|Sonic the Hedgehog|
North American box art
|Series||Sonic the Hedgehog|
Sonic the Hedgehog, also referred to as Sonic 1, is a platform game developed by Sonic Team and published by Sega for the Sega Genesis console. It was released in North America in June 1991, and in PAL regions and Japan the following month. The game features an anthropomorphic hedgehog named Sonic in a quest to defeat Doctor Robotnik, a scientist who has imprisoned animals in robots and stolen the powerful Chaos Emeralds. The gameplay involves collecting rings as a form of health and a simple control scheme, with jumping and attacking controlled by a single button.
Platform games, or platformers, are a video game genre and subgenre of action game. In a platformer the player controlled character must jump and climb between suspended platforms while avoiding obstacles. Environments often feature uneven terrain of varying height that must be traversed. The player often has some control over the height and distance of jumps to avoid letting their character fall to their death or miss necessary jumps. The most common unifying element of games of this genre is the jump button, but now there are other alternatives like swiping a touchscreen. Other acrobatic maneuvers may factor into the gameplay as well, such as swinging from objects such as vines or grappling hooks, as in Ristar or Bionic Commando, or bouncing from springboards or trampolines, as in Alpha Waves. These mechanics, even in the context of other genres, are commonly called platforming, a verbification of platform. Games where jumping is automated completely, such as 3D games in The Legend of Zelda series, fall outside of the genre.
Sega CS Research and Development No. 2, commonly abbreviated as Sega CS2 R&D and better known as Sonic Team, is a video game development division of the Japanese company Sega. Sonic Team is best known for the long-running Sonic the Hedgehog series and games such as Nights into Dreams and Phantasy Star Online.
Sega Games Co., Ltd. is a Japanese multinational video game developer and publisher headquartered in Tokyo. Its international branches, Sega of America and Sega Europe, are respectively headquartered in Irvine, California and London. Sega's arcade division, once part of Sega Corporation, has existed as Sega Interactive Co., Ltd. since 2015. Both companies are subsidiaries of Sega Holdings Co., Ltd., which is in turn a part of Sega Sammy Holdings.
Development began in 1990 when Sega ordered its developers to create a game featuring a mascot for the company. After considering a number of suggestions, the developers decided on a blue hedgehog and named themselves "Sonic Team" to match their character. Sonic the Hedgehog, designed for fast gameplay, was influenced by games by Super Mario series creator Shigeru Miyamoto. Sonic the Hedgehog uses a novel technique that allows Sonic's sprite to roll along curved scenery, which originated in a tech demo created by programmer Yuji Naka.
Super Mario is a series of platform games created by Nintendo, and featuring their mascot, Mario. Alternatively called the Super Mario Bros. series or simply the Mario series, it is the central series of the greater Mario franchise. At least one Super Mario game has been released for every major Nintendo video game console.
Shigeru Miyamoto is a Japanese video game designer and producer at Nintendo, where he serves as one of its representative directors. He is the creator of some of the most acclaimed and best-selling game franchises, such as Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Star Fox, F-Zero, and Donkey Kong.
Sprite is a computer graphics term for a two-dimensional bitmap that is integrated into a larger scene, most often in a 2D video game.
Sonic the Hedgehog was well received by critics, who praised its visuals, audio, and gameplay. It was also commercially successful, establishing the Genesis as a key player in the 16-bit era and allowing it to compete with Nintendo and their Super Nintendo Entertainment System console. The game has been ported a number of times, and inspired several clones, a successful franchise, and adaptations into other media. It is often cited as one of the greatest video games of all time.
In the history of computer and video games, the fourth generation of game consoles began on October 30, 1987 with the Japanese release of NEC Home Electronics' PC Engine. Although NEC released the first console of this era, sales were mostly dominated by the rivalry between Nintendo's and Sega's consoles in North America: the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and the Sega Genesis. Handheld systems released during this time include the Nintendo Game Boy, released in 1989, and the Sega Game Gear, first released in 1990.
Nintendo Co., Ltd. is a Japanese multinational consumer electronics and video game company headquartered in Kyoto. Nintendo is one of the world's largest video game companies by market capitalization, creating some of the best-known and top-selling video game franchises of all-time, such as Mario, The Legend of Zelda, and Pokémon.
The Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES), also known as the Super NES or Super Nintendo, is a 16-bit home video game console developed by Nintendo that was released in 1990 in Japan and South Korea, 1991 in North America, 1992 in Europe and Australasia (Oceania), and 1993 in South America. In Japan, the system is called the Super Famicom (SFC). In South Korea, it is known as the Super Comboy and was distributed by Hyundai Electronics. The system was released in Brazil on August 30, 1993, by Playtronic. Although each version is essentially the same, several forms of regional lockout prevent the different versions from being compatible with one another.
