Here is a link to a Gamespot article that details the development of Unreal and reveals some interesting facts about the game: http://uk.gamespot.com/features/makeunreal/index.html
A line from the help file included in the 1995 Alpha version:
It seems Unreal was going to be distributed by EA at one point, but this was changed for some unknown reason."This is a little game we are creating for a Fall ‘96 debut. Unreal will be published in shareware by Epic MegaGames and distributed in retail stores worldwide by Electronic Arts."
Here are a few screenshots of very early builds of the game (From 1995, 1996 and 1997) Almost everything you see in these screenshots never made it to the final retail version of Unreal.
Screenshots from the leaked 1995 Alpha (Which I'm sure is already on the server.)
More information about the 1995 alpha can be found here: http://tcrf.net/Proto:Unreal/1995_Tech_Demo
Unseen64.net has some useful info about the 1995 Alpha too, including some videos: http://www.unseen64.net/2009/06/16/unre ... tech-demo/
One of the very first (released) screenshots of the game showing the "Woman" and "Dragon", both cut from the final release. (1996)
The "Quad Shotgun" that was never finished for the final game. (1996)
A VERY early version of the "Automag" weapon. (1996)
A slightly updated version of the "Automag" weapon. (1997)
The final "Automag" weapon design. (1998, retail version)
A castle-themed map, never seen in the final. (1997)
There are many more screenshots over at UnrealSP.org: http://unrealsp.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=78
Also, if it's allowed (Not sure, thought I'd ask first) I have a collection of music from various Alpha/Beta versions of Unreal and I'd like to share them They date back to 1995/6/7.