For any game, the odds are that it has unused assets or partially completed systems that hit the cutting room floor.
Ocarina of Time started with the Mario 64 engine, so there are probably bits and pieces all over.
I'm honestly curious, i've never actually heard any theories about Luigi and mario 64 other than he just cut due to above mentioned reasons. Much like Yoshi.
It takes less effort to google 'mario 64 conspiracy' than it did to create the fan-fic you came up with while assuming that the GP was rationalizing things.
Why not assume the best of people?
Why assume negative connotation where there is none? It was a silly conspiracy poking light-hearted fun at conspiracy theorists.
The GP's phrasing "the guaranteed follow-up" that made me suspect the GP had seen conspiracy theories about other video games, but hadn't yet seen any conspiracy theories about this latest find, and was anticipating a future conspiracy theory. Sorry if my phrasing sounded malicious.
Why delete it? You never know if they might reinstate it (before release that is, and why bother deleting on release day?) or the model could be used in another game, making them costs money, storing them not that much.
The space obviously wasn't needed during development (this is leaked source, I don't know if it made it to the gold version) so there's two likely possibilities:
a) They knew about it but didn't have the dev/tester time to vet the change. This is coming from an era when most game testing was done manually and the N64 toolchain had some big issues around launch. Higher priority fixes might have just pushed a cleanup task like this off the list.
b) They just didn't know. This is also from an era where DCVS weren't particularly common in the games industry and CVS was still black magic in some circles so auditing changes or doing code reviews were very rare.
Also, as a developer (game and webdev), there's tons of leftover stuff. Most of which is assets. For games, the artists would've put them in the codebase at some point. For web, it's usually just forgotten when removing features.
Unfortunately, many game companies lost the source code for their classic games years ago. They couldn't release it even if they wanted to.
One of the big surprises coming from this leak is simply the fact that Nintendo's source code still exists. The company seems to have been very thorough in archiving material related to its older games.
Now if they'd just pay the emulator people a bucket of cash to make officially supported emulators that run on the Switch and all future hardware (without having to rebuy the titles), they'd make so much money they'll be around for the next 300 years.
> without having to rebuy the titles
How does this lead to making "so much money"? Purely from hardware sales?
Yeah, hardware margins for gaming systems are often not great. The point is that you also have to buy games for it. Similar to how printers are priced (it's the ink that makes the money).
They'll buy the new releases. And as a sample size of 1, I'd probably pay $10-$20 for each classic game if I knew it had indefinite portability. Same way I'm happy to pay for classic books.
I missed Metroid prime when it came out, and there's no real way for me to go back to it without getting my GameCube from my parents and finding a disk on eBay.
Just think of all of the kids who've heard about all of these classic games, love the latest version, and would gladly dive into the rest of the series, if it were available.
People are still getting excited because the source code for a 25 year old game has finally been stolen and leaked. 2401
I certainly know that I'd be loading up if they made everything available in perpetuity.
And thinking of how many people want to get get into a series but simply can't because there's no real way for them to. Nintendo isn't really even doing VC this generation. So they're turning to emulation, if they're technical enough.
I won't buy virtual console stuff because it won't carry over.
I'd happily buy their whole catalog if I knew it was mine forever.
Edit: Could someone downvoting explain what is wrong with my comment? We would all love to have source code of everything because that's what we like to dig into and hack on, it's also a fact that it isn't required if the goal is preservation.
Curious find though. Always wanted to play as Luigi in the game back in the '90s.
24+01 = 25.
2+4+0=1 = 7.
And here is its 3D model loaded in Blender with textures preview mode ON.
# Once it's deleted, there's no way to get it back.
# Version control isn't reliable.
But worse in all other cases. If your decision process is such that that weighs in favor of cluttering your codebase with dead code, that's a problem.
And, actually, since the commented code almost certainly isn't being maintained and uncommented for testing as the rest of the codebase evolved, it's probably not even better in the case that decisions are reversed.
> Once it's deleted, there's no way to get it back
There's rewriting it in light of the actual requirements and current state of the rest of the code base.
> Version control isn't reliable.
Neither is unmaintained, commented-out code dragged along with your code base. If your VCS isn't the vastly more reliable of those two things, that's a problem you ought to address.
(Of course, at the time of Mario 64, the calculus might well have favored a different approach.)
# Dev-only code.
# Fixme: delete before release.
I think we need better tooling for browsing historical artifacts that may be valuable in the future -- which I think is the main reason I've seen people intentionally keep dead code. Maybe the solution to that is to just tag the commit in which you deleted the code with a note on what it was so you can find it again.
Edit: An uncle comment mentions that this may have been a discovery from digging around in the CVS history for the game, so they may have kept the assets in source control after all! Some might reasonably take away from this to protect your source repo, but I think it's pretty cool it's possible to find these historical artifacts.