Someone Makes a Shadow the Hedgehog Presentation for a Party, Becomes Legend

What do you do when a friend organises a house party that requires every person to produce a three-minute Powerpoint presentation about a topic they are passionate about? If your answer is anything other than ‘talk about the philosophy of Shadow the Hedgehog’s morality in the Sonic series’, then you truly need to step your game up, my friend. Continue reading Someone Makes a Shadow the Hedgehog Presentation for a Party, Becomes Legend

The Top 15 TSS Articles of 2017

Continuing a bit of a tradition only this time I managed to plan it to land exactly on January 1st!

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 2017 on TSS according to total views, I have discounted individual images or hub pages like the Home page.

The date period that the data is from is 1/1/17 – 1/1/18.

Number 15

Out of utterly nowhere, a random company puts up the banner for the game on it’s website, then pulls it, then accidentally puts up the entire Q&A for the game, then pulls it down, then puts it up again, then pulls it down. Then soft launches it a few days later! Whats going on!?

Number 14

First bit of Mania news to hit the list, Detective Sonic Stadium discovered a small WIP animation of what appeared to be Sonic fighting one of the Hard Boiled Heavies. Little did we know that a few weeks later we would get the full stunning opening sequence.

Number 13:

A fan game proof of concept made the list! That’s pretty impressive… but what’s more impressive is that this article was written outside of the date period, more impressive than that, it was also on last years list!

You guys seem to really enjoy this one!

Number 12

First bit of Forces news on the list. Soundtracks are always popular products, no surprise that the news of a physical and digital soundtrack for a 3D Sonic game makes it onto the list.

And it totally says ‘Ow the Edge’ when you quickly glance at it.

Number 11

The pre-order hype train started for Sonic Forces with the promise of unique costumes. Fans were invited to dress up Clark the Wolf as a variety of characters from other Sega and ATLUS titles so long as they bought the game the moment it came out.

Number 10

Another article from outside the date range makes it onto the list! Not that surprising, we didn’t get the full reveal for the Avatar (AKA Clark the Wolf) until many months later, probably explains why this one made the list yet again.

Number 9

First bit of movie news to make the list… which seems really strange since there has been so little in terms of news for the movie since it’s announcement. In fact the only other bit of news for the movie which I can think of that came to light last year was the announcement that the film was now in the hands of Paramount Pictures.

Well it’s due out in 2019 and we still know nothing about it, I don’t see a problem with that… right?

Number 8

Another day, another mobile game gets announced! Sonic Fores Speed Battle was released to accompany it’s bigger brother and was actually better received than the game it was designed to support.

Number 7

Well… This certainly set the cat amongst the pigeons didn’t it? Whilst the majority of people reacted in support, some claimed I was making it up and used every excuse in the book to try and explain or somehow stain what I had written.

But after the game released there was really only one explanation. Sonic Forces was just naff both as a demo and a final product.

Number 6

Not much to say here, the new Sonic game gets a release date, of course the hit counter went nuts.

Number 5

Sega teases us again! We got an outline of the character and for an entire month we were toying with possibilities as to who it could be. Who was that third man? Bubsy?Fang? Big the Cat in a disguise!?

April was a fun month, we all went detective trying to figure it out. We even made a few guesses ourselves

Number 4

Things started to get stranger with this title. Sonic Runners Adventure got leaked, then got accidentally announced, then got pulled, then got released in Russia and nobody from Sega wanted to confirm it was real! This prompted many fans to ask was it real!? Is it real!? Am I real!? Are you real!?

Number 3

I’m… not that surprised this made it onto the list, nor am I that surprised it made it this high. Trophy and Achievement Guides are the new cheat books, considering how we were able to put this together so soon it’s not that surprising it helped out so many people.

Before You Continue…

There was only 1000 clicks between the next two articles… the article which hit the number 1 spot was published at the very start of the year, so it had an entire year of exposure and was constantly referenced to due to the fact the news was constant for over 9 months.

