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Half-Life: Decay
The game was originally planned to release on PC and it even had a completed port. However, this didn't happen. According to Patrick Deupree (one of the game's programmers), this was "due to powers beyond our control".

A fan-made recreation was released in 2008.
Bubsy in Claws Encounters of the Furred Kind
Accolade's marketing department attempted, and failed, to get Bubsy to wear pants.
Also Appears On: Bubsy (Collection)
Bubsy in Claws Encounters of the Furred Kind
Prior to the creation of Bubsy, Accolade tried to encourage Michael Berlyn to use Cheetos mascot Chester Cheetah instead of creating a new character for the game, but Berlyn convinced them by pointing out how creating a new character would be cheaper than licensing out an established mascot.
Attachment The Nintendo Entertainment System versions of Defender II, Joust, and Millipede were all conceived as part of a failed deal between Nintendo and Atari to distribute the Famicom internationally. Development was outsourced to HAL Laboratory, who decided to publish the games themselves in 1987 after Nintendo took international distribution of the console into their own hands two years prior. One additional title was put together as part of the Atari deal, but it was never released, with none of the parties involved revealing what it was.

Because of the circumstances behind their conception, the Japanese versions of these three games all feature title screens reminiscent of Famicom launch titles, with the copyright information uniformly reading "COPYRIGHT 1983 ATARI". When Nintendo of America exported the games to North America in 1988, the title screens were made more elaborate and the copyright info was updated. The ways of accessing the game's modes are also changed in the North American release; instead of having them all available on the title screen, the player must press Start in Defender II and Millipede to bring up a menu (itself displaying additional copyright information). In Joust, pressing Start skips the menu and automatically begins Game A; the player must press Select in order to access the menu.

The development of Joust as a launch title for an Atari-distributed system would have a prominent knock-on effect on HAL and Nintendo's future. The game was one of the first titles to be programmed by Satoru Iwata, who would go on to become a vital asset to HAL thanks to his coding skills before becoming Nintendo's president in 2002, and his experiences developing Joust would help him program Balloon Fight.
Also Appears On: Balloon Fight (Game), Defender II (Game), Joust (Game)
Contributed by VinchVolt on November 28, 2023
In the Sega Master System version of Rampart, there is unused text that reads "Jeff Spangenberg is a weenie", referring to Punk Development's founder. Coder Kevin Seghetti would explain this quip in an interview:

"I was in the middle of doing Rampart for RazorSoft at Punk Development when Jeff [Spangenberg] and I had a disagreement. I was helping Scott Statton debug the latest Genesis development system boards which had just come back from fab, and Jeff told me to get back to work on Rampart. I reminded him that I was doing Rampart under contract, I wasn't his employee, and he [didn't] get to tell me what to do. After a few more rounds of comments, which included him standing directly in front of me (he is quite tall) in an attempt at physical intimidation (which ended with me saying, "Go ahead and hit me, I could use the money"), he took the only action he could, which was to tell me I was no longer welcome in the Punk Development offices. So I packed up my stuff and moved it home and finished development of Rampart from there. So that comment is just a good-natured jab at him."
Also Appears On: Iguana Entertainment (Company)
TimeSplitters Rewind
Partly in response to a petition for the release of an HD version of the original TimeSplitters trilogy, a group of fans were given permission by Crytek to develop a TimeSplitters mod using CryEngine 3. Project lead Michael Hubicka stated that while TimeSplitters 4 was their ultimate goal, they first had to convince Crytek that there was "sufficient demand for the series through [an] HD Collection." The game (titled TimeSplitters Rewind) would combine "greatest hits" elements from across the series, and that although the engine would give the game a modern look they "didn't plan on fixing something that isn't broken.", featuring both story and multiplayer modes and being free of charge on PC. Additionally, there were originally plans to develop the game in Unreal Engine 4, but these were dropped due to concerns that the Unreal version would be unable to use the TimeSplitters IP and would "likely have to rebrand".
Contributed by chocolatejr9 on November 26, 2023
Midnight Magic
According to a hidden credit in the game's code, the Atari 2600 version of Midnight Magic was released 3 years after it was completed in 1984, likely for reasons relating to the 1983 US video game crash.
Neopets Browser
On July 17, 2023, Neopets was purchased from NetDragon through a management buyout deal by Dominic Law, the Neopets Chief Metaverse Officer and former Director of New Markets at both NetDragon and Cherrypicks. This lead to the formation of "World of Neopia, Inc.", a company comprised of team members from both Neopets and Neopets Metaverse, with Law serving as CEO. As part of this, it was announced that Neopets had received $4 million in investment money in early 2023, with additional funding from the management buyout equipping World of Neopia, Inc. to make "meaningful changes in pursuit of a Neopian renaissance." These changes include revamping the homepage and creating the 2024 mobile game "World of Neopets".
Also Appears On: World of Neopia, Inc. (Company)
Contributed by chocolatejr9 on November 24, 2023
Flappy Bird
Flappy Bird was removed from app stores by creator Dong Nguyen on February 8th 2014, due to being overwhelmed by its success and feeling guilt over the addictive, frustrating nature of the game, which he had originally intended to be relaxing. Although many speculated that the game was taken down by Nintendo due to the game's pipes and their similarity to the pipes from the Mario series, both Nguyen and Nintendo denied this.

