From Sega Retro
- For the 1994 Sega Master System and Sega Game Gear game by Sims and Nexa, see Disney's Aladdin (8-bit).
|System(s): Sega Mega Drive|
|Developer: Virgin Games, Disney Software, Sega of America|
|Licensor: The Walt Disney Company|
|Sound driver: GEMS|
|Number of players: 1|
|Official in-game languages: |
Disney's Aladdin, more commonly known as Aladdin (アラジン) is a platform game developed by Virgin Interactive. It is based on Disney's movie of the same name and was released for the Sega Mega Drive in 1993, before being made for the Amiga, Game Boy, IBM PC and NES. A Game Boy Color version also followed later.
Several different Aladdin games exist. An entirely different game was developed by Sims for the Sega Master System and Sega Game Gear was released around the same period, and another version developed by Capcom was created for the Super NES (and later Game Boy Advance). Capcom's version exists as at the time, they held the rights to develop Disney-themed games for Nintendo consoles (or more accurately, the SNES).
Most stages are played through as Aladdin, who must get through the stage while accomplishing a task given at the beginning of each level (such as finding Scarab pieces). throws apples (which can be used to hurt enemies and which there is a limited supply of but can be collected throughout the level), swings your sword, and jumps. Before the start of the game, there is a screen showing what each in-game item is used for.
If the Abu icon is collected in the level, after completing it a bonus stage will be rewarded where Abu must collect all the falling apples without getting hurt by falling pots too many times to win. If a Genie icon is collected another bonus stage will be rewarded, which is a slot machine-esque game where the player can either get bonus items or lose all remaining spins by stopping on Jafar.
|Cave of Wonders|
|Inside the Lamp|
Wanting to make a more meaningful contribution to the video game market (as opposed to just licensing out properties as had been the case until now), Disney Software were approached by Virgin Games with work-in-progress technology known as "Digicel" - a means of converting frame-by-frame animation cells (used in producing animated films) to a format more suited to video game consoles at the time. As Digicel theoretically allowed Disney to bring its trademark standards of animation to a new market, the company signed up to working in conjunction with Virgin Games on a new product - the Mega Drive version of Aladdin.
Work began in in January 1993 (having temporarily shelved The Jungle Book, which was in mid-production), with ten of Disney's Florida-based animators producing animations, which were then shipped to Virgin Games' production facility in Irvine, California and digitised for use in-game. Roughly thirty people were involved between the two sites in total, including the film's directors. The teams gave themselves a deadline of October 1993 (or "100 days"), considered roughly three quarters of the normal time allotted to game development in this era.
Lead programmer David Perry claims to have been insured for $1.5 million over the 100 day period, being medically assessed on the first day of the project, and working (on average) 19 hour days.
Disney worked exclusively on character animations (which took nearly eight weeks to produce), with backgrounds being provided by artists at Virgin Games (after being approved). Despite being in production at the same time, no animations are shared between the game and movie, mostly due to the requirement for video game animations to loop. 1,500 new pieces of art were created for the game, with 250,000 digitised cells from the film also at the team's disposal for reference. The team did not have access to the full movie, with Virgin instead paying the development team's cinema tickets.
The Mega Drive Aladdin was meant to launch in the US on the same day as the VHS release - October 10, 1993, however other sources suggest it missed this date. Sega of America allocated a $3-$4 million advertising budget for the game, with advertising inserts being included (alongside Colgate and Pizza Hut offers) with the original VHS.
Aladdin was first shown to the public at Summer CES 1993, with a lavish production number of the song, "Prince Ali", complete with harem girls and a fire eater. At the event, Tom Kalinske gave a speech, as did Virgin Games chairman Richard Branson, Walt Disney Studios chairman Jeffrey Katenberg and Virgin Games president Martin Alper. The version on display was incomplete, though was said have passed 14 out of 20 milestones.
