Proto:Mega Man X3 (SNES)/August Prototypes
This page details one or more prototype versions of Mega Man X3 (SNES).
A Japanese prototype of Mega Man X3 was found by one C. Davis, rendered and fixed up by the good people at arduino.cc, and released by the Rockman Corner on November 11th, 2016. A second, earlier prototype was released over a year later on July 5th, 2018.
These Rockman X3 Sample Versions appear to be nearly-finished builds from around four months before the commercial release. Almost all stages and features are implemented in some form or another. However, it's pretty clear the game is not quite finished.
- The August 9th build was sent out to gaming publications -- this is the version of the game seen in the November 1995 issue of EGM² -- and has many debug features enabled by default.
- The August 23rd build is more of a mystery. The disabling of password-related features suggests it might have been used in demo kiosks. No debug features are enabled by default.
- 1 Sub-Pages
- 2 Debug Features
- 3 Unused Graphics
- 4 Weapons, Armor and Items
- 5 Zero
- 6 Miscellaneous Differences
- 7 Ending
| Game Start|
Not a lot of changes from the final, but some things of note.
| The Eight Mavericks|
The bulk of the game's changes.
| Vile, Bit, Byte, and Dr. Doppler|
Oh, and Sigma. Spoilers.
| Sprite Changes|
Old Maverick designs and such.
August 9th Prototype
At any time, hold 1P Select to temporarily freeze the game. You can also press 2P Start to freeze the game until 2P Start is pressed again.
Press and hold 2P Select to slow the game down to 1/3 speed.
Press 1P L Button + 1P R Button + 1P Start + 1P Select simultaneously to reset the game.
Hold the 2P B Button before the Capcom logo appears to disable music playback.
Hold the 1P L+R Buttons while selecting "Game Start" to skip the intro stage and go right to the stage select screen.
Hold the 1P L Button while selecting a stage to go to one of the end-game stages instead. The area you go to depends on what stage the cursor is on:
|Blast Hornet||Vile Stage|
|Blizzard Buffalo||Doppler Stage 1|
|Gravity Beetle||Doppler Stage 2 (No Vile)|
|Toxic Seahorse||Doppler Stage 3|
|Volt Catfish||Doppler Stage 4|
|Crush Crawfish||Doppler Stage 2 (Vile)|
Alternatively, hold one of the following 2P button combinations and select any stage to warp to the desired end-game area:
|2P R Button||Vile Stage|
|2P L Button||Doppler Stage 1|
|2P L Button + 2P R Button||Doppler Stage 2 (No Vile)|
|2P X Button||Doppler Stage 3|
|2P X Button + 2P R Button||Doppler Stage 4|
There's no way to get to Doppler Stage 2 (Vile) with this method. 2P X Button + 2P L Button just leads to the stage the cursor is on.
- Note that if you do go to Vile's stage using this select method, completing the stage and exiting through the teleporter will softlock the game as there is no returning map reference.
- Beating Vile's stage normally will sometimes lead you to the intro stage instead, but your Sub-Tanks and enhancement chips will be removed.
Hold 1P Down before warping in to give X every weapon (including the Item Tracer from X2), the full armor set, all four Ride Armor modules, the secret black enhancement chip, and the Z-Saber.
Hold 1P Up before warping in to play as Zero.
There are more debug controls at your disposal after warping in:
- 2P A Button + 2P Up/Down: Adds / removes lives (with appropriate sound effects!)
- 2P B Button + 2P Up/Down: Warps to the next / previous checkpoint in the stage.
- 2P X Button + 2P Up: Gives player all weapons.
- 2P L Button + 2P Up: Refills player's health as long as the two buttons are held.
- 2P R Button + 2P Up/Down: Changes the player's checkpoint without warping to it.
- 2P A Button + 2P X Button: Pressing simultaneously while holding any button on the D-Pad button toggles armor pieces:
- 2P Up: Leg Parts.
- 2P Down: Body Parts.
- 2P Left: Arm Parts.
- 2P Right: Head Parts.
- Doing this as Zero temporarily sets his tile mappings to X's, but performing any other action fixes this.
- 2P B Button + 2P Y Button: Pressing simultaneously toggles invincibility.
- 2P A Button + 2P B Button + 2P X Button + 2P Y Button: Pressing simultaneously kills player.
