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The Grinch on Dreamcast, prototypes of the Japanese Unreleased version for Christmas !!!

In the 2000s, Ron Howard directed the film "The Grinch" with Jim Carrey as the main actor. The film recounted the adventures of the green character created by Dr. Seuss, author of dozens of stories and novels. He is part of the Christmas mythology. The goal of the Grinch, a grumpy and prankster hermit, is to steal the Christmas of the citizens of Chouville. He hates this celebration !

Despite mixed reviews, the film did very well at the box office. To accompany the release of the film, the Canadian studio "Artificial Mind & Movement era" (now known as Behaviour Interactive) started to create a video game based on the Grinch universe. Konami was in charge of publishing it.

The Grinch Dreamcast Japanese unreleased prototype.jpg
The Grinch Dreamcast japanese prototype.jpg

The video game "The Grinch" was released in late 2000 in Europe and the United States. A Japanese release was planned and was on the schedule until July 2001. For obvious reasons (the tragic fall of Sega), it was cancelled. Maybe the Grinch was not so famous in Japan after all !

Despite his greenish color and childlike appearance, the Grinch is a tough cookie. As the holiday season approaches, he sets out to wreck Christmas. The goal of this stranger, an anti-hero, is to annoy the residents of Wholand, where this video game adventure takes place. It is better not to get involved with him, otherwise your eyes will be filled with sadness !!!

The Grinch is not alone in his uburlesque journey. He is accompanied by Max, his faithful dog. Because of his small size, he can slip through holes to open a locked door from the inside or retrieve an important object from a room inaccessible to a human-sized character. The player can, at any time, take control of the poodle and discover the best kept secrets of Wholand.

The Grinch Dreamcast Japanese unreleased version.jpg

The levels are few, 4 in number, but they are very long and vast with a large number of diverse and nasty objectives to achieve, such as :

  • repaint the mayor's posters by collecting the necessary paint beforehand.

  • break the gifts scattered in the meanders of the levels.

  • make a mess of things.

The Grinch unreleased dreamcast prototype.jpg

To do this, the Grinch, with his fake belly, has 2 attacks. The first one is a foul breath that scares away every living soul for miles around. The second one is an incredible jump that allows you to crush elements of the scenery.

The Grinch had plenty of plans for building some pretty wacky inventions until a violent storm blew them away. His precious documents flew all over Wholand. To carry out his evil plan, he must find them !

The discovery of the development kit containing the cancelled Japanese version of the game

KF recently acquired a Katana Dreamcast development kit containing several builds of "The Grinch" including Japanese Unreleased versions of the game. A computer collector was selling it after repairing it.

This collector had found it, for a decent price, on the bottom of Ebay. The ad was in French (Quebec) and was badly listed. He thought it was a SEGA computer. It turned out to be a Dreamcast development kit used by the studio "Artful Mind and Movement".

After solving the problems related to its operation, as it was not in the line of conduct of the collector, he resold it without making a small margin in the process. Who doesn't ?

Download the SET5 Dreamcast dev kit with "The Grinch" :

The Grinch  Dreamcast Katana Dev Kit

Dreamcast Katana Dev Kit KF.jpg

The Japanese prototype of the game "The Grinch" dated February 7, 2001

The date of this build, which should be considered as the last one before the cancellation of the software, indicates the 7th of February 2001, a few days after the announcement of Sega to withdraw from the manufacturer market.

  • In the Cutscenes, there is no audio of the dialogues. However, In Game, the character speaks Japanese. Try for example to call his faithful dog, Max !

  • Some mini-cutscenes are missing, for example when the Grinch, at the beginning of the game, arrives near a lever that must be activated. This sequence shows the player that he has to use the lever by using this or that button, "Y" in this case. Since this video is not present, it is difficult to know what to do.

  • In the mission progression book, some of the objectives to complete are not present in this Japanese prototype. The button to go back is indicated by "A" and not "B".



The Grinch Dreamcast prototype.jpg
The Grinch Dreamcast Unreleased Japanese Version.jpg
Unreleased The Grinch Dreamcast japanese prototype.jpg
Dreamcast The Grinch.jpg

If a Japanese actor wants to dub the game, it would be perfectly possible to finish it knowing that the prototype is very close to a final version.

Unreleased Japanese Dreamcast version the grinch.jpg

The other Dreamcast prototpyes of "The Grinch" game

  • The In Game audio does not seem to be implemented in this build unlike the prototype explained above.

  • This prototype is 21 days after the final version by comparing the 1ST_READ.

  • It takes time to load, you have to be patient..

  • The prototype allows access only to the auto-demos. During an auto-demo phase, by pressing "START", the game goes to the next one. The auto-demos are cut by black screens acting as loading screens.

  • It could be a promotional version in which the demos are played in a loop.

The Grinch Dreamcast prototype dev kit.jpg
The Grinch Dreamcast US prototype.jpg

A hack of a Dreamast prototype of "The Grinch" game

  • The Grinch, unreleased Japanese version, with files from the final American version: You will have the Japanese voices in the game with the French voices in the Cutscenes. This hack was done while trying to run a build from the Katana development kit archive.

Special thanks to :

  • KF for sharing his archive and contributing to the history of the Dreamast.

  • Ian Micheal for working on the dev kit and creating the GDI of the different prototypes of "The Grinch" game.

Feel free to check out "other unreleased games" I found. For the more curious among you, I created a "list of all unreleased games from the Dreamcast".

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