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:
= STAFF =
(PROGRAM SURPORT) KOBA
...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!