Which makes the number 2 spot even more amazing. Had it not been for the constant news and rumours about the number one article, odds are this would have made it to the top spot.

So without further ado… here is number 2.

 

 

Number 2

You maniacs! What have you done!? She made it onto the list… she would have been the most viewed article of 2017 had it not been for… well you’ll find out in a moment. This is… I am at a loss for words.

A trick of the eye? A glitch in the Matrix? Call it what you like, what someone saw in Sonic Mania kickstarted a short term but very popular meme. Omelette was considered to be Eggmans secret niece who tired of watching her older relative try and fail to stop Sonic takes matters into her own hands.

Now can we please make her canon and put her into the next All Stars Racing game?

Number 1

Yup… it was always going to be on here…. And only just beat out Omelette by 1000 clicks!

We were the very first news outlet to break this story, we actually found out about it several days before we published this article, only there was nothing rock solid to support it. But a lot of signs were there to suggest what we had been told was indeed true.

The longest running comic based on a video game was coming to an end. With radio silence from Sega and Archie for over 9 months, the announcement of it’s cancellation finally came with a short press release.

Whilst many fans expressed anger and sadness at this, spare a thought for some subscribers who are still trying to get their subscription money back if our forums are anything to go by.

 

Honourable Mentions

These articles just missed out on the list. But were pretty significant, if only for the mass hysteria which followed their publication.

Sonic Mania is leaked… PANIC!

How do you leak a digital game? Well it turns out that the redemption codes for it are not time locked on certain systems! Which is a big problem if retailers start shipping out Collectors Editions early!

Coming to light several days before the games released, a lot of fans entered panic mode! Some instantly logged out of their Google accounts to prevent YouTube from displaying spoilers in the ‘Recommended’ section. Others took more drastic steps and went on a full internet blackout for several days.

With videos and even streams going on for days before hand. Even Sega stepped in and tried to block the leaks!

Clark Kent the Wolf is revealed!

Confirming what many had suspected, the third character in Forces was indeed Classic Sonic  The Avatar! A customised character that you could create, he would swing on a grapple hook (during scripted segments) and be a reflection of yourself as you help Sonic defeat Eggmans army.

All-Stars Brawl & Football Discovered

2017 was a quiet year for new Sonic game discoveries… but these two came to light on the same day and became a short distraction from Mania and Forces. A football themed All-Stars game as well as a Beat-Em-Up style brawler. 

 

 

See you in 2018, it’s going to be an Adventure.

Sonic 3D Blast: Director’s Cut Released onto Steam Workshop

Just in time for Christmas, Sonic 3D Blast: Director’s Cut has been put onto the Steam Workshop for everyone to play.

While it may seem like it ought to be another run-of-the-mill mod, there’s one factor that makes this project stand out; this was done by Jon Burton, founder of Traveller’s Tales and programmer on the original Sonic 3D Blast itself way back in 1996!

Over the past year, Burton (via his Youtube channel Gamehut) has been revealing coding secrets and tricks on Sonic 3D Blast and other classic TT games many would recognise, and as part of that he took it on himself to do some tweaks to the game to make it an overall better experience. Here’s a list of some of the modifications that this contains;

  • Super Sonic implemented into regular gameplay.
  • A time attack mode.
  • A level editor.
  • A “new” enemy (actually one that was always in the code but left unused in the final game).
  • A save game password system.
  • An overworld map screen for getting level to level.
  • Improved controls.
  • Bug Fixes.
  • Other miscellaneous gameplay changes, including alterations to the Flicky indicators and the behaviour of the Flickies themselves.

This game is a patch for the mod-friendly SEGA Mega Drive and Genesis Classics, so make sure you own that before trying it out if you’re interested. The patch can be downloaded here on the Steam Workshop for free.

If you’ve ever been curious as to how a developer would improve their work in hindsight, or just fancy playing Sonic 3D Blast in a way you never have before, this is something you might want to try out for yourself!