While the Sega-Virgin-Disney partnership garnered much of the attention at the time, this was not the only Aladdin video game project in development. Capcom, which at the time held the rights to produce Disney games for Nintendo platforms, were working on a different Aladdin game for the Super NES. Aside from working with the same source material, there is not thought to have been any overlap between the two projects - SNES Aladdin, a more traditionally made 2D platformer, launched later in 1993 to modest success. 8-bit Sega versions for the Sega Master System and Sega Game Gear developed by Nexa and SIMS, respectively, would also debut in the coming months.
Incidentally it is said that Capcom's Aladdin team drastically improved the graphics of its SNES version after seeing the Mega Drive at Summer CES.
Disney's Aladdin for the Mega Drive is considered to be a milestone for video game graphics, utilising technology known as "Digicel" to bring hand-drawn Disney-style animations to a video game environment. As each frame was drawn individually by professional Disney animators, Aladdin looked significantly better than most other platformers on the market, with visuals comparable to the graphical style as seen in the film.
With the exception of unreleased games such as DynoBlaze, no other Mega Drive games utilised the "Digicel" technology, however Aladdin did inspire many similar methods, such as those applied in Shiny Entertainment's Earthworm Jim (comprised of many former Aladdin developers). Other games published by Virgin such as Cool Spot and Mick & Mack as the Global Gladiators share Aladdin's focus on animation, whereas many games such as Pitfall: The Mayan Adventure are considered to be inspired by Aladdin's efforts.
The success of Disney's Aladdin gave Virgin Games the opportunity to work with other Disney licenses such as The Jungle Book, The Lion King and Pinocchio. It was also bundled with Mega Drive II systems in Europe.
A Sega Mega-CD version was planned for release, though full production was unlikely to occur until after sales numbers for the Mega Drive version "became apparent". The CD version was scrapped in favour of concentrating on The Jungle Book.
Aside from text translations, the game is identical in all regions from a content's point of view. The PAL version, like most other Virgin Games releases, was optimized in terms of music speed but not gameplay speed. Forcing the game into 60Hz mode makes the music play too fast.
In 2019, Aladdin was re-released as part of Disney Classic Games: Aladdin and The Lion King for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch alongside several versions of The Lion King. The compilation includes the original Mega Drive version, along with the June 27th prototype build (named the "Demo Version"), the Japanese version, and a "Final Cut" version which is a modified version of the Mega Drive game with many bug fixes, camera adjustments and other tweaks to improve gameplay, with the goal of representing "potential changes that the development team may have implemented had they had more time". The Game Boy version is also included in monochrome and "colour" (simulating the game as if it were inserted into a Game Boy Color).
- Programming & Project Management: David Perry
- Animation Engine by: David Perry
- Development Tools by: Andy Astor Services, Rob Northern Computing, Cross Products Ltd., Todd Robertson, Echidna
- Animation Directed by: Mike Dietz
