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Early Designs

Level-5 World 2011 Trailer

When the very first trailer for the Yo-kai Watch video game was released, several Yo-kai had earlier designs. Some of them looked mildly different, while several others are minor design alterations. The only one that remained exactly the same was Ake.

In the June 2019 issue of Corocoro Comics, to commemorate the release of Yo-kai Watch 4, the designs were shown again, along with a couple more ones that didn't appear in the trailer.

Early Design Overview Final Design(s)
EarlyJibanyan An early design of Jibanyan. He was originally fatter, had a different head shape, a bigger face pattern and a different body pattern. The hitodama tails were also smaller, and the collar was also thicker. JibanyanArtwork
Beta Walkappa An early design of Walkappa. The fronds on his head were curly rather than straight, and his feet was webbed just like his hands. He also originally carried a bag instead of a water bottle. Nogappa
Beta Dismarelda An early design of Dismarelda. She looked completely different, lacking the hair and make-up. DismareldaArtwork
Beta Himoji Hungramps
An early design of Hungramps. He looks almost exactly the same, except for the fact his head is more blunt and he's fatter. Hungramps Artwork
EarlyTattletell An early design of Tattletell. She looks almost exactly like her final design, except with a differently-shaped face. Tattletell
Beta Noko An early design of Noko. It has a green mark on it's head rather than a clover, circular eye shapes, and a differently-colored tail. The design itself may have been retooled for it's Lightside form in Yo-kai Watch Shadowside. NokoNoko (Lightside)
Beta Negatibuzz An early design for Negatibuzz. It looks almost the same, except he wore a cloak instead of a hoodie. A slightly later version of the design can be seen in the October 2012 screenshots of the video game, signifying that the design was changed late in development. Negatibuzz art

2016 Tokyo Museum Exhibition

Several more early Yo-kai designs were showcased at the Yo-kai exhibition at the Tokyo Museum from July 5, 2016 to August 28, 2016. It revealed that several Yo-kai like Whisper and Jibanyan went through multiple design changes, with several scrapped designs being reused for other Yo-kai.

Whisper

Whisper had went through a total of 11 designs, before a final one was settled with.

Early Design Overview Final Design(s)
BetaWhisper One of the earliest designs for Whisper. It resembled more of a teru teru bozu rather than a hitodama or will-o-the-wisp, which would probably be reused for Mr. Blue-Shy Tereteru-bozu
EarlyWhisperDesign2 One of Whisper's early designs. The colour for it would be reused for Daizn't. Daizn't
Earlywhisperdesign1 One of the later designs for Whisper. The shape of it would likely be redesigned into Fuu 2. Fuu-2
WhisperEarlyDesign A later design for Whisper, where he looks almost the same, except for the color, though this may be due to the photo quality. YW - Whisper

Jibanyan

Early Design Overview Final Design(s)
EarlierJibanyan A slightly earlier design of Jibanyan, with a rope belt instead of a haramaki. It was likely designed around the Level-5 World 2011 trailer of the franchise. 150px
EarlierJibanyan2 Probably one of the very first design sketches for Jibanyan, that wore a bandanna and had a sling pouch. The facial shape and eyes suggest that it was likely redesigned into Jibanyan's Lightside form that appears in Yo-kai Watch Shadowside. The accessory may have been retooled as Jibanyan's water bottle for his appearance in Yo-kai Watch: The Movie. JibanyanLight

Usapyon

Usapyon went through a total of twenty-four designs, originally starting out as a floppy-eared rabbit.

Early Design Overview Final Design(s)
Beta USApyon One of the early designs of Usapyon. He resembled more of a kangaroo or bunny (the latter like his current design though it's unknown if he was an otter in this design), and his suit looked more like pajamas. UsapyonArtwork

Other

Early Design Overview Final Design(s)
CEAWpRhWEAEv5QN
Yō-chan (Japanese: 酔うちゃん Yō-chan)
An early design for Spewart, which was originally a human caricature of voice actor Yō Ōizumi, who is known for voicing Professor Layton in the video games, which is one of Level-5's other franchises. It was first seen on an episode SWITCH Interview Masters, which aired on May 2, 2015. Level-5 said it was "a very early draft" for a Yo-kai design.[1] Yocchaa

Scrapped Yo-kai

August 2014 Mezamashi TV Broadcast

During the special report of the Yo-kai Watch franchise, a design for a scrapped Yo-kai was shown.

