In a bizarre series of events an early build of the unreleased Dreamcast version of ToeJam & Earl 3 has found its way onto the internet.
Assembler forum user ZakhooiTM discovered the early build on the internal hard drive of a Dreamcast dev kit they purchased on eBay for $1200. While publisher Sega has never approved this build's release, series creators Greg Johnson and Mark Voorsanger have assured ZakhooiTM that they will look the other way when it comes to this "community release," with the stipulation that the beta is not to be sold or pressed to a disc.
While ToeJam & Earl 3 eventually made its way onto the original Xbox in 2003, the Dreamcast version never saw the light of day and according to ZakhooiTM, it's a lot different than its commercial build. "The version on the devkit is more like the original on the megadrive but then in 3D," the hacker explained. "So no bosses, gates, keys, mini-games and hub connected world. Also no cutscenes, you just begin at the begin of the map and go to the elevator then can go to the next level."
This rough cut is also pretty buggy, and while the first nine levels run well, stages 10-12 are prone to lockups.
Since ZakhooiTM can't receive money for this unfinished build, the video game archaeologist has instead asked fans of the historic beta to donate money to the Mardan School, an american charity that helps children with learning disabilities.
You can download the ToeJam & Earl 3 Dreamcast prototype from the Assembler forums, where there are instructions on getting it to run. Or you can just watch ZakhooiTM play through a half hour of it in the video below.