During play, press 2P Start to pause gameplay, then press 2P Start + 2P Select to activate a free-movement mode. Use the 2P D-Pad to move the player and press 2P Button A to exit free-movement mode.
August 23rd Prototype
Use Pro Action Replay codes 00887E01 + 00887FE1 to access an Object Viewer after the Capcom logo.
- 1P Up/Down: Selects current object animation ("SEQ NO.").
- 1P Left: Toggles vertical mirroring.
- 1P Right: Toggles horizontal mirroring.
- 1P A Button: Attempts to toggle the "CHR CODE" variable, but always seems to switch back to 00.
- 1P X Button: Increases the "SEQ NO." variable by 1 per frame.
- 1P Y Button: Increases the frame delay, or "CHR COUNT", by 1 per frame.
- 1P L / R Button: Decrements / Increments the current object ID, or "SET CODE".
- 1P Start: Loads the object with "SET CODE"'s ID.
- 2P D-Pad: Moves cursor.
- 2P Y Button: Increments the frame number, or "CHR CODE", once per press.
- 2P L / R Button: Decrements / Increments the object ID by 10, then loads that object.
A frame of Volt Catfish presumably getting energized by the bolt of lightning he strikes himself with.
August 9th Only
Overlay sprites for X's Third Armor are stored in the ROM at 0x1527D3 in the August 9th prototype. The palette for these sprites is loaded during the "You Get" screen, but the graphics are not.
The armor set sprites fit with the large graphic of X on the "You Get" screen in all versions of the game, except for the last graphic, which doesn't fit over X in any version of the game. Presumably, this is left over from before the developers decided to remove this feature. The leg armor parts also do not exist, which may point to this feature being scrapped to save on VRAM space.
An alternate border graphic for the "You Get" screen, stored at 0x1533C6 in the August 9th build. This might have been intended to border the spinning wireframe weapons.
A bunch of unused parts for Blizzard Buffalo where he is facing away from the screen. The presence of glowing horn effects seems to indicate this was part of an earlier animation for his charging attack.
An unused head for Sigma's normal form, which seems to have been intended for a weakness reaction or death sprite. In both prototypes and the final game, Sigma does not flinch when hit with his weakness, and when defeated, he just freezes in his standing pose. The design of this sprite appears to be the basis for the small Sigma Virus head outline seen in the ending sequence of the August builds.
Unused frames for Kaiser Sigma's mines. The mines have a green core in the August 9th prototype; it's possible that the mines' cores could have changed color when they got closer to X. These frames were deleted when Kaiser Sigma's missiles graphics were added to his tileset.
What appears to be graphics depicting an unused attack for Kaiser Sigma where he would shoot his arm out and grab X.
Weapons, Armor and Items
|August 9th build||Final|
- Light Capsules in the August 9th prototype don't play any music; rather, an unrelated sound effect is played instead. This is because the Light Capsule music is technically stored as a sound effect in the previous two games and in the final version. The game is still using the ID of the Light Capsule sound effect / track used in X2, which has been reassigned since.
Anyway, whoever programmed the music didn't get the memo, because they stored the Light Capsule track as a music sequence instead. Use Pro Action Replay code 0688F82A to play the track in Blast Hornet's stage.
- Normally, X can't change weapons while teleporting. However, in both prototypes, there's a one-frame window where the player can switch -- holding the L or R Buttons at the beginning of the stage works.
- In the previous two games, X was allowed to freely switch weapons with L or R while teleporting in. This was changed in X3 to prevent the weapon energy meter from overlapping the Head Part's radar map.
- There's a major oversight with ladders that appears only in the August 9th prototype. To make ladders work properly in the engine, the game temporarily disables collision with solid tiles when the player is climbing. Collision is restored when the player reaches the top or bottom of the ladder, jumps off the ladder, or is knocked off the ladder by an enemy.
- If the player uses a charged Gravity Well, Triad Thunder, or Ray Splasher while on a ladder, they'll come off the ladder but will not have their collision with solid tiles restored, which will inevitably lead to a pit death. Getting back on the ladder will fix this.
- In all versions of the game, there are certain blocks that are meant to be destroyed by the Ride Armors.
- In the August 9th build, these blocks can be destroyed by the Chimera and Kangaroo Ride Armors, but not the Hawk or Frog Ride Armors. The Tornado Fang can also destroy these blocks.
