List of nonexistent games

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The following is a list of games that were either misreported, misidentified, or completely made up.

Atari 2600[edit | edit source]

Pitfall III: Harriet's Quest[edit | edit source]

Pitfall III: Harriet's Quest is a hoax sequel to Pitfall! planted in three Washington thrift stores by AtariAge member GrizzLee[1] during the late 90s.

Swordquest: Airworld (Flexured hoax)[edit | edit source]

In late 2002, an auction for a Swordquest: Airworld prototype was announced[2] by AtariAge user Flexured, and several screenshots were posted. Eventually, someone sent a link to the auction to Airworld programmer Tod Frye, who confirmed it to be a hoax.[3] After being notified of the prototype's illegitimacy, Flexured took down the auction, and claimed that he was unaware that the cartridge was fake.

Eventually, the screenshots were proven fake by AtariAge administrator Albert,[4] who cited inconsistencies between the images and the Atari 2600's resolution. Furthermore, one of Flexured's screenshots has a minor transparency error,[5] confirming that it was edited from an Earthworld screenshot.

In response to this, Flexured created another account, "finalize", which he used to defend the legitimacy of the Airworld prototype.[6] However, Flexured claimed that finalize was his coworker, who had the same IP as the result of a firewall. Eventually, Albert locked the thread, and Flexured was never heard from again.

Nintendo Entertainment System[edit | edit source]

Bio Force Ape (Paul Brown hoax)[edit | edit source]

On October 26, 2005, a Digital Press user, "Paul Brown", claimed to have obtained a Bio Force Ape prototype at a yard sale in Carson, California,[7] and posted several gameplay screenshots. As Paul posted more information on the game, several Digital Press users started asking Paul to dump the ROM, while others advised him not to, as it would decrease the value of the cartridge, which was supposedly worth over $2000.

Eventually, arguments broke out between collectors and preservationists, with the latter calling the former "buttery", and the former calling the latter "Communists". On October 30, Paul posted new screenshots, depicting a cutscene that directly referenced the arguments occurring in the thread.[8] However, few people noticed, and the arguments continued uninhibited.

Later that day, Paul posted a picture of the prototype cartridge smashed to pieces, explaining that he felt the need to destroy it due to "the anger that revealing this game's existence has caused".[9] On October 31, Paul finally revealed the entire thing to be a hoax,[10] and "Paul" turned out to be the Digital Press user Bratwurst.

The Legend of Zelda III: The Triforce Saga[edit | edit source]

On October 15, 2005, a mysterious Ebay seller (known only as Richard Vialoux) posted a listing for a supposed prototype of a third Zelda title for the NES.[12] To increase the game's legitimacy, the seller posted a photo of the game playing on an NES. On October 22, a user known only as "Knight 7" bought the game for almost $3000.[13]

Two days later, Richard contacted the gaming site Joystiq and claimed Knight 7 may have been connected to the now-defunct game company, Silicon Knights. As a result of this, the CEO and founder of Silicon Knights, Dennis Dyack, contacted Joystiq to inform them that Silicon Knights had nothing to do with the purchase.[14]

As the third Zelda game, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, was planned for the SNES in 1989 (a year before the copyright date on the Zelda III cart), this game is likely a hoax.

Magic Sword[edit | edit source]

A hint published in the July 1993 issue of SWAT Pro references an NES version of Magic Sword, though the screenshot clearly depicts the SNES version.

Mario Andretti's World GP[edit | edit source]

An erroneous report of the released game, Michael Andretti's World GP. Contrary to the description, the screenshot clearly reads "Michael Andretti".

Moto Roader[edit | edit source]

Reported for "Nintendo" by the magazine SWAT Pro, though the screenshot clearly depicts the TurboGraphx-16 version.

Steel Empire[edit | edit source]

Reported for the NES by the magazine GamePro, which later released a correction in July 1992 informing readers that it was actually for the Sega Genesis.[15]

Super Mario Collection[edit | edit source]

Reported for the NES by the magazine Electronic Gaming Monthly,[16] which also misnamed Super Mario Bros. 2 as Super Mario World 2. The screenshots, however, clearly show Super Mario All-Stars for the SNES.

Yeah Yeah Beebiss I (ItsJokerTime hoax)[edit | edit source]

On February 9, 2016, a user by the name of ItsJokerTime posted to NintendoAge's "Price Check" section about a Yeah Yeah Beebiss I prototype[17] given to him by his father. He eventually posted pictures of the cartridge, indicating that it was from the 1987 Consumer Electronics Show. However, when he tried to play the cartridge on his Retro Duo, the game displayed as a garbled wall of pixels.

The game was suspected to be a fake from the start, which was supported by the label looking new and undamaged despite the cartridge being old and discolored. This assumption was eventually proven due to the fact that, despite supposedly being from 1987, the game was on a three-screw cartridge, a design that did not exist until 1988.

Following requests to open the cartridge and take pictures of the board itself, ItsJokerTime ordered a 3.8mm screwdriver bit, which is necessary to open cartridges using security screws. However, after several weeks, the bit never arrived, and ItsJokerTime ceased posting to the thread.

Super Nintendo Entertainment System[edit | edit source]

Super Mario FX[edit | edit source]

Allegedly, Nintendo had originally planned Super Mario 64 for the SNES, using the Super FX chip to simulate 3D graphics. However, this was likely a misunderstanding of a statement made by Shiguru Miyamoto during an interview, in which he stated that he had the idea of making a 3D Mario game during Star Fox's development. Additionally, Dylan Cuthbert, who contributed to the development of the Super FX, explained that "Super Mario FX" was actually the codename for the Super FX itself.[18]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. AtariAge. Retrieved June 11, 2016.
  2. AtariAge. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  3. AtariAge. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  4. AtariAge. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  5. AtariAge. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  6. AtariAge. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  7. Digital Press. Recovered June 10, 2016.
  8. Digital Press. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  9. Digital Press. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  10. Digital Press. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  11. Digital Press. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  12. Joystiq. Retrieved March 21, 2016.
  13. Joystiq. Retrieved March 21, 2016.
  14. Engadget. Retrieved March 21, 2016.
  15. "Don't go rushing to an NES shelf to find Steel Empire. Although we listed it as an NES game, it is built for Genesis." GamePro, July 1992[page number needed].
  16. "Due out in July for the 8-bit Nintendo is Super Mario Collection from, you guessed it, Nintendo! Even though the big 'N' didn't have to spend any coin for this new cart, you do get to see the original Japanese Super Mario World 2 for the first time (it features more adventures set up like the first)." Electronic Gaming Monthly, issue 47 (page 52).
  17. NintendoAge. Retrieved March 21, 2016.
  18. SNES Central. Retrieved March 21, 2016.