"To add insult to injury, we had our source code stolen by an employee at a computer dealer and distributed to the internet. Having your publisher call in the middle of the night (on my birthday, no less) screaming "WTF happened?! How could you let your source code get stolen?" It wasn't a pleasant phone call. What followed was lots of footwork in MIRC, filing a lawsuit, US Marshals in an early morning bust, depositions, lawyers and money (they are synonymous) and other not-so-fun stuff. Ultimately, Monolith settled. That would never happen now that our Feds are somewhat more enlightened about software and source code theft."
--Nick Newhard, April 2008
The Blood Alpha was the alpha version of the original Blood and it had some differences than its final release. At some point during the game's development there was a leak onto the Internet of the Blood source code by an employee at a computer repair shop, dated February 17, 1996, which was reacted to severely by the game's publisher. Eventually Monolith settled the case in court, but the released files became known to the community as the Blood Alpha. The developers later made it policy that a staff member was to accompany computers to repair and monitor the repairers at all times. The password for the source archive contained in the zip file is "jello" and "elcycer".
"The old partial alpha as found on Death Mask, I think it was Gila?? that posted it back in the day on DM... The Full Blood Alpha first appeared in the forums at The Blood Line. I'm not sure if the post and the person that posted the file is still around. I sure would like to thank him, if I didn't cause its an outstanding find. Its here in the broken downloads titled as the Russian Demo CD I think. Legend may have provided a temporary link for it. I believe it was 37 some megs large, but easily condensed into 17 megs I believe I have with 7zip. The FBA has some custom files in it that where not part of the Alpha archive originally. But they won't interfere with the game or the included sources (which it includes the full source code this time around)... Anyhow, as you know M210 got of hold of it and went wild with it. I looked at it and even ran some programs in it, like QStudios sound system, its a neat 3D sound engine that they developed for Blood."
The Blood Alpha is currently available in two forms known under the following nomenclature.
- Partial: the older known version spread from DeathMask since the 2000s.
- Full: a version with additional files and the complete source code uploaded to Blood Line in the 2010s.
- Downloads: RTCM
The following lists ways the alpha varies from the final releases of Blood.
- A different darker Sawed-Off Shotgun sprite.
- A number of weapons are located on different number slots.
- The Aerosol Can has different sprites for both the can and its projectiles; the can being tinted dark black and the fire being represented by a stream of fire balls.
- In a third person mode Caleb is dressed in gray Fanatic robes rather then a black cowboy hat and a trench coat.
- An additional "single stick" dynamite mode is available.
- The Proximity Detonator and Remote Detonator are only usable via alt-fire mode, trying to throw them simply turns them into the default Dynamite Bundle.
- An unreleased weapon, the Spear Gun.
- The Napalm Launcher pick-up sprite says "shadow gun", and upon picking it up the weapon is referred to as the "EctoBlaster" in the display text.
- The Napalm Launcher sprite is different from its final version; it seems to be a bit longer and has a strange wire attached to a piece of flesh on its left side.
- The Flare Gun alt-fire consumes only 1 flare, and shoots them in a round target-ish pattern.
- The Voodoo Doll alt-fire causes enemy in-fighting to occur.
- The Life Leech does nor exist within the Blood Alpha.
- A weapon referred to as the "Beast Claws" located in the "0" slot, it has no alt-fire or attack definitions, and can only be acquired through the "QSAMMO" cheat.
- An unused pick-up sprite and ammo type called "armor-piercing bullets".
- There are unused "jumping" and "crouching" Cultist sprite sets.
- There is an alternate "fire" death animation for the Bloated Butcher, although it is not implemented due to fire death issues.
- There seems to be an alternate "crushing" death animation for the Axe Zombie, although since crushing is not yet implemented it cannot be demonstrated.
- The Bone Eel has a set of sprites that indicate it was once going to be able to jump out of water.
- A set of alternatively coloured Gill Beast sprites, showcasing it with bright white eyes and a more "zombified" appearance.
- An unused HUD damage sprite set, showcasing the appearance of three bloody scratches on screen.
- An unused "bobbing" wine bottle sprite set (bobbing as in floating up and down while in water).
- All maps with mirrors have a strange mirror-like function when the "M" button is pressed.
- No key-locked switches, doors, or objects refer to the key they need in the display text.
- The Diving Suit automatically activates upon pick-up, and is also completely useless due to the fact that there are no maps with working underwater sectors.
- An unused item called the Asbestos Suit, has the effect of protecting against floor-based lava (but there are no lava floors with damaging property).
