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Special Tee Shot

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Special Tee Shot was going to be an early SNES release by HAL. Eventually it was remade into Kirby's Dream Course. The game also eventually came out on the Satellaview, but differs in many ways.

By: Evan G
Last updated: February 17, 2017

Special Tee Shot is a game that was featured in Nintendo Power during the early stages of the release of the SNES, but completely fell off the radar. There is a good reason for this - the game was eventually remade using Kirby. It was evidently fairly close to completion, and a prototype made it out there. Special Tee Shot was previewed in the June 1992 issue of Nintendo Power, and even made it onto the back of the box of Super Nintendo systems.

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Screenshot of Special Tee Shot in the June 1992 issue of Nintendo Power (page 112). Note that the menu is a lot different than the prototype or the Satellaview versions. Thanks to Frank Cifaldi for scanning this for me.

Although Special Tee Shot eventually became Kirby's Dream Course, the gameplay differs in a fundamental way, at least in the Satellaview version that is available for playing. In Kirby's Dream Course, in order for the hole to appear, it is necessary to kill several enemies that lay around the course. Special Tee Shot is a more straightforward golf-style game where you merely need to get into the hole with as few shots as possible. The graphical style is pretty much the same, though. Another big difference is that in Kirby's Dream Course, you can aim the curve of your shot, while in Special Tee Shot, you can only to use the timed cursor to curve the ball. This, along with how fast cursor moves, makes Special Tee Shot a much more difficult game.

jbholio, who was once a prominent collector of oddities such as unlicensed games, purchased a prototype of Special Tee Shot on Ebay back in 2004. There is a thread about it on Digital Press. It sounds like it was a pretty epic auction that included a Super Starfox Weekend cart as well. He posted an extensive comparison of the prototype and the Satellaview versions of the game, however the website is long gone (though saved on archive.org). Years ago, he emailed me to say I could use whatever I wanted from his page, and since it doesn't exist anymore, I'm mirroring the information, along with some spruced up screen captures. Everything below was written by jbholio!

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Prototype cart

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Kirby's Dream Course used to be known as Special Tee Shot in it's earlier stage of development but both games are more or less the same. The control of the games are similar but in Kirby's Dream Course, you have to kill the enemies before the hole appears. Special Tee Shot is more like a mini golf game, you only have to put the little red ball in the hole. The game was never released as Special Tee Shot but I don't know why because it is one of the best SNES games I've played. It was also never released on cartridge but only on a system to be used with the Super Famicom called the Broadcast Satellaview X (BS-X). This may be the only copy in existence!

Some direct comparisons between the prototype and the Satellaview version. Note that the prototype screenshots were taken with a camera.

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Prototype - ©1992 Nintendo No "2 Player Match" optionSatellaview - ©1996 Nintendo
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PrototypeSatellaview
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PrototypeSatellaview
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Prototype - The bottom of the screen is different.Satellaview
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Prototype - BIG Spin/Power MeterSatellaview
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PrototypeSatellaview
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PrototypeSatellaview

Controls

There are some differences in the controls between the prototype and the Satallaview versions of the game.

Prototype

  • Y = see angle, direction and wind • show spot of landing (pink cone ) • cancel start of Spin/Power meter.
  • B = look at course.
  • A = start and stop Spin/Power meter.
  • X = show current hole and result.
  • Select = nothing.
  • Start = show bottom part of the screen • select type of shot (normal or special).
  • Up = change distance of shot.
  • Left/Right = change direction of ball.
  • Down = shoot ball in the air • change distance of shot.
  • L,R = nothing.

Satellaview

  • Y = look at the course • cancel start of Spin/Power meter.
  • B = look at the course • cancel start of Spin/Power meter.
  • A = start and stop Spin/Power meter.
  • X = look at the course • cancel start of Spin/Power meter.
  • Select = show result.
  • Start = show current hole.
  • Up = change distance of shot • see farther the direction of the ball when putting.
  • Left/Right = change direction of ball • change spin of ball.
  • Down = shoot ball in the air • change distance of shot • show spot of landing and bouncing (pink cones ).
  • L,R = nothing.

