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Joe & Mac (SNES)

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Title Screen

Joe & Mac

Also known as: Joe & Mac: Tatakae Genshijin (JP), Joe & Mac: Caveman Ninja (EU)
Developer: Data East
Publishers: Data East (JP/US), Elite Systems (EU)
Platform: SNES
Released in JP: December 6, 1991
Released in US: January 1992
Released in EU: 1992

CodeIcon.png This game has unused code.
GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
DebugIcon.png This game has debugging material.
SoundtestIcon.png This game has a hidden sound test.
RegionIcon.png This game has regional differences.

NotesIcon.png This game has a notes page

Joe & Mac is an SNES port of the arcade game where some cavemen fight dinosaurs using really nifty weapons.


Miscellaneous tidbits that are interesting enough to point out here.

Debug Mode $01

This first debug mode sets all stages to cleared, all locks opened, red eggs are always available, and enemy collision is disabled. Use Pro Action Replay (PAR) code 7E005F01 or Game Genie codes DF6A-D40D + 3CE1-A704 + 3CE1-A764 to enable it.

Debug Mode $02

Joe and Mac SNES debug mode active.png

In this debug mode, Joe and Mac start a new game with 39 lives and 9 keys each, and all red stages are cleared. Unlike the first debug mode, the blue stages (which can only be played once) are still accessible.

To enable it, on bootup enter Pro Action Replay (PAR) code 00FB3200 or Game Genie code DDE7-AD64. Next, enter the sound test. Set A to 78, B to 79, X to 73, and press Select to exit.

The secret combination suggests it was once intended to be a player accessible cheat, but in the final version the game skips over the programming that grants the bonuses. A fragment from a prototype build contains a copy of the programming before the debug mode was disabled.

Sound Test

Joe and Mac SNES Sound Test.png

This sound test is available in the Japanese and North American versions, but not the European version.

On the title screen, move the cursor to Option. On controller 2, hold Right and L. On controller 1, hold Left and R, then press Start.

Use the D-Pad to change the index values (the exact purpose of each setting is not yet clear). Press Start to transfer sound data? The A / B / X / Y buttons are used for playing songs and sound effects. Press Select to exit the sound test.

Also worth mentioning, the text string SOUND TEST located at SNES address $02E058 (NA version) or $02E056 (JP version) is loaded but doesn't appear on-screen.

Unused Sound Test Entry Point

Located at SNES address $02D025 is the pointer #$DD7F (NA version) or #$DD7D (JP version), which also leads to the sound test. There is no programming that loads index #$08 and jumps to $02D000 (hex pattern A9 08 22 00 D0 02). This was likely a developer shortcut to access the sound test menu.

Alternative Ending Sequence

Joe and Mac SNES Atomic Hanada.png

When the credits scroll pauses on "SOUND CREATOR ATOMIC HANADA" as pictured in the screenshot above, the game checks if X + A + L + R are held. If true, the game shows an alternative ending sequence of Joe and Mac being chased away by 4 ugly women:

Original Alternative
Joe and Mac SNES original ending 1.png
Joe and Mac SNES original ending 2.png
Joe and Mac SNES alternate ending 1.png
Joe and Mac SNES alternate ending 2.png

To skip instantly to the ending after the Data East logo in the NA version, use Pro Action Replay (PAR) code 00FB0707 or Game Genie code D5ED-AFA4.

Unused Graphics

These icons (or versions thereof) can be found in the game's graphics shortly after where the ones used in the final are stored.

A hammer, which is never found anywhere in the game.

Due to the very subtle differences, the following icons include the finals (left) for comparison purposes.

The boomerang, with slightly thinner outlining near the ends.

The stone wheel, slightly more darkened-in than the one in the final.

Unknown Controller Check

Located at SNES address $08C609-08C614 (NA and JP versions) is two checks for the controller 1 R button being pressed or held while playing a level. However, the following branches have a distance of zero, meaning the alternative code paths were deleted.

$08/C609 A5 54       LDA $54    [$00:0054]
$08/C60B 89 10       BIT #$10
$08/C60D F0 00       BEQ $00    [$C60F]
$08/C60F A5 50       LDA $50    [$00:0050]
$08/C611 89 10       BIT #$10
$08/C613 F0 00       BEQ $00    [$C615]

The L or R button depending on where Joe or Mac is facing, usually makes them run.

Regional Differences

Japan/US Europe
Joe&MacSNESLogoJU.png Joe&MacSNESLogoE.png

As Elite Systems published the European version, the Data East logo was replaced with their logo. This also led to the "Data East" jingle being removed.

Title Screen

Japan US Europe
Joe&MacSNESTitleJ.png Snesjoemac-title.png Joe&MacSNESTitleE.png

The Japanese version has the subtitle of 戦え原始人 (Tatakae Genshijin), literally meaning "Fighting Cavemen". The US version dropped the subtitle completely, but the European version kept it in spirit with the subtitle "Caveman Ninja". The copyright info was also updated with each version, though the European version uniquely uses the same yellow palette as most other text in the game. Additionally, due to PAL timing differences, the scene of Joe & Mac clobbering each other doesn't properly end in time with the music in the European version.


Japan International

Due to Nintendo of America's censorship policies, the intro cutscene was significantly reworked between the Japanese and international versions. In the Japanese version, there's a scene of a few cavemen entering a tent at night, a female "yelp!" is heard, the tent rustles, and the cavemen promptly drag some cavewomen out while the opening credits scroll by. Since this could be interpreted as the beginning (or the aftermath) of sexual assault, the cutscene was truncated so that it ends after the yelp, and the credits were replaced with a totally radical (ergo: aggressively '90s) text crawl that implies that the cavewomen weren't kidnapped by the cavemen, but instead ran away due to their poor hygiene.

Gameplay Mechanics

Japan International
JoeAndMacSNESJP2PDeath.png JoeAndMacSNESWestern2PDeath.png

In the two-player mode of the Japanese version, a player that has lost all their lives can steal one from the other player to continue (indicated by "PUSH BUTTON" in the HUD). This feature was removed from the international versions.

The HUD was also moved down one tile in the international versions.