Original Design Overview Reworked Design(s)
2014ScrappedYokai
Karuberosu (Japanese: カルベロス Karuberosu)
A design of a three-headed dog Yo-kai. It's name is derived from "Cerberus" (ケルベロス). As two similar Yo-kai already exist, It is unknown what it may have been reworked as.  ???

January 2016 Corocoro Magazine

Original Design Overview Reworked Design(s)
Unknown Yo-kai 1
???
A design of a Yo-kai that was supposed to appear in M02, which is unknown if it was a character, or as a cameo. It may have inspired the design of Ulteria, or to an extent Demandi. Ulteria Official Artwork Fixed
Demandi

Final Fantasy x Yo-kai Watch crossover

There were Yo-kai that were originally going to appear in the Final Fantasy XIV collaboration, but they were scrapped.

Original Design Overview Reworked Design(s)
Shigakunyan
Shigakunyan (Japanese: シガクニャン Shigakunyan)
A Yo-kai based on Jibanyan, wearing an armor of a Paladin from Final Fantasy XIV. He was scrapped for unknown reasons and got replaced with Mooglinyan. Strangely, the design is actually used as a visor for the crossover collabration in the Gamescom conference in Germany. Moglinyan Artwork
Shigakunyan riding Whislion
Whislion (Japanese: ウィスライオン Wisuraion)
The exact same Yo-kai, except he's riding a Warlion that takes on the form of Whisper. It was replaced with Chocobonyan, which has a similar design. Chocobonyan Artwork

2017 Level-5 Conference

Three scrapped Yo-kai designs were shown off at a Level-5 Conference with Akihiro Hino and Kei'ichi Tanaka, which taught students about character design. They were used as examples of Yo-kai that didn't make much sense, because the ideas behind them weren't delivered well.

Original Design Overview Reworked Design(s)
HanSode
Han Sode (Japanese: ハン・ソデ Han sode)
A Yo-kai that was supposed to be a boy that would always wear short sleeves, even in cold weather with the name being a wordplay on hansode (半袖), which is Japanese for short sleeves and Han Solo from the Star Wars franchise. Though, his design could only express the "short sleeves" part. Akihiro Hino also noted that his brown companion looked a bit too much like poop. His design was likely retooled as Fundango and possibly Silver Lining to an extent. SilverLining
Happy-san Artwork
Dekin-chan
Dekin-chan (Japanese: デキンちゃん Dekin-chan)
A girl Yo-kai that would be responsible for causing bans, with it's name being derived from dekkin (出禁), Japanese for "ban", and the character Dokin-chan from Anpanman. The "x's" on the Yo-kai's design was supposed to express the "ban" element, but wasn't strong enough. Hino didn't seem to like the name, either. The Yo-kai's design may have been remade into either the pose of Krystal Fox and probably Little Charrmer. LittleCharrmer
Krystal Fox
Tatoebaa
Tatoebaa (Japanese: たとえバー Tatoebā)
A Yo-kai that would have caused parables/"what if?" discussions (例え話/tatoebanashi) to go on forever such as a infinite paradox, with the name being a pun on tatoebanashi (例え話), and obaa-san (おバーさん). It was too difficult to express such a concept visually. In Mr. Tanaka's defense, Hino said that the "bar" on the head did express "bā" at least. As the Yo-kai bears a striking resemblance to Auntie Heart, it may have been the "child" of that Yo-kai and Uncle Infinite, which was probably retooled as Statikid in a similar manner. None (Possibly scrapped entirely)

2018 Kuroi Yo-kai Art Exhibition

An exhibition was held at the Fukuoka Yoroz Mart store from May 28-29 2018, which showcased conceptual artwork of Kuroi Yo-kai as well as some of the humans. Interestingly, some of those designs never appeared in the anime series or in merchandise.

Yo-kai Overview
KuroiWhisper
Kuroi Whisper (Japanese: 黒いウィスパー Kuroi Wisupa)
A scrapped Kuroi counterpart of Whisper.
Kuroi Muribake (Japanese: 黒いムリカベ Kuroi Murikabe) A scrapped Kuroi counterpart of Noway, showing more detail on a Japanese zen wall design.

Trivia

TattletellBetaDesign TalkSpriteOddity

Tattletell's conversation sprite in the Yo-kai Watch video game, with the beta design present.

  • Tattletell's early design was actually left in the final version of Yo-kai Watch, as a conversation talk sprite. It would later be updated in Yo-kai Watch 2.
  • Spewart is the most recent known currently existing Yo-kai to have a beta design released.

References

  1. https://youkai.gamepedia.jp/yw3/archives/182
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