Game preservation group puts more than 700 PlayStation 2 prototypes and unreleased demos online
Safeguarding video gaming historyBy Shawn Knight
In brief: A group of video game preservationists have released a massive collection of more than 700 unique prototypes for the PlayStation 2. Collectively, the bundle consists of around 860GB of compressed data and is the first part of what sounds like a lot more to come.
The dump comes courtesy of Hidden Palace, the same folks that brought us the Sonic the Hedgehog 3 prototype in late 2019. This time around, they worked with a single person that was kind enough to let them look over and preserve each item in his collection with no strings attached.
The haul, dubbed Project Deluge, is being split into multiple parts - this PS2 collection is only the first part of a much larger dump. Hidden Palace contributors have painstakingly combed over everything to weed out final retail builds, narrowing the release down to unique content like press previews, tech demos, localization prototypes, debug builds and otherwise unreleased versions.
Hidden Palace has a running list of Project Deluge builds over on its website. As of writing, there are 752 entries.
Given the scope of the project and the questionable reliability of optical media, the team said it wasn't able to determine the integrity of each and every dump in the lot. In other words, don't be surprised to come across an error or two that directly relates to the dumping process.
Images courtesy Deni Williams, Jirik V