The Hidden Palace is well know for collecting, archiving and preserving prototypes and unreleased video games – recently, they happened across a box of EPROM’s from Germany and discovered a previously un-dumped prototype of a game called Atmosfear. If you find the header or title of the game oddly nostalgic, you might be like me and owned the original board game this unreleased SNES game was based on. Atmosfear (also known as NightMare elsewhere in the world) was a VHS interactive board game (later released on DVD, I happened to own both versions for some reason) that mixes real time events with the physical board game, all hosted by the truly terrifying Gatekeeper – who will occasionally pop on your television and request certain events take place or tell you to change the board itself. I personally used to play it quite a lot at parties for it’s cheesy horror, best played around the Halloween Season.
The SNES counterpart was originally developed by Beam Software (known for their work on Radical Rex and Shadowrun) and plays like a typical action platformer of that era. As far as the community is aware, no screenshots or video footage was shown prior to this dump, with the game only being mentioned by name briefly in a few magazines around 1993 – ultimately never being released, with no cancellation reason given. Atmosfear was a big part of my childhood, and a game I go back to every now an then, so this ROM dump was something that took me by surprise and gave me something to play while filled with nostalgic whimsy. If you would like to download and try out the Atmosfear ROM for yourself, you can do so on The Hidden Palace’s website – just keep in mind, the game isn’t completely finished, and you may run into some bugs during gameplay (along with the last reachable level being incomplete and unbeatable.)