Sonic the Hedgehog is a 2D, side-scrolling platform video game. The gameplay centers around Sonic's ability to run at high speed through levels that include springs, slopes, bottomless pits, and vertical loops.The levels are populated with hazards in the form of robots inside which Dr. Robotnik has trapped animals. Destroying a robot frees the creature, but is not necessary to complete the game. The player must also avoid touching spikes, falling into bottomless pits, and being crushed by moving walls or platforms, as well as drowning, which may be prevented by breathing air bubbles from vents. Sonic's main means of attack is the Spin Attack, in which he curls into a ball and rapidly spins his body, damaging enemies and certain obstacles upon collision. This may be performed by jumping or by rolling on the ground.
2D computer graphics is the computer-based generation of digital images—mostly from two-dimensional models and by techniques specific to them.The word may stand for the branch of computer science that comprises such techniques or for the models themselves.
A side-scrolling game, side-scroller, or horizontally-scrolling game is a video game in which the gameplay action is viewed from a side-view camera angle, and the onscreen characters can generally only move to the left or right. These games make use of scrolling computer display technology. The move from single-screen or flip-screen graphics to scrolling graphics, during the golden age of video arcade games and during third-generation consoles, would prove to be a pivotal leap in game design, comparable to the move to 3D graphics during the fifth generation. Although side-scrolling games have been supplanted by 3D games, they continue to be produced.
The generic roller coaster vertical loop, where a section of track causes the riders to complete a 360 degree turn, is the most basic of roller coaster inversions. At the top of the loop, riders are completely inverted.
At the start of the game, the player is given three lives, each of which may be lost if Sonic collides with hazardous enemies or objects while in possession of no rings, falls to the bottom of the level screen, or exceeds an act's ten-minute time limit. Signposts act as checkpoints to allow Sonic to return to the most recently activated post when he loses a life.The time resets when he returns to the checkpoint. The game ends when the player runs out of lives, although the player may return to the beginning of the act with three lives if the player has any continues.
Scattered around each level are gold rings.Collecting 100 rings rewards the player with an extra life. Rings act as a layer of protection against hazards: if Sonic holds at least one ring when he collides with an enemy or dangerous obstacle, he survives. However, all his rings scatter, and disappear in a few seconds if not picked up again. If he is hit without holding any rings, he loses a life. Shields and temporary invincibility can be collected to provide additional layers of protection, but certain hazards, such as drowning, being crushed, bottomless pits, or running out of time, kill Sonic regardless of rings or other protection.
The game is split into six principal zones, followed by a short 'Final Zone'. Each main zone has its own visual style, and while some enemies appear throughout, each zone has unique enemies and obstacles.Each main zone is split into three acts, all of which must be completed. At the end of each main zone's third act, the player confronts Dr. Robotnik for a boss fight. For most of the fights, Robotnik's vehicle is fitted with different weapons. After completing the sixth zone, the player continues directly to the single-level "Final Zone" for a last encounter with Robotnik inside a large machine environment. Destroying Robotnik's machine ends the game. A brief animation shows Sonic's return to the first zone, with animals liberated from Robotnik.
Optionally, if Sonic reaches the end of any zone's Act 1 or Act 2 while holding at least 50 rings, a large ring appears through which he can jump to enter a "Special Stage." In the Special Stages, Sonic is continually curled up in his Spin Attack animation, and bounces off the bumpers and walls of a fully rotating maze. In these levels, the player earns a number of continues for each multiple of 50 rings collected, but the main goal is to obtain the Chaos Emerald hidden within the maze. Colliding with any of the blocks marked "GOAL" ends the level.
In an attempt to steal the six Chaos Emeralds and harness their power, the evil Dr. Ivo Robotnikhas trapped the animal inhabitants of South Island in aggressive robots and stationary metal capsules. The player controls Sonic, who aims to halt Robotnik's plans by freeing his animal friends and collecting the emeralds himself. If the player collects all the Chaos Emeralds and completes the game, an ending sequence is shown. If all the emeralds are not collected, Robotnik taunts the player while juggling any of the Chaos Emeralds not collected by the player.
In 1990, Sega ordered its in-house development studio to develop a game featuring a mascot for the company.This was a position already held by the character Alex Kidd, but he was considered too similar to Nintendo's mascot Mario and deemed unsatisfactory; Sega president Hayao Nakayama wanted a character as iconic as Mickey Mouse. Sega had competition with Nintendo, who was dominant at the time (particularly after the release of the successful Super Mario Bros. 3 ), and Sega wanted a foothold in the industry. Although the company had some limited success with Genesis ports of its arcade games, it knew this would not be enough.