- In later versions, these blocks can be destroyed by any Ride Armor and the Tornado Fang will bounce off them.
- In both August builds, if Zero dies and X has obtained the Arm Parts, X will obtain the green charge level normally reserved for the Beam Saber. After shooting the two charge shots, the player will only be able to shoot uncharged X-Buster shots, will not be able to charge again, and will keep their green charging palette until they select a different weapon.
- The border of the weapons menu is different.
- In the August 9th build, every time the weapons menu is brought up, regardless of what weapon the player has equipped, the X-Buster will be highlighted. Selecting another weapon while on the menu will properly highlight that weapon, and selecting the X-Buster and moving off of it will properly clear its highlight.
- When using a Sub-Tank in the August prototypes, X's life bar / Sub-Tank won't fill up / drain on the menu. Luckily, this is just a graphical glitch; the Sub-Tanks still work.
- X and Zero keep their charging palette on the weapons menu in the August 9th prototype.
- The static animation is glitched in the August 9th prototype if the player has collected the Head and/or Body Parts. The game seems to be applying the same graphical offsets of X's portrait to the static picture. These glitched pictures will very slowly animate through a series of garbage frames before they either freeze or they get to a half-speed version of the normal static animation.
- Load a password with Head parts obtained via password screen, or use the Pro Action Replay code 7E1FCEFF, to enable the leftovers of the Item Tracer from Mega Man X2. The prototypes keep the item's name on the weapons menu, while the final version only has the graphic. Trying to use the Item Tracer will freeze the game.
- The icon for the Item Tracer's weapon energy uses the VRAM's "W" placeholder graphic, found in all of the SNES Mega Man X games, due to not having a specific graphic to load.
- Additionally, when quick weapon switching is used (L/R shoulder buttons), it will simply use whatever icon is currently loaded to that slot in VRAM.
- X's picture doesn't change color during the "You get" screen. Also, there is no demonstration of the weapon. The wireframe of the weapon is always white instead of a unique color like in the final version.
- In the August 9th build, the Parasitic Bomb, Acid Burst, Triad Thunder, Spinning Blade, and Ray Splasher weapons only display the top halves of their wireframe models.
- In the same build, the Frost Shield, Gravity Well, and Tornado Fang weapons either don't have models yet or have their pointers corrupted, so they display a gnarled mass of lines instead.
- X gets locked out of switching weapons with the trigger buttons every time you get a new armor upgrade. Pausing and unpausing fixes this.
: Boss room
: Bit/Byte room
: Sub-boss room
: Ride Armor platform
: Vile capsule
- The Head Parts' radar detects more than upgrades: it also marks Boss rooms, Bit/Byte rooms, Sub-boss rooms, Ride Armor platforms, and Vile capsules. It was likely changed because by the time you get the Head Parts, the player has to have gone through at least four stages (Tunnel Rhino, Blizzard Buffalo, Neon Tiger, Volt Catfish), and by that point, some of the information isn't really necessary.
- One advantage the final version has over the August samples is that once the Head Parts are obtained, the stage select lists exactly which upgrades are in which stage.
- The Arm Parts upgrade is glitched. If you fire a fully charged shot, X will remain in "charged status". You can continue to fire normal bullets, but you cannot charge. You have to switch to a weapon and then back to fix it. This is also fixed by obtaining the Z-Saber. This also doesn't seem to happen 100% of the time.
- The August 9th prototype doesn't have graphics for the Body Parts' Defense Shield, so it appears as a mass of black squares instead.
- The auto refill function of Head parts enhancement chip/Hyper chip is different; empty Sub-Tanks won't be refilled, unlike final.
- The charged Parasitic Bomb will keep playing the charging sound effect in the August prototypes. In the final game, the sound stops as soon as the crosshairs pop up.
- The charged Parasitic Bomb uses no weapon energy in either August version. In the final version, it uses up 1 bar of weapon energy for each hornet that hits its target.
- In the August 9th build, the player is able to keep the charged Parasitic Bomb active while in a Ride Armor.
- The charged Spinning Blade can only be swung up using the D-Pad. In the final, you can also swing it down.
- If the player swings the charged-up Spinning Blade and takes damage, the rope will disappear, but the Spinning Blade will reappear once X's invincibility frames start ticking.
