Channel Hop: Publisher version. While all the games are developed by WayForward Technologies, the first game was originally published by Capcom, while all later installments are self-published digitally by WayForward themselves. Meanwhile, physical versions of those titles have been handled by Limited Run Games (Risky's Revenge, PS4 and Switch versions of Pirate's Curse, Seven Sirens, and all PS5 verions), Rising Star Games (3DS version of Pirate's Curse), and Xseed Games (Half-Genie Hero).
Cut Song: The soundtrack release for Seven Sirens features a downbeat rendition of the Tree Town theme named "Tree Town Chief", which was presumably intended to play upon first meeting the character in question while Vera is kidnapped. In-game however, the recurring theme used for numerous apprehensive or mysterious scenes in the game, "Secrets" plays here, and "Tree Town Chief" goes unused.
Dummied Out: In the Virtual Console release, it isn't possible to get the Tinkerbat Transformation as the game is emulating the Game Boy Color version, not the Game Boy Advance version (unless you know how to access the Debug Mode).
Executive Meddling: Shantae and the Seven Sirens being released on the Apple Arcade before any other platform, due to Apple's involvement in the game's production as they helped finance it plus two more original titles they were making at the time, Spidersaurs and Marble Knights. WayForward were also very tight-lipped about when the game would debut on other platforms, and didn't initially make things clear about the segmented nature of the Apple Arcade release.
Fan Community Nickname: Updates on Half-Genie Hero's Kickstarter referred to backers as "Tinkerbackers" and "Shantarians".
Fan Nickname: One of the planned enemies for Shantae Advanced was an undead Elite Mook who attacks Shantae by spanking her repeatedly whenever he catches her. When the demo of the game was shown to the public for the first time, fans were quick to dub him as Spanky Joe.
I Knew It!: Some fans accurately suspected that the half-genies' kidnapping in Seven Sirens was done mostly through someone deliberately aiding the Sirens, specifically the mayor of Arena Town. Played with in that the mayor wasn't actually real in the first place and was an elaborate disguise by Risky Boots, which took everyone by surprise.
As soon as she was shown off, nearly every fan called that the zombie half genie, Fillin The Blank, was Rottytops wearing a costume.
Limited Special Collector's Ultimate Edition: Every game in the series now has one, thanks to the Switch, PlayStation 4 and upcoming PlayStation 5 rereleases, released by Limited Run Gamesnote Except for 1/2 Genie Hero, which got a "Day One Ultimate Edition" from XSeed Games. Each collector's edition comes with a soundtrack, a reversible poster, a steelbook case, a collectible trading card, and a miscellaneous collectible, like an acrylic figure, a collector's coin, or a prop Game Boy Color cartridge. There was also a special rerelease of the original Game Boy Color version, FOR the Game Boy Color!
Milestone Celebration: The console versions of Seven Sirens were released in 2020, just in time for WayForward's 30th anniversary.
No Export for You: It took until Risky's Revenge was released in Europe in February 2011 for the series to make its way outside of the United States. Australia and New Zealand still didn't get it, though, with WayForward stating that they weren't actively pursuing it. To say nothing of Japan. It took until the 2013 Virtual Console release of the original Game Boy Color game for those territories to be introduced to the games.
The free "Dancer Outfit" in Risky's Revenge was not put in the DSiWare version for undisclosed reasons, likely due to Nintendo's restrictive policy on third parties releasing patches at the time.
Risky Boots, Bolo, and Rottytops were all going to be playable in a multiplayer mode for a Game Boy Advance entry that never got off the ground. Years later, the Kickstarter for the fourth entry in the series (Half-Genie Hero) had a stretch goal for Risky Boots getting her own campaign, and another stretch goal to give Rottytops, Bolo, and Sky their own campaign. Both goals were successfully reached, becoming "Pirate Queen's Quest" and "Friends to the End", respectively.
One of the pieces of Pirate Equipment that was scrapped in Pirate's Curse was a grappling anchor. It was later incorporated into the "Pirate Queen's Quest" mode of Half-Genie Hero.