The team developed ideas for characters, an engine, and gameplay mechanics. Development emphasized speed, so Sega eliminated character designs not associated with fast animals, as well as fast creatures like kangaroos and squirrels.One idea, a rabbit able to grasp objects with prehensile ears, showed promise at first but was too complex for the available hardware. The team narrowed its search to animals that can roll into a ball, their idea for an attacking move. Designers then realized that this would not seem aggressive enough, so they focused on two animals with spikes: armadillos and hedgehogs. The hedgehog character, first proposed by Naoto Ohshima, prevailed, although the armadillo would later become the basis for Mighty the Armadillo, who later appeared in 1993's SegaSonic the Hedgehog . Ohshima has since admitted that he created Sonic's basic design by combining Felix the Cat's head with Mickey Mouse's body. Ohshima explained that his inspiration for creating Sonic was Sega wanting a game that would be successful in the United States and a new mascot concurrently. He was working with Naka with a prototype game, and Ohshima was thinking of design ideas with the toy and stationery department. Before Sonic was chosen, other characters, including a rabbit and a bearded man who would ultimately become Dr. Robotnik, were created. One summer, Ohshima went on vacation to New York, taking sketches with him. He went to Central Park and asked locals for their opinions on them, and Sonic was the favorite. Ohshima explained that this was because he wanted support for his ideas.
Sonic was originally teal-colored,then a light shade of blue, but he was changed to dark blue so he would stand out against certain backgrounds and to match the Sega logo. His shoes had buckles through the inspiration of Michael Jackson's boots on the album cover for Bad and the red and white color scheme of Santa Claus, whom Ohshima saw as the most "famous character in the world". Sonic's spikes were emphasized to make him look sleeker, and he was given the ability to spin while jumping (so attacking and jumping could be controlled with one button). The new character was originally named "Mr. Needlemouse", but the eight-member team changed his name to "Sonic" and took the name Sonic Team. Ohshima stated that "Sonic" was chosen because it represented speed. Ideas proposed to flesh out the character included placing him in a rock band, giving him vampire fangs, and giving him a human girlfriend named Madonna, but Sega of America scrapped these ideas to keep his identity simple. Sega of America also expressed concerns that most Americans would not know what a hedgehog is and initially proposed a full-scale recreation of the character, but compromised with Sonic Team to simply make design changes. The antagonist ended up being named "Dr. Eggman" in Japan and "Dr. Robotnik" in other regions as a result of a dispute between Sega's American and Japanese divisions.
With a satisfying protagonist completed, Sega turned to esteemed programmer Yuji Naka, who had impressed them through his work on Phantasy Star and the Genesis port of Ghouls 'n Ghosts .Naka was a fan of Super Mario Bros. but desired something faster, so the game was made to play quickly, which was where he focused most of his effort. Naka explained that the reason he wanted a fast game is because he ported Ghouls 'n Ghosts, and wanted to work on its movement but found it slow.
Sonic the Hedgehog was developed by a team of seven: two programmers, two sound engineers, and three designers,although it began with just Naka and Ohshima. People came onto the team as the need for content increased. After being assigned a project with the code name "Defeat Mario", Naka and Ohshima began work, but encountered problems: Ohshima's Rabbit proved hard to program. Catching items and throwing them caused the action's rhythm to break. Naka stated that the rabbit was not suitable for his game engine, and he also wanted the game to be playable with only one button. Hirokazu Yasuhara came onto the team to supervise Naka and Ohshima and develop levels. He became the lead designer due to his greater experience, and found the way to make the game playable with only one button by having Sonic do damage by jumping. The trio came up with the idea of him rolling into a ball. After the hedgehog character was chosen, many characters were redrawn, and the team agreed on the environments visual complexity, with particular focus on the colors. After this, four people came onto the team to speed development up.
Due to the popularity of Mario, Naka wanted Sonic to take over the American market. Sonic's default speed was set to that of Mario while running. Tests were run using the Genesis' tool library, and problems such as flickering, slow frame rates, and shaky animation soon became apparent. Increasing Sonic's speed caused animation problems. Naka solved the problem by developing an algorithm that enabled the animation to retain fluidity. Sonic was able to cross levels quickly without the animation slowing down, and all that was left was the optimization of the game's speed to adhere to the staff's expectations. The team noticed that different people had different perceptions of the game's speed: some believed it was too fast, which caused disagreements. As a result, it was slowed down.