Source: Jon Burton (Twitter)

Check Out the Schedule for WinterFest 2017 at RadioSEGA, Starting Today!

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!

Continue reading Check Out the Schedule for WinterFest 2017 at RadioSEGA, Starting Today!

Winners Announced for Sonic Hacking Contest 2017

After a week of high quality Sonic hacks being put up against the keen eye of the community and the judging panel, the winners have been announced for this year’s Sonic Hacking Contest! Here’s a full list of all the winners announced on Sunday night.

Continue reading Winners Announced for Sonic Hacking Contest 2017

Sonic Hacking Contest 2017 Entries Announced

The entries for both the Sonic Hacking Contest and the Hack Expo have now been revealed.

With the new quality criteria in place this year, twenty four entries have made the cut for the main event and are now competing to be judged as the best games for this year. The contest entries are as follows;

● A Generic Sonic 1 ROMhack by CHRdutch
● A Rushed Sonic Hack by Unlimited Trees
● Achi (AKA another trend in gaming that is slightly annoying and ultimately pointless) by Natsumi
● Classic Pantufa the Cat DX by VAdaPEGA
● Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine – DX Edition by RadioShadow
● Heroes Mod Loader & Tweakbox by sewer56lol
● Metal Sonic Rebooted by Lone Devil
● Mr. Cat’s 16 Day Challenge by Mr. Cat
● SADX Lantern Engine by SonicFreak94
● Sonic & Ashuro by Ashuro
● Sonic 1 – Comet Edition v2.1 by BCasais
● Sonic 1 Back to South Island by PineappleArse
● Sonic 1 Dragon Edition by DragonWolfLeo
● Sonic 1: Colors Edition by campbellsonic
● Sonic 2 for PC & New 3DS by Clownacy
● Sonic 2: Zen Island by Yoshister
● Sonic 3 Chaos Adventure by Jdpense
● Sonic Chaos Quest Ultimate by Narcologer
● Sonic Double Dash by SteamPoweredPixel
● Sonic Egg Factory ReMastered by FoxConED
● Sonic Halloween by CamManS5
● Sonic Legacy by GammaV
● Sonic Redux (Character Demo) by InvisibleUp
● Tails Adventure X-L by lordxernom

In addition, twenty three further hacks will be available to play during the Hack Expo. These will not be judged formally, but they’re still held to quality standards so should be fun and interesting showcases of what you can do just by hacking regardless. These games are as follows;

● Sonic the Hedgehog Bania: Gold! Edition ~ Promotional Demo by Royameadow
● SADX Physics Swap Mod by MainMemory
● SA2 Physics Swap Mod by MainMemory
● Mario Mania by metalkingboo
● Sonic.EXE Mania by haloarbiter117
● Spider-Hog Mania by PotterAndMatrixFan
● S3K/SKC Random Special Stages by MainMemory
● S3K Mania Special Stages by MainMemory
● SADX SMPS Mod by MainMemory
● Mania SMPS Mod by MainMemory
● Mania Random Bonus Mod by MainMemory
● Sonic 2 Fine2uned by Clownacy
● Sonic: The Return of Shadow by JoenickROS
● Sonic 1: Terra Night by SonicBurst
● Sonic’s Fun and Easy Adventure by Novedicus
● Sticks by Slashy
● Sonic Limbo by lordxernom
● Aurora Garden (Sonic Mania) by AeroArtwork
● Sonic 3D Blast Director’s Cut (BETA) by gamehut
● Super Sonic & Hyper Sonic in Sonic 1 by Clownacy
● Sonic Lost World – Snowball Joyride by Dario
● Sonic Generations – Classic Green Hill Zone Forces WIP by TwilightZoney
● World 1-1 in Sonic Mania by AeroArtwork

The hacking contest and the expo will start on November 20th, at which point all games listed here will be put up on the official website for the public to play. The events will last through to November 26th, and the winners will be announced at 8pm on that day.

Here’s an official teaser trailer for the event to give a taste of what’s in store for then. This same channel will also have a live stream for the premier of the event.

