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Proto:Ni no Kuni (Nintendo DS)

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This page details one or more prototype versions of Ni no Kuni (Nintendo DS).

So very stubbly.
This page is rather stubbly and could use some expansion.
Are you a bad enough dude to rescue this article?
Cacti speak Japanese.
...But what does it mean?
This game has text or audio that needs to be translated. If you are fluent with this language, please read our translation guidelines and then submit a translation!

This page is heavily indebted to GlitterBerri for her awesome work on the translated descriptions.

Level-5 Premium Platinum (TGS 2009 Demo)

For the Tokyo Game Show 2009, Level-5 presented a Nintendo DS demo containing extended demos of the then-upcoming Inazuma Eleven 2, Professor Layton 4 (as well as London Life, but as an unlockable), and Ninokuni. The demo has since been leaked and dumped as an unnumbered DS ROM release. It has many differences from the final, and the TGS 2010 demo later released.

The Ninokuni gameplay demo has a short textual introduction resuming the events leading to Oliver's arrival to Ninokuni. It covers the first dungeon (North Woods) and the first town (Goronail Kingdom). Upon finishing the castle guard side-quest, the demo cuts to a VA credit screen with a "Congratulations!" screen and some snapshots from the animated cutscenes, then resets.

NnK-DS2009-Title.png NnK-DS2009-Ending.png NnK-DS2009-TBC.png

To do:
Tutorial Option has very clear screenshots of the early options, and it details how they would work. Must look into that and translate it, and hack the game to unlock the locked tutorials.

Battle System

  • The demo uses random encounters, unlike in the final where you can view enemies on the field and avoid them (except in the sea). The encounter rate however is much lower than in the final, and the escape success rate is very high in the demo.
  • You can change your party members positions during battle, but you can put them anywhere you want, unlike in the final version where you are restricted to a 3×3 grid.
  • The battle menus are using only one line in the demo, and there are no options to sort spells by type. The buttons coloring is slightly different ("Escape" is brown instead of pink, for example). Your HP/MP numbers aren't shown, and the party member names are centered instead of aligned to the left.
  • Shizuku does not have any magic in the demo: He has a support magic in the final game.
  • The font used to write the spells used is different from the final.
  • The first boss doesn't have a HP bar like in the final, yet he still shows signs of exhaustion when brought to less than 1/4th of his HP. He doesn't disappear when he is defeated.
  • Neither Oliver nor Rucci have the Limit Break moves they have in the final.
  • When a party member is KOed during battle he is revived with 1 HP in the field like in Mother 3, unlike in the final where he remains incapacitated.
  • You can't get a Game Over in this demo, though the graphics for it are in the ROM. You return somehow fully healed where you were before starting the battle.


Elementary, my dear Cactus.
This needs some investigation.
Discuss ideas and findings on the talk page.
Specifically: Action Replay codes to hack the dragon flute item in your Key Item inventory, or a Walk Through Walls code for the overworld, to explore more of the overworld.
  • The Area Name showing when you enter it for the first name is written in black letters over a very nice graphic matching the theme of said area. Unfortunately the demo contains only the graphics for the areas available in the demo. The final DS game has instead the Area Name written in bold white characters without any other graphics.
    However, two unused area name graphics found in the final retain the older graphical style, and one of these ("basiruna") is even present in the TGS 2009 demo, with a duplicate version in an older tile format (Area name graphics are stored as 3D model textures).
  • There are only blue Crystals in the demo, that replenishes both your HP and MP, as opposed to the final using blue ones for MP and green ones for HP. The save point near the dungeon entrance isn't present in the demo, and the one before the boss battle only replenishes all HP and MP instead of saving (probably because this is a demo). Oddly enough, Astram Mirant grave in Goronail Town behaves as a save point in the demo, instead of triggering cutscenes and the rune drawing screen like in the final.
  • The overworld is drastically different from the one used in the final game, as well as the World Map, and how the ocean looks. To the east of Goronail are some cliffs and snowy mountains, unlike the final version which has instead a desert. There are other very noticeable differences, like abundant trees around Goronail and some unique landscape layouts. The final version kept the same enemies though, including a secret mini-boss.
  • Blue Crystals and signs are present, some in unreachable areas (needing the dragon to reach), while they are never used outside of dungeons in the final.
  • The different shops use different icons on the mini-map than in the final, matching the appearance unique to the Goronail town shops.
  • Moero Forest entrance is sealed in the demo, preventing further progress.
  • The "Gate" spell to return to Ichi no Kuni has been disabled in the demo.
TGS 2009 Final
Ni no Kuni proto Twf00.png Ni no Kuni final Wf000t.png
TGS 2009 Final
Ni no Kuni proto Tgr00.png Ni no Kuni final Gr010t.png

