Headcannon, the studio behind Sonic Mania, the 2017 game that after years of botched attempts from Sega finally managed to recapture the magic of the original Sonic the Hedgehog, hoped to strike nostalgia gold again with a reboot of another 2D ‘90s classic.
Simon Thomley or “Stealth,” the main developer behind Headcannon revealed that he developed a reboot of the Darkwing Duck game in hopes that it would be picked up by Capcom. The original Darkwing game hit the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1992 (and later the Game Boy in 1993) based on the Disney TV series which ran for three seasons. The series and game followed Darkwing Duck, or the “terror who flaps in the night,” as he fought crime in his town of St. Canard.
But unfortunately, it seems the full version of the Darkwing reboot is probably never going to see the light of day due to a lack of interest from Capcom and Disney, according to Thomley. “We had just spent a couple months of our own time working on something that’s not going to take us anywhere,” said Thomley in a video explaining the process of how his team arrived at the demo.
So instead of a full version, he released the demo that he sent to Capcom, which you can download here. The Headcannon development team found success with Sonic Mania after years of experience making unofficial Sonic fan games, which rather than trying to reinvent the blue hedgehog for a new generation, stuck close to the original formula. The demo for the Darkwing reboot it pitched seemed to use the same strategy. It doesn’t stray too far from the original with only a few tweaks, so like Sonic Mania, fans can relive the magic of playing the original.
It’s worth noting that Capcom re-released Darkwing Duck, along with other Disney and Capcom collabs, Duck Tales and Talespin in 2017, playable on Playstation 4, Xbox One, and Windows as a part of the Disney Afternoon Collection.
But if you’re interested in Headcannon’s demo, it’s available to download for Mac, Windows, and Linux.