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#1
Unreleased Virtual Boy Games That Made It Far Into Development
Posted on: 2013/3/25 19:29
PVB Elite
Joined 2011/4/27
USA
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Here is my current list of unreleased Virtual Boy games, concerning which there is good and easily accessible evidence that indicates that each game either made it very far along in its development process and/or that there is a known prototype cart in existence, and some of these games may have even been 100% finished:

1. Dragon Hopper
2. Mansion of Insmouse (North American Version)
3. Polygo Block
4. Virtual Block
5. Virtual Bomberman
6. Virtual Double Yakuman
7. Virtual Fishing (North American Version)
8. Virtual Jockey
9. Zero Racers

It is my hope that new information will be found over time, which will add some of the other known unreleased Virtual Boy games, or even a completely hitherto unheard-of game, to this list. Right now, I am pretty sure that I have a new game that I would like to add, but I have some questions about it. The one that I think strongly deserves to be added to this list is "Virtual League Baseball 2." The reason why I think it deserves to be added to the list is because it was officially rated by the ESRB. I made an image of its rating, along with images of the ratings that "Bound High," "Dragon Hopper," and "G-Zero" (aka "Zero Racers") received, all of which were taken straight from the ESRB's website.

Now, according to the data on this website, it has already been known that the ESRB rated Virtual League Baseball 2, and yet the details for it underneath "Prototype:" say "Does not exist"

Now, as far as I know, a game had to be very near completion, if not fully completed, in order for a game developer to send it to the ESRB for rating, because if any significant changes were then made to the game by the time of its release, the developer would either have to spend more time and money to get it rated all over again or else get fined if any new changes resulted in the ESRB's rating being inaccurate.

Thus, my question is: should there be good reason to think that an almost complete or fully complete prototype cartridge of "Virtual League Baseball 2" would have had to exist, or could have easily been made by flashing what they had to a cartridge, in order for the ESRB to create a rating for the game, or is there something that I am missing here?

Attach file:



png  Bound High Rated by ESRB.PNG (19.64 KB)
1643_51509611d362b.png 650X400 px

png  Dragon Hopper Rated by ESRB.PNG (19.57 KB)
1643_5150962443245.png 650X400 px

png  G-Zero Rated by ESRB.PNG (19.19 KB)
1643_515096311f5f6.png 650X400 px

png  Virtual League Baseball 2 Rated by ESRB.PNG (20.16 KB)
1643_5150963e95caf.png 650X400 px
Edited by Benjamin Stevens on 2013/3/25 20:15
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#2
Re: Unreleased Virtual Boy Games That Made It Far Into Development
Posted on: 2013/3/26 10:50
Virtual Freak
Joined 2012/7/7
USA
57 Posts
10+ Game RatingsLong Time User (7 Years)
It's a safe assumption that a fairly completely prototype exists if the game has an ESRB rating.
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#3
Re: Unreleased Virtual Boy Games That Made It Far Into Development
Posted on: 2013/3/26 17:19
PVB Elite
Joined 2011/4/27
USA
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Yeah, I strongly believe that you are right. According to the current information on the ESRB's website pertaining to the ESRB's ratings process, for any video game that is going to get a physical release,

"the publisher must provide two key forms of content disclosure as their game is being finalized:
a completed ESRB online questionnaire detailing the game's pertinent content, which essentially translates to anything that may factor into the game's rating. This includes not only the content itself (violence, sexual content, language, controlled substances, gambling, etc.), but other relevant factors such as context, reward systems and the degree of player control; and
a DVD that captures all pertinent content, including typical gameplay, missions, and cutscenes, along with the most extreme instances of content across all relevant categories. Pertinent content that is not playable (i.e., "locked out") but will exist in the game code on the final game disc must also be disclosed."