Total Members

There can be 10 different members in the prototype, while the Satellaview version allows only 5.

Starting a New Class

fly across the screen to give 5 balls, see picture below. The Satellaview does not do this.

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Total Balls

Prototype: You start hole #1 of every class with 5 balls. Before each hole (except hole #1) you are given extra balls. If the hole is a Par 3 you will receive 3 extra balls, Par 4 = 4 extra balls and so on. You don't lose balls when you putt the ball O.B., however you do lose a stroke. When you are out of balls ...GameOver.

Satellaview: Every hole you have 10 shots to putt the ball in the cup or you are Game Over.

Before Each Shot...

Prototype: ... fly across the screen with the number of the current shot in his hands (see picture below). If the number is more than 9, it says X instead of a number.

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Satellaview: ... the ball transform into a number or

Landing and Bouncing

Prototype:You have to press Y if you want to see where the ball will land. You cannot see where it will bounce. Also, when pressing Y the angle of the shot, the direction of the ball and the wind are shown on the screen (see picture below). Wind also shown on the bottom of the screen in the middle.

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Satellaview: You see where the ball lands and bounces just by pushing down on the control pad. There is no angle or direction anywhere in the game. The wind is shown on the bottom right of the screen.

Blobs of Water

Prototype: The ball bounces on the blob.

Satellaview: The blob sucks the ball in and make you lose a stroke.

Power Shots

Prototype: No Power Shots.

Satellaview: One power shot is received every time you hit but you must use it as your next stroke.

Special Shots

Prototype: When starting a new class you are given 1 to 5 special shots which can be used at any time. The higher is your level the more shots you start with. You also receive one more every time you hit a flashing yellow tile.

Satellaview: One special shot is received every time you hit but you must use it as your next stroke.

Bonus Room

Prototype: There is a bonus room when you collect 4 and putt the ball in a special cup. While in the bonus room, you have 60 seconds to hit 4 grey and putt the ball in the cup (see picture below). If you succeed your score will be -6 (see picture below). There are 4 different bonus rooms.

Satellaview: No Bonus Room.

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putt the ball in the cupIf you succeed your score will be -6

Putting the Ball in the Cup

Prototype: If you are 3 under Par there are letters that come out of the hole spelling "Nice Albatross!!". 2 under Par = "Nice Eagle!!", 1 under Par = "Nice Birdie!!" or Par = "Nice Par!!". Nothing if over Par. Then comes over the cup with the total number of shots in his hands.

Satellaview: flies on the top of the cup with the score => ... ...

Result Board (see pictures above)

Prototype: No star to indicate a hole in one. Total shots for each hole and score are shown. The score is separated in two parts : the first number is the actual score including bonus points (-16) and the other is the actual score (-13).

Satellaview: A star with a "1" inside appears next to every hole in one. Only total score is shown (-14).

Trophy

Prototype: There seem to have a bug because even if you win the Gold trophy in a class you will often have a Bronze trophy when you look at your stats. There is no Silver trophy (I think).

Satellaview: Gold, Silver and Bronze trophies available. No trophy bug.

Demo

Prototype: A demo of a hole starts by not pressing anything on the control pad while on the title screen. The hole is named Extra4 #1 but it is not in the BS-X version. (see screenshot below)

Satellaview: No demo. The game resets if you don't press anything on the title screen.

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Holes

All holes between the 2 versions are differents. Some are similar but none are exactly the same (most are tougher in the proto version). I don't think there are holes Extra 1,2,3,4 in the proto but I could be wrong because of the demo hole.