Bug Hole / Gravity Well
- The charged Gravity Well interacts weirdly with certain enemies, like Helits. The Helit body will be properly destroyed, but the propeller will just hang slightly offscreen. The Gravity Well will be active until the player either scrolls the propellers offscreen or switches to another weapon from the weapons menu.
- When the charged Frost Shield shatters and starts crawling on the ground in the August prototypes, the player is allowed to shoot uncharged Frost Shields (loading the graphics for such into VRAM) almost immediately, glitching the charged-up Frost Shield if it's still on-screen. In the final game, the player can't shoot any more Frost Shields until the charged-up Frost Shield is destroyed.
- Likewise, if the charged Frost Shield is destroyed prematurely by air dashing, hitting a powerful-enough enemy, etc., the charged Frost Shield graphics remain in VRAM. This time, it's the uncharged Frost Shield that is graphically glitched.
- In the August 9th build, the charged Frost Shield doesn't yet have its special underwater "ice block" functionality. This makes the Kangaroo Ride Armor part impossible to reach without Frog Ride Armor, passwords or other alternate debug-related methods.
- The charged Tornado Fang isn't automatically created in the August 9th build; the player has to let go of the Shot button first. In later versions, it's automatically spawned once the player reaches maximum charge.
- The way the charged Tornado Fang expends energy is different in both August prototypes.
- In the August 9th build, the charged Tornado Fang only uses energy when it's first created. Keeping it out uses no energy.
- In the August 23rd build, the charged Tornado Fang takes away 1 bar of energy every 64 frames.
- In the final version, it uses 3 bars every 64 frames.
- Both prototypes have bugs related to using a charged Tornado Fang and then pausing the game:
- In the August 9th build, if the player is clinging to a wall with the charged Tornado Fang, pauses the game, and then selects any other weapon, they'll keep the ability to cling to walls without sliding. This was partially fixed in the August 23rd version, but the player will still be able to stick to the wall they were originally on when they paused until they either drop or jump off.
- X will constantly kick up dust while clinging to a wall in the final version. This seems to be a bug introduced when the above glitch was fixed.
- In the August 23rd prototype, if the player uses the charged Tornado Fang, switches to the weapons menu, then selects any other weapon, they'll be unable to use the charged Tornado Fang for the rest of the stage. Trying to use it again will give X either his normal or charged palette until they select another weapon.
- In the August 9th prototype, the game doesn't check how high X is on the wall, leading to odd situations where X appears to be drilling into thin air.
- If X is underwater and against a wall with the charged Tornado Fang, he'll slide down the wall instead of sticking to it. This was fixed in the final version.
- If the player tries to use the Hyper Charge while clinging to a wall, they'll shoot out a glitched X-Buster pellet (using the same graphic as the charging particles) instead. Trying to use it again will just shoot out a normal X Buster pellet. This lasts until the player changes weapons.
- In the August 9th prototype, X accidentally uses Zero's palette when charging the Z-Saber.
- This is not an instant-kill attack on bosses with invulnerability frames, like it is in the final. It instead does a flat 4 damage.
- Similarly, a direct hit using the Z-Saber with X seems unable to do more than 4 damage to most bosses. In the final, it does a whopping 16 damage to most bosses.
- X's Z-Saber beam surrounds normal enemies as it does to the bosses. In the final game, the saber goes straight through normal enemies and destroys them.
- X's Z-Saber energy wave only does 2 damage to most bosses, rather than continual damage. It sometimes immobilizes certain bosses as well.
- In the August 9th build, if the Z-Saber projectile hits an invincible object, it will continuously make impact sparks until it leaves the screen. This may cause a graphical glitch during the Kaiser Sigma fight; if there are too many Magnet Mines on-screen and the player shoots the Z-Saber's projectile at them, the impact sparks will constantly refresh, causing X to disappear. Later builds fixed this problem.
- In the August 9th build, the Ride Armor platform graphics become partially corrupted after a Ride Armor is spawned.
|August 9th Build||Final|
- The back of the Chimera and Kangaroo Ride Armors have layering issues in the August 9th prototype (check the arm sprite on the left).
- In the August 9th build, punching in the Chimera / Kangaroo Ride Armors while jumping resets X's vertical momentum.
- In both of the August prototypes, if the player jumps and times a punch such that the animation ends at the peak of the Ride Armor's jump, they'll be able to jump again. This can be done an infinite number of times.