Nguyen claimed that his worries about the game had lost him sleep, and removing the game from sale managed to restore piece of mind - despite this, Nguyen did promise a Flappy Bird comeback, albeit in a less addictive form, which would eventually come in the form of an official sequel: Flappy Birds Family for Amazon Fire TV.

Some eBay users attempted to sell the iPhones with the original game installed for up to $99,900, but the listings were removed due to eBay's rules against selling technology that has not been factory reset.
Also Appears On: Flappy Birds Family (Game), .GEARS Studios (Company)
Contributed by Rocko & Heffer on November 24, 2023
Spot: The Video Game
Attachment Spot: The Video Game has a hidden credits scene that can occur after watching an all-CPU game, taking place on the game's victory screen. Virgin developers were not allowed to put credits inside games, only in manuals, so this was a way of hiding the credits in the game. The Japanese version adds credits to the game.
Club Penguin
Chris Hendricks, a former artist and composer for Club Penguin, was originally against the inclusion of the game's main villain Herbert P. Bear, as he felt that Club Penguin was a game that was meant to be "safe and fun" and thus didn't need a villain. However, during development of the PSA missions, it became apparent that it was becoming difficult to put obstacles in the player's way without some sort of villain behind it. The team member who first pitched the idea of adding a villain to the game initially came up with the idea of there being three polar bears: a boss bear, a skinny vegetarian henchman bear, and a big stupid bear who would lift heavy objects and be endearing and lovable. Some staff, however, felt that this was too many bears, and eventually reached a compromise: take all the best attributes of the three bears, combine them into one bear, and give him a lovable sidekick.

Chris, however, was still concerned about the idea of adding a villain, so to both build up mystery and try to appease him, the story was developed so that the villain wouldn't be revealed until the fifth mission: in the third mission, the only evidence of the villain was white fur. This gave them a potential escape route in case players didn't want a villain in the game, as they could have the fourth mission reveal that the whole thing was a misunderstanding and that a white puffle (which hadn't debuted at that point) was to blame. As it would turn out, fans loved the idea of a villain, so the fourth mission would give a shadowy teaser of the villain, before the full reveal of Herbert P. Bear in the fifth mission. Chris would later admit that he was wrong to not want a villain in the game, as Herbert became one of his favorite characters, and lead to the introduction of other memorable villains (i.e. Tusk and Ultimate Proto-Bot 10000) as well.
QuackShot: Starring Donald Duck
During development of QuackShot, a level was implemented where Donald Duck could club baby seals as enemies. This horrified producers from the Disney side of development, who demanded Sega remove the stage from the final game.
Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu!
Attachment When Pokémon Sword and Shield were announced, they inspired a slew of memes from British internet users who found humor in the influences their culture provided towards the games. One meme, made by Twitter user Callum O'Dwyer, depicts a PokéMart from Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! edited to show the logo of Greggs, a UK bakery chain. After the tweet proved viral, O'Dwyer reached out to Greggs to ask if the tweet was "worth a couple of [steak] bakes" as compensation for the free advertising. In response, Greggs gave him a £10 coupon and told him to "have a steak bake or three on us".
Also Appears On: Pokémon Sword (Game), Pokémon Shield (Game)
Contributed by Rocko & Heffer on November 21, 2023
Company: Atari SA
Attachment In 2001, Infogrames Entertainment SA produced a corporate anthem entitled "Infogrames Rocks My World", which was used at industry events starting with E3 2001 as part of a heavy marketing push to promote their slate of IPs after a series of acquisitions throughout the 1990s. According to YouTuber Larry Bundy Jr. during a video researching the development and release controversies surrounding the game Driv3r, Infogrames' public relations division reportedly spent $50,000 creating the song, but due to the song being relentlessly mocked following its reveal, everyone involved with the song's production was reportedly fired. While Bundy also claimed that the song was first leaked to the Internet by a disgruntled Driv3r developer in 2004, the song was actually distributed by Infogrames to other gaming news outlets as part of digital press kits. The earliest known upload of the song appears to be by software developer Phil Bak to his personal website sometime during or immediately after E3 2001 in May, and the earliest known surviving upload is through a 2001 IGN article covering Infogrames' Gamers' Day press event in August. The song was later uploaded to ZDNET in 2002 on a special article ranking it at #9 on a list of their Top 20 Corporate IT Anthems.
Also Appears On: Infogrames Entertainment SA (Company)
Contributed by MehDeletingLater on November 21, 2023
Infogrames Entertainment SA's PR department - "Infogrames Rocks My World":