A minor example. When the original game was pitched for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and the PC, Shantae's red outfit would have upgraded to a triumphant blue near the end of the adventure. While this doesn't happen in the final Game Boy Color release, some entries in the series would go on to have the blue outfit available as an alternate color, either unlockable after beating the game once or as a starting option.
Troubled Production: The release date for Pirate's Curse was pushed back from "2013" to Holiday 2013 to Summer 2014 to finally October 2014. Adding in a contract with Inti Creates mid-development, not to mention the shifting of personnel to work on Half-Genie Hero, are probably the main contenders in the delays.
During the creation process for Shantae's character, one of the early ideas was that her belly dancing would summon or charm animals into helping her accomplish her tasks. Over time, this was eventually turned into her transforming into said animals herself via transformation dances.
Risky Boots was originally meant to be a ghost pirate and had a much more ominous look in concept. Eventually, they scrapped that idea, but maintained her purple skin and skull motif.
During the SNES/PC pitch days, one of Shantae's possible transformations was a tiger. It almost came back during the planning for Half-Genie Hero as well, but it ultimately wasn't chosen by backers when put up for voting.
There was meant to be a game for the Game Boy Advance titled Shantae 2: Risky Revolution that would have had a multiplayer battle mode with Risky Boots, Bolo, and Rottytops as playable characters. The game was never completed but some of the sprites and ideas were used in Risky's Revenge.
Risky's Revenge was originally going to be the first in a trilogy of "episodic" Shantae games.
In Pirate's Curse, there was originally going to be a character known as the "Gunsmith", whose main purpose was to upgrade Risky's Pistol. On a related note, the Wetgal enemies were going to return along with their Wetmen counterparts, but were removed for some reason.
Early articles for Pirate's Curse mention Pirate Equipment that never made it into the final game, such as Bone Daggers that could be used as a ranged weapon and allow Shantae to climb walls, a grappling anchor, and remote controlled mines. Also, the game originally featured 30 Cacklebats as opposed to 20.
Pirate's Curse was originally going to have a pirate-esque outfit for Shantae, but was removed for unknown reasons, and the character portraits for it only show up twice in the whole game. Interestingly enough, it's still visible in sprites when using items in the final game, with the exception of the scimitar. It's most notably visible when using the pistol and cannon items, as seen here
Half-Genie Hero was originally going to feature a location called "Freshwater Town". This area would've served as a prologue for the "Mermaid Falls" chapter, with Shantae accidentally scaring the Merfolk, leading her to investigate their situation. In the game itself, no such area appears.
One of the planned bonus chapters of Half-Genie Hero had Nega-Shantae returning Back from the Dead. Sadly, it wasn't funded in time, and while she does make an appearance, she's only around for a single cutscene in the main story. WayForward proceeded to make her the primary antagonist of the Friends to the End campaign, instead.
Other content that wasn't funded included full voice acting, animated cutscenes, and a chapter where Risky supposedly reforms (the synopsis suggests it was an expanded version of the endgame involving the Dynamo).
Half-Genie Hero was going to have a boss fight during Shantae's dream/vision in the prologue, but it was scrapped.
The team experimented with a Wiiware title. Nothing came of this.
Word of Dante: A subsection of fans tend to assert that Shantae is "canonically" 16 years of age, pointing to a tweet the series' official Twitter account posted in 2015 in response to a fan inquiry on the topic. However, when pressed about the tweet, series designer James Montagna stated that it was posted by an intern without approval, that Shantae as a character was never designed with the intention of portraying her as a minor, and that they never intended to do anything with Shantae's fanservicey elements that would make them or other people uncomfortable.
Early promotional material for Half-Genie Hero notably had Shantae appear much paler than normal. Matt Bozon explained in an interview that this was a mistake caused by the lighting engine they were using, which was easier to tinker around with if the base color of the test character was light, and was never intended to be part of the final image. Alas, the uncolored test model was what the initial pre-release material based their art on, leading to a pale Shantae. This was fixed before the final release.