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Proto:Resident Evil 2 (PlayStation)/November 5, 1996 Prototype

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This is a sub-page of Proto:Resident Evil 2 (PlayStation).

Hmmm...
To do:
This game has a special development story. So to treat it as such:
  • We need dates and names from files so we can chronologize when, say, backgrounds were rendered.
  • Room numbers for areas, some were reused for the final RE2 after all.
  • ...and a whole lot more.
BIO1.5 Title Screen.png

Resident Evil 1.5 was dubbed by producer Shinji Mikami as a failed attempt at creating Resident Evil 2, representing Hideki Kamiya's own then-immature directorial experience and the development team's arduous struggles correcting the game's scenario oversights, prosaic settings, maps, gameplay, etc.. All of which resulted, in their own opinions, a less-than-stellar game. The bold solution was to scrap all of what was done and start over. Completely.

The procurement of this build itself has a long and convoluted story. Essentially, it originated from a rogue collector in 2007, who obtained it from an estate sale of a deceased Capcom employee. After an unruly mess of the community organizing and gathering funds to obtain the prototype from said collector years later... they sat on it(!). But it was eventually initially "leaked" to the public in 2013 through treachery amongst the fan-mod group Team IGAS, who began a "restoration project" of 1.5 to restore the game as an envisioned final product, using actual assets and code from the very same alleged build owned by the collector earlier. That leaked binary came out as a WIP build of that fan project. The team later released the actual untouched build as a response to the breach. Yeeeeeeeeeah.

Dated November 5, 1996, made a year and two months prior to its final January 21, 1998 release, this prototype shows how disparate it is from the final version, let alone the rest of the later prototypes and provides many playable areas for the player to explore. Some of which made to the final release. Wholesale, in fact. Note that this page investigates the actual development code and not the aforementioned IGAS fan restoration project still (supposedly) in development.

Load/Save Screens

RE1.5 NOV0596 -Load-Screen.png

RE1.5 NOV0596 -Load-Screen-2.png

You can tell the Load/Save section simply exists in this build to make it seem more functional than it is. The real interesting detail here is that the section uses the international Resident Evil 2 provisional logo screen for its background.

Character Select Menu

Character Selection Screen
RE1.5-NOV0596-CHARACTER SELECT LEON.pngRE1.5-NOV0596-CHARACTER SELECT ELZA.png

We're not even going to discuss how fundamentally different this Character Select screen is from the final -- there isn't any in the actual game. But this menu had a few of its own rough drafts within the DATA directory and each have their own names and dates even, oddly enough. What's actually seen on the select screen appears to display a mix of graphics from SELECT.TIM (PLEASE SELECT MAIN CAST) and SELECT3.TIM (the first letter of both the main characters' first names being emphasized by their signature colors).

Debug Menu

RE1.5-NOV0596-Debug-Menu.png

RE1.5-NOV0596-Debug-Mode-Memory-Viewer.png

Out of the three categories provided by the prototype's DEBUG MENU, UTILITY MENU presumably gave developers the options to utilize (duh) whatever development tools they had to test out the game's functions (likely in real-time), JUMP handily grants the player to warp into any room in the game they wish regardless of scenario, and finally MEMORY VIEWER provides a chart of how much memory and resources are being used in real-time.

Inventory Screen

RE1.5-NOV0596-Inventory-Screen.png

The prototype bore a completely different presentation for the inventory sub-screen compared to the final version. The design and arrangement of the menus appeared inspired by the first game's sub-screen, particularly the electrocardiography (ECG.) condition tab and Chris Redfield's sub-screen portrait seen on Leon S. Kennedy's ID, which is obviously a reused graphic from said predecessor.

Unique to this build was the ability to simply switch to MAP and FILE screens on the fly with the press of the L1 and R1 buttons similar to Mega Man Legends [1], but does not seem fully operational at all.

Soundtrack

Composer Masami Ueda remarked about having to reuse most of the tracks he composed for the prototype onto the final version of Resident Evil 2. How much exactly is not certain, but the following are tracks that were never heard before prior to the prototype leak in early 2013.