Larry Bundy Jr. video on Driv3r development and release controversies:

3000 AD forum post of the Phil Bak link to the song days after E3 2001:

2001 IGN article and embedded link to the song:

2002 ZDNET Top 20 IT Anthems archived article:
Batman: The Video Game
Attachment Sunsoft's NES Batman originally had cutscenes using the comic book iteration of Batman, but these had to be scrapped and replaced with digitized renditions of Micheal Keaton's live-action Batman as the game's artist was not aware that the Batman comics and movies were separate licenses. The Joker, however, was always depicted as Jack Nicholson's portrayal, even in prototypes using the comic version of Batman.
Contributed by Rocko & Heffer on November 20, 2023
Elf Bowling 1 & 2
The Elf Bowling series has been the subject of multiple bizarre and unprofessional Wikipedia edits by individuals involved with the franchise, something considered poor conduct on the website.

Elf Bowling co-creator Dan "Ferg" Ferguson created a Wikipedia article under the name "Itzaferg" and inserted self-aggrandizing information about his history with the franchise to its page, as well as adding articles that were soon deleted for his company Blockdot and its lesser known, non-Elf Bowling works.

After this, Matthew Lichtenwalter, who bought the rights to Elf Bowling in 2001, attempted to claim that the portable compilation, Elf Bowling 1 & 2 was "unauthorized" using Wikipedia as a platform, writing a signed quote from himself on the Wikipedia mainpage for Elf Bowling, as well as saying that he "created the series [after]" he bought it out.

"The DS and GBA versions were not approved or authorized by NStorm and were extremely poor copies of the code and art by original creators Ferguson and Bielinski. Myself, along with millions of fans all over the world loved the original artwork of Ferguson in all its pixelized glory and this unauthorized release caused sever [sic] harm to the brand that took several years to recover from." ~ Matthew Lichtenwalter, Commotion Interactive

It seems highly unlikely that the Elf Bowling ports were actually unauthorized, as no legal action was taken, nor did any of the developers or publishers of the release attempt to hide their work on it at any point.
Also Appears On: NStorm, Inc. (Company), Blockdot (Company), Elf Bowling (Collection)
Shortly after the Famicom's launch in 1983, Atari approached Nintendo offering to distribute the system outside of Japan as the Nintendo Enhanced Video System. Negotiations for the arrangement stalled when Atari saw a demonstration for the Coleco Adam home computer system that used the ColecoVision port of Donkey Kong as a demo title. Because Atari previously gained the exclusive PC port rights to the arcade game, they assumed that Nintendo was also working with Coleco behind their backs. By the time the misunderstanding was cleared up, the North American video game industry had crashed and Ray Kassar had stepped down as CEO of Atari, causing the agreement to be called off entirely. The Famicom wouldn't reach international shores until 1985, when Nintendo began distributing a revised version in North America themselves as the Nintendo Entertainment System.
Also Appears On: Atari (Company), Nintendo (Company)
Contributed by VinchVolt on November 18, 2023
The Day Before
In January 2023, the game's Steam page was pulled along with a gameplay trailer on YouTube the following month, with developer Fntastic stating that there had been trademark issues surrounding the game's title, with the game being delayed to November of that year as a result. However, the studio's founders revealed that there were already plans to delay the game prior to the trademark disputes, which was intended to be announced as part of a ten minute gameplay trailer. They also defended against claims that the game was a scam, due to being backed by publisher Mytona and evaluated on their progress regularly. They also stated that "we didn't take a penny from people: no crowdfunding, no pre-orders, no donations".
Contributed by chocolatejr9 on November 18, 2023
Super Mario 3D All-Stars
Attachment When Super Mario Bros. 35 and Super Mario 3D All-Stars were released, they were criticized for being preemptively planned to be pulled from digital storefronts on March 31, 2021. This, along with the DIC Mario cartoons coincidentally being moved from Netflix to Paramount+ on the same day, spawned an internet meme depicting Mario as receiving a medieval public execution by Nintendo on that date.
Also Appears On: Super Mario Bros. 35 (Game), Mario (Franchise)
Contributed by Rocko & Heffer on November 17, 2023
Chex Quest was based on the engine of Doom - the engine could be officially licensed thanks to the game technically not making a profit of it's own as a free game, only profit for the Chex cereal, and the release of Quake rendering the old Doom engine obsolete.
Also Appears On: Chex Quest (Game)
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