unreleased Videogames

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  • by The-Bus ( 138060 ) on Friday February 06, 2004 @08:18AM (#8199940)
    I think anything 3D Realms announces doesn't come out. Duke is an obvious choice but let's not forget Prey [] either...

    But once it comes out, rest assured I will be playing it on my Glaze3D [] chip. Maybe they'll even port it to the Phantom!
  • Tattoo Assassins... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Lazyhound ( 542184 ) on Friday February 06, 2004 @08:24AM (#8199969) actually available as a MAME ROM now.
  • by osullish ( 586626 ) <> on Friday February 06, 2004 @08:32AM (#8200007)
    I would love to know what they were smoking when they thought of that!

    Stoned Developer 1 : "uugh dude, (takes a deep puff..) do you know what there isn't enough of in games to day?"
    Stoned Developer 2 :"uugh I dunno dude"
    Stoned Developer 1 :"Hamsters man, just think about it dude.."
    Stoned Developer 2 :"crazeeee man"

  • Hamsters? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by neostorm ( 462848 ) on Friday February 06, 2004 @09:10AM (#8200170)
    That's such a funny idea. I would have loved to see that.

    Reminds me of "Battle Hamster"

  • Dueling Firemen (Score:3, Insightful)

    by hrieke ( 126185 ) on Friday February 06, 2004 @09:54AM (#8200477) Homepage
    What sick twisted mind came up with this?
    Just watch the video...

    • Re:Dueling Firemen (Score:4, Insightful)

      by pezpunk ( 205653 ) on Friday February 06, 2004 @10:37AM (#8200811) Homepage
      seriously! i watched the trailer for this and my jaw just went slack. timothy leary, mark mothersbaugh, steve albini, and the guy that created Dolemite are in it. the other actors, though, are kinda weird. it's really hard to discern any details from that website, but apparently this was going to be a 3DO title?!?! seriously wacked. the trailer opens (i THINK) with 2 airplanes crashing into downtown Chicago, and lots of high-rises bursting into flames ... oddly prescient for 1996. apparently the citizenry of chicago reacts by doing 500 hits of acid each and throwing a big party. aliens(?) arrive. firemen breakdance. timothy leary turns into Max Headroom. what the fuck?
      • It was an airplane AND the Columbia crashing into a sky scraper! What the?!?!
        For fans of 70's camp, Japanese game shows, and drugs.
      • I believe that is an airplane and a space shuttle crashing into the Sears Tower. Everyone left alive runs to the Hancock building to boogie down. As for actual gameplay... Who knows?

        I also believe that this is the first videogame that Tony Hawk has appeared in, either by image or by proxy. Also the presence of the Reverend Ivan Stang and Timothy Leary means that the game was made in connection with The Church of the Subgenius [].

        Personally I hope they make this into a full-length movie. With primary film
        • see, I thought the same thing: this would make an AWESOME screwball midnight movie. they seriously should dust off the non-interactive segments (what am I talking about? its an fmv game, there ARE no interactive segments.) and sell it to some cable network. I mean, hey, I saw a movie where aliens implant people with alien dna via easy listening music and graham crackers, and the aliens only weakeness was polka late at night on cable. it was the stupidest thing I've ever seen, and if I knew the title of it
        • Ivan Stang! Fuck, that game is a geek's wet dream! Why, oh why, did they cancel it?!
  • Why most the ones in the article look like there was a good reason they got shelved.

    Why not list Half-Life for Dreamcast or Macintosh? What about Thrill Kill for PS1?

    (Okay, Thrill Kill made it out in various forms - I still have my copy - but it wasn't ever "officially" released.)

    • Most games were shelved for a good reason. I would consider the terrible lateness of the Mac version and the low US sales of the Dreamcast a good reason to shelve Half-Life. Thrill Kill, while fun for about 5 minutes, was a hollow, repetitive game that despite its legendary status wasn't up to snuff (no pun intended). Plus with only 8 characters, you were guaranteed repeats by the 3rd level. Doing a wu-tang sellout was a good use of the engine.

      Most game projects get shelved... The reaches development
  • Honestly instead of those stupid this is your brain on drugs commericials with eggs being scrambled, for drug education kids should be shown that trailer!

    ... see kids, drugs are bad mmmkay.

  • by freidog ( 706941 ) on Friday February 06, 2004 @11:18AM (#8201314)
    Malice [] was one of the titles used to show of the power of the XBox before it was released . If you paid attention to the XBox hype, chances are you saw some Malic screenshots.
    It was widely expected to be a release title in fact. But here 3+ years latter, no release date ia availibe, the Official [] webpage no longer exists, and we've heard nothing from Argonaut Games in the last year or so.
  • by Clomer ( 644284 ) on Friday February 06, 2004 @12:12PM (#8201967)
    I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned WarCraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans []. It was to be Blizzard's first adventure game, but was cancelled as a nearly complete game. Oh well, at least the story is now available as a novel. And it is part of WarCraft official cannon, as it plays into the setup of WarCraft III.
    • Yeah, that's true...I bet a lot more people had heard of that than any of the games they actually put on the list.

      Plus, like all the others on the list...I'm kinda glad it never came out.
  • Fallout 3 & Xcom (Score:3, Interesting)

    by samsmithnz ( 702471 ) on Friday February 06, 2004 @12:25PM (#8202146) Homepage
    Don't forget about the ill-fated Fallout 3... ml [] 20.html []

    and XCom, I don't know how many times this project has been canned and then resurected again 2 years later... [] []

    These are the two biggies for me...
  • by Pluvius ( 734915 ) <{pluvius3} {at} {}> on Friday February 06, 2004 @12:58PM (#8202547) Journal
    If I had to pick one piece of vaporware I'd want to be able to play, this [] would be it. It was a bunch of screwed-up mini-games, including this one where you have to drive from somewhere to Las Vegas in a tour bus. I remember reading a preview for it in Video Games (aka the best gaming mag ever); a couple of the staff members actually took turns playing the tour bus game for like eight hours before they accidentally wrecked and ruined all their "progress."

