Unparalleled Canadian greatness! Jeffrey is a writer for TSS and Gamnesia, a pianist obsessed with video game music, and a recent university graduate majoring in Communications. Loves all things Sonic and Nintendo to a fault.
The world of Sonic fan game development never rests. What with annual Hacking Contests, Amateur Game Expos (plus Really Amateur Game Expos), and the odd flash of brilliance catching the Internet’s attention, these games not only help us pass the time between the major official releases from SEGA, some even push the boundaries of the unwritten rulebook of Sonic game design in ways we can only dream of.
Such is the case with a trio of ambitious passion projects in the works, as these three have gained significant notoriety lately for striking a significant chord with the wider Sonic community. In order, we have a large scale mod upending Sonic Mania with a whole new game, an easy-to-use tool to test the limits of your imagination, and something someone’s been working on that may have redefined Modern 3D Sonic gameplay as we know it – check them out below!
So it’s no secret that Sonic has a whole cavalcade of friends built up across his history, and with most bearing a distinct and unique voice, you’d typically be able to recognize each one and discern who’s who just from the sound alone. However, if their voices were to switch around, like hearing the charming and sweet Cream the Rabbit talking in Big the Cat’s velvet tones, well… things can get weird really, really fast.
In this BrainstormAlex-animated short directed by longtime Sonic community member Loor101, what happens is just that when Tails’ latest gadget goes wrong when Eggman intervenes!
I’ve heard of “timed exclusivity,” but seven years is a little overkill, isn’t it? Ah well, better late than never!
Sonic Generationsfinally hit Xbox One backward compatibility last week—with the added bonus of Xbox One X enhancements—and now it seems fans who hadn’t preordered the game on Xbox 360 seven years ago (or who don’t own it on Steam) can finally enjoy the complete experience at no additional charge.
If you’re a Sonic fan on the internet, chances are you’re very familiar with a series of satirical animation shorts from a group known as Sonic Paradox. Heck, you’ll find that we’ve covered quite a bit of their work over the years here at TSS!
The animation team has worked on shorts, dubs, and a variety of other projects since its inception, and now they’re looking to expand into the world of action-packed art and text. Introducing the Paradox-powered fan comic in the making, Sonic Legacy!
Microsoft held their second episode of Inside Xbox yesterday, in which they share a behind-the-scenes look at the company’s inner workings, and today’s livestream held a special announcement regarding backward compatibility on Xbox One.
The gaming giant revealed that a handful of backward compatible Xbox 360 games will become Xbox One X-enhanced, a beefy update through which last-gen titles receive a substantial performance boost on the most powerful home console on the market, after the presentation. Among them is none other than Sonic Generations, which also means that the 20th anniversary title celebrating Sonic’s history has also been finally retrofitted for the Xbox One family of systems as of today!
Episode 2 of Inside Xbox also revealed a ton of new original Xbox games being added to the backward compatible library, including SEGA’s own Panzer Dragoon Orta.
It won’t be long before Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One, based on Ernest Cline’s 2011 novel of the same name, premieres in theatres. In a dystopian near-future ruined by the evils of pollution, political corruption, and climate change, a despondent mankind turns to a worldwide network of virtual reality for work, education, and entertainment.
The fantasy online world features a number of pop culture cameos so extremely high it would make more modest product placement advertisers blush, featuring the likes of Tracer from Overwatch with her signature salute to the towering figure of The Iron Giant‘s titular character. Additionally, it looks like SEGA has gotten our favourite Blue Blur in on the action as well, as Sonic the Hedgehog himself has been spotted by eagle-eyed fans in a leaked commercial for Ready Player One.
It’s only been a month since the animators and voice actors over at Sonic Paradox released the karma collector-themed Vector’s Knickers, and tonight, the crew has unveiled a brand new spinoff series to the popular Sonic Shorts Volumes collaborations. Sonic Seconds!
Check the first volume of shorts out below, as well as credits, links, and important details regarding upcoming projects.
Last year, Nintendo has announced that they will be closing the doors of the Wii Shop Channel for the original Wii indefinitely on January 30, 2019. The change comes as the company has moved on to online networks for the 3DS and Switch, and so, after more than twelve years of activity, the Wii Shop Channel and all its services (Wii Virtual Console, WiiWare, and Wii System Transfer Tool) will go offline at the cut-off date early next year.
Among the bevy of VGM cover artists I follow on the web, one standout artist in particular shines with his rock/metal arrangements of classic gaming themes in the form of “GaMetal.”