Out-of-Bounds Areas

The TGS 2009 demo has only the forest dungeon, the Basiruna plains area of the overworld, and parts of Goronail's kingdom city. The overworld is different from the final version and is more closed off, but extends beyond what's normally accessible. The encounters have a much higher rate and are invisible and unavoidable - this was addressed in the final version.


Main Menu

TGS 2009 Final
Item Pouch, Synthesis Pot, Bottle
Equipment, Nurture Basket, Connect
Quest Notes, Settings, Ability Lens
Never mind the silly monster names
Item Pouch, Synthesis Pot, Bottle
Equipment Link, Nurture Basket, Switch
Quest Notes, Teach Stone, Ability Lens
  • The upper screen is different. HP and MP are represented in obviously unfinished black bars, instead of green/blue ones. The levels are absent in the demo.
  • The options not unlocked yet in the Menu are in a darker shade in the demo, instead of being completely greyed out like in the final. Some of the icons have been redrawn. The save option is moved to the Teach stone sub-menu, but disabled, this being a demo, as well as the Settings menu.
  • The main menu in the demo keeps track of the stamps received for side-quests under the "Heroism" stat, as the demo lacks the stamp sub-screen under the Quest Notes. The demo does have a button under Quest Notes for displaying a world map (or a map of the current town) with the next destination, which was completely removed in the final since locations are already mentioned in the text.
  • Note that the option to change party members was "Connect" in the demo, which would be more fitting to the PS3 version where Oliver connects his soul and shares it along with HP and MP with the Imagen, unlike in the DS version (inluding this demo) where Oliver and Imagen are separate party members during battle, thus the more fitting "Switch" in the final version.
TGS 2009 Final
Fragments of Hearts
  • The Heart Fragment screen is very different from the final one. It has also a counter for each fragment to track how many of it you have, while in the final you could only collect a single one from each kind.
  • The tutorials have some early screenshots with the heart-shaped container fully assembled, and the Status screen keeping track of the heart fragments (unlike in the final) using some icons unused in the final game. Maybe collecting heart fragments for yourself was more important than simply borrowing them to give them to a person in need like in the final?
To do:
Translate what the text says.
TGS 2009 Final
NnK-DS2009-ItemMenu.png NnK-DS2009-KeyItemsMenu.png
Item Pouch
Important Items
  • The Item menu is very different. While it doesn't include Equipment like in the final, it does have a button to change to the plot-relevant items, themselves having another dedicated sub-menu in the Spell Menu.
  • The Magic Master item under the Key Item screen doesn't have the "Use" option available, like in the final.
TGS 2009 Final
Level (3) - Heroism Level (0)
Equipment (Nothing)
Heart Pieces
Cleared Quests(0)
Please select the character you wish to see.
Nnk-DSFinal-Status.png Never mind the English text, this is from an in-progress fan-translation
Elemental Weaknesses
Spells Learned: 14
Equipment Link: (4 entries)
Spell Subscreen:
Effect: Heals 1 ally.
Regular: Separate
Personal: Separate
Power: Small
  • The Status menu is different from the final. It doesn't include weaknesses or a spell list, and tapping one character doesn't open a sub-menu like in the final.
  • In the demo, the Status screen keeps track of a Heroism level (but only for Oliver), where the EXP points are what the stamps for completing quests are in the final. It also needs apparently 100 points for the next level, while the maximum possible amount of stamps in the final is 400. Maybe more quests were planned? In the demo, though, one of the Tutorials has a screenshot with the Heroism level being 22.
  • Hacking the demo so that you exceed the Heroism EXP level-up cap when you complete the next side-quest (by changing the address 0x0214440C) doesn't seem to change the Heroism Level though. Likewise, hacking the party member regular levels to 99 has the EXP text overflowing, suggesting this demo was made pretty early during development.
  • The demo lacks any info about the Imagen species, ID number, and elemental affinities which shows below his portrait in the final. The Equipment seems to be showing only for Oliver in the demo below the stats (themselves lacking any level-up info in the demo), and it was moved a bit to the left.
  • The demo doesn't keep track of elemental weaknesses, and for the Imagen, info about action slots and moves. The final, in turn, doesn't display the number of completed quests, coins, Heroism points, and heart fragments.
TGS 2009 Final
NnK-DS2009-StoneEncycl1.png NnK-DS2009-StoneEncycl2.png
Teaching Stone - All Settings
Teaching Stone Subscreen
Magic Master - Guide
Teaching Stone
What do you want to know?
Question List
Imagine Encyclopedia
Dungeon List
Adventure Checksheet
Moya Recipes
  • The Stone Encyclopedia sub-menu in the demo has aside from the greyed-out adventure log, and the Config Menu mentioned above, another sub-menu with the Stone Tutorials and a greyed-out option for viewing... an in-game version of the Magic Master!
  • The Sound Configuration menu has been moved under the Stone Encyclopedia sub-menu. It only has volume options, as opposed to the Save Deletion option, and another option in the final.
  • The Tutorial section has screenshots of the previous early screens.
To do:
Translate it since it is different from the final version, and unlock the inaccessible lessons to see if there is any differences from the final.