    • Here's the thing that gets me about it: The article you link to reads like an ISO of the game is floating around somewhere "out there." Thing is, an awful lot is known about this unreleased game for it to be completely unavailable to the public somehow.

      I still remember my first exposure to the game, though: Penn and Teller on the Boston Pops, performing the song "The Typewriter" with that game instead of a typewriter.
      • Thing is, an awful lot is known about this unreleased game for it to be completely unavailable to the public somehow.
        Not really. I have an old back issue of Sega Visions (the crappy free magazine Sega sent you if you bothered registering one of their products) with a two-page spread that goes into pretty good detail on every single mini-game. I haven't found anyone who actually claims to have played it.
    • I remember that review. It was the first time I'd heard of Penn & Teller, and it made me a fan.

      If I remember, the only thing in the bus tour game that ever happens (aside from the bus constantly pulling to the right, requiring you to actually steer it), is that four hours in, a bug gets squashed on your windshield, and you have to stare at it the whole time afterwards.

      It seems like the most accurate simulation of road madness ever.
  • I am surprised that no one has mentioned Marble Man yet... []

    The ROMs are out there, it's just a matter of getting them leaked.

    • Heh, I was just about to mention Marble Man myself. I so wish a Mame ROM was available.
    • Re:Marble Man? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Thedalek ( 473015 )
      The ROMs are out there, it's just a matter of getting them leaked.

      Don't you mean a matter of getting them dumped?

      I recall a few years back (before CPS2 encryption was cracked) someone started posting to some Mame dev boards saying that he owned a MarbleMan cabinet. Once someone asked him how much he would want for such a thing, he quoted some absurd figure.

      That didn't discourage the Mame fans, though. They started a collection to reach the mark (I think it was $10,000), and were making serious progres
      • That reminds me of a similar situation that Mother for the NES went through. An unreleased English version was finished, and the only owner of a copy ended up selling it to a group of dumpers who released it.
  • Wheres Duke Nukem Forever?
  • Yeah well, I'm gonna make my own video game.....
    with blackjack, and hookers! In fact, forget the video game.
  • Damn Rush fans always getting into everything!
    • Totally. Wouldn't have even clicked on the article, 'cept I half-expected to see a Rush reference in there somewhere.


      When my car was stolen Nov 2002 about the only thing the thieves DIDN'T take was my "Vapor Trails" CD. Not only were they criminals, they had bad taste in music, too.

      They even took the chrome Bevo I had off the back of my car. Are you kidding me? What kind of sick fuck steals a man's Bevo?

      [Bevo = logo for the University of Texas, a silhouette of a longhorn cow head]
  • Polybius! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Man In Black ( 11263 ) <{ac.wahs} {ta} {or-ez}> on Friday February 06, 2004 @04:42PM (#8205832) Homepage
    Polybius [] is one game that I've always wanted to see surface some day... any game that was written by the military/CIA/(insert conspiracy theory here) and can give people amnesia and horrible nightmares has got to be one hell of a game!!

    Sadly, I think it's actually been proven to be a hoax.
    • From what was there it sounds like there was such a game, but that it was more mundane than some people would like to think. Apparently the mazes made some people dizzy and the strobe effect it used could induce epileptic seizures. These effects are entirely possible and it sounds like they were exaggerated badly.
  • I seem to remember reading about this great game for the NES called Doki Doki Panic... Man I wonder whatever happend to that game?
  • by spyrochaete ( 707033 ) on Friday February 06, 2004 @06:43PM (#8207426) Homepage Journal
    Too bad the world will never see Full Throttle 2. Lucasarts [] axed it because it did not meet their high quality standards. Also, the actor who voiced the protagonist Ben passed away a year or two ago. Shame. The original was a cool, cool game.
    • The original was a cool, cool game.
      And the new one looked terrible. Seriously, the screenshots they released were sub-Grim Fandango in terms of graphics quality and they were describing it as an "action-adventure" instead of pure adventure, complete with lots of fistfights (in fact, most of the released screenshots were of action scenes). Can't say I'm terribly crushed they canned it.
  • Thrill Kill was not waporware proper. It was finished modulo some touch-up, but it seems it was a bit too much for Virgin (IIRC), who buried it rather than release it. Some copies had gotten to journalists, however, and I got to play it with my friends.

    It was a S&M-themed fighter for the Playstation, with funny characters like a madman in a straitjacket, a midget on stilts, a surgeon with scalpels and a nurse with a stungun. The fighting bodies locked quite nicely, and fatalities usually involved behea
  • Chrono Break (Score:1, Interesting)

    Relativly new vaporware. Square Enix had trademark registration for the title, but that registration has recently expired. I read an article at RPGamer that stated Square Enix staff said that the company is no longer persuing the title.

    They probably never started development. Too bad, I'd have liked to see it. l

    When Squaresoft trademarked the name Chrono Break in December of 2001, many Chrono Trigger fans became hopeful for the release of a third game in the
  • This space flight combat sim set in the B5-universe was cancelled by Sierra. The company (once again) chickened out, fearing that both the genre and the franchise would be catering to too limited an audience.

    Reportedly, the game was in very advanced stages of development when it was axed.

    Fortunately, fans of both Babylon 5 and the space flight combat sim genre have received quite a treat last Christmas, when an indepedent group released the prequel campaign of the B5 space flight combat sim "I've Found He

"Tell the truth and run." -- Yugoslav proverb