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jamesster

LEGO Island 2 development history/cut content

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jamesster

Back in 2011 I wrote up this topic on another forum based on what we knew at the time. Wes replied but didn't really give any details on what changed, just generally why.

 

I'd just like to bring this back up for discussion - I won't bother reposting everything already said there, but there's a few notes/corrections I'd like to add:

 

Quote

Mr Hates and Cedric were meant to appear in the Asteroid Belt, shooting lasers at you,

IIRC, I said "lasers" because in the physical manual I had, there was a beta screenshot that showed what I thought were lasers in this minigame, and/or perhaps red/green powerup bricks like Desert Speedster. However, upon looking at a clearer (but still low res) digital manual, it just looks like random LEGO clutter... And the text specifies that you would have had Brickster-Bots flying at you (like in Parachute onto Ogel):

 

njBl0PJ.png

 

But, there's also two versions of the manual (at least that I've found, digitally)... And they have different screenshots from each other, though sometimes both from beta.

Manual 1

Manual 2 (from this topic)

When I get home in maybe a few weeks, I'll try to dig out my old physical manual and compare it with these, and maybe get a better idea of what made me think there were lasers specifically.

 

Here's the Asteroid Belt screenshot from the other manual, for comparison:

 

AjIt6bh.png

 

Quote

The GBA version contains a lot of minigames and such that aren't in the PC version, and I'm willing to bet that those minigames were planned for PC/PS1 versions at one point but were removed last minute, leading to the missing data archive files.

Removed? Yeah. Removed last minute? That's not how these things work, 2011 me...

 

Now, about the GBC version. In the topic I pointed out the cave specifically, but there's far more differences and areas that weren't in the PC/PS1/GBA versions. It was also developed by Crawfish Interactive - all the other versions were by Silicon Dreams.

 

We don't know why the GBC version is so different in story and locations from the others, but one theory is that Crawfish Interactive was working off of an earlier outline of the game, which continued to evolve as Silicon Dreams worked on the main versions. If that's true, then the cave/rock monster fight, imperial jail, castle maze, dungeon, dark forest, etc may have been part of the PC/PS1 (and GBA) design at one point.

 

The cave at least is supported by the Rock Monsters and Slimy Slugs in the final game - perhaps they were modeled earlier, then recycled into their final roles after the cave was cut? It's speculation, but possible.

 

Who knows, maybe those ideas go back even earlier to LI2's days as a tie-in for a canceled TV show?

 

 

We know Krisalis had done work on "buildings, vehicles and environments" back when they were developing the game (see the last post in that topic), but we don't know much Silicon Dreams kept, if any.

 

We DO know the game was turned into a LEGO Island sequel while still at Krisalis, not at the same time it was given to Silicon Dreams:

 

Quote

So we change the kid to Pepper, dropped the dog, added a skateboard (there was going to be a Tony Hawks lite element to the game, performing stunts and so on - don't think that was in the final game), changed the plot to pretty much what it is now, dropped all the time-travelling puzzle solving and added mini-games - basically made it a lot simpler.

Unfortunately, that's where my involvement ended - basically with the game still at prototype stage. After I left, LEGO took the game away from Krisalis and gave it to Silicon Dreams, plus they expanded the platform range - when I was involved, it was intended just for PC and PS1.

 

There's also this topic discussing a PS1 beta that was found, though it's from pretty late in development so it doesn't answer many questions...

 

 

And there's this beta video of the PC version, but it also appears to be from pretty late in development...

 

 

I think our best bet for figuring out this game's weird history, what plans were, when they changed, etc would be to get in contact with more of the original developers... If they'd still remember all the odd details clearly 16-17 years later, haha.

 

Edit - One thing I just remembered; there's a "Ferry.msh" file in the data for LEGO Island in the PC version. IIRC, it's just a placeholder, only a few flat planes... But, in the GBA version, you use a ferry to go to Castle Island. It's not the only unused/beta mesh or anything, but it's an especially interesting one IMO as it ties into something that was used in a handheld version.

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Pereki

This is great, I just want to add that a small but significant amount of stuff in the GBA version crops up again in IXS on PC/console, which seems like an indication that that stuff might've been originally conceived for LI2, then rolled over to the sequel when there wasn't time to fit it in. Stuff like the sheep, missions to deliver pizza/groceries that are given to you by different people on the island, a lot of little lines of dialogue ("talk to people, they might have something to say!"), and in general the less linear progression that has you explore the island to find different quests.

 

If the GBC version was really based on an earlier draft of the script for the full game, I wonder what that would mean for the weird Bologna Roni cameo...

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jamesster

Oh yeah, another thing I just remembered... Boney Hawks/Bony Hawks/Gnarly Bones:

 

Besides what's said in that post, in the PS1 version, you can see a skeleton standing in the middle of the skate park half pipe, in the screenshot on Pepper's computer when you're selecting the board park minigame. That, plus the sound effect for smacking into Boney Hawks/Gnarly Bones, seems to imply he was originally going to be an opponent... But was then cut from PS1 entirely, only made a background NPC on PC, and given a slight (misspelled?) mention on GBA. Until he was finally renamed and included in IXS PC/PS2.

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Brickome
Quote

Before you can go to Adventurer's Island, you need to prove to Valerie Stubbins that you can be trusted on the high seas. Ride a water scooter for two laps around the LEGO Island racecourse. Attempt to beat LEGO’s finest Jet Bikers in this license-winning event..Raring to go, Infomaniac

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jamesster

Oh yeah, that's another thing, in LI2 GBA you had to get a driving license... And apparently you were gonna have to get a boat license, too. Even more ideas that got used in IXS PC/PS2, wow.

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aidenpons
On 12/23/2017 at 5:36 PM, jamesster said:

I

Quote

Mr Hates and Cedric were meant to appear in the Asteroid Belt, shooting lasers at you,

IIRC, I said "lasers" because in the physical manual I had, there was a beta screenshot that showed what I thought were lasers in this minigame, and/or perhaps red/green powerup bricks like Desert Speedster. However, upon looking at a clearer (but still low res) digital manual, it just looks like random LEGO clutter... And the text specifies that you would have had Brickster-Bots flying at you (like in Parachute onto Ogel):

 

njBl0PJ.png

 

But, there's also two versions of the manual (at least that I've found, digitally)... And they have different screenshots from each other, though sometimes both from beta.

Manual 1

Manual 2 (from this topic)

When I get home in maybe a few weeks, I'll try to dig out my old physical manual and compare it with these, and maybe get a better idea of what made me think there were lasers specifically.

 

Here's the Asteroid Belt screenshot from the other manual, for comparison:

 

AjIt6bh.png

 

While replaying some LI2 minigames I liked I noticed this:

 

large.WaitAMinute.png.805a2ee9c44cb0951c1e1f93ab2f6b1d.png

 

Everything except the game itself says that you'll be shot at XD No wonder that level is strangely easy!

 

 

(BTW, if you haven't played LI2 / it isn't obvious, all you have to do in the minigame is dodge the asteroids - no debris, no being shot at, not even any Ogelites. Just asteroids.)

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