The gameplay originated with a tech demo by Naka, who developed an algorithm allowing a sprite to move smoothly on a curve by determining its position with a dot matrix. Naka's prototype was a platform game with a fast-moving character rolling in a ball through a long, winding tube, and this concept was fleshed out with Ohshima's character designs and levels by Yasuhara.Yasuhara originally intended to work on the game for three months due to the delay of his planned move to the United States by the outbreak of the Gulf War, but was engrossed in the project for nearly a year. His designs for levels were intended to attract both hardcore and casual gamers by integrating occasional challenging set pieces into the mostly accessible level design. The color scheme was influenced by the work of pop artist Eizin Suzuki, and the aesthetics of Green Hill were influenced by the geography of California.
In designing the gameplay, Naka was inspired by Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto, whose games he had enjoyed playing years earlier. Admiring the simplicity of Miyamoto's mechanics in complex environments, Naka decided that Sonic would be controlled with only a directional pad for movement and a single button for jumping. He also wanted his creation to be more action-oriented than the Mario series;while playing Super Mario Bros. , he had wondered why the levels could not be cleared more quickly.
Naka, Ohshima, and Yasuhara worked 19 hours a day on the project for several months.Due to the need to demonstrate the Genesis' technological prowess, the game underwent extensive testing and redesign, which took over six months. According to Naka, the game had the fastest-ever character speed in a video game and a rotation effect in the special stages that had been considered impossible on the console.
The team intended to add a two-player mode displayed via split-screen, but Naka's programming knowledge was insufficient to implement it. A two-player mode appeared in Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (1992), whereby the second player controls Sonic's sidekick Miles "Tails" Prower.Sonic Team also intended to include a sound test with animations of Sonic breakdancing to a band of animal characters; including a crocodile keyboardist who was later introduced into the series as Vector the Crocodile in Knuckles' Chaotix in 1995. The sound test was scrapped for time reasons and Naka used the freed up memory to add the "Se-ga!" chant used in TV commercials as a startup sound.
Naka's relationship with Sega was tenuous during this time, and he received little credit for his work. He left the company shortly after the game's release, although Sega of America hired him later. Before leaving, however, he defied Sega's prohibition of developer credits by displaying a few names in black text on a black background, identifiable only by looking at the code.Naka stated that level design was a major challenge: he created maps much wider than normal and tried to ensure players would not get lost. It took him around eight months to develop Green Hill Zone as he kept restarting from scratch. He stated that he found the process "very interesting". Naka also stated that the team was trying to create smooth maps, and that implementing looping structures was a challenge because Sonic would break through them instead of running around them. The backgrounds were also a challenge, as the game's speed created the impression of going backwards. The zones were based on designs by Naka and Ohshima, with the goal of creating the world's fastest action game. According to Ohshima, Robotnik was based on Humpty Dumpty.
Yasuhara wanted the game to appeal to both Japanese and American players, which was why Green Hill Zone was redesigned many times. Sonic Team wanted the level to portray the character correctly. Its checkered ground was inspired by 3D image rendering from computers, an idea Naka obtained from Sega developer Yu Suzuki, who used this technique with Space Harrier . The team read Famitsu to stay informed of what their rivals were doing so they could avoid their mistakes.
The music for Sonic the Hedgehog was composed by Masato Nakamura, bassist and songwriter of the J-pop band Dreams Come True.Nakamura said he was surprised when asked to create the soundtrack, as he had just started with Dreams Come True. He accepted as he was inspired by the team's desire to outperform Nintendo. He adapted the Genesis' sound chip, and believed the hardest part of creating the soundtrack was the number of sounds that could play concurrently: he was limited to four, and said that his lack of knowledge of music on computers made it "impossible". Nakamura wrote the soundtrack concurrently with the Dreams Come True album Million Kisses.
On October 19, 2011, over 20 years after the release, a three-disc compilation of music from Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was released in Japan. The first disc features original tracks from both games, the second contains Nakamura's demo recordings before they were programmed into the Genesis, and the third has songs by Dreams Come True and their associated Akon remixes.
Game-package illustrator Akira Watanabe said that his goal was to make the characters "colorful", using clear lines and gradation to "finish them neatly". ... without being particular to conventional packages" – something "original" and "stylish". The title was not revealed until the January 1991 International Consumer Electronics Show because Sega wanted to wait until the right time and because they saw an opportunity to "steal the show". At the show, Sonic the Hedgehog was believed to be the most impressive game shown, and won the CES award for innovation.According to Watanabe, the developers asked him to create a package design "similar to pop art
Sega of America CEO Tom Kalinske wanted reassurance that the character would not fail. The global head of marketing, Al Nilsen, became involved, and playtested the game across the United States with Mario fans: they were shown Mario and then played Sonic the Hedgehog. 80 percent preferred Sonic the Hedgehog, and the game was shown at the 1991 Summer Consumer Electronics Show.It was released in North America on June 23, 1991, and in the PAL regions and Japan the following month. Sega of America packaged it with American Genesis consoles, replacing Altered Beast . This tactic enabled Sega of America to sell 15 million Genesis units. Genesis owners who bought their consoles before the switch could request free copies of Sonic the Hedgehog by mail. Sega of America created a large-scale marketing campaign, promoting Sonic as its mascot.