Week by week, Jonny Atma wows the scene with all sorts of fantastic VGM covers featuring his trademark solos, covering nearly every song under the sun from the popular to the obscure, and fan-favourites from the Sonic series is no exception. While he has covered a handful of tracks from the franchise in the past, Atma wrapped up the month of February with not just one, but two remixes of some of the best boss tracks Sonic the Hedgehog has to offer.
Sonic Triple Trouble had all the makings of a fantastic 2D Sonic adventure, but—shackled by the 8-bit restrictions of the SEGA Game Gear back in 1994—fell short in a number of ways by no real fault of its own.
Enter Noah Copeland, in collaboration with Overbound Game Studio (the same team of fans responsible for Sonic Time Twisted), who seeks to correct this injustice with a question:
“What if [Sonic Triple Trouble] became a Genesis/Mega Drive game?”
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.
2010 was the year Sonic the Hedgehog came back.
Yes, we all heard the stories about how the franchise had declined not long after the jump to 3D, how gaming news outlets and critics even now would begin their pieces with some variation of “Sonic has had a rocky history,” and how every new Sonic game released around the “dark ages” period couldn’t shake off the dreaded “Sonic Cycle.”
“To get through tight spaces, press the Circle button to slide!”
It’s been a long time coming, but if you’ve been itching for more Sonic Shorts Volumes, you’ve certainly come to the right place… if you’ve been expecting something much greener and scalier! Much like the Knuckles Briefs, the animation team at Sonic Paradox has come back together again to deliver more raucous laughs and satirical pokes at the Sonic franchise in a new specially themed shorts collection, this time shining the limelight on everyone’s favourite crocodile, muscle, and karma collector. Behold…
Last month, the long-awaited inclusion of Super Sonic had finally come to pass for Sonic Forces, but there was a nasty catch: the Chaos Emerald-powered hedgehog would have only remained free for a limited time.
A series staple since Sonic the Hedgehog 2 over twenty-five years ago right up to the recent Sonic Mania, either earning the seven Chaos Emeralds or clearing the game’s story often yielded the highly coveted reward of Super transformation. From there, simply collect fifty rings mid-stage, transform, and blast off with ring-fueled invincibility and faster speeds.
While oddly absent from the game’s initial release over a month ago, Sonic Forces is finally bringing in this long loved franchise staple at long last as free downloadable content… unfortunately, with a catch that is already drawing community backlash.
For its fourth year running, our friends at RadioSEGA are holding their annual weekend-long WinterFest event, with fans all over the SEGA community coming together to celebrate good music, raise money for Special Effect, and walk away with some sweet prizes!
Just like last year, RadioSEGA hosts and guests from across the community will be hosting the festivities over the next three days, including yours truly. Read on after the jump for the complete schedule and on how to win a coveted limited edition pressing of the Sonic Mania soundtrack!
With word from Xbox’s very own Larry Hryb, “Major Nelson” himself has revealed today that the Xbox Live Arcade version of Sonic Adventure 2 is at last Xbox One Backward Compatible. Those who previously owned the remastered HD edition of this classic on Xbox 360 can recover the digital download at no extra cost; those interested in picking it up can do so for $9.99/£6.75/9,49€.
It is no secret by now that Shadow the Hedgehog will be playing an important role in the upcoming Sonic Forces. The E3 trailer revealed that the ARK-born and raised Ultimate Life Form is revealed to be joining the all-star lineup of longtime Sonic villains standing in the Resistance’s way, but fans and theorists alike are still wondering why the long-reformed Shadow would possibly side with Team Eggman.
Some suspect foul play like mind control while I initially believed Eggman sprang for a rather impressive embossed invitation, but it wouldn’t be long now until we find out the truth for ourselves.
Hope you’ve readied your wallets, folks. Sonic Forces is less than two months away from launch now, and there’s a lot about the game to get psyched about. The ability to live out your dream of having your own original character star in an official Sonic game, a notably much more ambitious and serious story compared to recent entries, a cool new villain, and now Shadow the Hedgehog returning as a playable character for the first time in over a decade, longtime fans of the series might have little reason to sit this game out.
That said, if you’re the type of gamer who prefers the convenience of owning a game digitally and playing it the moment it’s officially released, we bring good news! Preorders for the digital versions of Sonic Forces on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are going live today, with the PC version going live on Thursday, September 21.
(Unfortunately this does not apply to the Nintendo Switch iteration, as the console’s eShop is not currently enabling early purchases and preloads.)
Those who purchase the game early digitally will automatically receive the previously announced SEGA/Atlus costume pack Add-on, and the Shadow Costume, for the Custom Hero character. All owners of the game regardless of medium will also be receiving the newly revealed Episode Shadow Add-on as well.
