Super Shinobi/Revenge of Shinobi BETA ROM [Sega Smash Pack, Sega Final Genesis ROM Archive]

AKA... Sega's Silly Blunder
AKA... The Search for the Redumped ROM

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Last Updated: Saturday, November 11, 2017

I'm finally mentioning my story after over five years!

It started in 2005.

Before then, we had received the Twin CD release of the Sega Smash Packs... which included Sega Swirl. In 2005, I was in my sister's room on her computer [called The 7th PC... even then!], and was messing with the Sega Smash Pack Collection CD. The PC ran Windows 98 First Edition, had 64MB of RAM, had 400MHz CPU speed (Intel Pentium II), had an S3 Trio 64V+ PCI video card, and a Sound Blaster ISA sound card. In 2005. Anyway, in the process of messing with the Smash Packs, including playing Sonic 2, Phantasy Star II (which I sucked at back then), and Comix Zone (I STILL suck at that game), all in short intervals... I finally went to run Super Shinobi. I knew about this game on the Internet and heard it was good (for its time at least), so I started the game. My sis was watching me the whole time, so this was already interesting from the start.

The game starts up, and I watched the short intro. Since I never played the game ever, I had no clue of the final product. After pressing start, I immediately noticed the numbers in the top-right corner... and so did Sis. Our first and quick deduction was the Level Select feature... which I knew wasn't present in the final. Went into the options menu, and immediately noticed the No Death feature. Clearly not a final product feature. Oh, and the numbered sound test. [Somehow I recalled the named tracks?] Yet, I never thought it to be a beta. Not that I could play it far enough on The 7th PC to even determine that before it crashed (program kept closing without any warning) within a minute. Yes, it was that unstable on 7th.

A few years later, in 2007, I noticed that the games themselves were in the .kvq extension and even with my inferior software skills, I could tell that they were encrypted. I copied the files to another location, which would be anywhere right now since I keep switching backup drives and moving stuff, and left it alone. Since there was no info other than what the extension itself was at the time, it was pointless.

Fast-forward to Saturday, August 13, 2011. I was going through drx's Hidden Palace forums, since his main website is bugged up [PHP fail], and found the first thread linked below. I then read the entire thread and thought to myself, "Wait. Does that mean the ROM file is finally decrypted into a playable version?" A [now dead] link proved as such. When I found out that the link was dead, I was disappointed, but I did not give up! I looked through the directory of which the ROM was previously stored. It was not present on the server. I also knew that it was not floating on the Internet on another source, so I went on to reading the SonicRetro forum thread linked in the Hidden Palace forum thread, which is the second link... right under the first thread link.

Upon reading the SonicRetro thread, someone had the foresight of placing the Revenge of Shinobi beta ROM with the rest of the games [of course], thus not losing the file at all... and prompting me to save the files and host them right on this website. Don't expect a comparison screenshot collection or any video anytime soon, as I suck at the final version of Revenge of Shinobi to begin with.

Update: 2017/11/11

I finally revisit this page and did some structural backend changes, aside from the updates to this page. However, any old page and download links since this page's inception (which is Wednesday, August 17, 2011) will break. [I will make redirect links for those for one year, anyone linking to the old links on their websites should update their links by November 11, 2018.] There is also some more info regarding this ROM; the Update Sources links below provide it.

drx and evilhamwizard have released the SEGA Final ROM Archive images in 2016. They also released the separated roms that would have been with the notable 2008/02/23 release, possibly due to space constraints they were not directly on their servers, and they were mostly redundant anyway. In Disc 1 of the Archive, the Super Shinobi beta ROM was present without the Sega Channel header. That is also provided here. Essentially, it should be a clean dump, but knowing data archival in the 1990s, even that is not 100%.

SEGA apparently goofed and used SHINOBI1.BIN (the 1989 prototype) instead of SHINOBI2.BIN (the 1990 REV02 prototype) when adding the ROM to SEGA Smash Pack 1. But... REV02 proto has a level select code enabled by default! Ah, SEGA.


Here's the ROM itself [Separated from]: Enjoy
There were also newer revisions of games in Sega Smash Pack 1 and 2 [curiosity]: Enjoy
The complete Sega Smash Pack ROMs package is here, if you [somehow] are interested: Enjoy

2017/11/11 Update

The ROM itself (again!): Enjoy
The only difference is that the "A0115 Sega Channel" header is not present in this ROM dump, unlike the original Sega Smash Packs ROM dump.

The intended ROM: Enjoy
As mentioned before, this is the intended ROM, rather than the 1989 prototype. Notable difference is that the level select code is enabled by default. Other than that, this is just a final build with few changes before it was finalized.

Both smash*.zip files were grabbed from SonicRetro through Megaupload. They would've disappeared at some point in time anyway, so I thought... why not grab these files before they do go into obscurity?

From Sonic Retro Forums:

What's different in Smash Pack 1
Golden Axe
Super Shinobi

What's different in Smash Pack 2
Comix Zone
Super Hang-On


Hidden Palace Forum Thread
SonicRetro Forum Thread

2017/11/11 Update
News Release of the SEGA Final ROM Archive Release Part 1 - Some info regarding the Revenge of Shinobi prototype and its build date.
The Revenge of Shinobi (Aug 21, 1989 Proto) Hidden Palace Wiki Entry
Rage Quitter 87's Revenge of Shinobi Prototype/Final Comparisons Page - A bit comprehensive.

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