A version of Sonic the Hedgehog was developed by Ancient and released in late 1991 for Sega's 8-bit consoles, the Master System and Game Gear. Its plot and gameplay mechanics are similar to the 16-bit version, though some level themes and digital assets are different and Chaos Emeralds are scattered throughout levels rather than special stages.Gameplay as a whole is simplified; the level design is flatter and has a larger focus on exploration, with no vertical loops, and Sonic cannot re-collect his rings after being hit. The game has a different soundtrack composed by Yuzo Koshiro, which includes adaptations of music from the original version. It was the final game released for the Master System in North America. The Master System version was re-released for Wii's Virtual Console service in North America and Europe in August 2008. The Game Gear version was re-released for the Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console on June 13, 2013, and included as an unlockable game in Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut for GameCube and Windows and Sonic Mega Collection Plus for PlayStation 2, Xbox, and Windows.
To mark the game's fifteenth anniversary, a port for the Game Boy Advance, Sonic the Hedgehog Genesis, was released on November 14, 2006. While the port is mostly identical to the original, it includes several new features not seen in the original Genesis release, such as the ability to save game progress, a level select option, and inclusion of the Spin Dash move.This version, unlike others, received poor reviews, with a Metacritic score of 33/100. The chief complaints concerned its poor conversion to the Game Boy Advance, resulting in a bad performance and poor implementation of the original music and gameplay.
As a response to the poor reception and claims that the system could not handle the original game, Simon Thomley, who later assisted with the development of the 2013 mobile port, released an unofficial, proof-of-concept version of Sonic the Hedgehog for the system. The unofficial version contains a complete Green Hill Zone and two special stages, as well as Tails and Knuckles as playable characters.
A remastered mobile port was released on iOS on May 15, 2013, with an Android version following the next day. This version was developed by Christian "Taxman" Whitehead and Simon "Stealth" Thomley from scratch using the Retro Engine, previously used in the 2011 remaster of Sonic CD . This port features several enhancements, such as widescreen graphics, the optional ability to Spin Dash, an additional special stage, a time attack mode, and the unlockable option to play as Tails or Knuckles; it additionally features a heavily expanded debug mode which allows for use of unused elements and elements from more recent games (such as the characters' super forms).The iOS version was updated in 2016, adding compatibility with Apple TV.
A Nintendo 3DS version, 3D Sonic the Hedgehog, was released as part of the 3D Classics line in 2013.This version, unlike most downloadable re-releases of the game, is not emulated; rather, the code was restructured to take advantage of the 3DS system's stereoscopic 3D graphics and comes with additional enhancements, such as the option to use the Spin Dash move, a CRT-style filter, and the option to start from any level.
With its sequels for the Genesis, Sonic the Hedgehog has been ported for a wide range of home and handheld consoles and personal computers through compilations.The first collection it appeared in was Sonic Compilation (1995) for the Genesis. It has since appeared in Sonic Jam (1997) for the Sega Saturn, Sonic Mega Collection (2002) for the Nintendo GameCube, Sonic Mega Collection Plus (2004) for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox, Sega Genesis Collection for the PlayStation 2 and PSP, Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection (2009) for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, Sonic Classic Collection (2010) for the Nintendo DS, Oculus Arcade for the Oculus Rift, and Sega Genesis Classics (2018) for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
Sonic the Hedgehog has been available for all three major seventh-generation video game consoles. It was part of the Wii Virtual Console at the service's 2006 introduction,and was released for the Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network shortly afterwards. The game was released for the iPod Classic, iPod video, and video-capable iPod Nano models in 2007 and for Apple's iOS in April 2009. Sonic the Hedgehog became available on GameTap in September 2009. In October 2010, it was released on Microsoft Windows via Steam. The game was ported to Android and released in December 2012. Additionally, it is an unlockable reward in the console versions of Sonic Generations . It was also made available on the Sega Forever service on iOS and Android in June 2017. A port for Nintendo Switch was released on September 20, 2018 as part of the Sega Ages line of rereleases. It adds features including the ability to use moves from Sonic 2 and Sonic Mania , a challenge mode, a time attack for the first stage, and features from the 3DS rereleases of the game and its sequel.
