Dr. Mario was a runaway success on both the Nintendo NES and Game Boy, but did you know its original name was Virus? An unfinished and varying version of this 1990 Germ-em-up has surfaced online after a recent discovery in the last place you'd expect to find a prototype - a Nintendo PlayChoice-10 arcade machine.
The PlayChoice-10, for those unfamiliar with it, was Nintendo's attempt to bring their hugely successful NES line up to the arcades. With the capacity to hold up to ten different arcade adapted NES games, players would insert money in exchange for playing time on their game of choice.
So why on earth would an unfinished Nintendo NES game appear outside of Japan in one of Nintendo's arcade machines?
Prototype guru of Lost Levels, Frank Cifaldi, was quick to point out that the Nintendo-owned Chuck E. Cheese restaurants dotted around Seattle (which held these PlayChoice-10 cabinets) were once used to test upcoming Nintendo NES games during development. While this isn't definitive evidence, it might explain the existence of the PlayChoice-10 version.
A detailed comparison of both this prototype version and the retail release of Dr Mario has been posted online, accompanied by a downloadable ROM file of Virus, at Dream and Friends.
Dr. Mario Prototype 'Virus' (Nintendo NES) Gameplay Video
|< Prev||Next >|