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This article pertains to all of the known beta elements and unused content from Vexx.

Due to time constraints and insufficient funding, many elements and levels were cut, while others were changed through various stages of the game's development.

Characters[]

  • Vexx himself went through numerous changes, starting as a creature by the name of "Jinx" who possessed magical gloves inspired by the Battle Chasers American comic-book series. This was changed to a rodent-like creature named "Clip" who had a small, reptilian sidekick named "Mischief," but their similarities to Jak and Daxter led the developers to change the main characters once again, ditching the side-kick Mischief in favor of a platformer based around one central protagonist.
  • Five different new characters had been designed, with at least two of them being combined into Vexx's current look. At the time, he was still known as Jinx and was at one point a female, but he was renamed to "Vexx" and changed to a male character.
  • An old render of the main cast shows Dark Yabu with greener skin and spine-like hair, Reia with tan skin and different colored clothes, and Darby, who doesn't appear to be affected by blindness and has more detailed facial hair, surrounding Vexx who back then, was still known as Jinx.

Enemies[]

  • In the game's official strategy guide, there are descriptions for three unused enemies: Moddax (dog-reptilian enemies), Fuegore (an insect enemy), and Stingers (giant, flying Shadowcreep heads).
  • In both the game guide and the official instruction manual, Puggles have a different daytime version, showing them as more beady-eyed with no horns. However, the game guide could be based on a near-final build of the game that was left unedited.

Locations[]

  • The game originally had 18 levels split into 6 worlds, with them being connected together and visible from a distance, all surrounding the Central Landspire. The cut levels included:
    • Vexx's home village of Overwood
    • The Temple of Nanyk
    • Talon's Maw
    • Undertow Tower
    • Submarilis
    • The Devil's Well
    • Pyroseum
    • Sorrow's End
    • Mirrorrim.
  • In several previews, Overwood was originally named "Rockhaven," but the music files give it the name "Redwood." Some early press releases also mention that Vexx was going to try and reach Landspire to confront Yabu. Along with this, Reia tells Vexx during the central cutscene that he has to "activate the three outer structures of Astara," hinting at a plot point removed late in development.
  • Beta screenshots show the early layout of the levels, worlds that can be seen in the backgrounds, enemies in different areas, different collectibles, a bar-based health meter, and possibly darker lighting to the game, as well as more vibrant and colorful textures in various areas.

Items[]

  • There was planned to be a Water Suit that would improve Vexx's swimming ability and allow him to swim through freezing water without taking demage, similar to the Rock Suit and Air Suit. However, it was not added due to time constraints. To compensate, the developers increased Vexx's swimming speed.
  • An early trailer shows Vexx riding a creature between Dragonreach and Daggercrag, but the mount was scrapped in the final version of the game.
  • In the 'Voices' part of the options menu, an unused Darby voice-line can be heard, where he discusses the Spirit Stones and the voices that can be heard near them.

Music[]

  • An alternative soundtrack featuring unused songs and some alternate versions of others can be found here.

Prototypes[]

On March 20th, 2021, videogame preservationist website Hidden Palace uploaded and dumped over 700 unique prototypes of various PlayStation 2 games in an archivist project called "Project Deluge." Three of these are prototype builds of Vexx, and share differences from the final version of the game. The prototypes can be played on the PCSX2 emulator or on a hacked PlayStation 2 console.

On September 18th, 2021, Project Deluge dumped numerous Xbox and Sega Dreamcast game prototypes, including one prototype build of the Xbox version of Vexx. Like the PS2 prototypes, it can played on the Xemu emulator or through a modified Xbox console.

November 2nd, 2002 prototype[]

The earliest of these prototypes is dated to November 2nd, 2002. This prototype build served as a preview version given to journalists and members the press, as seen in this video from IGN. This build has the largest amount of differences from the final build. It is extremely unfinished and riddled with bugs and glitches. It also suffers from frequent stuttering and hitching due to preloading not being properly implemented. The ISO of this build can be downloaded from archive.org.