U.S. Gold acquired the rights to make a version of Sonic the Hedgehog for the Amiga, ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, Amstrad CPC and Atari ST personal computers, but these went unreleased.Several screenshots exist, some of which resemble the 8-bit version. An enhanced port for the Sega CD was also planned, but was scrapped in favor of Sonic CD .
Sonic the Hedgehog was praised by critics, with an 86% rating at the review aggregator GameRankings.It was considered Sega's answer to Nintendo's widely popular Mario series, as it was a platformer featuring the company's mascot. Paul Rand of Computer and Video Games compared the two in depth and characterized Sonic the Hedgehog as being faster, with brighter colors, and Super Mario World as having more "depth of play". Frank Ladoire of Génération 4 believed Sonic the Hedgehog was part of a new generation of games that demonstrate that the Genesis is capable of "beautiful things" in the technical department.
Reviewers praised the colorful, detailed graphics. Rand called its color scheme "lively, but never garish", praising the interaction of color with detail in the sprites, backgrounds, and animations and describing its graphics as the best available for the Genesis. ... ever seen". Julian Boardman of Raze praised the "colourful and highly detailed" backdrops and "fabulous" sprites. The music and sound effects were also well received; Dragon called them "great", and GameZone "amazing". Rand praised the "catchy" soundtrack, calling some of the sound effects "absolutely brilliant". Although Mean Machines called the songs "vaguely appealing", the sound effects were better appreciated. However, Boardman of Raze considered the music "a little boring".Reviewer Boogie Man of GamePro called the intricate backgrounds "eye-popping" and "gorgeous", which was echoed by Mean Machines . The Lessers (Hartley, Patricia, and Kirk) of Dragon claimed the graphics made Sonic a possible contender for the best game of 1991 and GameZone called the animation "some of the smoothest and fastest
Critics cited the fast gameplay, unprecedented in platformers.The difficulty was disputed, described as "impossible" by Rand and "average" by EGM. Rand said about the gameplay in general that it "plays like a dream"; according to GameZone it would enchant players for hours, and Boogie Man praised Sonic Team's ability to provide an engaging experience primarily from running and jumping. Although EGM, Dragon, Paul of Mean Machines and Boardman of Raze praised the level design (especially the hidden rooms), Paul found losing all of one's rings frustrating.
Sonic the Hedgehog has maintained its popularity, and has since been considered one of the greatest video games of all time. Frank Provo of GameSpot described the game as "one of the best platformers of all time", finding that despite technical issues in the Game Boy Advance port "after all these years, the underlying graphics, audio, and gameplay still hold up". 's emphasis on speed and pinball mechanics dramatically departs from generally accepted precepts of game design, requiring that players "learn through repetition rather than observation" as "the levels aren't designed to be seen or even understood in one playthrough." However, Stuart concluded that "sometimes in Sonic, when you get better, or through sheer luck, things take off, every jump is right, every loop-the-loop is perfect, and you're in the flow, sailing above the game's strange structure ... Sonic is incorrect game design and yet ... it's a masterpiece." Mega ranked Sonic as its third-favorite Genesis game, and in 2001 Game Informer called it the 24th-greatest game of all time. Sonic the Hedgehog has been a commercial success; the original Genesis version bundled with the Sega Genesis / Mega Drive hardware had sold over 15 million copies by February 2009, and the mobile version had eight million paid downloads by 2008. Bob Strauss of Entertainment Weekly gave the game an A+ and wrote that it was a very fast game, yet never felt chaotic or impossible, and they later named it the best game available in 1991.Lucas M. Thomas of IGN agreed that it stood the test of time. Writing in The Guardian , Keith Stuart observed that Sonic the Hedgehog
Primarily because of its Genesis bundling, Sonic the Hedgehog contributed to the console's popularity in North America.During October–December 1991, the Genesis outsold the Super NES by two to one; at its January 1992 peak it had 65 percent of the market for 16-bit consoles. Although Nintendo eventually overtook Sega, it was the first time since December 1985 that Nintendo did not lead the console market.
Sonic the Hedgehog inspired similar platformers starring animal mascots, including Bubsy ,Aero the Acro-Bat , James Pond 3 , Earthworm Jim , Zero the Kamikaze Squirrel , and Radical Rex . "Animal with attitude" games carried over to the next generation of consoles, with the developers of Crash Bandicoot and Gex citing Sonic as a major inspiration.
