Beta elements are things left out or changed in the final version of the game. This list comprises of games that were tested before the GameCube era.
There are many unused levels in the game. Here are some notable ones:
- World 0-1: An underwater version of 4-4.
- World 0-2: Same as World 0-1.
- World 0-3: Underwater version of World 2-4, but with 400 seconds on the timer.
- World 0-4: Once again, same as World 0-3.
- World 9-1: Underwater version of World 6-2.
- World 9-2: Underwater version of World 1-4.
- World 9-3: The World 6-2 underwater bonus room.
- World A-1: An underwater version of the World 6-2 coin heaven.
- World A-2: Same as World 8-1, but with 400 seconds.
- World B-1: Underground version of World 3-4.
- World B-2: Same as World 0-1.
- World C-1: Same as World 9-2.
- POAPYE: Underwater versions of World 2-3 and World 3-4.
- LKAPYA: Underwater versions of World 1-1, World 8-2, and World 4-3 in this order.
There are many differences between the 1987 beta version and the final. Most were moved from Doki Doki Panic. Here's a bunch of examples:
- The size is 1 megabit (128 KB).
- The title screen's colors are changed.
- In the intro story, "faint" was removed and "he" was added.
- You start with 20 lives.
- The eyes of Mario, Luigi and the Princess are not white.
- All characters cannot go faster, even when holding the B Button.
- There is no animation to the items.
- The rapid waterfall, magic lamp and mad vegetable are all the same as in DDP.
- In World 5-1, Mushroom Blocks have no spots.
- Phanto is nowhere to be found in the room where you fight Birdo for the key in 7-2.
- If you lose a life, you can choose a different character.
- You get unlimited continues after you get a Game Over.
- The World 7-1 scenery is blank.
- The Bonus Chance screen is green, like DDP.
- The columns in World 7-1 have added one extra cloud platform.
- You will only need to kill Wart with four vegetables to defeat him.
- You will see the words "Thank You" after you rescue Subcon.
- At the end of the game, a player is awarded with "Prize Money", depending on how many times lives were lost.
- The last frame of the game is just a night color scheme with the words "The End".
- The background music for underground areas is completely different, more like the SMB3 underground music.
- Finally, there are secret worlds that are messed up and corrupted, which can be accessed by pressing the A Button on the title screen. Some of them can lead to the game freezing.
If you press the A Button a certain number of times on the title screen, it will lead to the following:
- 1 = World 2
- 2 = World 3
- 3 = World 4
- 4 = World 5
- 5 = World 6
- 6 = World 7
- 9 = World A-1. It's actually a bugged version of World 1-1. If you take one of the "vases" where Birdo is standing on, it leads to World A-2, a bugged version of 1-2. However, if you go too high in A-2, you will be taken back to A-1 or revert backwards in A-2 and automatically lose a life. And if you defeat Birdo in A-1, the next level you'll go to is the normal World 1-2.
- 10 = Same as above, but after about 4 seconds, the game freezes.
- 13 = Again, same as above, but with even more scrambled graphics.
- 16 = World 1-F, which is a lot like World 5-3. The vase in Sub-Space mode will lead to World 4.
- 17 = World 2-0. It's actually World 1-3 with "desert" graphics. The vase warps you to the normal World 2. The scrambled boss at the end takes five hits to be defeated, but then you will be taken to World 1-1.
- 18 = World 3-something, but again, it's a lot like World 1-1. After you defeat Birdo, the Hawkmouth will automatically take you to World 3-(some kind of Farsi letter), the lookalike of World 1-2, instead of going to the Bonus Chance game. After that, it leads to World 3-(scribble mark), which is much like World 1-3. The warping vase will lead to the normal World 5. Another difference is, since there's no key upstairs, and there's no locked door in the bottom, you can just proceed on to the boss battle. Once again, it takes five hits to defeat the boss, and like before, it will lead you back to the normal World 1-1, but instead, you will start in one of the underground rooms.
- 19 = World 4-(scrambled graphic). This level is much like World 4-2. In fact, it will be World 4-2 once you climb up the vine.
