20 years really ?! I'm clueless about the history behind this beta version, but if it's 20 years I'm thinking it might be a press leak that's been in the way of the retail version since the start.
Like Oasiz said the September 96 version is the worst. IIRC that's the one in which, among other things, visibility is broken. FYI the game doesn't have gamma settings, instead what they call "gamma" and what you change by pressing F11 is visibility, which completely messes up the game (don't touch it, iirc there are 5 levels and the third one should be default). However, even if it's documented in the cfg file, visibility is broken in the September version and is stuck to 0.
In other words, you can't see shit, and for a game like Powerslave it gets even worse because they use palette to set forced full visibility on some items and surfaces, which will stand out even more if your global visibility is set to 0.
Then it gets even worse in our episode because we use slopes which have full visibility as well by default. You may not see any difference in most outdoor areas of our maps though, no matter your global visibility setting, because we used forced full visibility with palettes in those areas especially so that slopes wouldn't stand out in the distance,
Yes, it's a mess.
However IIRC the beta version does support music but you need the CD of the game or an iso of it.
Thanks for playing and for the comments.
I feel the same way about the map being drawn out in a way. I realized this when it was finished, I wanted the map to feel like you're searching the place for all 4 keys for the exit, but during the middle of the map the player just goes through numerous ultra-thematic rooms, one after the other. At first I wanted it more to feel like you return to the hub between rooms, but that feeling is lost because when you do after the baths room, the corridor you're in IS part of the hub but there is no visible connection to it yet until the walls go up. So the player doesn't realize he's back in the hub the first time he's in the corridor and as a result, it can make the player feel like he just goes from room to room with a lack of purpose.
I couldn't think of an efficient way to fix this without re-doing a lot of the connections between rooms so I just rolled with it.