Sonic Forces launches on November 7 for PS4, Xbox One, PC, and Nintendo Switch.
It’s been the lifelong dream of many Sonic fans to work at SEGA or with the Sonic brand in some official capacity, and in many ways, Tyson Hesse has achieved it.
Back when Archie Comics still published their Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic Universe serials, Hesse was brought on board during the later years as one of many great artists behind each carefully crafted page. His beloved take on Classic Sonic soon led to him pencilling the unfortunately ill-fated Sonic: MEGA DRIVE comics, and later directing not only the animation for Sonic Mania‘s preorder trailer, but the official opening for the game as well.
However, there was a time before all of this, a simpler time, when a certain Boxer Hockey wove a masterpiece of a tale – a dramatic epic with running, giants, robots, chases, escapes, True Love, miracles, and finally…
…magical kitsunes and rock-hard fist-nipples.
For Mania Week’s Freak-Out Friday, we take another look back at Hesse’s legendary Sonic’s Adventure, as animated by Bocodamondo back in 2012. Enjoy!
“Porta Vista,” “Checkpoint,” and “Time Trials.” Hyper Potions have become synonymous with promotional Sonic music over the past year, and their contributions to the brand have finally reached a head with Sonic Mania‘s release tomorrow on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch.
The opening animation to the highly anticipated throwback to the classics (of which you can read our TSS review with Svend and Adam here) was accompanied by Ian and Kevin’s newest nostalgia-inducing single: “Friends.” The full version of the track made its debut alongside the opening’s unveiling, and today, it is now up for grabs on digital markets such as iTunes and Google Play.
We’re just one last, impossible weekend away to Sonic Mania, so I feel it’s only appropriate to highlight one celebrated aspect of the game: its music! The news of Tee Lopes’ hiring as Mania‘s composer was met with widespread acclaim across the Sonic community, and over the past year, we were gifted with a number of his contributions to the soundtrack.
For the occasion, I am bringing back Sound Test Saturday and have catalogued one remix for every Zone confirmed by SEGA in Sonic Mania, as well as a few bonuses! Don’t forget to support and follow these artists in the links provided below. Now, enjoy!
In the preorder trailer that debuted two months ago, we caught a glimpse of another returning Zone to Sonic Mania in the familiar form of Stardust Speedway. The hallmark stage from Sonic CD where the Blue Blur finally confronts Metal Sonic became a fan-favourite for its differing yet memorable theme tunes between time zones and regional releases, courtesy of Naofumi Hataya and Spencer Nilsen.
San Diego Comic-Con has come and gone for 2017, and this year’s gave attendees the world over a lot to look forward to in forthcoming entertainment. Superhero movie aficionados got an early peek at a number of highly anticipated films for the upcoming year (Black Panther, Justice League, and Avengers: Infinity War to name a few), bitesized previews were shown off for new seasons to Stranger Things and Steven Universe among other hit shows to whet eager fans’ appetites, and in Sonic’s case?
Well, whether you’ve fallen out of the loop or just enjoy a quick summary of last week’s events, allow me to bring you all back up to speed!
San Diego Comic-Con 2017 is wrapping up today, and so does our coverage for the yearly star-studded convention. For one last hurrah, and as promised in last night’s Sonic Mania developer panel, the theme for the game’s Special Stages has been uploaded on the Sonic social channels today after being previewed to attendees.
Have a listen to Tee Lopes’ “Dimension Heist” below!
Among the familiar faces fighting under Eggman’s name in Sonic Forces comes a brand new villain by the name “Infinite.” SEGA dropped some new music for the occasion with a dedicated theme song featuring vocals and lyrics by Dangerkids band members earlier today (and sounding so deliciouslyShadow the Hedgehog-like, I might add), and now we have a trailer dedicated to this dangerous new evil as well.
Give it a watch above, and share your thoughts with us on Infinite in the comments below!
It’s only been two days since we were introduced to Tee Lopes’ “Hi Spec Robo Go!” for Sonic Mania‘s Hard Boiled Heavies, and today SEGA has come around with another new song just in time for San Diego Comic-Con, this time for the new villain starring in Sonic Forces.
Composed and arranged by Tomoya Ohtani, as well as guitar by the legendary Jun Senoue, the new track features vocals and lyrics by Tyler Smyth and Andy Bane from Dangerkids, aptly titled “Infinite.” Those who enjoyed the edgier and darker theme songs from Shadow the Hedgehog are bound to get a kick out of this tune, as well as better insight into the character of Infinite himself.