Exclusive to Resident Evil 1.5

Filename Description Last Modified Audio Notes
SUB_00.BGM R.P.D. Intro October 30th, 1996 08:44
Used standalone on promotional videos. In this build it's intended to be mixed with "R.P.D. Track #2" in the introductory cutscene of each scenario.
MAIN01.BGM R.P.D. Track #2 October 30th, 1996 08:43
Used standalone as a background on promotional videos for Leon's intro that come from a later stage of production than this build with proper voice lines. In this build it's mixed in the introductory cutscene of each scenario with "R.P.D. Intro".
MAIN01.BGM + SUB_00.BGM R.P.D. Track #2 + R.P.D. Intro -
This build seems to play simultaneously "R.P.D. Intro" and "R.P.D. #2" in the introductory cutscene upon reaching the Lobby area. It will not combine the tracks once it reaches a loop point and instead it will just play "R.P.D. #2" alone. If you leave the area and return to the Lobby the combined mix will be played again even though judging from the game's file structure it's very unlikely this was it's intended behavior.
MAIN02.BGM Sewer Track October 30th, 1996 08:43
Used while being in the sewer. The track contains a subchannel with water effects which is muted on this preview file.
MAIN05.BGM Unknown Track #1 October 30th, 1996 08:44
Not playing anywhere. It is speculated to be the 3rd Factory Track that would play during Marvin's playable part or possibly another Laboratory track.
MAIN0F.BGM Factory Track #2 October 30th, 1996 08:44
Used while in the "CORRIDOR (309)" area. For some reason it's lacking loop points.
MAIN13.BGM Unknown Track #2 October 24th, 1996 15:12
Not playing anywhere. Most probably is a Save Room theme, a cutscene or some area with no enemies.
MAIN14.BGM Laboratory Track #2 October 30th, 1996 08:44
Used in multiple laboratory areas.
MAIN15.BGM R.P.D. Track #3 October 30th, 1996 08:44
Used in the "OUTDOOR B" area.
MAIN16.BGM Gorilla Boss Track October 30th, 1996 08:44
Used during the gorilla boss fight in the parking lot.

Tracks modified on the retail version

Filename Description Last Modified Proto Audio Retail Audio Notes
MAIN0B.BGM Birkin Battle October 30th, 1996 08:44
The 1st Malformation Of G
The 3rd Malformation Of G
Used during the battle with the malformed William Birkin. It's a rather early version of what evolved to become "The 1st Malformation Of G" and "The 3rd Malformation Of G", again, serving as themes for the malformed William Birkin boss battles.
MAIN12.BGM Laboratory Track #1 October 30th, 1996 08:44
Used near the entrance of the Laboratory on the prototype. The updated version serves a similar function/location to the final. Interestingly, except from the slight production changes, the retail version seems to be faster. Unfortunately, the title of the retail version of the track is unknown since it's not included with any soundtrack release of the game by Capcom or any other known related artist.

Tracks repurposed with no modifications

Proto Filename Proto Description Proto Last Modified Final Track Title Notes
MAIN00.BGM R.P.D. Track #1 October 30th, 1996 08:43 The Marshalling Yard (The First Half) Repurposed for the 1st Half of The Marshalling Yard.
MAIN04.BGM Factory Track #1 October 30th, 1996 08:43 The Marshalling Yard (The Second Half) Repurposed for the 2nd Half of The Marshalling Yard.
MAIN06.BGM Laboratory Track #4 October 30th, 1996 08:43 The Underground Laboratory Used on the experiment room in the prototype. Repurposed as a Laboratory track. Interestingly, the same exact Experiment Room is present in the final game but it's not playing this track!
MAIN07.BGM Laboratory Track #6 October 30th, 1996 08:43 Fearful is no Word for it Repurposed for the 4th survivor mode and Tofu
MAIN09.BGM Laboratory Track #3 October 30th, 1996 08:44 Wreckage of the Mad Experiment Repurposed as a theme for the Secret Laboratory Room.
MAIN0E.BGM Laboratory Track #5 October 30th, 1996 08:44 Maximize Your Survival Instinct Repurposed for the 4th survivor mode

Rooms

What can be said? EVERYTHING. Well, almost everything. All individual rooms will be named after their internal names as seen in the JUMP function of the DEBUG MENU.

Note that the background images of presumably a majority of the latter half of 1.5 rooms made it to the preview versions of the final game, although they are unused and the rest of the rooms' data did not make it. Some of the backgrounds look similar to this version, but many are in a more advanced and detailed state which, among other things, such as the rendering dates on the background .BBS files, tells us that development of Resident Evil 1.5 ended at least one month after this build was compiled. The mere presence some of the assets in said later preview versions implies they were being considered for reuse after production restarted.

Police Station

Likely the most infamous, well-known place of 1.5, this prototype's version of the station is far more dreary, darker, compact, and down-to-earth than the final Resident Evil 2`s take on the more eccentric art-museum-turned RPD. Instead of a stretched-out map that has the player traverse across both wings of the RPD in the final, 1.5`s has no wings and thus smaller in proximity, leaving the player not much to explore.

RE1.5-NOV0596-Police-Station-1F-Overview-Map.pngRE1.5-NOV0596-Police-Station-B2-Overview-Map.png

RYUUCHI SYO (Room 121)

The concept of encountering an NPC in the cells in a basement floor underneath the police station was present in this incarnation.