- In the August 9th prototype, if the player charges and releases the Kangaroo Ride Armor's fist and then quickly jumps out, the fist will remain on-screen until its animation cycle ends.
- Collecting a Heart Tank while in a Ride Armor (easiest to do in Blizzard Buffalo's stage) will briefly make the Ride Armor disappear. This was fixed in later builds by disabling collision with the Heart Tank while using a Ride Armor.
August 9th Only
- Zero can use the Ride Armor platforms in this build! Since the game doesn't have any sprites for Zero in a Ride Armor, the player will end up looking like X with Zero's palette. Jumping out of the Ride Armor acts normally, but the life bar will have X's icon instead of Zero's icon, and Zero can't get back in the Ride Armor.
- The player is able to switch characters while in a Ride Armor. Zero will get stuck in his falling animation and will be able to shoot Z-Buster shots while controlling the Ride Armor as normal. Switching back to X doesn't fix this bug, but jumping out as either character does.
- When the player reaches and activates a Light Capsule as X, they're able to switch to Zero as long as they pause before Dr. Light's text box pops up. Zero is able to walk around while Dr. Light is yammering on about whatever.
- If Zero approaches the capsule, is close enough to activate it, and the player switches to X, the capsule will activate but X and the health bar will be invisible. Taking damage will fix X's invisibility, while entering and exiting the pause menu will fix the health bar situation.
|August 9th Build||Final|
- Zero is missing from his own "death" cutscene in this prototype.
- If X has the head upgrade and the player has warped into a stage as Zero (by holding up on the D-Pad while warping in), Zero will project the stage map from an empty space in front of his forehead.
- After the player has warped in as Zero from the start of the stage, when the player reaches a spot where the game would normally switch back to X, X will warp in with zero HP. The player will be unable to move, and the screen will eventually fade to black. This counts as a death, and subtracts a life!
- Switching to Zero will not remove X-Buster shots from the screen. The same is true when switching from Zero to X.
- A slight glitch exists with the Z-Saber: if the player fires Zero's second-level charged shot, quickly does two or more short hops, then mashes the shoot button when Zero lands, the charge will be lost, but Zero will keep his "glowing" palette animation. The final version fixes this (sorta) by resetting Zero's palette back to normal.
- Zero's death lacks sound effects.
- Unlike the final, Zero can collect Sub-Tanks and Heart Tanks. When Zero collects a Heart Tank, his max HP actually increases! X will also receive the upgrade when you switch back to him. Unfortunately, the upgrade to Zero's max HP is not permanent, although it will last until you switch back to X.
- Zero can enter the Vile stage teleporters. Entering the teleporters as Zero will predictably teleport you to the Vile stage. You will enter the Vile stage as X, and for an instant you'll have a much larger HP meter. This was fixed in the final, where Zero cannot activate the Vile stage teleporters.
When playing as Zero in the August 9th build, firing a charged shot will cancel all of his Buster-related sound effects. This will fix itself after a bit, though.
- There are no password screens after beating the bosses in the August 23rd build.
- If X or Zero are hit by an attack that does 6 damage or more, they will take a knee and be stunned for about 3.77 seconds (or 226 frames). Some bosses, like Gravity Beetle or Blizzard Buffalo, will pause their assault and let X/Zero recover, should this happen during battle with them.
- If X or Zero dash on the ground then immediately turn around, they will immediately revert to a standing position, unlike in the final.
- There's no ending sequence in the August 9th build, but there is one in the August 23rd prototype, though it can't be reached through normal means. Use the Pro Action Replay code 7E00D106 and start a new game to see it.
- The buildings in the prototype look very different, more like a city than a scientific laboratory. Did X destroy Dopple Town?! The mountains in the background are also drawn differently than in the final version. The sun has been added in the background behind the mountains, with sunbeams scattering around.
(Note that X uses his walking animation as a side effect of the way this code works. It is not an actual difference.)
- The cliff where Zero and X stand during the final game is nowhere to be seen; instead, a blue strip fills the bottom of the scene. The cast roll music plays during this scene, even though the epilogue track is already in the ROM.
- What would be the Cast Roll in the final version lasts about five seconds in this one and shows a whole lot of nothing.
- The "Thanks for Playing" screen plays the "You Get" music from when you obtain a new weapon. In the final version, this screen simply keeps playing the Cast Roll music.