Did you know it has been 24 years since the US release of SEGA Saturn classic NiGHTS into Dreams…? Well, SEGA certainly remembered, as their retro revival channel ‘SEGA Forever’ published a celebratory video all about the game. The company also included some long lost concept artwork that feels a bit more ‘nightmare’ than ‘dream’.
NiGHTS launched on SEGA’s ill-fated 32-bit console on 20 August 1996 in North America (5 July 1996 in Japan, and 7 October 1996 in Europe). Sonic the Hedgehog co-creator and former Sonic Team leader Yuji Naka has always been very vocal about how much a labour of love NiGHTS was to him, and you can imagine that the character went through a number of changes during the game’s planning stages.
As you can see from the image above, which is included in the retrospective video, the dream-like jester character once took the form of something akin to a court jester. Look at that nose! This is the first time anyone has seen this concept art, originally touted to be the game’s promotional cover. Luckily for everyone, Sonic Team refined the character design somewhat and we have the much more elegant chap you see in the gameplay video below.
Watch SEGA Forever’s video below – it’s a great trip down memory lane, and includes a bunch of other interesting facts about the Saturn action title that you might not have known before. Happy anniversary, NiGHTS!