If you’ve entered the competition or the expo, then I hope your hack manages to capture the excitement of everyone who plays it. If you’re going to play the entries when they become available to download, I hope you have fun with them!

Sources: Sonic Hacking Official Website, Youtube [redhotsonic]

Weston Super Sonic to hold 4th convention on Saturday

Saturday 21st October sees the UK’s more cozy Sonic convention, Weston Super Sonic, hit the Grand Pier in Weston Super Mare for its fourth year, with special guests Ferran Rodriguez of Sonic the Comic, and Tom Fry and Kieran Gates from the Sonic Mania team.

Established in 2014 by Claire Cameron and Jonathan Dixon, Weston is a convention in the more traditional sense, featuring artists, merchandise vendors, panels and cosplay in a 200-person seaside venue. As in previous years, The Sonic Show will be in attendance live-streaming the event. It’s always a good time, so be sure to stop by and check it out.

On the other hand, if you’re attending in person, feel free to say hi to the TSS crew if you see us!

The event begins at 11am UK time (GMT+1), running until 6pm.

Sonic Hacking Contest 2017 Now Open For Submissions

This year’s Sonic Hacking Contest has opened its gates for would-be game hackers to show off their skill and creativity once again.

Running from Monday 20th November to Sunday 26th November, the Sonic Hacking Contest pitches the most cool and unusual Sonic game hacks the community has to offer to the public and judging panel in order to see which ones stand out as the best of the pack.

Alongside this will be a number of side shows such as the usual Hacking Expo that allows entrants to cut loose and show off, and other events to be announced closer to the contest period. There are some pretty notable attendees to be seen during the Interactive Contest Week, with confirmed streamers including SomecallmeJohnny, MegaGWolf, AntDude and many more to be revealed.

In order to provide a better experience for those playing the hacks, this year will introduce Quality Control Criteria that every hack has to meet in order to qualify for the contest. Essentially, make sure your hack is of a good standard before submitting. Joke entries aren’t allowed in the contest, but as long as it meets the QCC it can still be put forward for the Hacking Expo.

The deadline for preliminary submissions is October 29th. Following this, contest entrants will be allowed to refine their builds until the final build upload deadline of November 5th. If you are entering your hack into the expo and not the contest, the deadline for refinement is November 12th instead.

If you wish to read more about the contest or submit your own work, the Sonic Hacking Contest now has its own dedicated website. Because of this, any downtime issues that were experienced in the past should be mitigated. Please note that you need to have a verified Sonic Retro or SSRG account to submit entries.

Sonic Hacking Contest Website

Sonic Talk 48: Succubus Mouse

When is a weasel a kangaroo rat? When is a duck a woodpecker and since when does a bat have it’s wings on it’s back instead of it’s arms? But the real question that needs answering is,…..Hooters? Seriously?!

Join Alex, GX and Jason as they discuss the insane way you have to purchase Sonic  Runners Adventure in America, our de-escalating hype for Sonic Forces, Denuvo, Shadow the Hedgehog’s return and Bill Frieberger’s departure from Sonic Boom. All this and much more!

Big thanks to Cory “Jet” Holmes for the header art. Here’s the original, unaltered image.

New Sonic 2 HD Trailer Released, Demo Incoming

The team behind the ambitious Sonic 2 HD project have revealed a new trailer, sporting two new zones and a demo release.

The fan game, which was revived back in 2014, has seen sporadic updates via the development journal run by the team over the years – but there has been no playable version of the project since the alpha release in 2012.

The new trailer shows off the previously playable Emerald Hill Zone in action once more, alongside new additions Chemical Plant Zone and Hill Top Zone. The trailer ends promising fans a new playable build will be available September 30th for download. You can check it out in action below:

Will you be revisiting Sonic 2 in high definition later this month? Let us know your impressions below.

Sonic Talk 47: Sonic Mania is Runnin’ Wild!

