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Proto:Shadow the Hedgehog/Beta 4

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This is a sub-page of Proto:Shadow the Hedgehog.

Xbox-ShadowTheHedgehog-Title Beta4-1.png
This cactus is UNDER CONSTRUCTION
This article is a work in progress.
...Well, all the articles here are, in a way. But this one moreso, and the article may contain incomplete information and editor's notes.

A prototype of the Xbox Shadow the Hedgehog was released by Last Minute Continue on January 2, 2023 as part of their Sega Early Build Discs Rescue Project. Dated September 16, 2005 (a little over a month before the final Xbox build) and marked as Beta 4 on the disc, the game is playable from start to finish.

Unfortunately, not everything was able to be dumped properly, possibly because the disc is a bad burn. Two dumps were made and released - one has its files mislocated, while the other has 111 files (~170MB) undumped, most of which is a good chunk of the cutscene audio files. A fix can be found here that imports files from the Xbox US retail build to make the game playable without crashes related to missing files.

The disc has been sent to Hidden Palace for further examination, so in the future a better dump may become available.

Sub-Pages

DevTextIcon.png
Unrecovered Files
So is this a half-prototype now?
SoundIcon.png
Audio Differences
Lots of audio sliders were toggled in the last month.

Differences

Title Screen

  • The title screen has a graphic that reads "β version" above the game's logo.
  • No prompt appears to plug in a second controller when selecting 2P Game.

FMV Cutscenes

While many of the FMV cutscenes (except the opening) are already finalized, they're in a 3:2 aspect ratio (720×480) here versus the final's 4:3 (640×480). This was done so the footage wouldn't look squished in-game as it would have to be reverted back to a 4:3 aspect ratio.

Notably, there's details visible in the beta's cutscenes that were cropped out in the final:

Proto Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-cutscene1 Beta4-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-cutscene2 Beta4-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-cutscene4 Beta4-1.png
Final Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-cutscene1 Final-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-cutscene2 Final-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-cutscene4 Final-1.png
  • The text offsets for the first Story Mode cutscene are completely wrong and all of the dialogue is not in sync.
  • E5022.sfd, which goes unused in the final, is not present here.

Opening Cutscene

  • Starting from 0:30, there's slight differences in the start and end frames for each shot. Every shot may start a few frames earlier or a few frames later in the prototype. This lasts until 0:49.
  • The extended footage where a soldier gets shot by one of the Black Arms is present at 0:42.
  • The entire audio track is 6dB quieter.
Proto Final

Options

There's a lot more options compared to the retail build.

  • There's an option to change the game's audio between mono and stereo, though it doesn't work - changing it to Mono does nothing, and changing it to Stereo stops all music.
  • You can change the on-screen text and spoken language. Normally, the game pulls the language settings from the Xbox dashboard, and it does in this build, but still leaves open the option to change it while in-game. This does leave the option open to set the game's language to English with Japanese voiceovers and vice versa, something not possible in the final build. Restarting the game changes the settings to the language set in the Xbox dashboard.
  • A bunch of the game's tracks do not have proper names yet or aren't properly capitalized.
Proto Final

In-Game

  • During the Mission Completed screen, instead of Shadow posing while holding a Chaos Emerald, he walks onto the screen and crosses his arms.
Proto Final
  • During the intro of the 2-player matches, no audio cue plays. These cues don't exist in this build, either.
  • Shadow's throwing distance for picked up items is much greater than the final game
  • Various layout changes exist throughout all levels
  • Sonic is a Partner character you can meet in Space Gadget, where in the final he not findable.
  • Vacuum type weapons can suck up GUN Robot mechs, where in the final they cannot.

Cheats

This version of the game has a built in cheat system.

Beta4-xbox-debug-prints.jpg

While in the main menus:

  • select + left trigger = Wipe all progress. A ring-loss noise will play.
  • select + right trigger = Set all stages completed to A rank, unlock all weapons and expert mode. Does not get keys. A confirmation noise will play.


While in-game:

  • select + dpad up + left trigger = complete level with dark mission
  • select + dpad up + right trigger = complete level with hero mission
  • select + dpad up + y = complete level with normal mission
  • select + dpad up + b = 99 lives
  • select + dpad left + x = toggle invincibility (debug print is Invincible)
  • select + dpad left + y = toggle infinite ammo (debug print is InfinityBullet)
  • select + dpad left + b = chaos control gauge fill
  • select + dpad left + a = chaos blast gauge fill
  • select + dpad down = enable debug print of player position and game version


On select mode:

  • select + dpad up + select level = set story progress to that stage and continue from there
  • select + dpad down = clears all level progress on level select


Xbox Dashboard Icon

The Xbox dashboard icon is completely different, instead showing part of the game's logo on a gray background rather than a render of Shadow from the title screen.

Proto Final
Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-Icon Beta4-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-Icon Final-1.png

Text & Dialogue

General

Proto Final
The Game Data appears to be dameged.
Please delet it using the Xbox Dashboard
and try again.
Press A to continue without loading or 
B to return to Xbox Dashboard.
The Game Data is damaged . 
Please delete it using the Xbox Dashboard
and try again. Press A to continue without
loading or B to return to the Xbox 
Dashboard.
A bunch of (almost comically bad) spelling errors were fixed and the text wrapping was changed around.

Unused Graphics

A couple of graphics were left over from earlier in development. These were likely from when other languages weren't implemented yet based on the file names.

Options.txd

  • The options texture has smaller variants of the setting icons with its scrollbar(?) and highlight. The PS2 button prompts are also slightly wider and the X button is purple.
  • The background is missing its black stripe and has some of its visual layers moved or toned down.
Unused Final
Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-OptionsUnused-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-OptionsUsed-1.png
Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-TitleBgUnused-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-TitleBgUsed-1.png

RouteDisplay.txd

  • The Story Route background is a lighter tint.
  • Almost all of the mission pictures are missing. The ones that are present have some slight differences. None of the assets for the arrows, circle, or trials have been finalized either.
Unused Final
Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-StoryRouteBgUnused-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-StoryRouteBgUsed-1.png
Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-MissionPicsUnused-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-MissionPicsUsed-1.png

SelectModed.txd

  • The background elements have a red tint to them with inverted arrows. The UI has a less thicker outline, there's button prompts, there's no E rank, and there's "Select" and "Exit" texts in place of "Boss".
  • Just like the texture above, this background also has a red tint and inverted arrows.
  • One of the circle icons lacks a dot. This variant is used in the final game by another texture file, but not by this texture file.
Unused Final
Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-ModeSelectUnused-2.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-ModeSelectUsed-2.png
Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-ModeSelectUnused-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-ModeSelectUsed-1.png
Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-RouteDisplayUnused-1.png Xbox-ShadowtheHedgehog-RouteDisplayUsed-1.png