- Assistant Animators: Shawn Mclean, Clarke Sorenson, Roger Hardy, Edward Schofield, Jeff Etter, Allyn Welty, Tom Tanaka
- Background Art by: Christian Laursen, Nick Bruty, Steve Crow
- Presentation Art by: Edward Schofield, Lin Shen
- Sound, Music & FX: Tommy Tallarico, Don Griffin
- Digital Sampling: Steve Henifin
- Director of Design: David Bishop
- Levels Design by: Bill Anderson, Tom Tanaka, Seth Mendelsohn
- Consulting Animation Producer: Andy Luckey
- Image Processing: Metrolight Studios
- V.P. of Production: Dr. Stephen H. Clarke-Willson
- Produced by: Robb Alvey
- Executive Producer: Neil Young
- Production Coordinator: Christina Camerota
- Original Design by: David Bishop, Seth Mendelsohn, Mike Dietz, Mark Yamada, David Perry
- Assistant Producers: Mike Glosecki, Ken Love, Craig Warmsley
- Marketing & P.R.: Debbie Brajevich, Robin Kausch
- Focus Testing: Debbie Brajevich
- QA Manager: Adam Ryan
- Lead Analyst: Jared Brinkley
- Product Analysts: Chris McFarland, Scott Manning, Paul Schoener, Mitch Feldman, David Fries, Lyndon Dole and Virgil the Cat
- Produced by: Patrick Gilmore
- Technical Director: Ron Fortier
- Licensing Brand Management: Cathy Fortier, Sue Fuller
- Public Relations Management: Kirk Green
- CES Event Management: Tom Bisignano, Spence Bovee, Helen Fillman, Andrew Henry, Will Kassoy, R.K. Little, Chase Senge
- Quality Assurance Leader: John Santos
- Product Analysts: Stewart Irel, Roger Kung, Chris McNulty, Amy Steiner, Joe Santos
- Storyboards: John Fiorito
- Production Support: Fred Weimer
- Directed by: Barry Cook
- Produced by: Paul Curasi
- Secretary to the Producer: Annette Laguer
- Artistic Coordinator: Ruben Procopio
- Production Specialist: Chuck Williams
- Animators: Tom Bancroft, Travis Blaise, Phil Boyd, Tony Cipriano, Rob Corley, Tim Hodge, Jim Jackson, Alex Kupershmidt, Anthony Michaels, Barry Temple
- Clean-Up Coordinator: Jeanie Lynd Sorenson
- Clean-Up Artists: Paulo Alvarado, Brian Beauchamp, Rachel Bibb, Eliott Bour, Sam Ewing, Tracy Lee, Kellie Lewis, Tamara Lusher, Mario Menjivar, Monica Murdock, Keith Newton, Sherrie Sinclair, Bryan Sommer
- Head of Effects: Jeff Dutton
- Effects Artists: Mike Duhatschek, Jason Francoeur, Troy Gustafson, John Hailey, Joe Pepe, Paitoon Ratan, Tony West
- Color Models: Irma Cartaya
- Animation/Final Check: Pam Darley
- Product Management: Pamela Kelly
- Produced by: Pamela Kelly, Kent Russell
- Public Relations: Ellen Beth Van Buskirk
- Q.A. Manager: Jason Kuo
- Q.A. Lieutenant: Julio Martinez
- Product Analysts: Tony Lynch, Dermot Lyons, Siegie Stangenberg, Andrew Podesta, Glen Cureton, Vince Nason, Heather Meigs, Janine Cook, Blair Bullock, David Forster, Bill Person, Rey Alferez, Kirk Rogers, Vy Nong, Maria Tuzzo, Atom Ellis, Richard Gangwish, Pete McNab, Eric Rawlins, Ivan Foong, Michael Baldwin, Todd Morgan, Greg Becksted, Conan Tigard, Joe Cain, Simon Lu, Joe Ganis, Jennifer Brozek, Erik Wahlberg
- Special Thanks to: Peter Adee, Martin Alper, Richard Branson, Ron Clements, Robert Devereux, Shannyn Gardner, Justin Heber, Tom Kalinske, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Bob Lambert, Bob Levin, Alan Menken, Steve McBeth, John Musker, Amy Pell, Marc Teren, Shinobu Toyoda
- Disney Characters, Artwork & Music © 1993, The Walt Disney Company
- © 1993 Sega Disney's Aladdin
- In-game credits
- Sound, Music & FX: Alan Menken
- Vice President of Development: Stephen Clarke-Willson
- Coordinators: Robin Kausch
- US manual 
- Main article: Disney's Aladdin/Magazine articles.
- Main article: Disney's Aladdin/Promotional material.