- An unused item called the Clone, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Doppelganger, represented by a tiny spherical smiley-face and has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Decoy, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Black Chest, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Wooden Chest, has no effect in-game
- An unused item called Raven Flight, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Gas Mask, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Shadow Cloak, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Skull Grail, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Silver Grail, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Wine Goblet, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Wine Bottle, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Rose-colored Glasses, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Rage Shroom, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Grow Shroom, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Shrink Shroom, has no effect in-game.
- An unused item called the Delirium Shroom, causes your screen to get hazy, twist, and contort on pick-up.
- An unused item called the Red Potion, gives 2 health on pick-up.
- An unused item called Feather Fall, causes the player character to fall slower and minimize falling damage.
- The Guns Akimbo pick-up sprite has dark black-tinted shotguns, also it has no effect in-game.
- There is no armor of any sort to be found within the Blood Alpha, although the art for the various armors exist there is no armor system implemented and they are not placed within within the maps.
- The limited invisibility item's pick-up sprite is different.
- The crouch function does not work, although it does work while using mapedit.
- The Tilt view functions work in the Blood Alpha, although they have no stopping points and will cause your screen to endlessly spin in a circle
- Utilizes a different map-file format than retail Blood.
- Caleb was originally named Micheal.
- Ophelia Price was originally named Rachael.
- Originally titled "Horror 3D".
- Developed by Q Studios Inc.
- There are no Innocents yet.
- A Beast mode that would function under a bloodlust system, which was fueled by taking massive amounts of damage/doing massive amounts of damage to enemies.
- A concept of having all four of the Chosen being selectable and having their own separate "Beast mode", which were most likely going to be the boss characters of retail Blood: Cheogh, Shial, and Cerberus.
- Neither the Axe Zombie or the Bloated Butcher have alternate death sequences when killed with the Voodoo Doll.
- The Fanatic can lob singular sticks of dynamite.
- The Axe Zombie does not have any fake death sequences yet.
- The Bloated Butcher does not have a vomit attack yet.
- The Hell Hound can be gibbed with explosive weaponry.
- Stone Gargoyles can be gibbed with explosive weaponry.
- Gill Beast can be gibbed with explosive weaponry.
- There are no green or red Spider enemies, and the spider enemy has no blinding or delirium-inducing effects.
- All destructible vases have a "destroyed" sprite, and can be bounced around with explosives.
- All Stone Gargoyle statues will transform into a Gargoyle when attacked.
- Cultist bodies do not melt away after death.
If you have aerosol can and switch before the weapon turns into ready state, possible to make infinite ammo for everything.
Also available is the Beta version 0.91 of the Blood shareware from January 2, 1997, which only features three levels (E1M1: Cradle to Grave, E1M2: Wrong Side of the Tracks and E1M3: Phantom Express), there is no game demos or options for online play, the end level markers are just switches rather than Tchernobog's seal, the Fanatic can throw dynamite, levels begin with a text display of the level name, some of Caleb's lines are captioned, and there is no end-of-level screens; it is also considerably easier with mostly one shot kills. Otherwise it is very similar to the official shareware release of the game.
The Lost Episode
"Turns out there's a whole episode worth of content in the leaked Blood Alpha build. I did not create these maps but, I have put a great deal of work into them. I believe the author of most of these maps (if not all) is James Wilson III. I have come to this conclusion because most of the original map titles in this episode had a J in front of them. Mr. Wilson was the main level designer for Blood and the Plasma Pak. It is likely he created most the maps in the alpha since five of the levels in the plasma pak are straight from the alpha: Aqueducts, Forbidden Rituals, Forgotten Catacombs, The Dungeon, and Beauty and the Beast. Not surprisingly, there are a few levels in Blood which are from the alpha as well i.e. Fire and Brimstone. Since those alpha levels were good enough for the final product and they were all most likely made by the same person(s) they are all definitely worth playing."
The Lost Episode is a unofficial add-on for Blood that adapts eight level files found in the Blood Alpha release and makes them into a coherent whole; speculated to be drafts by James Wilson III. Put together by Maz/kingmaz and released on November 27, 2014.
The alpha build has also inspired other fan projects, most notably the Weapons Mod for Blood (which reverts many final sprites to their alpha versions, as well as giving the player Beast claws), and the "Horror 3D" project for ZDoom. Various Doom custom WADs have also mined sprites from the Blood Alpha.
- Blood Alpha at the Cutting Room Floor Wiki
- Blood Beta at the Cutting Room Floor Wiki
- Thread from The Postmortem
- Another thread from The Postmortem
- Blood Alpha music discussion from Transfusion Forums
- Thread - Transfusion Forums
- Blood Alpha
- Blood Alpha Gameplay
- Blood Alpha map 01
- Blood Alpha map 02
- Blood Alpha by Monolith in Third Person View