- 20 = World 5-(another scrambed graphic), but it will become World 5-3 after you climb up the ladder.
- 21 = World 6-(moon shape). It's another "desert" version of World 1-3. If you take the warping vase, it takes you to the normal World 6.
- 22 = World 7-(blank). You'll actually start at the top of the World 6-3 vines. The "blank" will then turn into World 7-0 if you climb up to the top.
- 25 = World A-5. It probably looks like the lobby of World 2-2, but you can't go through the door 'cause it's hovering above a blue invisible floor.
- 29 = Same as above, but after you pause, you won't know which world you're in, and after you unpause, Mario becomes all buggy.
- 31 = Exactly the same as if you pressed the A Button 18 times.
- 30+ but unknown = World 2-4. It is like World 3-1, but you must press A quick before you sink in the sand!
- 30+ but unknown = World 4-6. It is like World 5-3, but with the same old "snowy" landscape. Here, you can warp to World 6. Halfway through, however, you'll eventually get stuck.
For numbers I did not put in, those just often result in the game freezing.
The cartridge that came with this prototype version of Super Mario Bros. 2 was sold on eBay in 2005, and all the information about it was unveiled on February 27, 2007 on TMK.
Hidden in this game are some unused levels that can be discovered by using an SMB3 level editor.
- Alternate World 1-5: This one has a door, and there are no power-ups, just Piranha Plants, Venus Fire Traps, Buzzy Beetles and Koopa Troopas. Same pipe exit as the final.
- Alternate World 1-6: There are a few cloud platforms at the top of this level.
- Alternate World 1-6 (shorter version): This version is shorter, and there's no Card Roulette. You will therefore have to fall off and waste another life. There are actually two slightly different copies of this level. The second copy is lowered by one block.
- Alternate World 3-9: The last pipe will lead you to an underwater portion of the level. The pipe at the very left will lead to the exit, with another pipe leading to Coin Heaven, the other requiring a P-Wing in order to get the Card Roulette. You will get a Jugem's Cloud if you take the Coin Heaven pipe.
- Alternate World 5-3: Loaded with pipes, coins and Spinies. The pipe exit is the same as Grass Land 5's.
- Alternate World 7-3: This level also has Lakitu, except he throws regular/red Spiny eggs this time. There is also Grass Land's Coin Heaven available here.
- Iced Land Secret: Another scrolling level, which includes gold Cheep-Cheeps that swim in groups.
- Multiple Room Fortress: Every room has a Tanooki Suit, except the pipes lead to different places. Some of the rooms, however, will lead to nowhere but doom.
- Non-Pipe Maze: No enemies, and you must swim up the waterfalls. The pipe exit leads to nothing but a Card Roulette.
- Sky Secret 1: This one scrolls up and down, and there are Green Parabeetles here. The pipe exit is equivalent to 5-4, 5-6, 5-8 and 5-9's.
- Sky Secret 2: An enemy-infested Coin Heaven. There are only 29 coins, though.
- Sky Secret 3: There are no enemies, and the stars up above the four long cloud platforms are odd. The power-up is a Super Leaf. The bad thing is, there is also no exit.
- Sky Secret 4: No Bullet Bills will appear from the cannon. The power-up is a Fire Flower. Also, there is no exit here.
- World 1-0: This is an icy level that never made it to World 6, but can still be accessible using "AOZULT". The level scrolls vertically, and the pipe exit is guarded by a Piranha Plant. It is also the same as in Iced Land 2. The level itself can also be possible for finding in Super Mario All-Stars, but is difficult.
- World 7-0: A Hammer Bros. stage was originally intended for the final game, but because no Hammer Bros. can be seen on the World 7 (Pipe Maze) map, the stage is considered inaccessible.
These unused levels were first discovered on TMK on February 17, 2004.
In an early version of Super Mario World, showcased in September 1989 in the Japanese magazine "Famicom Tsushin", the levels mostly resembled Super Mario Bros. 3. The logo on the beta title screen was entirely colored blue, and the map looked like a large mushroom-shaped island. The game was also originally planned to feature Toad Houses, but in the final product, Toad does not appear whatsoever in Super Mario World.