Article on hiddenpalace.org.

Differences from the final version[]

  • It contains a debug menu that is not present in the final release.
  • The opening movie that plays on the title screen is a series of screenshots and stills instead of a gameplay reel video like in the retail version.
  • The "Press Start" on the title screen has slightly shorter text.
  • The background of the pause menu has a reddish tint, rather than a bluish tint like in the final version.
  • The Tutorial is missing entirely.
  • When entering underwater, a bug occurs where the first frame of the opening cutscene will appear in front of the screen, blocking the player's vision and making it impossible to see underwater.
  • Puggles drop two orbs of health rather than one.
  • Grimkins still have their heads on fire unlike in the retail PS2 version, where there is no fire effect.
  • The Rift Hub is extremely dark and poorly lit.
  • It contains an alternate middle cutscene featuring a voice-over for the Rift Hub's artificial intelligence system.
  • The main menu has an animation for Vexx landing onto the platform below him that is not present in the final game.
  • The main menu has an option for "Free Strategy Guide" below "Extras" which plays a video advert for the Acclaim website.
  • Vexx builds momentum while running slightly slower than in the retail build.
  • If Vexx long-jumps into a flat wall, he will bounce back and be dizzy for a short time, similar to Mario in Super Mario 64.
  • When doing a second grounded jump, Vexx will perform a front-flip animation, which he does not do in the final game.
  • The Rage Meter is located adjacent to the Health Bar on the lower-left corner instead of the top-right corner. It appears as three circles instead of a bar like in the final version.
  • Shards, Jars, and Wraithhearts are not present in the top-left corner at all times like in the final version. Instead, they appear only as pop-up notifications when a player obtains one of them.
  • When one of Reia's Scrolls are collected, a pop-up notification appears and reads out the entirety of the journal entry. This does not occur in the final game.
Vexx-_2002_prototype_mid-game_beta_cutscene

Vexx- 2002 prototype mid-game beta cutscene

An early version of the middle cutscene featuring an unused voice-over for the Rift Hub's artificial intelligence system.

Gallery[]

January 20th, 2003[]

This prototype build is dated to January 20th, 2003, built five days after the final North American build. It was built for review purposes. The ISO of this build can be downloaded from archive.org.

Article on hiddenpalace.org.

Gallery[]

February 6th, 2003[]

This prototype build is dated to February 6th, 2003. The ISO of this build can be downloaded from archive.org.

Article on hiddenpalace.org.

January 15th, 2003[]

This prototype build is dated to January 15th, 2003. It was compiled one week before the final North American Xbox build (the first retail build) for review purposes. The ISO of this build can be downloaded from archive.org.

Article on hiddenpalace.org.

Gallery[]

Concept Art and Early Renders[]

Early Screenshots[]

Sequel Artwork[]

Videos[]

The_Works_Vexx_Trailer

The Works Vexx Trailer

An early trailer for Vexx, showing new renders of the hero, different level design, dust effects on the ground, some of the unused levels and distance-based areas, an unusual health bar, weather (rain), enemies exploding into blood upon being killed, a wider vocal range for Vexx, and a different Rock Suit pad design.

Vexx_Trailer

Vexx Trailer

Another early Vexx trailer, showing a different version of Darby, new Reia lines, different voices, and sound effects, Vexx riding a creature in the Daggercrag-Dragonreach world, an unusual water-based world, a stepping-stone based area, and blue wings for the Wing Suit.

Vexx_-_The_144_Beta_Wraithhearts

Vexx - The 144 Beta Wraithhearts

A video analysis by YouTuber 3dmarth, explaining and speculating on many of the cut Wraithhearts.

Vexx_speedrun_ft._developer_Kynan_Pearson_FULL_STREAM

Vexx speedrun ft. developer Kynan Pearson FULL STREAM

Speedrunner Strategism brought Vexx designer Kynan Pearson to commentate on the game during the Twitch live-stream. In it, Pearson reveals many details about the game and its development, as well as ideas the team had for the canceled sequel.

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