Sonic Mania Dev Shows Off Rejected Darkwing Duck Game

Headcannon shares a demo it made for a Darkwing Duck title.

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In the NES era, Capcom was well-known for its video game adaptations of some of Disney's most beloved cartoons, including DuckTales, TaleSpin, and Darkwing Duck. These would be collected and released for modern consoles as the Disney Afternoon Collection, but beyond that and 2013's DuckTales Remastered, the company hasn't released any follow-ups to its classic Disney games in decades--although we've now gotten a glimpse at a game that could have been.

Darkwing Duck writer Aaron Sparrow revealed on Twitter (via Game Informer) that Sonic Mania developer Headcannon pitched a new Darkwing Duck game to Capcom in 2018. According to Sparrow, the prospective title was envisioned as a spiritual successor to the classic NES game and would have featured Steelbeak, Taurus Bulba, and the Fearsome Five as villains, with voice work by "as many [members] of the original cast as possible."

While Capcom would ultimately pass on the pitch, Headcannon has shared a video of the short demo it put together for the game on YouTube. As you can see, it would have featured SNES-like visuals and similar gameplay to the original title, with a few new skills in Darkwing's repertoire, such as the ability to fire a grappling hook and swing across chasms using his Gas Gun. You can watch the demo below.

Despite never being greenlit, players can play the demo level that Headcannon created on PC. You can download it for free from the studio's website, although it remains unfinished.

The Disney Afternoon Collection launched for PS4, Xbox One, and PC in 2017. GameSpot awarded it a 7/10 in our review, writing, "The Disney Afternoon Collection is a refined time capsule that covers a very specific chapter in gaming history. While these games might not be anything to get overly excited about individually, in a package that includes plenty of history and extras, this collection is a nostalgic curiosity with heart."

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GirlUSoCrazy

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Edited By GirlUSoCrazy

When I first saw the screenshots I thought maybe it was an unfinished Genesis or PC Engine game (anything would be better than the actual PCE game we got). I'm a little disappointed this wasn't an unearthed prototype for an actual console but happy they decided to let this out, I wish they could have made the idea work, it looks awesome.

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Bread_or_Decide

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My goodness. I would have bought that the second it released.

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snugglebear

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Edited By snugglebear

Dark wang, dark wang, DUHK

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bouchart

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Darkwing Duck on the NES is a pretty good game. It's basically a modified Mega Man game. But it's nothing special. I can't imagine anyone being overly enthusiastic for a remake or successor.

These guys are obviously talented, so they can probably use their game engine and retool this into a game with their own original IP.

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Barighm

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Edited By Barighm

In this risk-averse climate nobody would support the development of a game tied to a cartoon show that has been off the air for over 20 years. Certainly not the big boy AAA developers anyway.

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Elranzer

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@Barighm: It would have to tie in to some Darkeing Duck revival. Perhaps a release of the series on Blu-Ray.

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LordCrisp

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@Elranzer: holy crap... would give my arm for a blu-ray release of Darkwing

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Coolman13355

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@Elranzer: That or a spinoff from the DuckTales reboot.