Even if the specifics may have changed a bit since 1996, I have a feeling that a publisher would have had to have provided videos of gameplay, and as far as I know, the only way that Virtual Boy developers could create videos of their games in action would be to put a game on a cartridge and either play it on a Video Boy and make recordings from there or play it on a Virtual Boy and make a video of it. In either case, the near finished game would have been flashed to a cartridge. Thus, list updated:

1. Dragon Hopper
2. Mansion of Insmouse (North American Version)
3. Polygo Block
4. Virtual Block
5. Virtual Bomberman
6. Virtual Double Yakuman
7. Virtual Fishing (North American Version)
8. Virtual Jockey
9. Virtual League Baseball 2
10. Zero Racers
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#4
Re: Unreleased Virtual Boy Games That Made It Far Into Development
Posted on: 2013/3/27 5:39
Nintendoid!
Joined 2012/10/16
207 Posts
Long Time User (7 Years)
Not that this helps, but I actually emailed the company that was supposed to originally have created Dragon Hopper in hopes of getting some kind of response, information or anything like that. The company, Intelligent Systems emailed me back, saying "officially" that due to various reasons, the company has no information to give out. "Unofficially" the clerk or helpdesk technician, or whatever he/she was, said that they do have areas in which old or beta games are stored, but she/he were unable to validate anything. That due to the age of the time period I emailed about, not many people are left or stayed with the company in a development perspective.

I know this doesn't help, but I thought I'd show you my "Eagle Scout" try.

thanks
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#5
Re: Unreleased Virtual Boy Games That Made It Far Into Development
Posted on: 2013/3/28 5:20
Nintendoid!
Joined 2012/10/16
207 Posts
Long Time User (7 Years)
I just realized that I posted about this before lol
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#6
Re: Unreleased Virtual Boy Games That Made It Far Into Development
Posted on: 2013/3/28 6:29
Nintendoid!
Joined 2013/1/22
USA
198 Posts
Long Time User (7 Years)
Quote:

Benjamin Stevens wrote:
Yeah, I strongly believe that you are right. According to the current information on the ESRB's website pertaining to the ESRB's ratings process, for any video game that is going to get a physical release,

"the publisher must provide two key forms of content disclosure as their game is being finalized:
a completed ESRB online questionnaire detailing the game's pertinent content, which essentially translates to anything that may factor into the game's rating. This includes not only the content itself (violence, sexual content, language, controlled substances, gambling, etc.), but other relevant factors such as context, reward systems and the degree of player control; and
a DVD that captures all pertinent content, including typical gameplay, missions, and cutscenes, along with the most extreme instances of content across all relevant categories. Pertinent content that is not playable (i.e., "locked out") but will exist in the game code on the final game disc must also be disclosed."

Even if the specifics may have changed a bit since 1996, I have a feeling that a publisher would have had to have provided videos of gameplay, and as far as I know, the only way that Virtual Boy developers could create videos of their games in action would be to put a game on a cartridge and either play it on a Video Boy and make recordings from there or play it on a Virtual Boy and make a video of it. In either case, the near finished game would have been flashed to a cartridge. Thus, list updated:

1. Dragon Hopper
2. Mansion of Insmouse (North American Version)
3. Polygo Block
4. Virtual Block
5. Virtual Bomberman
6. Virtual Double Yakuman
7. Virtual Fishing (North American Version)
8. Virtual Jockey
9. Virtual League Baseball 2
10. Zero Racers
What does ESRB do with the carts after reviewing the games? I think I'll write to them and express my anger at their failure to return the cart(s) to ME, Nintendo manager (insert credible name) --- please return all Virtual Boy prototypes immediately to (insert personal address)....


PS --- since there is a screenshot from "Goldeneye" (from their brochure), it's likely some sort of cart existed for that...
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#7
Re: Unreleased Virtual Boy Games That Made It Far Into Development
Posted on: 2013/3/28 17:02
PVB Elite
Joined 2011/4/27
USA
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Quote:

vb-fan wrote:
PS --- since there is a screenshot from "Goldeneye" (from their brochure), it's likely some sort of cart existed for that...


While it is indeed true that a cart could have been used to create that screenshot, it is also very possible that not much coding was done for the game, in order for that screenshot to be made. It's possible that the cart simply contained a few-seconds long, unplayable demo of one unfinalized level of the game, which is why I hesitate to put it on the list. Other possible games such as the Star Fox demo, the Racing game, VB Mario Land, and some others were likely put on cartridges to get the known videos of them, but the actual development work on the games may have been very little, and playable versions of the games may not exist at all.

For all of the games on my list, there is accessible evidence that indicates or suggests that all of these games were at least over half-way done in their development and that likely playable versions of the games are out there somewhere.
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