Sonic's success led to an extensive media franchise, with the first of many sequels, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, released the following year. It has generated dozens of additional games and a large cast of recurring characters, keeping Sonic and Robotnik (later renamed as Eggman) mainstays, and continued beyond Sega's exit from the console industry after the Dreamcast.The series has ventured from platformers to fighting, racing, role-playing, and sports games, and also expanded into anime, manga, cartoons comic books, novels, and toys. Sonic the Hedgehog is one of the best-selling video game franchises of all time, with over 140 million copies sold or downloaded worldwide across consoles, PC’s, mobile phones and tablets by May 2014. The first stage, Green Hill Zone, has been used in several games, such as Sonic Adventure 2 , Sonic Generations , Sonic Mania , Sonic Forces , and the Super Smash Bros. series.
The game inspired a number of unofficial variants, including Somari , a pirated Nintendo Entertainment System conversion featuring Nintendo's Mario character in levels from the original Sonic game,Sonic the Hedgehog Megamix , a total conversion mod of the original game, and Sonic 1 Boomed, a ROM hack which implements Sonic's redesign from the Sonic Boom animated series.
Nights into Dreams is a 1996 action game developed by Sonic Team and published by Sega for the Sega Saturn. The story follows teenagers Claris and Elliot, who enter Nightopia, a dream world where all dreams take place. With the help of Nights, an exiled "Nightmaren", they begin a journey to stop the evil ruler Wizeman from destroying Nightopia and consequently the real world. Players control Nights flying through Claris and Elliot's dreams to gather enough energy to defeat Wizeman and save Nightopia. The game is presented in 3D and imposes time limits on every level, in which the player must accumulate points to proceed.
Sonic the Hedgehog is the title character and protagonist of the Sonic the Hedgehog video game series released by Sega, as well as numerous spin-off comics, animations, and other media.
Sonic the Hedgehog 3 is a platform game developed and published by Sega. It is the sequel to Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (1992) and was released worldwide for the Sega Genesis in 1994. Following the events of Sonic 2, Doctor Robotnik's spaceship, the Death Egg, crash-lands on a mysterious floating island. There, Sonic and Tails must once more retrieve the Chaos Emeralds to stop Death Egg from relaunching, while making rounds with the island's guardian, Knuckles the Echidna. Gameplay is similar to previous entries, with players controlling Sonic and Tails through side-scrolling levels at high speeds while collecting rings and defeating enemies.
Sonic Adventure is a 1998 platform game for Sega's Dreamcast, and the first main Sonic the Hedgehog game to feature three-dimensional (3D) gameplay. The story follows Sonic the Hedgehog, Miles "Tails" Prower, Knuckles the Echidna, Amy Rose, Big the Cat, and E-102 Gamma in their quests to collect the seven Chaos Emeralds and stop Doctor Robotnik from unleashing Chaos. Controlling one of the six characters—each with their own special abilities—players explore a series of themed levels to progress through the story. Outside the main game, players can play minigames like racing and interact with Chao, a virtual pet.
Sonic the Hedgehog is a 1991 side-scrolling platform game and companion to the 16-bit Sega Genesis game of the same name for the 8-bit Game Gear and Master System consoles. Ancient—a studio founded by composer Yuzo Koshiro for the project—developed the game and Sega published it to promote the handheld Game Gear. The 8-bit Sonic is similar in style to its Genesis predecessor, but reduced in complexity to fit the 8-bit systems. It was released for the Game Gear on December 28, 1991, and for the Master System around the same time. It was later released through Sonic game compilations and Nintendo's Virtual Console.
Sonic the Hedgehog CD, commonly referred to as Sonic CD, is a 1993 platform game for the Sega CD. The story follows Sonic the Hedgehog as he attempts to save an extraterrestrial body, Little Planet, from Doctor Robotnik. As a Sonic the Hedgehog series platformer, Sonic runs and jumps through several themed levels while collecting rings and defeating robots. Sonic CD is distinguished from other Sonic games by its time travel feature, a key aspect to the story and gameplay. By traveling through time, players can access different versions of stages featuring alternate layouts, music, and graphics based on the time period.
Sonic & Knuckles is a 1994 platform game developed and published by Sega for the Sega Genesis. An installment in the main Sonic the Hedgehog series, it is the sequel to Sonic the Hedgehog 3, released earlier that year. The story follows Sonic the Hedgehog and Knuckles the Echidna in their quests to save Angel Island; Sonic tries to prevent Dr. Robotnik from relaunching his orbital weapon, the Death Egg, while Knuckles scuffles with Robotnik's minion, EggRobo.