RE1.5-NOV0596-121-Ryuuchi-Syo-1.png

SHOCHO IRONS

RE1.5-NOV0596-Shocho-Irons-1.pngRE1.5-NOV0596-Shocho-Irons-2.pngRE1.5-NOV0596-Shocho-Irons-3.png

Although his conceptual design was done at this point in time, Chief Irons uses Leon's model as a placeholder in this prototype.

Drains

The basic story concept of escaping the Police Station through the sewers was the same in 1.5, but that's about it.

RE1.5-NOV0596-Drains-B2-Overview-Map.png

The sewers, named the "Drains" here, was reportedly the area the team had supposedly struggled with the most.

Factory

Bares no resemblance to the chemical factory in the final release. Period. This part of the game is perhaps the most telling of the quality concerns that the development had with 1.5. The entire map looks like 3/4 of a whole box divided into smaller, stacked boxes.

RE1.5-NOV0596-Factory-Overview-Map.png

Laboratory

The Umbrella Laboratory was quite massive in size in 1.5, but about a majority of it all was carried over to the final Resident Evil 2, with certain few rooms being identical. As such, the locales in this prototype from this point forward starts to resemble more of the final game's. Across four basement floors, there many, many rooms in wildly varying states of completion, many of which were scrapped entirely, but are playable.

RE1.5-NOV0596-Laboratory-B1-Overview-Map.pngRE1.5-NOV0596-Laboratory-B2-Overview-Map.pngRE1.5-NOV0596-Laboratory-B3-Overview-Map.pngRE1.5-NOV0596-Laboratory-B4-Overview-Map.png

JIKKENSHITSU (Room 409)

November 5, 1996 prototype (internal .BSS file dated ‎October ‎24, ‎1996)
RE1.5-NOV0596-409-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (1).bmpRE1.5-NOV0596-409-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (2).bmpRE1.5-NOV0596-409-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (3).bmpRE1.5-NOV0596-409-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (4).bmp
Trial Edition (internal .BSS file dated ‎November ‎7, ‎1996) to Final
BIO2TRIAL-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (1).bmpBIO2TRIAL-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (2).bmpBIO2TRIAL-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (3).bmpBIO2TRIAL-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (4).bmpBIO2TRIAL-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (7).bmp

One of the very few areas — and background slides, in fact — retained wholesale for the final Resident Evil 2 (!). The room's final ID# becomes ROOM 60D.

BIO2TRIAL-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (6).bmp

This card-reader control panel didn't make it to the November 5, 1996 build. But this slide inside the .BBS file (the file type that the bitmap backgrounds are assigned as in the game) surfaced in the Trial Edition and was rendered just two days later.

Trial Edition (internal .BSS file dated ‎November ‎7, ‎1996)
BIO2TRIAL-JIKKENSHITSU (RENDER) (5).bmp
Final
RE2-JIKKENSHITSU (5).bmpRE2-JIKKENSHITSU (6).bmp

The background render for the Fuse Case "puzzle" appears mostly the same except for a little more haze seen in the area behind where the mechanical arm would be, and the lid appears to protrude further from the base of where said arm would rest on.

Subway

This, what can be seen anyhow, was also more or less carried over to the final version with some minor adjustments to walls and misc.

Eat Fresh!

Only two whole rooms are playable, the subway operator's cab and the passenger area. You don't get to fight any G monsters or Jared Fogle here either.

UNTENSHITSU (Room 603)

RE1.5-NOV0596-603-UNTENSHITSU.png

The Operator's Cab. Elza's model here is likely used as a placeholder for Annette, if certain information is to be believed [2].

Items

Hand Grenades

RE2Grenade.png

These only exist in this prototype version, seeing the early design of the avatar itself. Leon would be able to use these, in response to Elza having the Grenade Launcher. It is unknown if there were actually two other versions of the grenades that match the grenade rounds for the Grenade Launcher.

Unused Enemy Animations and Models

Potential Explosion Death

These were found within the animation data for the zombies. They show a zombie flying and slamming into a wall, seemingly depicted in a manner of a explosion-related death or are pushed onto a wall. They're unique as they have both a forward and back-facing variant.

"shitai"

RE1.5-NOV0596-SHITAI.md1.png

Within the game's EMD files is a subfile listed under "shitai," which is Japanese for "corpse". They are present during gameplay with corrupt textures. Depending on the location, the corpses will display using a random zombie texture or the textures of the shutters found within the RPD. It's not exactly known what the intended implementation was, but based on gameplay, if you quickly re-enter a building that previously had zombies within it and you had already killed them, this model would take its place instead of the regular downed zombie corpse as a performance-cutting measure. Also noted is the "decayed" look it has; its textures share a resemblance to the Cerberus texture with some slight alterations and the addition of a blood pool that would constantly display from underneath the model; however, this is only seen within the texture and not in game. Below is the model that would be seen with the correct texture attached.