CANCELLED/UNRELEASED GAMES

Contra Encyclopedia main page

 
Contra is no exception with respect to incompletely developed games. Unlike the Contra games that were cancelled prior to the late 1990’s, the titles cancelled afterward are the result of a lack of interest on the part of the developers.

 
Select a game:

Contra (Commodore Amiga)
Gryzor (Commodore Amiga)
Super C (Commodore 64)
Contra Spirits and Super Contra (Sega CD)
C: The Contra Adventure (Microsoft Windows)
Contra 64 (Nintendo 64)
Contra (Nintendo Gamecube)
Contra (Nintendo 3DS)
Contra (Unknown) (1)
Contra (Unknown) (2)

CONTRA (COMMODORE AMIGA)

A version of Contra for the Amiga had been under development between 1987 and 1988. Some websites had Amiga timelines that included this detail. One such website had a timeline listing its alleged release. For the most part, there have been no reports of anybody ever having played the game, either magazines or general gamers.

A response from Konami indicated that there may have been an Amiga conversion of the game under development, but cannot fully verify it and that it was likely cancelled.

Screenshots of an alleged Amiga Contra do appear on many flyers for the computer conversions of Konami’s coin-op arcade games. Here is one example, taken from the brochure Konami’s New Computer Games Cure Terminal Boredom:

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A minor variant of this ad appears as part of the collective brochures by Konami for home computer conversions of their games, Introducing the Hardest Software Ever…:

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… also in There’s Only One Thing As Exciting As Our Seven Hit Computer Games:

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Curiously, Amiga is not listed in the second pamphlet as one of the available conversions of Contra.

On the front side of the Arcade Assault ad, there is further implication, along with a screenshot, of an Amiga version:

konpcad

However, a corner of the back of the ad makes it explicit that an Amiga version had been in the works:

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The most interesting aspect of this conversion is the screenshots that appear on the back of the DOS and Commodore 64 versions of Contra (shown in that order):

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The September and October, 1988 issues of Amiga World magazine reference a Contra game for Amiga multiple times, even providing some price points for it.

Like the DOS and Commodore 64 versions, this version was likely being developed by an outsourced company and not Konami, themselves.

(On a side note, it is understandable why none of the screenshots on the back of the DOS cover depict the actual DOS version: it is atrocious. Indeed, one would place screenshots of a good-looking version instead, to entice people to purchase it.)

The origin of these images is interesting, as they don’t depict any released Contra game. A question one might ask concerns their origin; they appear on both the DOS and Commodore 64 Contra game boxes. Whoever designed the packaging artwork might know more.

The DOS and Commodore 64 versions of Contra released in North America underwent Konami’s typical packaging of home computer conversions (see here). Looking into the shared instruction manual, one will find instructions for the DOS and Commodore 64 versions, but not for an Amiga release.

For the time being, there is no proof of this game’s release.

 
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GRYZOR (COMMODORE AMIGA)

ACE Magazine‘s 11th issue includes an ad for Ocean’s conversions of Gryzor:

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(also in Amstrad Action, issue 034)

At the bottom of the page, it is claimed that Gryzor is also available for the Amiga home computer.

Power Play also mentions an alleged Amiga Gryzor:

In issue 21 (November, 1991) of CU Amiga magazine, Gryzor is briefly discussed in the Gone, But Not Forgotten article as an Amiga title that was ultimately never released (along with Combat School):

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It is worth noting that the author of this panel, Steve Merrett, is the owner of a Probotector prototype for Sega Genesis.

Less is known about the Amiga version of Gryzor than of Contra. It is most likely a similar case to the DOS version of Gryzor: that is, it would have been a retitling of the planned Amiga Contra game (see above).

On a related note, there used to be many websites where an alleged Amiga version of Gryzor was listed, developed by Ocean and published by Sega. This is very unlikely.