Well let me tell ya somethin’ brother!! I was at Venice beach pumpin’ iron when I heard someone listenin’ to a podcast! It had these three nerds, Jason, Alex and GX, all talking about that new Sonic game, Sonic Mania and heapin’ a bunch of praise on it! Jason was reviewing that new Sega game, Yakuza Kiwami and giving his hands on impressions about Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle. They also talked a bunch about all the news on Sonic Forces and reviewed some of the latest episodes of Sonic Boom! Continue reading Sonic Talk 47: Sonic Mania is Runnin’ Wild!

Meet Omelette, Sonic Mania’s Accidental New Boss Character

It was only a matter of time before someone managed to completely misread the sprites in Sonic Mania and create a brand new character out of it. We just didn’t think it would happen so soon! One player in particular has captured the hearts and minds of the Sonic community by epically misinterpreting one of the bosses. Introducing ‘Omelette’ / ‘Eggette’ / ‘Ovoid Robotnik’! Continue reading Meet Omelette, Sonic Mania’s Accidental New Boss Character

Sonic Mania: The Twitter Experience

While Sonic Mania is taking many gamers back in time to the nineties, much about the Sonic hype experience is very different to that enjoyed some twenty-plus years ago. One of the biggest changes to the gaming experience has been the emergence of social media, which allows developers, critics and fans to react and interact in a way that simply did not exist back when Sonic was rocking in 16-bit. Continue reading Sonic Mania: The Twitter Experience

Sonic CE Statue Contains An Actual LED Light And Can Be Modded to Work.

A twitter user by the name of Jojo has discovered that if you open up the Genesis/Mega Drive stand of the Sonic Mania Collector’s Edition statue, there is an actual LED light in the display! (NOTE: Doing so would void any warranty you might have on it.) What’s more, you can make it work! The tiny circuit board for the “SEGAAA!” sound includes two holes marked “LED”. All you need is a bit of copper wiring and a screwdriver. You can check how he did it on Jojo’s Twitter page, but man! What an easy mod! It makes you wonder though. Sega seemed to back out of the LED light working at the last minute. Why?

 

Freak-Out Friday: Tyson Hesse’s Legendary “Sonic’s Adventure,” Animated by Bocodamondo!

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!

Continue reading Freak-Out Friday: Tyson Hesse’s Legendary “Sonic’s Adventure,” Animated by Bocodamondo!

Sonic Stuntman In Parkour Panic Rescue Act 1!

A Facebook user by the name of Devin Super Tramp who describes himself as a ‘stuntman’ has uploaded a rather amazing video to show his excitement for Sonic Mania, dressed Sonic, he runs through the countryside and performs a number of Sonic inspired stunts and acrobatics through trees, walls and even some old ruins, as he rushes to rescue his Amy Rose. Continue reading Sonic Stuntman In Parkour Panic Rescue Act 1!

You Can Now Download Hyper Potions’ “Friends” from the Sonic Mania Opening

“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.

Continue reading You Can Now Download Hyper Potions’ “Friends” from the Sonic Mania Opening

Sound Test Saturday: Pre-Mania Launch Edition!

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!

Continue reading Sound Test Saturday: Pre-Mania Launch Edition!

TSS Review: The Sounds of Sonic Concert (With Video Highlights!)

On Thursday, July 20th in the Indigo Ballroom at the Hilton Bayfront, I witnessed a concert by Sonic fans, for Sonic fans. A rocking music extravaganza with trumpets, saxophones, guitars, drums a keyboard and a lot of passion. It’s obvious that Shoto Nakama wanted to create something special and he truly has.

It started off with the usual stuff. Sound tests, followed by a ton of trailers. There was a funny moment as I watched Jun Senoue hanging out on the side, head-banging to his own tune, “Infinite’s Theme”.

The first song off the bat is of course, “Green Hill Zone”. The saxophone and trumpets really added a jazzy vibe to this classic tune. The video screens off to the side were showing off the original classic along with a bit of the level from Generations. Next, we go from the first Sonic tune, to one of the newest, Studiopolis! It’s cool hearing an instrumental version of a tune almost entirely programmed digitally and it’s done really well.

