11 (Yes, Eleven) prototype builds and design documents for cancelled Vectorman PS2 sequel found and preserved

Vectorman is a name well regarded by fans of the Sega Genesis/Mega-Drive. Vectorman (1995) and its sequel Vectorman 2 (1996) were hallmarks of that console’s twilight years, with some truly impressive pseudo-3D graphics and fluid animation, on top of also being a legitimately fun time. It’s earned it’s honor of being one of Sega’s common picks for their many Genesis game compilations in recent times. It’s just too bad that Vectorman was never able to move beyond the Genesis, though this wasn’t for lack of trying. The original developer of the two Genesis games, BlueSky Software, had envisioned a second sequel on the Saturn that never came to pass, and other developers have wanted to bring Vectorman to the Dreamcast and beyond.

The ill-faded sequel that came closest to fruition was the PS2 game being worked on by Pseudo Interactive, the creators of Full Auto (2006) and Full Auto 2: Battlelines (Also 2006 on PS3 and 2007 on PSP), both of which were actually published by Sega. Before that, Sega announced a new Vectorman title for the PlayStation 2, simply known as Vectorman, in April 2003, with intent to release the following year. The news of the game’s cancellation came before 2003 even ended, in November, despite a positive showing at E3 earlier that same year. This was during the time when then-Sega of America CEO Peter Moore was preparing his departure from the company and shortly before the company would merge with Sammy, so internally, things were tumultuous at Sega and Vectorman did not survive this transition. What did thankfully survive was a bunch of prototype and press builds, art, and documentation on the game, which was all just found and preserved by Comby Laurent on his preservation website Sega Dreamcast Info Games Preservation.

Check in past the break for more info, and a link to check out these finds in finer detail.

What Comby Laurent came across was two different versions of Vectorman 3 envisioned by developer Pseudo Interactive, both represented in the various prototype builds he discovered, with one of them, dubbed Vectorman 3.14, being one that many people have not seen before. This version of Vectorman came later and seemed to be the version that went over best with playtesters and press. This was a much more cartoon-like game and seemingly a lot more faithful to what Vectorman originally was on Genesis, though still a 3D game. It was designed with 2-player co-op modes in mind and made to stand out better against the more popular shooters of the day. The earlier idea for the sequel, the one most people have seen a bit of before, is dubbed “Halo-like” as it was made to more closely emulate Halo, the popular shooter to compete with at the time, than it was to resemble Vectorman’s actual identity.

There’s a lot more to the story of Vectorman 3, and I mean a lot more, so for that, I’ll link you to Comby Laurent’s page on Vectorman 3, which contains his entire write-up on the cancelled sequel’s history, its characters, world, and story, as well as links to the various prototypes and documents for you to check out for yourself. Special thanks goes out to Mr. Laurent for the discovery and preservation of all this historical material, as well as Pseudo Interactive for their efforts to bring Vectorman into the new millennium in style. 

Not many people liked seeing the “Halo-Like” Vectorman sequel in retrospect (Especially Barry after briefly watching an original trailer during the Sega Talk episode about Vectorman), but I think Vectorman 3.14 looked like a much cooler and more inspired take on a Vectorman sequel. I’m not at all surprised that this was the version of Vectorman that people seemed to like a lot better during development. There’s no telling if the game would’ve actually been good, let alone a classic, if it had finished development and made it to retail shelves. We can only leave that to our imaginations to decide at this point, but if you’re curious enough, you can mess around with these prototypes and then tell us in the comments below if you think Pseudo Interactive was really on to something here.


4 responses to “11 (Yes, Eleven) prototype builds and design documents for cancelled Vectorman PS2 sequel found and preserved

  1. joe says:

    Wow, this is pretty epic. I always loved the aesthetic of Vectorman, but boy do I suck at those games. Maybe SEGA will bring it back in its second round of re-imaginings?

  2. Zoyous says:

    I always felt that most of the appeal of Vectorman was that it pushed the limits of what was possible on the Genesis, with pre-rendered 3D elements and stylish demoscene effects. However, when that style is brought into the full 3D era, with characters composed of disconnected geometric primitives, it doesn’t have that same appeal of pushing the tech at all, instead looking a bit outdated. Maybe if they were to reboot it with more stylized visuals, like cel-shading or some other artistic rendering style, it could be cool.

  3. Dub one says:

    Maybe they should bring it back and give it to whatever Development team that made Ratchet n Clank and finish it… And Voila!! Game of the year…

  4. Smeg says:

    “ill-fated” 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *