The Spin: Sonic Forces Me To Write This…

Disclaimer: The views in this piece may not reflect the views of TSS or other writers on the staff team. The intention of The Spin is to promote debate and discussion of an issue or something that’s happening in the fandom or the world of Sonic.

So when I said in my last article that…

“I’ve seen the footage from SXSW, and the Nintendo Direct, I have a few things to say, mainly on what bugs me about Sonic Generations 2 Sonic Forces so far.”

I didn’t think that it would take less than 2 weeks before Sega did something that would mean I felt it necessary to actually talk about these things.

Continue reading The Spin: Sonic Forces Me To Write This…

UPDATE: First4Figures Hints Future Sonic Statues at Risk of Cancellation

A funny thing happened on my way to the First4Figures Collectors Club Page today, I was quite surprised to see tons of posts from multiple posters lamenting the cancellation of the Sonic line. Quite baffled by this I looked into it a little more and found even more people saying that the Sonic line was to be cancelled or ‘in danger’.

After doing some research, it seems that in a recent Q&A video, First4Figures strongly hinted that the Sonic line was indeed in danger, specifically future releases being cancelled unless the next statue sells very well.

The comments in question are made in this video (April 7th, between 46:00-48:00), a user asks about a ‘Modern Metal Sonic’ statue and the staff respond that it won’t happen unless the 25th anniversary statue sells very well. At first the tone is jokey, but then it changes to a more sombre and serious one, with them finally saying “Make sure that sells well or… forget about Modern Metal Sonic,” at which point one of them even shakes their head.

Now whilst there has been no official confirmation (that I can find) as to the specific reason as to why the Sonic line is in danger, but many long term fans of F4F have been stating on the Facebook page that what’s happening is very similar to what happened to Kirby and a few other franchises.

It seems that future lines can suffer depending on the sales of a previous statue, even if in the past the line had done very well. Fans have been citing Kirby as a prime example, which had a previously announced statue cancelled due to poor sales over an earlier release.

So if that’s indeed the case, who was the last character in the Sonic series that got a statue? This guy.

Yup, Silver is being cited by many on the F4F page as being the reason for these comments, checking the exclusive statue, it seems that only 375 were made in response to orders… Compare that to the Exclusive Tornado statue which cost $45 more had 425 made… that’s… not good.

More information as and when we get it.

Source: First4Figures Q&A

UPDATE: A F4F staff member responded on our Facebook page with the following

Hey all. Let me chime in. that 425 number isnt the real number. That was just a random number selected before we moved to the 2 week preorder system, where you get a more accurate number for Silver at 375. (We usually round it up to a nicer number) So sales arent just based on Silver alone. Tornado sold way less than the 425 number suggested. For many years, the company only had 3 members, so those ‘low’ numbers were ok to get by however with growth now in these last couple of years. Things need to be improved at all levels. Our prices have remained relatively very low and competitive in the same market and we continue to improve the way we make our products accessible with flexipay options. Hope that helps abit more with the story. Thanks

So what we get from this are a number of things.

The first is that the Tornado sold even lower than the 425 quoted here, combined with the fact that F4F has expanded it’s business means that we now have two statues in a row which might have both fallen far below expectations which suggests that the line really is at risk.

Second Sonic Synergy Trailer Discovered

A few days ago, a few websites reported the discovery of a trailer for Sonic Synergy, the game which would become Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric, the trailer showed a number of differences to the final product, such as some very different Eggman designs, better looking graphics and a completely different title.

Well, a few hours ago, a member on our forums revealed that they had an extended version of this trailer which shows even more differences, and that they had it for 2 years but were under the impression it was already known! Well… we know about it now!

Some of the more noticeable differences include Sonic who has finger-less gloves and his arms are not completely blue, the chao were also going to be in the game at some point.

Check out the trailer and see the differences yourself.

Source: SSMB (special thanks to BxB-Meister for posting the goods).

Detective TSS & The Case of The Third Character

Well there he/she is, the mysterious third character, all we know, is that it’s not Boom Sonic. But that hasn’t stopped people from guessing who it could be, so we here at The Number 1 Sonic Stadium Detective Agency have been looking at this image for all of a few seconds and have decided to come up with our own theories as to who this mysterious man could be.

We have one clue, the character is facing away from us, so whoever it is, the first time we saw them was from their rear side… make your own joke at that one.

Without further ado, here are the candidates and we’ve rated them out of 5 as to the likelihood of being the candidate.

Bubsy

It’s the silhouette that launched a thousand YouTube videos of people staring into the camera and blankly saying ‘is that Bubsy?’ Followed by, ‘Ok guys! I don’t know it looks like Bubsy!’ And they’re right! It does look like Bubsy.

Alas, he doesn’t look like he’s wearing his trademark T-Shirt.

The Third Man: 2/5

Fang/Nack

Yes folks, the man with two names is being called by some people as being the potential candidate. It would be quite fitting for the theme of the game to include a bounty hunter type character.

Just a few problems, no hat, and no tail.

The Third Man: 1/5

Dave The Intern

Paid below the minimum wage, stuck in a dead end job, gets disrespected by his boss, by his customers, by his friends! Could it be he’s finally snapped and is ready to be the hero we deserve?

Probably not.

The Third Man: 2/5

Original The Character Aka, Your Fan Character

One upon a time, people liked to create fan characters, this was very popular in the early – mid 2000’s with everyone making their own fan character. Many people saw the rise of MMO’s and thought ‘Yes! Danny the Echidna will save the day!’ Today, these are not anywhere near as popular but people still make them.

So why not have a character creator in the next Sonic game!? … … … Erm well… actually…

The Third Man: 3/5

Necky The Fox

This one comes from TSS’ own Jason and… Well… it’s not as far fetched as you may think. Who is Necky? Necky is the mascot for the Japanese gaming magazine ‘Famitsu’.

What are the odds of this being Necky? Well… Necky has had several parts and cameos in lots of games over the years, Sega of Japan has recently been doing a lot of exclusive reveals with Famitsu regarding Sonic Forces.

Necky also tends to change outfit quite a lot too, so don’t think he’s wearing the wrong clothes, the silhouette kinda looks like Necky and… it wouldn’t be the first time Sega has done something like this, Just ask Danica Patrick and Ralph.

Just one potential mark against him, no sign of a tail.

The Third Man: 4/5.

Conclusion

The third character, will be a character, in a game, made by Sega.

Until next time, Detective TSS & SSMB will keep investigating.

P.S. Max the Spider for ASRT DLC!

The Spin: “Yo! Ho! Ho! Green Hill Giant”

Disclaimer: The views in this piece may not reflect the views of TSS or other writers on the staff team. The intention of The Spin is to promote debate and discussion of an issue or something that’s happening in the fandom or the world of Sonic.

So I’ve seen the footage from SXSW, and the Nintendo Direct, I have a few things to say, mainly on what bugs me about Sonic Generations 2 Sonic Forces so far.

But… I’m not going to do that right now, because, reasons.

Anyway, the one thing which came out of last night’s footage and reveal which probably even took Sega by surprise just a little was the level of negative feedback that The Green Hill Zone got, one which has people now turning away from the game and to be honest, really hasn’t done much for people’s perceptions of Sonic Forces, with some writing it off as glorified DLC for Sonic Generations or simply Generations 2 in all but name.

Oh and I’m not going to talk about how bland it looks because this footage is almost certainly Alpha and given how good modern Sonic’s stage looked, I suspect it’s running nowhere near final quality… now if we get to E3 through to October and it still looks like that… Then ho ho!

Regardless as to what you may think of the game as it stands right now, one thing is absolutely clear. Green Hill Zone apathy is a real thing which Sega needs to address right now or else a lot of fans are going to backlash against the franchise, badly.

Is Green Hill Really Used That Much?

This depends on what we’re talking about, when I saw Green Hill Zone last night I groaned and said ‘not again’ then I thought about it and tried to come up with a list of Games which have had the Green Hill Zone going back to Generations and… I have to admit I struggled with this.

Here is the list I could come up with.

  • Sonic Mania (Though Act 2 is pretty much a completely different stage just using GHZ assets.
  • Sonic Lego Dimensions (if you really want to be vain).
  • Sonic Runners (If you REALLY want to be vain).
  • Sonic Generations.

There’s probably one or two others which are likely mobile games which I only played for a few seconds before becoming bored, however, aside from other minor appearances such as stages for fighting games like Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax. In terms of you playing a character, going through a level, that’s the best I could come up with.

So following on from Generations which was the first game to bring back the Green Hill Zone in name and to standard for many years, we’ve had… a mobile game which barely represented the stage. A DLC/Level Pack for Lego… and Sonic Mania which isn’t out yet… whose Act 2 is barely recognisable to GHZ.

That’s… not a lot… so why does it feel like the Green Hill Zone has been in every game since forever?

Well the fact is it hasn’t… Green Hill has been barely used, it’s been used more than other stages, but it’s still a very minor stage, one could argue that Seaside Hill has had appearances or references in more games, yet nobody begs for that zone not to appear whenever something new gets announced. so what’s going on?

So if you’re Sonic Team right now, you might be a bit confused as to why Green Hill Zone has generated such a negative reaction, you’ve not had it as a real full stage in one of your games since 2011, last time it was an actual stage was the Lego game… so… why do fans suddenly hate it so much?

Well, I think it’s down to two possible explanations.

Sonic Forces/GHZ Just Looks Too Much Like Sonic Generations

I’ll keep this brief since I’ll probably be writing a lot more on this in another article.

Since Forces was announced, right from the teaser trailer… many people have compared it to Generations, since then, Sega have done very little to suggest otherwise, other than say ‘No it’s not a sequel’. Yesterdays footage has also done little to stop those comparisons, the short GHZ section just looks so much like the Generations stage… oh wait, now there’s sand… that’s different I guess?

Like I said, I’d keep this point brief, but if you pull a level out and it looks so much like a level from your last good/great Sonic game, you can’t help but feel like it’s the same old game. In fact, pretend Sonic 2 and Sonic 3 did this, had the Green Hill Zone in it, everybody would probably be saying ‘not again’.

Had it been any other zone, I suspect fans would have been much warmer to it’s reveal.

Anyway, we’ll come back to this game being too much like Generations and why it’s a bit of a problem another day.

 Green Hill Zone Is Used A Hell Of A Lot… Outside of The Games.

Just think about this for a moment… When was the last time you saw an official Sonic T-Shirt depicting the Chemical Plant Zone? Death Egg? Angel Island? Ice Cap? Hydrocity? Sky Chase?

No? How about Green Hill?

That’s just the tip of the iceberg… Oh go on have these too.

Green Hill Leggings!

How about mugs?

 

Amazingly, those three mugs came out at the same time… from the same company. Different mugs… all made to use the same level, Green Hill Zone.

Statues/Figurines?

How about art prints?

What about more general merch?

Books?

What about Sega’s booth at trade shows!?

Oh come on!

That is a very small sample, there is a lot more I could bring in. You know what is really crazy, all of this stuff is barely 5 years old, most of it is under 2 years old. Even promotional material and the social media guys tend to use the Green Hill Zone quite a lot, it all adds up.

For at least the last 5 years, without a doubt longer, the franchise has been over-saturated with Green Hill Zone imagery and products, it’s used on nearly everything, the only thing which is used more are those generic Sonic poses which are often used for merchandisers wanting to make a very cheap quick buck.

It’s no wonder fans are fed up and reacting negatively, outside of the games, everything is Green Hill, it’s rare that we get any other zone featured. With the exception of the bases on some of the recent First4Figure statues, the only Zone which I can think of that got featured on a piece of merch outside of Sonic Boom was Meccano’s Chemical Plant Zone toy.

As a fanbase, we’ve been exposed to so much Green Hill outside of the games in the last few years, that we’re bored of it, crying out for something new. This finally boiled over last night when after all that saturation of this particular Zone, finally, a new Sonic game and the second zone shown, is Green Hill… is it any wonder people reacted so negatively?

This is an entertainment product, if you keep producing the same old entertainment time and time again, people will get bored of it and reject it. So why on earth has Green Hill Zone been pretty much the only thing that has been used?

So Why is There So Much Green Hill?

Basically, there’s two reasons. One is obvious, the other annoying.

1: If you ask people who are not Sonic fans, but know what it is, to name a level from Sonic, they’ll probably name Green Hill… and honestly? That’s probably about it. It’s the most recognisable zone in Sonic, so you wanna sell your T-Shirt? Better make it Green Hill.

2: The second reason… I can’t say for sure, but I don’t think Sega wants people to use any other zones? This might be changing with the coming of Sonic Mania, but, certainly prior to it’s announcement, this felt the case.

We bring these up a lot, but frankly more people really need to pay attention to them, the style guides that we know of mention Green Hill, have assets for it, but do not mention assets or any other zones.

So if the style guides prevent people from using other zones, what chance do we have of originality?

What Needs to Be Done?

Green Hill apathy is a real thing which is having an impact, Sega absolutely needs to start taking this problem seriously or else fans are only going to become a lot more vocal in their displeasure of both games and the surrounding Sonic universe.

Last nights reaction was clear enough this has reached a boiling point. Sega needs to start promoting other zones as well as allowing licensees to use other levels and assets.

Or… do the amazing thing and let designers and artists have more freedom.

Take a look at the Drop Dead clothing line, it’s quite amazing, doesn’t use the traditional artwork or style guide designs, yet sold amazingly well because the designs were really great as well as being highly quality items. Otherwise, if you keep using Green Hill for everything, you’re going to get more people turning away.

 

And not once did I have to mention the placement of that dash pad.

Is This The Very First Sonic Plush Ever Made?

Before Sonic was a franchise, before he was a household name, before he even had a single game, he was just an idea and a pitch. It’s quite common knowledge that Yuji Naka and Naoto Oshima along with a few others had to pitch the idea of Sonic to Sega higher ups in order to get the green light for development.

Part of this pitch included ‘a small Sonic plush toy’, this has been a matter of record in a number of different interviews and articles, such as the History of Sonic book which came out a few years ago.

Yet, to this day, nobody has ever seen this plush… well… that might have changed.