Next up, the lead singer, Dave Ross came onto the stage along with Crush 40’s own Jun Senoue. Now this was a rock concert! “Live and Learn” was the first tune up and they really rocked it. Dave shows a strong passion in his singing and a great range as well. Especially since the next song up was “Believe in Myself”. A song originally done by female singer Karen Brake, was sung by Dave himself and he did a surprisingly faithful version.

I gotta say this about Dave. He really knew how to work the crowd and was full of energy. When he wasn’t rocking out onstage, he was constantly jumping off the stage and running around into the crowd, giving out high-fives and making damn sure that the audience was having a great time.

Next up was “Endless Possibility” which must have been a favorite for the band as it was also the encore of the night. Dave was incredibly into it and seem to really love the number. After that, it was “Reach
For The Stars”. It was great hearing a number normally done mostly in chiptune and tonebox done with full instruments and vocals. Another great highlight of the night. They followed that up with “Escape From The City” which Dave seem to take as something he wanted the audience to do as he jumped off the stage, running around the large crowd. After fooling around for a bit and having Jun do a VERY short guitar solo, they went into “It Doesn’t Matter”, a song that fit Dave’s vocal range very well. The concert wrapped up with another performance of “Endless Possibility”.

All in all, this was a fantastic concert. The people onstage were full of energy and passion for the music they were playing and that passion was absorbed by the crowd watching. Dave Ross had a great vocal range and the performance of a true rock star. They asked if they’d like to see this concert tour close to a town near you. Hell yes, I would! I’ve seen a lot of Sonic concert performances (mostly Crush 40) and this was by far the best one. If they turn this into a full tour, don’t miss it!

Sounds of Sonic Music Event Set For San Diego Comic Con

SEGA have announced today a wealth of events to be held at the San Diego Comic-Con! To complement the already announced “Behind the Scenes” Sonic Mania panel, the five day convention will also play host to the “Sounds of Sonic” music extravaganza, which will take place at the San Diego Hilton Bayfront, and include a suite of music performed by Shota Nakama, creator of the Video Game Orchestra, and Sonic Team composer and Crush 40 guitarist Jun Senoue. Continue reading Sounds of Sonic Music Event Set For San Diego Comic Con

Sonic Talk 45: E3 Mania

Join Alex, Jason and GX as they discuss all the happenings at this year’s E3. Alex and Jason were at the show and they discuss their hands-on with Sonic Mania, Sonic Forces, their time at Sonic Revolution and Alex’s first trip to Disneyland. We also talk about ARMS, Sega Forever, Sonic Runners Adventure and more! It’s out most jam-packed podcast yet, so listen in and enjoy!

Being LGBT in the Sonic Community 🏳️‍🌈

For those who do not know, June is known to many as PRIDE month. A month where people unite to promote, stand up for and celebrate the rights and history of LGBTQ people. You may wonder what this has to do with Sonic the Hedgehog, so please let me explain. Continue reading Being LGBT in the Sonic Community 🏳️‍🌈

OverClocked Remix Releases New Sonic Anniversary Album

A new album from the re-arrangement masters, OverClocked Remix, has just hit the interwebs. There’s a special reason to run out and get this one, because this latest release focuses on the past 25 years of Sonic the Hedgehog. Just in time for the blue blur’s birthday! Continue reading OverClocked Remix Releases New Sonic Anniversary Album

Additional Members of Sonic Mania Dev Team Revealed

Following Sonic Mania‘s success at E3 (and nominations for multiple awards at the event) come the revelations of more of those involved in the game’s development…and it really is a who’s who of some of the most prominent talent in the Sonic the Hedgehog community! Continue reading Additional Members of Sonic Mania Dev Team Revealed

Sound Test Saturday: Super Sonic Racing – Otamatone Deluxe Cover

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.