Sonic Advance is a 2001 side-scrolling platform game developed by Dimps for the Game Boy Advance (GBA). It was the first Sonic the Hedgehog game to be released on a Nintendo platform and was produced in commemoration of the series' tenth anniversary. The story follows Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, and Amy as they journey to stop Doctor Eggman from taking over the world. Controlling a character, players are tasked with completing each level, defeating Eggman and his robot army, and collecting the seven Chaos Emeralds.
Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine is a falling block puzzle game developed by Compile and published by Sega. It was released for the Genesis/Mega Drive in North America and Europe in November 1993, and was ported to the Game Gear and Master System in December 1993 and June 1994, respectively. The plot revolves around Sonic the Hedgehog series antagonist Doctor Robotnik kidnapping residents from Beanville and turning them into robots, with the purpose of removing all joy from the planet Mobius.
Sonic the Hedgehog Spinball, commonly abbreviated to Sonic Spinball, is a 1993 pinball video game developed by Sega Technical Institute and published by Sega. It is a spinoff of the Sonic the Hedgehog series set in the universe of the Sonic the Hedgehog animated series. Players control Sonic the Hedgehog, who must stop Doctor Robotnik from enslaving the population in a giant pinball-like mechanism. The game is set in a series of pinball machine-like environments, and Sonic acts as a pinball for the majority of the game.
Sonic Gems Collection is a 2005 compilation of Sega video games, primarily those in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. The emulated games span multiple genres and consoles—from the Sega Genesis to the Sega Saturn—and retain the features and errors of their initial releases with minimal edits. Player progress is rewarded with demos of other Sonic games, videos, and promotional artwork spanning the history of the Sonic franchise. While its 2002 predecessor, Sonic Mega Collection, comprised the more popular Sonic games, Gems Collection focuses on more obscure games, such as Sonic CD and Sonic the Fighters. Other non-Sonic games are included, but some, such as the Streets of Rage trilogy, are omitted in the North American localization.
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is a platform game developed by Aspect and published by Sega for the Master System and Game Gear. The Master System version was released in Europe on October 1992. The Game Gear version was released first in Europe in October 1992, and in North America and Japan in the following month. It's a sequel to Sonic the Hedgehog for Master System and Game Gear.
Sonic the Hedgehog is a media franchise owned by Sega, centering on a series of high-speed platform games. Sonic, the protagonist, is an anthropomorphic blue hedgehog with supersonic speed. Typically, Sonic must stop antagonist Doctor Eggman's plans for world domination, often helped by his friends, such as Tails, Amy, and Knuckles.
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is a platform game developed and published by Sega for the Sega Genesis console, released worldwide in November 1992. It is the second main entry in the Sonic the Hedgehog series, and introduced Sonic's sidekick, Miles "Tails" Prower, controllable by a second player. In the story, Sonic and Tails must stop series antagonist Dr. Ivo Robotnik from stealing the Chaos Emeralds to power his space station, the Death Egg.
Somari is a side-scrolling platform video game, originally released in 1994 for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). An unlicensed port of Sega's 1991 Sega Genesis game Sonic the Hedgehog, the game was sold primarily around Asia, Russia, and other regions where pirate NES cartridges were distributed. Like the original, players venture to defeat the mad scientist Doctor Robotnik, who plots to turn the animal population of the fictional South Island into evil robots. Unlike the original, the game features Nintendo's mascot Mario as the main character rather than Sonic. The title is a portmanteau of "Sonic" and "Mario".
Doctor Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik is a fictional character and the main antagonist of Sega's Sonic the Hedgehog series. His original character designer was Naoto Ohshima, who created him as part of many design choices for the company's new mascot. After the creation of Sonic the Hedgehog, Ohshima chose to use his previous egg-shaped character to create the antagonist of the 1991 video game Sonic the Hedgehog, making him the archenemy of the series' eponymous main character.
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I is an 2010 episodic platform video game in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. The game was developed by Dimps, with assistance from Sonic Team, and published by Sega. The game was intended to emulate the original Sonic the Hedgehog titles on the Sega Genesis.
Mark Cerny: Sonic had been a lighter blue, but he was very hard to see against the ocean backgrounds, so his color was darkened at the last moment.
Sonic was delivering [the kind of] high speed no other [game] was capable of, and the Mega Drive allowed this stunning demonstration of rotation during the bonus stages. This was said to be impossible on the hardware at the time.
Description: (SONIC THE HEDGEHOG) This is Sonic's first action game on GAME GEAR. Stop Dr. Eggman from getting his hands on the Chaos Emeralds! One Chaos Emerald is hidden in each zone. Collect them all to view the true ending.
Unfortunately, I pretty much forgot all that when working on James Pond 3, and I spent too much of the development time chasing after what Sonic had just achieved.
Description: SONIC THE HEDGEHOG: GREEN HILL ZONE