Tiny Toon Adventures: Defenders of the Universe is the name of an unreleased Tiny Toon Adventures video game initially scheduled for release in 2002. Development is believed to have ceased in 2002, and the game is assumed to have been canceled, although its publisher denied this for years. Developed by a Japanese video game studio, Treasure, it was originally slated for the PlayStation 2 and GameCube.
On a planet made almost entirely out of gold located in the Jewel system, live the Bullions. They have lived there peacefully for many years, until their home was attacked by the Drizzletroopers. Two of them manage to escape, Zig and Zag, to the planet earth. The Leader of the Drizzletroopers learns of this and has someone go after the two. As morning comes by, Buster Bunny and the gang attend school. However, a strange robot, disguised as Bugs Bunny, appears in their class rather than their teacher.
When his disguise is blown, the group chase after the fleeing robot. After stopping the robot from getting away, he makes an attempt to kill everyone, but ultimately fails, leaving a hole in the ground. There, zig and zag appear out of the hole, startling the group. The strange creatures explains their situation and the group agrees to help them.
However, Shirley the Loon appears telling the group a great danger will fall upon the earth if they help them. Despite her warning, the group decides to help the creatures out. They all enter the hole into the ground, leading them into yet another new adventure...
Nearly all of the surviving members of the original main cast of Tiny Toon Adventures reunited to provide the characters for the game (with Billy West replacing the late Don Messick as the voice of Hamton).
- Charlie Adler - Buster Bunny, Zag
- Tress MacNeille - Babs Bunny, Zig
- Joe Alaskey - Plucky Duck
- Billy West - Hamton J. Pig, Maximus Flush
- Danny Cooksey - Montana Max
- Gail Matthius - Shirley the Loon
- Kath Soucie - Fifi La Fume
- Cree Summer - Elmyra Duff
- Maurice LaMarche - Dizzy Devil
- Frank Welker - Gogo Dodo, Furrball
The game's original official website, www.dotu.net, no longer exists. Tetsuhiko Kikuchi (aka Han), the director of the game, has hinted on his homepage (Japanese) that the game "will forever go unreleased."
An article on IGN, written back in 2004, had suggested that the game had always been intended for release. It said that at the end of the article that the game was "still officially slated to come out sometime (not necessarily in 2004)". However, years later, nothing new has been mentioned about the game. With the releases of the next generation consoles, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Wii, the game's release is very unlikely. The main page at IGN now has canceled for the US release date.
Exact reasons for the game's cancellation remain unknown, but are generally believed to be unrelated to the state of the product itself. Publisher Conspiracy Entertainment was in dire financial shape at the time and several other projects of theirs quietly disappeared during this same time. They cited unspecified "business complications" for the extended hold up. Their previous partnership with Treasure, Tiny Toons: Scary Dreams was manufactured in 2002, but its existence could not be confirmed until it appeared on eBay in 2005. Defenders of the Universe was evaluated by the ESRB, which some take as evidence that the game was in a near-final state.
On February 25, 2009, an image of a prototype of the game was released by a member of the internet forum, Lost Levels. The prototype confirmed many suspicions about the game, including its advanced state of completion, and the involvement of Rakugaki Showtime director Tetsuhiko Kikuchi. The title appears feature-complete, apart from a few errors in the in-game text.