|Sega Retro Average|
|Mega Drive, PT|
|Mega Drive, AU (Sega Platinum Collection)|
|Mega Drive, World (iam8bit; red)|
|Mega Drive, World (iam8bit; purple)|
ROM dump status
|2MB||1993-07-31 17:46:24||Japanese revision prototype||Page|
- File:Aladdin MD JP Box.jpg
- https://sega.jp/history/hard/megadrive/software.html (Wayback Machine: 2020-07-20 09:51)
- VideoGames, "September 1993" (US; 1993-xx-xx), page 41
- GamePro, "November 1993" (US; 1993-xx-xx), page 50
- Mega, "November 1993" (UK; 1993-10-21), page 35
- Sega Pro, "November 1993" (UK; 1993-10-14), page 44
- MAN!AC, "11/93" (DE; 1993-xx-xx), page 45
- Megazone, "December 1993" (AU; 1993-12-01), page 37
- https://www.iam8bit.com/collections/legacy-cartridge-collection/products/aladdin-legacy-cartridge-collection (Wayback Machine: 2019-10-23 19:58)
- VideoGames & Computer Entertainment, "July 1993" (US; 199x-xx-xx), page 78
- Mega, "November 1993" (UK; 1993-10-21), page 16
- VideoGames & Computer Entertainment, "July 1993" (US; 199x-xx-xx), page 80
- VideoGames & Computer Entertainment, "July 1993" (US; 199x-xx-xx), page 79
- Mega, "November 1993" (UK; 1993-10-21), page 17
- Electronic Games (1992-1995), "November 1993" (US; 1993-10-21), page 64
- Game Players, "Vol. 6 No. 8 August 1993" (US; 1993-xx-xx), page 52
- Game Players, "Vol. 6 No. 8 August 1993" (US; 1993-xx-xx), page 16
- File:Aladdin MD US manual.pdf, page 29
- Beep! MegaDrive, "December 1993" (JP; 1993-11-08), page 22 (24)
- Sega Saturn Magazine, "September 1995" (JP; 1995-08-08), page 83 (85)
- Computer & Video Games, "December 1993" (UK; 1993-11-15), page 59
- Edge, "November 1993" (UK; 1993-09-30), page 92-93 (92)
- Electronic Gaming Monthly, "November 1993" (US; 1993-xx-xx), page 44
- Game Players, "Vol. 6 No. 11 November 1993" (US; 1993-xx-xx), page 96-106 (98)
- Game Players, "Vol. 7 No. 2 February 1994" (US; 1994-xx-xx), page 120 (122)
- GamePro, "November 1993" (US; 1993-xx-xx), page 46-47 (50)
- Joypad, "Octobre 1993 (Le Film, Le Jeu supplement)" (FR; 1993-xx-xx), page 12-16 (12)
- MAN!AC, "11/93" (DE; 1993-xx-xx), page 44-45 (44)
- Mega Force, "Octobre 1993" (FR; 1993-10-08), page 92-95 (95)
- Mega Fun, "11/93" (DE; 1993-10-20), page 74-76
- Mean Machines Sega, "December 1993" (UK; 1993-10-xx), page 66-68 (66)
- Player One, "Novembre 1993" (FR; 1993-1x-xx), page 48-51 (48)
- Sega Force Mega, "December 1993" (UK; 1993-11-16), page 52-54 (52)
- Sega Force, "2/94" (SE; 1994-02-23), page 6-7 (6)
- Supergame, "Novembro 1993" (BR; 1993-11-xx), page 26-27 (26)
- Video Games, "11/93" (DE; 1993-10-27), page 120-122
|Games based on Disney animated films for Sega systems|
|Ariel the Little Mermaid (1992) | Disney's Aladdin (1993) | The Jungle Book (1994) | The Lion King (1994) | Pocahontas (1996) | Pinocchio (1996)|
|Ariel the Little Mermaid (1992) | The Jungle Book (1994) | Disney's Aladdin (1994) | The Lion King (1994)|
|The Jungle Book (1993) | Disney's Aladdin (1994) | The Lion King (1994) | Ariel the Little Mermaid (1996)|
|Math Antics with Disney's 101 Dalmatians (1994) | Pocahontas Riverbend Adventures (1995) | The Lion King: Adventures at Pride Rock (1995) | Nurie Daisuki! Dumbo no Waku Waku Circus! (1997) | Peter Pan Neverland e Ikou! (1997) | Shirayukihime (1999) | Disney Princesses: Princess ni Naritai (2003) | Disney Princesses: Ariel (2004) | Disney Princesses: Suteki ni Lesson! Hiragana-Katakana (2004)|
|Disney's Dinosaur (2000)|