Naoto Ohshima, the man who designed Sonic has lately been posting a lot of very interesting pieces of artwork and design on his Facebook page, including a rather curious plush.

Whilst he’s not confirmed it is the original plush from the pitch, there’s a number of clues to suggest it might be, first of all, there are no tags of any kind, it’s a homemade item, secondly, it stands upright on it’s own accord, there are only a handful of Sonic plushies out there which do this and none of them look anything like this.

Another big clue is that it is VERY high quality, this was not made for mass market, it was either made to order or was an extremely limited run.

Speaking to a few Sonic Merch collectors, none of them have been able to identify it which would either put this as a custom job… or… the legendary plush. If it is the plush from the pitch, it would make this product 001, the very first piece of Sonic merch ever to have existed and a one of a kind.

The watch on his wrist is a different product which was released a few years after Sonic 1. If we get anymore details as to the origins of this mystery product, we’ll let you know.

Source: Naoto Ohshima Facebook.

Something About a Metal Leg is Happening ‘Tomorrow’

From the Sonic twitter account…

Yup, that’s definitely a leg. And maybe a foot. It might belong to Metal Sonic, but it’s hard to tell.

And something about Tomorrow.

And that is all there is to say about this, no really, there is nothing else to say. Unless anything else happens. As usual we’ll let you know.

See you tomorrow. Feel free to speculate what this means in the comments.

Actually… lets have some fun… you can only pick one.

#TeamFoot

#TeamThigh.

Let us know if you follow the foot or obey the thigh in the comments.

UPDATE: Polygons Nick Robinson apparently knows what it is, so if the press know then it might be something worth keeping an eye out for.

Sega Europe’s Community Manager Dan Sheridan Is Leaving

So… I felt it was necessary to write this because I think it’s important to praise a great job and after AAUK left Sega Europe as their main community man, European fans of Sega went through a bit of an ‘urm… ahhh… urm…’ with regards to outreach and connection with Sega and community. We’re not going to talk about that period today, instead we’re going to talk about someone who did a lot of good for Sega in Europe.

In September of 2015, Dan Sheridan or “Action Dan” as he’s also known as joined the company as the new community manager, now quite often when a company gets a new CM, they don’t really do too much other than put out the very heavily scripted tweet or reblog a trailer for a game. In terms of community relations that is, I know there’s a ton of more admin related stuff which goes on internally…

Anyway…

With regards to community engagement… This is just a small sample of what Dan did, or at least was the main front man of in terms of community within his first month of being in the role.

  • Started a ton of giveaways for some pretty amazing stuff. We’re talking promotional merchandise items for some videogames, collectors editions of games, sega employee hoodies and various other very exclusive hard to get items.
  • Organised and ran a community party for Sonic Lost World’s PC release and invited the community, free entry, goody bag (which included a free copy of the game) and there was an open bar… Yes my friends, I can sit here and say that we got drunk thanks to Sega. Although we liked Lost World on the PC before the booze started flowing.
  • Completely turned around Sega Central which many fans had stopped watching because it was cringe worthingly bad. Oh yes, and at the end of each episode lots of codes were given out for free PC games, sometimes codes would unlock multiple games, so that’s always a good thing.
  • Actively reached out to the community, even I was contacted at one point to help run a giveaway and review a bunch of games, I know of several other people on YouTube who were also contacted and reached out to.

However… one of the best things I ever saw him do was at the Sonic Lost World party, there was a fan there who was very shy, so for a large part of the day, Dan sat with this person and just talked to them, what about? Just… anything. Just sat and talked and made them feel welcome and I think it probably did help with them feeling more relaxed as they seemed to ‘warm up’ as the event went on.

But it didn’t end there, he also gave this person one of the red Sonic Christmas Jumpers which at the time hadn’t been released.

I’m pretty sure that someone who was at this even nominated him for a community manager award because they were so impressed with how he made this fan more at ease and to ensure that they had a good time and didn’t feel alone at this event.

Then there was other amazing moments too, such as the day before Western Super Sonic, a rather large box from Dan turns up, when we opened it up, it was full of free items for giveaways at the event.

Free stuff is always nice, but I wanted to write this not just for his brilliant work with the fans face to face (as illustrated by the Lost World party note earlier), Dan has been quite brave in the stuff he’s had to do. Practically being the face of Sega Central, coming to it after many fans hated the show and turning it around as he did could not have been easy. Yet on every occasion he puts in a lot of energy for someone who was clearly nervous in his first few episodes. He clearly researches and cares about the material he’s talking about, and that’s the key point, he clearly cared because we the fans, be it of Sonic, Football Manager, Alien Isolation, Yakuza, Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax or even Aliens GodDam Marines, also cared about the things we love to play.

And even though I’m still bitter over not winning the Alien Isolation robot USB storage device in the first giveaway… He’s done a very good job of which he should be very proud of, I only hope that whoever takes over is just as good and just as engaging with the community as he was.

