Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood sees the franchise head to a Role Playing Game format for the first time, and is developed by renowned RPG studio Bioware, famed for their intricate stories. The game fuses traditional RPG elements with accessible, fast-paced action that is a trademark of the Sonic the Hedgehog series. Released for the Nintendo DS, the game is controlled almost entirely by the touchscreen, using the shoulder buttons in lieu of optional on-screen action buttons.
Sonic Chronicles is seen as a further sign of SEGA’s commitment to support Western development, and can be seen as a fanservice project due to Sonic’s general popularity outside of Japan. As a result the game makes many references to past games and television shows whilst taking on a comic book layout during key sequences.
Words: Svend Joscelyne
- Sonic Chronicles was born from an informal discussion made between Simon Jeffery (President of SEGA America) and the founders of Bioware (Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk), who are reported to be friends.
- The composer for Sonic Chronicles was Steve Sim, with additional original tracks from Richard Jacques. Jacques is well known for his contributions to the Sonic R and Sonic 3D Flickies’ Island (Sega Saturn) soundtracks in the mid-90s. There are plenty of throwbacks to past Sonic games in his works here, with remixes of tracks from:
- Diamond Dust Zone (Sonic 3D, Mega Drive), in Central City
- Final Fight (Sonic 3D, Mega Drive) in Mystic Ruins
- Diamond Dust Zone (Sonic 3D, Sega Saturn) in Blue Ridge Zone
- Panic Puppet Zone (Sonic 3D, Sega Saturn) in Metropolis
- Collision Chaos Bad Future (Sonic CD JPN) in Angel Island
- Tidal Tempest Past (Sonic CD JPN) in Metropolis Ground Zero
- Volcano Valley Zone (Sonic 3D, Sega Saturn) in Kron Colony
- Quartz Quadrant Bad Future (Sonic CD USA) in N’rrgal Colony
- Final Boss Theme (Sonic 3, Sonic & Knuckles) in Nocturnus
- This game helps explain a few key plot devices introduced in Sonic Adventure, including the nature of Perfect Chaos and the eradication of Pachacamac’s echidna clan. The exact history of Gizoids (Sonic Battle) being used as a method of warfare by warring tribe, the Nocturnus, is also detailed.
- Alien race Zoah was named by fansite SEGA Nerds, as winners of a competition held by SEGA Europe to invite the Sonic community to think of a name. Before the contest, Bioware had named the race Tyxis.