 
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SUPER C (COMMODORE 64)

It is not clear how the Commodore 64 would handle a game like Super Contra, or Super C, to be precise. A version of the game for this home computer is mentioned in the collective brochure by Konami for home computer conversions of their games, Introducing the Hardest Software Ever:

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An approximate release period of Spring 1991 is stated. However, in the brochure Konami’s New Computer Games Cure Terminal Boredom, Super C is slated for a fall 1990 release:

KonamiCureBladesOfSteelSuperC

This suggests that a conversion had been under development, possibly by DSI/USI, albeit with problems in the process that resulted in delays. The absence of any screenshots in print media implicitly supports this suggestion. Eventually, this game had been cancelled.

 
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CONTRA SPIRITS AND SUPER CONTRA (SEGA CD)

There were supposed to be conversions of Contra Spirits and Super Contra for the Sega CD; based on the titles, they were likely going to be Japanese releases. It is another example of early cancellation.

 
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C: THE CONTRA ADVENTURE (MICROSOFT WINDOWS)

Laren d’Or was the music composer that Appaloosa Interactive assigned to many of their games, including the 2 PSX Contra games. According to his resumé on his now-defunct website, he was assigned to compose music for a C: The Contra Adventure for PC. Of course, no such game exists. When I contacted him regarding this matter, he explained that a Windows version of C: The Contra Adventure was planned, but they ultimately scrapped the project.

You can try to re-visit the particular page through Wayback Machine: http://www.larendor.hu/gb/game.htm

 
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CONTRA 64 (NINTENDO 64)

After the failures of the PS1 titles, Konami planned to develop the next entry in the series themselves.

In an interview featured in Nintendo Official Magazine, issue 55 (April 1997), then-president of Konami Computer Entertainment Osaka, Kuniaki Kinoshita, expressed interest in developing Nintendo 64 based sequels to popular Konami titles (page 74):

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Speculation had begun at this point about a putative Contra game for Nintendo 64, as seen on page 75 of the same magazine:

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This entry in the series has been referred to as Contra 64 in early announcements, such as magazine advertisements.

Nintendo Official Magazine, issue 57 (June 1997):

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Nintendo Power, issue 97:

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Next Generation, issue 29:

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Games X, issue 17:

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Italian magazine Il, issue 1 excerpt:

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In issue 73 of Nintendo Official Magazine (October 1998), it was stated that Contra 64 was slated for a release some time in 1999:

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The game’s development ended short when the division of Konami working on it disbanded, possibly due to the poor sales of the Nintendo 64 in Japan. What was already worked on may have been taken up by a separate Konami division to develop into what is now Contra: Shattered Soldier, according to rumor.

 
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CONTRA (NINTENDO GAMECUBE)

There is very little information regarding this game. In 2002, a European division of Konami announced its development, but unwisely kept “everything” from the public. When nothing else turned up beyond this, a response from Konami basically summed up its cancellation.

 
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CONTRA (NINTENDO 3DS)

A common trend with newly announced video game systems is the nature of the associated launch titles. Many of these alleged video games are nothing more than a means of attraction to the new game system. Those who are familiar with this trend likely know the truth: there is (currently) no such 3DS Contra game in the works and there never was.

 
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CONTRA (UNKNOWN) (1)

This entry refers to the game that was teased shortly before E3 of 2011. The teaser was generic enough to be used for any action, horror or thriller game. If you don’t get any updates in more or less 2 months following a video game teaser release (especially one as generic as what was shown), that game is more than likely in development hell. Indeed, that was exactly the case. I say, “was” because it is no longer in development hell; rather, it has been cancelled: confirmed from the resumé of a developer working for Yager Development. The game had undergone development from July to December of 2011 before being discarded.

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This display by that developer was just another example of someone preferring attention over productivity.

 
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CONTRA (UNKNOWN) (2)

While under employment of Eurocom, game developer Neil Casini had been tasked with a “next generation” Contra game. With inspiration from Geometry Wars, the game would make use of twin analog sticks for control: the left stick would control the player while the right stick would control aiming and firing. A small degree of auto-aim would be implemented. This project did not progress past a conceptual demo.

 
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Contra Encyclopedia home page

6 Responses to “CANCELLED/UNRELEASED GAMES”

  1. Mr. Fox owns Commodore 64 game called Super C made by Konami

  2. whybother Says:

    oops can you delete my previous comment thANks

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