What are your thoughts on Infinite’s theme music, and how do you think the Sonic Forces OST is shaping up? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!
The Custom Hero in Sonic Forces was revealed last month to the tune of two brand new trailers. One of these offered an early look at gameplay taking within the destroyed Park Avenue, and as fun as it was to see a customizable avatar character in action in a Sonic game, I think I speak for all of us back when we first heard vocals drop right within the last few seconds of a great tune that we needed to hear more of it.
Needless to say, Sonic Social has heard our plea and granted our wish! Jam to an early preview of the music from Park Avenue’s Custom Hero Act above, and sing along with the lyrics below! Special thanks to Forte-Metallix on the SSMB for deciphering them.
Take on the enemy, strike them down We can’t let evil win, take them out This is justice, this is what’s right
Take on the enemy, mess them up And bring them to their knees, do your stuff Time for justice, time to go fight
Destiny lies before you I believe we have the power Can you see the horizon? Victory’s for the taking!
Mere words cannot do justice to this cover by self-proclaimed “World’s Okayest Violinist and Master Otamatonist” Mklachu, but never in my life have I needed something so much and never known until I received it.
Chart-topper Bruno Mars has produced a great number of worldwide hits since his solo debut in 2010, including songs such as the beautiful “Just the Way You Are,” the way too relatable “The Lazy Song,” and the unreasonably catchy “Uptown Funk” with Mark Ronson. His music videos on YouTube alone continue to gather millions of views as a testament to his talent, and his recent “24K Magic” is yet another example of that.
Turns out that “24K Magic” also mashes incredibly well with the classic Chemical Plant Zone theme from Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Who knew? Mashup artist BotanicSage certainly caught on to it, and you can jam to this delicious combo in the video above!
Found any other interesting Sonic music mashups out there on the web? Maybe you have one of your own you’d like to share? If so, you can reach us via any of the following and see your choice on the next Mash-Up Monday:
Contact us via our social media outlets on Facebook and Twitter!
The spring season will likely pass as another dry spell for Sonic fans looking for a new classic gameplay fix, as SEGA delayed Sonic Mania to the summer. To their relief, however, one long-anticipated fan game finally saw a timely launch for Windows earlier today after many years of work and several SAGE demos.
Developed by Overbound, Sonic Time Twisted boasts a number of Genesis-era features and callbacks, including CD-inspired time travel, a dizzying number of Zones to explore, and a variety of old and new elemental shields. The unique Dueling Ages soundtrack has also largely been composed and performed by Hinchy—along with collaborators Andy Tunstall, Joshua “EXshad” Kruszyna, Jogurt, Christopher Wright and Michael Davis—which you can download separately here.
As for the story, the game’s events take place in a separate timeline after Sonic CD and the destruction of the Death Egg, this time leading to the demise of Dr. Robotnik. Metal Sonic aspires to resurrect his fallen master using ancient alien tech, and it is up to Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles to gather both the Time Stones and Chaos Emeralds to put a stop to the mechanical maniac’s fiendish plot!
Be sure to check out the Overbound Studio website for more information and the actual download for the free fan game. A Mac-supported release for Sonic Time Twisted is also pending.
Have you been keeping track of this game’s development, or will you be going in with a fresh pair of eyes? What have you enjoyed most from Time Twisted so far? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!
It’s no secret by now that Sonic Mania will be borrowing many classic elements from the Blue Blur’s genesis years to shape up for one hell of a throwback experience. One of these elements that will no doubt delight Sonic 3 & Knuckles fans is how Tee Lopes has been composing the game’s soundtrack, as SEGA already confirmed that each Act of a given stage will be given a unique musical score. Continue reading Check Out Tee Lopes’ Fresh New Sonic Mania Remix for Green Hill Act 2
With SEGA’s panel at SXSW this past week, eager attendees got their first extensive look at the finally unveiledSonic Forces. Sonic Team looks poised to deliver a game that builds upon the foundations of Colours and Generations, and things certainly seem to shape up that way if an early preview of modern Sonic’s gameplay is of any indication.
The panel then shared the instrumental version of the main theme to Sonic Forces, also revealing that the game’s sound direction will be led by Tomoya Ohtani. It didn’t take too long until fans began remixing the energetic (and dare I say, kinda anime opening-esque?) theme song, and while it will still be a while until we hear the official vocalized version, one awesome cover in particular might just help with the long wait.
Have a listen to Sonic Mania composer Tee Lopes’ rendition below, and share your thoughts with us in the comments!
Sonic Forces is scheduled for launch this holiday season for Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.