Best of luck in the future. I hope they let you keep the hat.

“Woo!”

P.S. Whoever takes over the role as EU community manager, can we have another community party with an open bar… and cake!

Sonic to Get a VR Themed Roller Coaster Experience?

This is quite an old story which has only just come to light and… I don’t remember anyone talking about it so here you go.

Throughout last year, Sega made constant hints and nods that they were looking into expanding Sonic into theme parks and other leisure related attractions.

Even at the Sonic fan party last year at the House of Blues, during the livestream they accidentally let it slip that a number of attractions were on the way, fortunately I was paying attention and caught it just in time.

Well, whilst doing the rounds we found a very interesting piece from February 2016 which seems to have gone noticed by the majority of people. In an interview with Attractions Management Sega discusses again that they are open to having Sonic featuring as part of theme parks and other rides, similar to the Alton Towers deal, which sadly ended very recently.

In the closing of the article, the website claims the following.

Attractions Management also understands that Sonic will be the theme of a high-profile virtual reality rollercoaster, due to be announced later this year.

Now… obviously, there was no such announcement in 2016, however, given that Sega were constantly dropping hints that they were actively looking into this, and that there were at least 6 arcade games in development, this doesn’t seem too unlikely. Especially with a number of theme parks lately developing or adapting their existing rides to incorporate a virtual reality experience.

What do you think? In the future will we finally get a Sonic VR experience… on a roller-coaster?

Source: Attractions Management

Silver The Hedgehog Statue On Sale Next Week

I could fill this update with various Silver puns, but to be honest it’s no use so on with the article.

First4Figures have announced that their Silver the Hedgehog statue will go on sale next week.

Tuesday 21st February is the date the statue goes on sale. The time’s are as follows,

  • California: 7am
  • New York: 10am
  • London: 3pm
  • Germany: 4pm
  • Hong Kong: 11pm

(We think all the times are in GMT, as far as we know it’s a worldwide release so just convert your time using one of the above if your country/region isn’t listed).

They’re also hosting a live-stream one hour prior to the launch in which they’ve be revealing details about the ‘Day One Edition’. You can view this via Youtube, Twitch or Facebook.

We’ve also been told the prices of each version of the statue, it breaks down as follows.

Standard Edition: $249.99

Exclusive Edition: $284.99

Prices do not include shipping.

There’s also a video showcasing the statue in more detail, including the lighting effect on the exclusive edition.

Another small detail is that there are no set numbers for each statue, this time they make to order.

So… anyone going to order one?

UK Retailer Claims Sonic Mania to Get “Physical Copies for All Platforms”

For the past month we’ve had a lot of retailers listing what appears to be a physical edition of Sonic Mania on the switch, so far Sega has been completely silent on the subject despite multiple retailers listing the game for pre-order.

Continue reading UK Retailer Claims Sonic Mania to Get “Physical Copies for All Platforms”

Tons of New Sonic Toys Shown at Spielwarenmesse 2017!

Remember how I told you that London Toy Fair doesn’t usually have much in terms of Sonic? But New York and Germany are the ones to watch out for? Well… told you so. Spielwarenmesse is currently underway and as expected, there was a huge showing of Sonic merch! Someone managed to get inside Tomy’s booth and took photos of everything in sight! Resulting in one epic haul of Sonic merch for 2017 and beyond!

Based on the photos taken, the Sonic Boom toy line continues to be very profitable. Yes it is profitable, because if it wasn’t they wouldn’t keep making them… That’s how making money works, you make more of what is selling!

Anyway, on with the report.

Continue reading Tons of New Sonic Toys Shown at Spielwarenmesse 2017!

Sonic Revolution 2017 Announced & Dated

The Sonic Revolution fan convention is set to return for 2017, this year the event will be held Sunday, June 11th from 10 AM to 6 PM at the Fiesta Hall in Whittier, California.

Along with the confirmation of the venue and the date a number of special guests were also confirmed.

Bill Freiberger, co-executive producer and voice actor on Sonic Boom, as well as Alan Denton, one of the writers for Sonic Boom will be in attendance, fan content creator Balena Productions will also be in attendance.

Tickets will be distributed through GoGetFunding, every ticket comes with a goody bag but for those who want to spend more money, you will be rewarded with a collectable mug or T-Shirt.

More guests and incentives to attend have also been hinted at.

Full details of the event can be found on Sonic Revolution 2017 funding page.

 

16bit Themed Sonic Figures Shown at London Toy Fair 2017

It’s Toy Fair time again! As January ends and February begins, London, New York and Germany all become host to major toy fair events. Being a trade show, these events show perspective retailers toys that will be on shelves throughout 2017.

 

Well, London Toy Fair ended a few days ago and… yeah there wasn’t much in terms of Sonic there, however London has never been that great in terms of Sonic content, New York and Germany are the ones to watch out for.