Spell Menu

TGS 2009 Final
NnK-DS2009-MagicMenu.png NnK-DS2009-MagicMaster.png
Draw Rune-Important Items
Learned Spells-Rune Book
TGS 2009-exclusive Rune Book screen
Draw Rune - Learned Spells

It has four options, as opposed to two (Rune Drawing, Spell List) in the final. The two extra options are for viewing the Key Item menu, and the Magic Master.

  • The Magic Master option opens an in-game version of it with all the spells available so far, like in the PS3 version, but not the final DS game.


  • The demo Spell List doesn't categorize the spells to healing, support and offensive spells like in the final. Some spells have been disabled to accommodate the demo purposes, like the Gate spell.
  • Only 11 spells are included in the demo (one of them is unused). Some of the spell runes are drawn in a very different manner than their final counterparts:
  • どく (Escape)
  • todo
  • The spells "Heart Cure" and "Heart Peace" for healing empty-shell persons, and the "Gate" spell, are not free in this demo, unlike in the final.


  • The Battle Victory and Quest Completed themes are slightly different from the final.
  • The Field music loops differently than in the final DS and PS3 versions, allowing the track to be heard in its entirety including the chords at the very end, like in the OST version of that track.
  • Most sound effects are different from their final counterparts. Drawing runes makes sound effects that were removed in the final game.


  • Many cutscenes have been altered to accommodate the demo purposes.
  • Pressing Start while playing animated FMV cutscenes skips them directly without asking for confirmation, like in the final.
  • Unlike the final, pressing Start doesn't skip the 3D cutscenes.
  • You can't pause either, unlike in the final.


  • The Quests are not numbered in the demo. Upon completing them, you should view the stamp screen in the final, but it's not present in the demo, instead telling you how many stamps you received in a message box.
  • The Adventure Log screen, the Genie Pot and the Imagen Raising options are not available in the demo, since the demo cuts off pretty early in the game.
To do:
Are they still there?
  • Items use different graphics from the final game.
  • The Astram font is not included in the internal files, yet the debug font is.
  • The copy-protection is absent in the demo, unlike the final release.
  • Most of the internal files for text and maps only cover the areas available in the demo, except those for the sea and the overworld and its map.
To do:
Add images from the final. In the other page, specify which files are from TGS 2009 and which are from TGS 2010.