Continue reading Sound Test Saturday: Super Sonic Racing – Otamatone Deluxe Cover

Weston Super Sonic 2017 Kickstarter Launches

It’s been all quiet on the Weston Super Sonic front, but that looks like it’s about to change! Weston Super Sonic is back for another year, this time the event will be held Saturday October 21st.

However, it needs your help to become a reality, the organisers have launched a Kickstarter in order to help secure both a venue and a wide variety of special guests for this years event.

The Kickstarter goal is £1000 and tickets for the event are available as pledge rewards, other rewards include goody bags, T-shirts and pin badges.

Source: Weston Super Sonic Kickstarter

 

Sonic Talk 44: Schrodinger’s Sonic

Right now, Archie Sonic is much like Schrodinger’s Cat. Until we get an official confirmation, he is both cancelled and not-cancelled. In this week’s Sonic Talk, we discuss Sonic’s apparent comic cancellation and what this means for the future of non-game Sonic media. We also discuss what recent games we’ve been playing and the flat level design of the Green Hill Zone in Sonic Forces. All that, and more so stay tuned! Sadly, this was recorded just before the news broke about the third character. Continue reading Sonic Talk 44: Schrodinger’s Sonic

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…

Mash-Up Monday: BotanicSage’s “16BIT Magic”

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!
  • Send a message over to me via The Sonic Stadium Message Board – join today!
  • Send an email to me personally via vizardjeffhog@sonicstadium.org, or hit me up on Twitter with your findings @VizardJeffhog!

Opinion Zone 65: Sonic Time Twisted Interview with creator Overbound Games!

For fans living under a rock, Sonic Time Twisted is an unofficial Sonic the Hedgehog game that has been in development as a pet project for 12 years. But unlike a lot of fan game projects, this one was finished!

To celebrate today’s release of the long awaited project, we sat down with the creator to discuss what is needed to push through to the end of such a long running piece of work. Not only that but we also discuss our thoughts on the finished project and if it is worth your time downloading! We also discover that the OST features a track very similar to another fans work in 2010, what does our (half hearted) investigation discover!?

We also cover the last weeks news in Sonic (oh my did a lot happen this week!).

Have you played the game yet? Let us know what you think in the comments!

The Long-Awaited Fan Game “Sonic Time Twisted” is Finally Released

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!

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.

Sonic Talk 43: Switching Forces

In this month’s Sonic Talk, it’s all about the Nintendo Switch. We go into our obsession with Zelda and our overall thoughts on the system. We then discuss the upcoming Sonic Forces along with the fact that Sonic Boom seems to only be on Boomerang now. This and a whole lot more. Just strap it to your veins! Continue reading Sonic Talk 43: Switching Forces

The Sonic Community April Fools Day Roundup 2017

We love April Fools Day, we do. At The Sonic Stadium, it’s an annual tradition – we’re the original pranksters in the community after all. It’s nice to kick back and have a little fun from time to time. And it looks like a whole bunch of Sonic sources have joined in on the act this year too, so let us bring you a selection of April Fools jokes that happened in 2017. Starting with the king, of course…
Continue reading The Sonic Community April Fools Day Roundup 2017

OverClocked Remix Releases April Fools Day ‘& Knuckles’ Album

Have you been pining for some new Sonic-themed remixes lately? Well, OverClocked Remix’s latest album release could be either a blessing or a curse – the legendary music group pushed out a new LP titled ‘& Knuckles’ on April 1. It’s a real album, too. Continue reading OverClocked Remix Releases April Fools Day ‘& Knuckles’ Album

Sonic Mania Trailer Music Artist Headlining EGX Party in London

If you thought one of the best things about the Sonic Mania reveal trailer was the 8-bit music, then you’ll love this (assuming you live in the UK) – Nitro Fun, the artist behind those chiptune beats, will be headlining a special gaming-themed party in a couple weeks’ time during London-based show EGX Rezzed. Continue reading Sonic Mania Trailer Music Artist Headlining EGX Party in London