But saying that, Tomy did have a booth and we can confirm that they showed off some new Sonic toys!

Continue reading 16bit Themed Sonic Figures Shown at London Toy Fair 2017

The Sonic Hotel Room is No More

You might remember that last year we brought you news that the Sonic ride at Alton Towers had closed down, well, re-themed and all traces of Sonic been removed from the park. Except for one area, the hotel room was still listed on their website and was still available for bookings. Continue reading The Sonic Hotel Room is No More

ToyWorld: “Solid Roadmap of Sonic Games for Next Few Years”

The January 2017 issue of Toy World Magazine contains two interesting bits of Sonic related news, first we have an article which not only comments on Sonic Mania and Project 2016, but also that Sega apparently have a roadmap for Sonic games for the next few years, suggesting that plans for 2018 and even 2019 are already on the drawing board (though honestly that’s not really too surprising). Continue reading ToyWorld: “Solid Roadmap of Sonic Games for Next Few Years”

The Top 15 TSS Articles of 2016

So last year we decided to look at the sites top articles of 2015, and this year is no different!

Throughout the year our site monitors and keeps tracks of various statistics and we’re able to run various reports based on that data. So with that in mind, let’s take a look at what were the top 15 news/articles of 2015 on TSS according to total views, I have discounted individual images or hub pages like the Home page.

The date period is 31/12/15 – 31/12/16.

Lets go!

Number 15

I’m honestly surprised that this is so low on the list, however it’s probably because it came during the night of a thousand announcements and when you have to compete with Dancing Sonic and #Totino’s it was always going to be a tough battle for clicks.

Number 14

Well here is our first big surprise! Sonic Boom Season 2 was an article written in October 2015, yet between December 31st 2015 and today it had more hits than Sonic Mania did! What say you now BooMoaners?

Fun fact, this was number 15 on last years list.

Number 13

First bit of Archie news makes the list, and a well deserved one, Sonic: Mega Drive is one of the best Sonic comics in years, surprising fans of the series and bringing back fans who had left the comic book, beautifully drawn and brilliantly funny.

Number 12

You know in Toy Story, when they’re around the baby monitor and Rex yells ‘It’s a what!? What is it!?’ that best summarises the reaction to this news. Coming from Japan with dodgy fan translations all over the internet, nobody really knew what had happened until several hours later.

But our first clue at a big new Sonic game, of course we got excited.

Number 11

There was a time when 25th Anniversary news was popping up on a near daily level, many places reported that Sega had big plans for large scale events and parties, oddly, despite some of this news coming direct from Sega themselves, some of these events never materialised.

Number 10

We were one of the first places to break this rumour, and not only did it turn out to be true, but it ended up being one of the best Sonic games in years. Sonic in Lego Dimensions ended up being a fantastic game and has already had fans chanting for an official Sonic Lego kit to be made. One for 2017’s Christmas List I think.

Number 9

The end of 2016 saw a bunch of surprise fan projects, but the one which makes our list is Sonic Utopia, a fun little ‘what if’ kind of fan game, not perfect, but a great effort and kept a large number of you entertained for several hours.

Not tried it yet? Go give it a bash.

Number 8

One of the biggest surprises of 2016 was the discovery of an unknown arcade game SegaSonic Bros. a puzzle based game in which you line up coloured blocks. Starring Sonic, Ketchup and Mustard the Hedgehog, hey if we get official names, I’ll gladly stop calling them that.

Number 7

It’s really not surprising this one got as high as it did, I’d be quite surprised if it didn’t make it on next years list? Why? Well for one thing people usually search for ‘Sonic *insert year here*’ when trying to find news on stuff, so the fact this has Sonic 2017 in it means it’s going to be high on the list.

So anyway, the odd announcement from the end of the big party in America was Sonic Project 2017, which has a lot of fans going ‘erm… I’m not sure how to feel’. Well we’ll soon know how to feel as there is expected to be an information blowout of the game following Mania’s release next year.

Number 6

One of the first articles of the year, and what an article it was, another one of those weird interviews which promised a lot of stuff but didn’t quite deliver what was said, news of several new Sonic games which ended up being announcements if you don’t count Lego Dimensions.

Number 5

Sonic Runners should go down as a case study for mobile game developers as an incredible example of how a game died barely a year after it’s global release.

Sonic Runners soft launch was met with near universal acclaim, however following it’s worldwide launch players suddenly found their ability to progress restricted, banned for getting legitimate high scores, micro-transactions forced on them as well as more seriously sending hundreds of contact requests to advert providers and filling up device memory when players of the game discovered that the game was not deleting old data.

Sonic Runners, Not OK.

Number 4:

Is anyone really surprised this article is up here? News of a new character and the keyword ‘Sonic 2017’ will get people coming. Expect a lot articles from all over the Sonic community next year as sources claim things and news gradually leaks out.

