This could have been the most acclaimed 2D fighting game to ever be created somebody other than Capcom
, but it never saw the light of day. The Eternal Champions
series was created by a team called Deep Water, one of Sega of America
's own in-house programming teams. The Sega Genesis
version was pretty good, and the Sega CD
version was spectacular but suffered from the limitations of the available technology. Eternal Champions: The Final Chapter
would have picked up on one of the dangling plot threads from the Sega CD
game - the appearance of the Infernals
- and gone on to introduce new characters and an all-new game tournament.
Sega of America was already making plans to release the third and final installment on the Sega Saturn and was in the process of souping up the game engine when their superiors over at Sega of Japan put their foot down and said demanded that work cease on the project immediately. It wasn't going to happen because they wanted Virtua Fighter - a game that had come out of their own programming stable - to be the definitive fighting game for the Saturn. Not only was Eternal Champions for Saturn never developed, it never even made it out of the planning stages.
Looking back, Eternal Champions: The Final Chapter might have been one of those regional titles that could have helped push Saturn sales had it been given a fair chance, but it never got that opportunity. Sega of Japan killed Eternal Champions for the Saturn before one line of preliminary code ever made it through a Sega Saturn development kit.
Lots of info came from http://www.atani-software.net/segabase/SegaBase-Saturn(Part2).html