Top 10 Cancelled Nintendo GamesNot every Nintendo game makes it to release. However, these cancelled games still deserve recognition! Leaked or not leaked, these are the top 10 cancelled Nintendo games! (NOTE: Star Fox 2 is disqualified, due to it seeing an official release on both the SNES Classic Edition and Switch Online.)
This game was supposed to be the sequel to Earthbound on the Super Nintendo, and was originally going to release on the Nintendo 64DD. After the 64DD flopped, however, it moved to a cartridge format. Unfortunately, this new format caused all kinds of problems for the game, and HAL started to bleed money. Eventually, in late 1999, they decided to outright cancel the game. The project was revived a few years later in 2003, albeit on the GBA, and it would release in 2006 as Mother 3. However, the original N64 version remains lost.
Lucas was supposed to replace Ness in Melee because of this.
Another case of a game initially being cancelled, but then brought back for another platform. Kirby GCN entered development after Kirby 64 was released, and was supposed to bring back helpers from Super Star (years before Star Allies brought them back). The game even got as far as to have a trailer at E3. Unfortunately, after E3 2005, the game ended up in a state of limbo. A ton of prototypes were created that completely reworked the game (including one that turned it into a 3D platformer), until eventually Nintendo settled on one that would end up becoming Kirby's Return to Dream Land.
Super Donkey, despite it's name, isn't a Donkey Kong game, but rather an original game that was supposed to be released on the Super Nintendo. Little is known about it, mainly because all we have of it are it's prototypes; however, the game was cancelled sometime before 1994, since the game ultimately ended up being reworked into Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island.
When I saw the title, I was like "Isn't that the Japanese version of Donkey Kong Country?"
Raven Blade was an RPG being developed by Retro Studios that was in development from 1999 to 2001. It was supposed to release on the GameCube, and was showcased at E3 2001. However, Nintendo was not happy with how the project was panning out, mainly because most of Raven Blade's developers had moved to working on Metroid Prime, slowing the development of the game to a crawl, and threatened to cancel the project altogether if Retro didn't show any improvements by a certain date. Retro failed to meet this deadline, and the game was cancelled as a result in July 2001, only a few months after it was shown off at E3.
Starting life as a tech demo at SpaceWorld 2000, Super Mario 128 was supposed to be the next big Mario game after Super Mario Sunshine, and would have been a sequel to Super Mario 64. However, despite reports that the game would appear at E3 several years, the game never showed up. Eventually, in 2007, it was stated that Super Mario 128 had been cancelled; however, a lot of the elements of the game were broken off into other games, such as Pikmin and Super Mario Galaxy.
Donkey Kong Racing would have been a sequel to Diddy Kong Racing, except instead of featuring Diddy Kong and his friends, it would've featured more characters from the main Donkey Kong Country franchise. Another difference from Diddy Kong was that instead of vehicles, this game would have featured the characters riding on animal buddies from the Country series, like Rambi and Enguarde. Sadly, the game was cancelled when Microsoft bought out Rare, preventing them from continuing development of the game.
Yoshi Racing was a prototype created not by Nintendo, but by Argonaut Software that was pitched to Nintendo sometime after Star Fox 64/Lylat Wars was finished. It was supposed to be exactly what it sounds like - a 3D Yoshi racing game. However, Nintendo ended up rejecting the prototype due to their strict policies on licensing out their characters to third parties, which caused Argonaut to take the prototype and develop it into Croc: Legend of the Gobbos, which was released on all platforms except for the Nintendo 64 (likely as a way to get back at Nintendo for rejecting Yoshi Racing).
Another victim of Microsoft's Rare buyout, Donkey Kong: Coconut Crackers was to be a Game Boy Advance puzzle game featuring Donkey Kong. Like Donkey Kong Racing, the game was cancelled after Microsoft bought Rare; however, unlike DKR, the game was revived a few years later as It's Mr. Pants, except the game was released by THQ and no longer had a Donkey Kong theme.
Pokemon Pink was to be a partner game to Pokemon Yellow, except instead of the game centering around Pikachu, like in Yellow, the game would have centered around Clefairy. The game never released for unknown reasons.
Super Mario Spikers was a project developed by Next Level Games, and would have been a cross between a volleyball and wrestling game for the Wii featuring the Mario characters, similar to the Mario Strikers games. The game did not go past concept art and early animation tests, however, since when Nintendo saw the animations, they rejected the game due to it being too violent.
This doesn't count because it was actually released on both the SNES Classic and Switch Online.