Number 3

Sega’s fan event in Japan earlier this year saw not only the announcement of Sonic Project 2017, but also the reveal of a ton of concept art for Sonic and friends. Some of the designs different greatly to the final version, such as Shadow being blind in one eye and Cream being a completely different species.

Number 2

This news beat out Sonic Mania, it beat Sonic 2017 and Lego Dimensions news, think about that for just a moment.

It’s really… not that much of a surprise. The fact that GlamGlow is mentioned in the article is the reason why this article did as well as it did, see a lot of fans of beauty products search for limited products so it’s really no surprise that this article did as well as it this year, add onto that Sonic Merch Collectors, not that hard to see why it scored as high as it did.

The only really sad part about this is that Sega didn’t really announce this, it was discovered accidentally by fans and instantly put into the hands of ‘Instagram celebs’ who barely talked about it, if only they had made the product obtainable to the general public.

Number 1:

11 days into the year, that’s all it took for the first major 25th Anniversary news to break, the fact that this is our most viewed article of 2016 is proof enough that the thirst was real.

Hinting at new style guides, huge branded events and a major celebration, it was the first hint that Sega would be taking the 25th anniversary seriously and had big plans for it.

Honourable Mention: BIG NEWS

April 1st 2016 saw the return of Big News! Big the Cat took over the TSS main page as well as the Twitter and Facebook accounts, posting informative articles such as the best games which feature fish and a review of Bigs Big Fishing Adventure 3 Well… Big News’ central hub was actually number 16 on the list. But because it got taken down shortly after April 1st, it hasn’t had the pleasure of a whole years worth of exposure, odds are if it had remained accessible it would have been in the top 15.

The lesson here, never underestimate Big the Cat.

See you in 2017.

Multiple Sonic & Sega 2016 Style Guides Discovered

In the last few years there has been a small explosion in Sonic Style guides hitting the internet, if you don’t know what a style guide is, give this article a read.

Sometimes we get lucky and a full guide lands in our laps, but this is a very rare event, however we do sometimes get the odd one or two scans of style guides which give us an insight into not only how Sega see’s Sonic and would like retailers, manufacturers and designers to see Sonic, but also how they see us as fans.

Continue reading Multiple Sonic & Sega 2016 Style Guides Discovered

TSS Review: Sonic x Kidrobot Limited Edition Vinyl Figure

sonickidrobot1How many of you have seen something which looks really cool, and you really want it, it finally comes out, you put your money down, the item arrives! You’re filled withexcitement as you take it out of the box and then a few moments later… Something happens, you’re not sure what it is, but something has happened which now means that the excitement isn’t quite there anymore, it’s rapidly in decline and you can’t figure out why.

That’s how I feel about this figure.

Continue reading TSS Review: Sonic x Kidrobot Limited Edition Vinyl Figure

Sonic 25th Fine Art Exhibition Reveals Art Pieces

Just over a month ago we brought you news that a Sonic 25th fine art exhibition was to be launched in the UK. Well we can now give you some more details as to what to expect, which includes some sample artworks which will be on display. Continue reading Sonic 25th Fine Art Exhibition Reveals Art Pieces

The Spin: Happy Birthday Sonic the Hedgehog Oh Six

Today marks the tenth anniversary of a videogame. So myself and a few other staff members have stolen an idea from Sonic Retro to give you our mini retrospectives on said electronic digital media product. A game which had such an impact on the games industry that it’s still talked about to this day, except on the Sonic Stadium forums because all discussion on it is banned apart from one topic for reasons we don’t understand. That game, is Sonic the Hedgehog, in Sonic the Hedgehog Episode 2006, you play as Sonic, Shadow and Cannabis Plant Head Guy, who is a magician. Continue reading The Spin: Happy Birthday Sonic the Hedgehog Oh Six

Shadow, Big, Tails & Knuckles are in Lego Dimensions

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Just posted by the LEGO Dimensions Twitter account. It looks like we won’t just be seeing Sonic and Eggman in the new LEGO Dimensions pack, but also Shadow, Tails, Big, and Knuckles.

No gameplay footage was given, but fans will be overjoyed at Big the Cat in Lego form.

The Sonic Level pack is released on November 18th.

Source: Twitter

Sonic Fine Art Exhibition Announced

Sonic Concepts

Coming this December in selective galleries in the UK, a Sonic fine art exhibition is to open it’s doors across art galleries owned and operated by Washington Green.

The exhibit will feature paintings, mixed media and sculpture and will be completely original works of art.

A number of select pieces will be reproduced in limited numbers, each will come with a certificate of authenticity hand signed by Sonic the Hedgehog creator, Naoto Oshima!

A VIP launch will be take place on the 1st of December 2016, with a public showing the following day. Details as to the full venues and range are yet to be published.

