Saturday, September 25, 2010

Credits, Multiplayer And More Unearthed In Mega Man Soccer


If you've ever completed Mega Man Soccer before, you'll notice how strangely abrupt the game ends. Whenever most video games are completed, you're usually met with the credits screen, displaying a list of every individual who contributed in said title's development. In Mega Man Soccer, however, this is not the case. There simply are no credits. Instead, successfully beating any one of the game's modes in its entirety boots the player back to the title screen. The identities of the game's developers shrouded in mystery.

Sixteen years after its release, the mystery of those lost credits has been solved. The Cutting Room Floor, a wiki-based site that chronicles beta and early development aspects of various games from all sorts of platforms, got around to tinkering within the innards of Mega Man Soccer and discovered the game actually did have credits (among other removed features such as 4-player multiplayer) that further fuel the argument that Mega Man Soccer was sold as an incomplete game...



The credits were indeed encrypted within the game but for one reason or another, weren't fully implemented. Here they are, at long last, in their entirety:

ROCKMANS(MEGAMANS)SOCCER 

= STAFF = 

(GAME DESIGN) 
YATSUHOU 
RED 
MICKEY 

(MAIN PROGRAM) 
KWAERU.T 

(SUB PROGRAM) 
MINK.M 

(GUEST PROGRAM) 
GERO 

(PROGRAM SURPORT) KOBA 

(GRAPHICS) 
7852 
ORI-CHAN 
MARIO-CHAN 
SUMIRE 
Q-CHAN 
MATABICHI 
RAKKASEI-ONDO 
YOSHIMI 
KAORU 
OKAAA-CHAN 
PATRIOT-YAMAZOO 

(SOUND PROGRAM) 
TOMI 

(SOUND) 
OKA 
TOMI 
NORIRIN 

(SPECIAL THANKS) 
HITOMI-SAN 
MAKINO-SAN 
KWA-CHAN 
SASA-CHAN 
IWA-CHAN 
NAO 

(DIRECTOR) 
YACCYAN! 

(PRODUSER) 
PROFESSOR F 

THANK YOU

...and the credits weren't the only lost feature discovered. TCRF even found out the game originally intended to support the Super Nintendo Multi-tap accessory, allowing for four players to play the game simultaneously. This according to the following unused text buried within the ROM:

    "WARNING!  ADJUST MULTI TAP IN THE CONNECTOR OF 2 PLAYER SIDE! ACCEPT JOYSTICKS ONLY!"

Further, unused 3P and 4P icon graphics were discover as well:


These icons would have appeared above the characters on the field. Alas, this wasn't meant to be.

And, of course, the game's biggest, most infamous mystery: Dr. Wily. It was inevitable we talk about this..


No matter what you do, you cannot get the cursor to highlight Dr. Wily, rendering the ability to play as him impossible. Through the use of a Game Genie, however, playing as Wily becomes a reality:

"Either use the Game Genie code F0DD-927C (WARNING: only have this code on when the Member Select is reached, or the game could glitch) or set RAM address 7E008C to 02 BEFORE you get to the Member Select screen to select him."

Successfully imputing either one of the codes grants you a fully playable Wily:




A full set of sprite pallet swaps and his player select mugshot in its entirety were also unearthed:




The inability to play as Wily was a large part of the argument that Mega Man Soccer was rushed to market. It was almost as if Capcom forgot to make him selectable and/or unlockable during development! Same goes for the credits... they're in the game but not in the game. The four-player mode is also speculated to be accessible, however no one (to my knowledge) has pursued getting it to work.

The game lacks a proper ending, too. The plot, although very simple, doesn't come to an actual conclusion. Again, beating the game merely kicks you back to the title screen. I'm afraid no amount of hacking or code digging can unearth this lost sequence... it wasn't even made in the first place! Why? We may never know.

Despite these shortcomings, Soccer remains one of my personal favorite "side-games" in the series. I think it would be very neat to get a follow-up one of these days that includes four-player multiplayer, Wily,... and a true ending followed by a proper credits screen.

If you're a fan of the prototype, pre-release stuff, I highly recommend checking out everything The Cutting Room Floor has to offer. Hit the preceding link and give it a gander!

11 comments:

  1. Wow, and people say that Mega Man 3 was incomplete. In any case, though, these are some pretty interesting finds.

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  2. I feel at peace now (sorta). Despite the abrupt ending and part of Dr. Wily's mugshot, I rented the game twice because it was fun! I'm glad I didn't buy it though; would have felt ripped-off/betrayed.

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  3. @Krazy Monkey I don't think MM3 is incomplete, it's complete as far as I know of, with a few unused stuff of course, and even if you people DO think MM3 was unfinished, there's an entire article at Mechanical Maniacs about unused content, as well as beta content: http://themechanicalmaniacs.com/articles/mm3mysteries.php

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  4. The soundtrack on this game is god like.

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  5. Wily is not 100% unplayable, he is one of the players in Elec Man's and Dust Man's teams from League Mode. That's the only way to play as him without cheats.

    Interesting stuff through. Imagine how would be a new Mega Man Soccer game a la Mario Strikers?

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  6. @D-Proto: I have to agree with you. Some of the tracks in the game are really good! Thank goodness for SPC files...

    Thanks Protodude for bringing this up. The credits thing always bothered me. There is something else that I remembered when the game first came out. Back when I had a subscription to Nintendo Power, they did a small review of the game. One of the screenshots that was featured is actually different from the final release of the game (can I even call it final?)

    http://i54.tinypic.com/208bo2b.jpg

    In the screenshot, Mega Field and Proto Field are localized properly while in the final version, they left the Japanese names.

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  7. I agree with D-Proto. At least we got some rockin' tracks from it.

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  8. Pretty crazy to have been featured here -- I took a look at our stats and noticed a huge jump yesterday, so it was quite the pleasant surprise :)

    Glad you found it interesting, and remember, there's a whole bunch more Mega Man early stuff to browse through.

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  9. So,off-topic but what ever happened with that OSS English patch?

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  10. The patcher is VERY busy IRL. Work will begin soon.

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  11. http://www.gonintendo.com/?mode=viewstory&id=158607

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