Hole # - Beginner Class - 

PROTO

Satellaview

1 Welcome (not the same as BS Beginner #1) Welcome (not the same as proto Beginner #1)
2 Water Hole Toss Up
3 Steps Water Park
4 Gap (similar to BS Beginner #7) Conveyor Belt
5 Big Wave (similar to BS Beginner #6) Dance Floor
6 Steps 2 (similar to BS Extra2 #3) Big Wave (similar to proto Beginner #5)
7 Twin Peak Hop Step (similar to proto Beginner #4)
8 Air Curtain (similar to BS Extra 1 #7) Over The Sea

 

Hole # - Amateur Class -

PROTO

Satellaview

1 Blue Lake (similar to BS Amateur #1) Pier (similar to proto Amateur #1)
2 Space Ship (more or less similar to BS Pro #1) (not same as Extra2 #7) Tower (similar to proto Amateur #4)
3 Launcher Rubbish Chute
4 Tower (similar to BS Amateur #2) Marsh
5 Spoon (similar to BS Amateur #7) Kickturn
6 Water Square (similar to BS Amateur #6) Hoof (similar to proto Amateur #6)
7 Stadium Spoon  (similar to proto Amateur #5)
8 Hill Climb (similar to BS Pro #8) Anchor

 

Hole # - Pro Class -

PROTO

Satellaview

1 Cliff (more or less similar to BS Extra 3 #5)  Bridge (more or less similar to proto Amateur #2)
2 Big Slider (similar to BS Pro #3) Shoot
3 Double Jump (similar to BS Master #3) Big Slider  (similar to proto Pro #2)
4 Down Hill (similar to BS Pro #7) Candy
5 Splash The Alps
6 V Turn (similar to BS Extra 2 #1) Glass Shoot
7 Butterfly Down Hill  (similar to proto Pro #4)
8 Hurdle Hill Climb (similar to proto Amateur #8)

 

Hole # - Master Class -

PROTO

Satellaview

1 Rib (similar to BS Extra 3 #1) Hammer Head (similar to proto Master #4)
2 Twin Bridges (similar to BS Extra4 #1) Good Luck
3 Crevasse Double Jump (similar to proto Pro #3)
4 Hammer Head (similar to BS Master #1) Tank Head
5 Up Down Do Not Fall
6 Tower 2 (similar to BS Extra2 #2) Island Chain
7 Gun Shot (similar to BS Extra1 #1) Top Spin
8 Narrow Bridge Leap Up

 

Hole # - Extra 1 -

PROTO

Satellaview

1 N/A Try To Air (similar to proto Master #7)
2 N/A Cheap Trick
3 N/A Tier Stand
4 N/A Little Pond
5 N/A High Jump
6 N/A Catapult
7 N/A Dance On Air (similar to proto Beginner #8)
8 N/A Landslide

 

Hole # - Extra 2 -

PROTO

Satellaview

1 N/A Lightning (similar to proto Pro #6)
2 N/A Twin Towers (similar to proto Master #6)
3 N/A Triple Jump (similar to proto Beginner #6)
4 N/A Downstairs
5 N/A Reflex
6 N/A Narrow Road
7 N/A Space Ship (not the same as proto Amateur #2)
8 N/A Big X

 

Hole # - Extra 3 -

PROTO

Satellaview

1 N/A Rib (similar to proto Master #1)
2 N/A Rattlesnake
3 N/A Big Bridge
4 N/A Shining Alley
5 N/A Cliff (more or less similar to proto Pro #1)
6 N/A Twisted Way
7 N/A Challenger
8 N/A Railgun

 

Hole # - Extra 4 -

PROTO

Satellaview

1 N/A Two Bridges (similar to proto Master #2)
2 N/A Strike Square
3 N/A Spinning
4 N/A Trick Shot
5 N/A Mt Fuji
6 N/A Wonder Corn
7 N/A Great Wall
8 N/A Great Mountain

 

 

Review of Special Tee Shot
 

Prototype

Satellaview

Graphics 8.5/10 8.5/10
Music/Sound 9.5/10 9.5/10
Control 8.5/10 8.5/10
Replay Value 8/10 8.5/10
Fun 10/10 10/10
Overall 8.9/10 9/10

AD from a Super Nintendo System Box

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Thanks to v1rich for the pic

The screenshot on the left is very similar to Beginner hole #6 (Steps 2). The only difference is the platform on the upper right side of the hole (with the two ). In the proto it's on the upper left side of the hole.

The screenshot on the right is Beginner hole #3 (Steps).

The screenshots are from the prototype because I played the Satellaview version and they are not anywhere in the game.


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