My BETA Mod includes a lot of these discoveries but since releasing the mod, we have made hundreds more discoveries on content that used to be in the game but was either removed or changed prior to the final release of Carmageddon 2, all of this fascinates me but this information is no good kept to myself or shared every now and again on Discord/IRC as it will never be detailed permanently.
I want to use this thread as a base to just talk about different things and engage conversation on the in-dev and early stages of Carmageddon 2, some posts will be short, some may be long but I'll aim to detail as much as I can with my discoveries, I'll start off with an article I posted a few months ago on my site about the development of Digga and will continue from there.
You may also remember I did a little thread like this on the old carmageddon.com forums that was stickied in the Carmageddon 2 sub-forum, this aims to expand on that with more in-depth discussion and details but I will also include the information from that thread in here as well.
Ron Dumpster who is the brother of Don Dumpster, appears in Carmageddon 2 and he drives the Digga, well he was supposed to but he doesn’t exist in the final version of the game. The official reason for the missing opponent(s) is that Stainless Games either weren’t happy with some designs and due to SCi forcing Stainless to finish the game ahead of schedule, they left some vehicles out of the game, Digga being one of these. The Digga is unlocked when you complete C2 but if you choose the car, the game will crash when loading.
Ron Dumpster’s mugshot still exists in the final build of the game in the ‘/data/64x48x8/PIXELMAP/tiffrgb’ (and PIX16) folders. Let’s take a look at every piece of evidence I have access to for this vehicle to try and piece together a timeline on the development of the vehicle and try to find out what really happened to Digga. Please note that any dates I list shouldn’t be taken as fact, I’m purely going off the dates of the files I have access to which give us a rough estimation of timeframes. My opinions shouldn’t be taken as fact either.
The first ever evidence of Stainless Games deciding they wanted to do something with a giant excavator in a Carmageddon game comes from the 3D model they used as a template for the vehicle, this model is titled FH200.max and was used as a basis for Digga, the creation date of this file is 20/11/1996
The first instance we have that work began on Digga is from 26/05/1998 with the file digga11.max – It shows the vehicle in a far along and almost complete state, the fact that the file name is called digga11.max implies that there were 10 prior versions of the model saved at some point during it’s development but I don’t have access to those. At around this same time Stainless were also working on other vehicles during the mid-development of Carmageddon 2.
The following day more work was done to the vehicle and it became almost visually indistinguishable from the final model that was distributed to modders after the game’s release, the final in-development model available for Digga is digga13.max, it is dated one day after the previous digga11.max & digga12.max on 27/05/1998.
In the next few months work was continued on the rest of the game, including: vehicles, levels, drones, accessories, UI elements and more until Stainless decided to return to the Digga model and began creating textures for the vehicle but also decided at the same time that instead of completing it, they would create a new vehicle with it; logmachine (aka. Loggerhead). The creation date of the Digga textures and the first logmachine file are the same, 18/09/1998, the first version of logmachine is logmachine01.max– This file contains the main body, arm and scoop from Digga as well as the beginnings of the logmachine weapons.
A lot of work was done to logmachine on this day and the next 3 versions of the vehicle show the development of the weaponry, logmachine02.max, logmachine03.max & logmachine04.max all show the progress of the vehicle over a few hours on 18/09/1998.
Logmachine was finished within the next month ready for the final release of Carmageddon 2 in October of 1998, it’s important to note that the game was still in active development right up until release, even as close as the week before the release of the game, which adds credence to the fact that Stainless really did run out of time to finish up the game correctly and so had to leave things on the cutting room floor, one of those things being Digga.
The final release of Carmageddon 2 provides us with our last pieces of evidence, if you look at the logmachine textures you will see all of the Digga textures, as noted by their dig prefix. There are a few logmachine specific textures, such as the simplemodel textures and driver textures which have a log prefix, so we can assume that all of the textures prefixed with dig were indeed created for Digga initially.
It is interesting to note that some of the Digga textures were likely reworked for logmachine, you’ll notice that the digaarm.tif texture which predates the other Digga textures is more orange than the rest, this was likely the original colour of Digga as opposed to the more yellow and green that logmachine uses in the final release of the game. This is indeed the inspiration for Toshiba-3’s later release of the vehicle.
Upon release of the game, Errol asked Stainless Games directly for the incomplete Digga model, which they provided to him to which Toxic Ragers proceeded to create a usable version of Digga and finally in February 2000 let people use the vehicle in-game. Later upon the realisation that the Digga textures still exist in the final build of the game, Toshiba-3 released Digga again with the dig prefixed textures, albeit with a colour change that closer matches the orange shade of digaarm.tif.
Digga final model – [ digg3ds.zip ~4kb ]
Toxic Ragers Digger – [ Digger.zip ~635kb ]
Toshiba-3 Digga – [ digga.zip ~425kb ]
From the evidence we have available, we cannot dispute the claim that Stainless Games ran out of time to finish work on Digga, as we know that the game was still in active development literally right up until release and we also cannot dispute that they just weren’t happy with the design because they chose to alter it into a completely different vehicle.
In my opinion, I think that when they decided create Loggerhead from Digga a few months before release that they were entering a crunch period for the game and just didn’t have the time to go back and finish up what they were working on and so had to prioritise finishing Loggerhead and other important parts of the game over finishing Digga, this theory is also supported by the leftovers present in the game, such as the ron64.tif mugshot image and the appearance of Digga in OPPONENTS.TXT, time must have just ran out and the game was released before Digga was fully removed from the game.