Before and after: the games that changed during development

Team ICO’s enchanting adventure wasn’t always about a man, consumed by solitude and regret, murdering monsters. No, it used to be an enchanting adventure about several men, consumed by several times as much solitude and regret, murdering monsters. Below you'll see how the game originally known as Nico subtly evolved into one of PS2's most beloved titles.

The most respected survival horror game in history went through more transformations than William Birkin in Resi 2. It originally started life as a high flying, John Woo-esque action game. Considered too big a departure from previous games, the project eventually morphed into Devil May Cry.

Above: Early versions of the game maintained the series' locked camera views

After this, Capcom went in a similar direction to the Silent Hill games, with screens showing Leon fighting his way through misty surroundings and even a mysterious airship. This was again cut with Doctor Salvador savagery, and the company quietly canned this version.

Above: Old hook hand isn't exactly El Gigante, is he?

The final iteration of the game, before it turned into the over the shoulder scarefest we all know and love, featured Leon in a haunted house. We’re glad this version didn’t survive. As much as we love derivative haunted houses and shitty enemies who look like cast-offs from I Know What You Did Last Summer, we think we’ll stick with decapitating Los Illuminados.

Or ‘the game that used to be Dinosaur Planet before bizarrely having the Star Fox license pasted on top of it five minutes before going gold’. Originally set for the N64, Rare’s new IP was an adventure game in the mould of Zelda. After seeing the British developers’ designs for the leading characters, though, Miyamoto decided they looked so similar to Fox McCloud that the project should be changed to include our least favourite team of animal intergalactic pilots.

Above: The game’s original lead, Sabre, (top) was transformed into Fox

The newly named Star Fox Adventures shared many similarities with the original title; so much so, many fans complained the game’s universe felt completely out of synch with the Fox’s mythology. Sadly, for all those moaners, it would be Rare’s last game made exclusively on a Nintendo console. The company jumped in bed with Bill and his money-stuffed mattress in 2002, developing games only for the Xbox and 360 ever since.

Bungie’s first entry into their epic sci-fi FPS franchise had very little to do with headshots, plasma grenades or teabagging. No, it first started life as an RTS known as Blam! Sounding like something you’d associate with Adam West punching campy villains in Batman, the project had a short shelf-life.

The game soon made the transition from tactical top down fare to a third person shooter at E3 1999. This didn’t last long either and soon the game was an FPS and the rest is history.

June 15, 2009

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