These details were rediscovered on the internet at least since December 14, 2006.
A "No Yoshis Allowed" sign was intended for ghost houses, fortresses and castles, but is nowhere to be seen in the final product. This beta test level was discovered on March 5, 2002.
In a very early version of Super Mario 64 from November 1995, the game looked a lot different. For example, the castle exterior doesn't have a glass window with the Princess on it, and only the main lobby of the castle was built. Only about 1/3 of all the levels were accessible in this early version.
Courses like Whomp's Fortress, Cool, Cool Mountain, Lethal Lava Land and Dire, Dire Docks all looked different as well, and Bowser would disappear leaving behind a bunch of coins and another Star if defeated.
In the early version from mid-1996, this game was known as "Super Mario Kart R". Screenshots of the early version were uploaded to the Internet on October 9, 1996. The characters in the top four (displayed on the upper left corner) are facing forward, and there is a question mark in the item box for whenever no items are currently in use by the player.
In a later build, in which the game is closer to completion, the characters in the top four are facing left instead of right. Screenshots like these were uploaded on October 24, 1996.
Long before the GameCube even existed, there was a Nintendo 64 version of Kirby Air Ride that was to be a game with a snowboarding twist. Back then, it would have been the first 4-player game for any Nintendo 64 game (especially before Mario Kart 64, that is).
In 1997, the game was known as Yoshi's Island 64, before its final title was unveiled. In this early version, there was also going to be a Brown Yoshi and a Purple Yoshi as playable characters, and Flowers as an item, but they never appeared in the final version. Unused enemies include giant Shy Guys and purple flesh-covered Bone Dragons.
The first screenshots showing these elements were released from January 26, 1997 to September 9, 1997.
Hidden in the game is a secret unused level called "Horseshoe Gulch", which was originally planned as a Dino Domain course. In this level, there is no lap display, and the track appears to be a dead end. In the background, Wizpig can be seen flying around in his rocket. The map on the bottom right corner is for Fossil Canyon. The glitch was discovered on November 17, 2005, and a gameplay video of it was uploaded to YouTube on August 7, 2006.
On September 10, 1999, a kiosk demo cartridge, labeled "not for resale", was seen in many video game stores, kinda like demo VHS tapes. There are only three levels available here -- the second Dogadon battle from Fungi Forest, a harder of the Jungle Japes mine cart challenge (where you must collect 70 coins instead of just 50), and the Army Dillo boss battle from Crystal Caves in the Jungle Japes arena.
After Dogadon is defeated in this demo version, the boss music still continues to play rather than the Troff 'n' Scoff music.
Back then, the game was rated "RP" (which stands for Rating Pending; much similar to how films are classified as "This Film is Not Yet Rated"), and the cartridge skin color was gray instead of yellow.
During the presence of this kiosk demo version, Rareware announced that the final game will feature the original Donkey Kong arcade game, along with the final release date of November 22, 1999.
The origins of Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards date back to June 1, 1999, when nine early screenshots of the game were seen at Nintendo.com. In this early version, Waddle Dee, King Dedede and Adeleine were originally intended to be playable characters, but this was scrapped from the final build.
Ribbon wasn't revealed until January 24, 2000, when the game was closer to its final phase of development. Of course, there were still some differences, such as the opening sequence where the sky is filled with realistic clouds instead of rings and hearts.
Paper Mario started off as Super Mario RPG 2 way back in 1999. However, due to complications involving Squaresoft, the title was changed to Super Mario Adventure on May 25 of that year. Finally, the title was changed to Mario Story (Paper Mario outside of Japan).
The first pieces of information about Super Mario Adventure were posted to TMK on September 24, 1999. More info, as well as the final title (Paper Mario), were added on June 16, 2000. Back then, the game was set for a U.S. release on December 26, 2000.
Unused items include the following:
- Insecticide Grass - Only defeats bug-type enemies.
- Hustle Drink - Mario can take two extra turns for attack.
- Please Come Back