Source: Videogamer.com

Sonic 25th Anniversary Cafe Open in Japan

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To help celebrate Sonic’s 25th Anniversary, from October 1st until November 13th, there will be a special Sonic themed cafe open at the Suites Paradise Ueno ABAB shop on Japan.

A specially designed Sonic themed menu has been created, including Sonic themed drinks, all meals purchased will come with a special gift (coasters and stickers). Some of the drinks even come in special containers, the Tails themed drink for instance comes in a science beaker.

Some more pictures are available in our gallery and lots more are in the topic on SSMB.

Last Chance to Get a Limited Summer of Sonic/Sonic 25th Anniversary T-Shirt

The Summer of Sonic convention may have come and gone but there is one final hurrah for everyone.

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Those awesome T-Shirts, which are also official 25th anniversary pieces of merchandise, if you still want one, there are a few left over and they’re also up for purchase at the Summer of Sonic hub.

So if you want to be the height of fashion, it’s time to buy!

P.S. make sure you read the page carefully so you know how to select your size.

Sonic Mania – Hands on Impressions

At Summer of Sonic I managed to get some time to play Sonic Mania. Here is my initial response… Sonic Mania is probably one of the best platforming games for years, it’s probably better than the original classic series, it’s probably that and more… probably.

Now let’s talk about why that is.

Continue reading Sonic Mania – Hands on Impressions

More Sonic in Lego Dimensions Details Revealed

IGN have posted another video about Lego Dimensions which contains a big focus on the Sonic stages. In this video we learn a bunch of new details about the Sonic level pack.

  • 7 Stages.
  • “It practically is a Sonic game”
  • Battle Arena based on “Carnival Zone.” – “Brightly coloured, neon mashup.”
  • Lots of boss fights.
  • Confirmation that Sonic’s ring is based off the Lego Toilet Seat.

Check out the video to see the details and some better quality gameplay.

Sonic in Lego Dimensions Releases November 18th & New Gameplay Released

A video posted by IGN via twitch has shown off gameplay from the Sonic Level Pack from Lego Diemensions.

The video shows how  Gizmo and Harry Potter will navigate the level as well as a brief appearance by Sonic.

In other news, the level pack itself has appeared on multiple retailer sites including Amazon & Toys R US all stating that the pack will be released on November 18th. Current price point is £29.99.

So this is in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided… And We Love it!

Deus Ex: Mankind Divided releases in just under a week and this is apparently hidden in the game.

deus ex knuckles

We have nothing else to say except this is incredible, please can we have a copy… of both Deus Ex and “Knuckles & Knuckles & Knuckles?”

Source: Twitter

My Day At Summer of Sonic 2016

“Are you going to do the Summer of Sonic retrospective?”

“Sure” I say! How hard can it be?

Well… it’s surprisingly hard. I’ve tried reading other peoples thoughts on the day for some inspiration, when I realised my problem. Because I’m on the SOS staff team, I don’t get to experience Summer of Sonic in the same way as someone who isn’t on the staff team, which is most other people.

Continue reading My Day At Summer of Sonic 2016

The Sonic Sunday Strips Have Been Found!

sundaysonic

Back in the early 90’s, there was a newspaper in the UK which went by ‘The News of the World’ on a Sunday like many papers at this time they had a special supplement, this was often filled with crossword puzzles, random stories from it’s readers, a TV guide and usually, comic book shorts.

Well… Sonic had a comic series in this supplement. This comic series ran as best as we can from October 1993 – April 1995, over 70 comic strips were produced. This comic series was first brought to my attention 7 years ago, in that time many fans have found the odd one or two issues and uploaded them online. However with the magazine being a throw away thing which very few people kept, it’s become near impossible and expensive to find a complete collection.

Continue reading The Sonic Sunday Strips Have Been Found!

Project Sonic 2017 Announced

Announced at the 25th Anniversary Party, Sonic project 2017 “is not a sequel”. During the CG trailer we see an image of destruction in which Eggman mechs have taken over, as Sonic charges towards them he’s joined by… well… you’ll see. Continue reading Project Sonic 2017 Announced

Sonic In Lego Dimensions Gameplay Revealed

Just shown at the 25th party, Sonic in Lego Dimensions gameplay footage.

In addition a level pack was confirmed, it contains two vehicles, the Tornado and the Speedstar from the ASR series.

Sonic can visit the Tardis, hang out with the Goonies, go to Gotham City and pilot a mech robot!

Expected release date is November 2016.

Sonic Mania Announced!

Just announced at Sonic’s 25th party, a new 2D game for the PS4, PC & Xbox One.

Christian Whitehead is behind the project along with Takashi Iizuka. The game is due Spring 2017.

Sonic, Tails & Knuckles are playable.

More details as we get it!

Edit: Because this is going live, we will update this with more information once we get time to go through everything.