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Sonic Design Styles


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Ever Since Sonic's first Video Game sequel he has gone through many changes, many of which include design. Although they were never anything drastic, they did change slightly and steadily overtime. Many restyles are very different from the core design, while some are just a slight Color change. To be honest. I love all of them <3


From Sonic 1 to Sonic Boom, there's never been a design that I didn't enjoy to some extent. My favorite Art Style Sonic has taken on was that of the likes of his Sonic CD and OVA appearences.



It captured that Anime-esque style that I am just in love with! It displays perfectly his Attitude yet goodwill doesn't it? Many exaggerated differences in this design are absent in others like the looseness of his gloves and Socks, and his Wild Hair. He also sports that Trademark Potbelly that everyone loves, but I was never really drawn to it that much tongue.png


My opinion isn't the only one that matters though, What are your favorite designs? Be sure to add a picture and a description as to why it is your favorite. (Please Make sure that Pictures aren't HUGE as a precaution to keep the thread nice and neat.)

Or why make it that Simple? What's your favorite character design for any Sonic character? 

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Boom design Sonic is my favorite. Because his spines being a little messy says that he doesnt care what he looks like as long as he can kick butt. It also makes him look young and I like it because he is young. The scarf it gives an elegent and classy look to him. It also makes him mature. I dont mind the bandages because they are sports and Sonic moves around and hes atheletic so it fits him.

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I prefer the Classic design of Sonic. There's just something about it that I like, and I kinda wish it was an option in Lost World (probably because I've gotten so accustomed to Modern Sonic's surreal-realism style ala Unleashed that seeing him in what amounts to "the game that would've happened if Adventure didn't" kinda feels off).


That said, I do like the design used in Unleashed onwards. It's like a perfect hybrid of Classic Sonic and Adventure Sonic.

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Sonic's design from SatSR+ is STILL unrivalled in my mind. Boom's Sonic design looks like a step backwards compared to this;


- The eye ridges are not too prominent
- He's not too fat yet not too thin; His belly has an extremely slight bulge to it and it's in no way exaggerated
- The luminous quality to his emerald green irises just portrays his vivid energy to me. Of interesting note is that at least in Werehog form, they do glow slightly in darkness i.e when he is first turned into a Werehog and as he turns to look at Eggman, his eye in the shade of his thick arm actually glows
- The spines/quills are of perfect length and have the perfect curvature
- What I like about the legs is that they're not excessively thickened nearer the ankles like SA2 Sonic. Seriously, SA2 Sonic looks like his legs are severely atrophied at the 'thighs' which is not so much in this Sonic
- I kinda like the extremely slight curve at the 'toe' of his shoe
- And of course, the mouth being on only one side of the face. This depends on camera angle in the actual game i.e his mouth will switch sides on his muzzle to face the camera in Unleashed
- Nose isn't too long
- I think the hands are perfectly rendered too. Broad with somewhat thick, stubby fingers.
- Oh, and I think he's the perfect shade of blue. He certainly looks a lighter blue than previous Sonic's, who definitely had darker blue fur.


This design FTW. Always been highly endeared to it and that's unlikely to change.


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My preference tends to waver between his modern era design and the CD opening/ending design. The CD design is really nicely styled, and really takes advantage of being 2D in how they always keep him looking "spiky" no matter what angle he's shown at. But I've never seen a really satisfying 3D version of it, and I'm not sure it's possible without doing some trickery to mimic how his spikes are handled. On the other hand, his modern design is basically the best he's ever looked in 3D, it's a really polished semi-realistic look...but I find myself missing some of the exaggeration and there's too many angles where his spikes don't stand out (which, again, is kind of inherent to 3D).


I wouldn't mind either one stealing Boom-Sonic's scarf and loose spines, tho'.

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Sonic Unleashed and Sonic CD (promo art) for Sonic, though I have a major soft spot for the Sonic CD cutscene design;  I find it cool that the artist clearly had a lot of lenience but it still really fits, definitely wouldn't have minded if it turned out to be the 'modern Sonic'.


Sonic Unleashed, the first thing that draws me to Sonic's and Chip's designs;

Their eyes; the irises and pupils are rendered on, not mere textures, and the irises are given a striking retroreflective texture.look_zpsd8a2a304.pngSonic Colours and Sonic Generations had very irritatingly flat-looking eyes.Thankfully Sonic Lost world has quite nice eyes, but I don't think they're rendered .


Also pretty what Verte said, he looks sleek but not overly skinny, no excessively large wrists and ankles either, he is a bit stubbier than any of the previous 'modern' Sonic styles, and better for it I think.

Models after it are the same proportions and it wouldn't surprise me if they are derivatives of it, what does surprise me is they apparently removed the pupils and irises from the model in order to texture them on. His eyes didn't look right with the form of lighting they used for the Wii perhaps? What about the WiiU?

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The Sonic CD/OVA design is also one of my favorites. I think it resembles the perfect blend of attitude/nice or cool/cute - it's just fun to watch.


Another highlight to me is Sonic Adventure 2. The 2D artwork not so much, but I love the look and feel of the in-game models. They are very carefully animated and don't feel as weightless as their more recent counterparts. Sonic leans in when turning corners, his steps appear to be actually hitting the ground... it just looks like the character is actually there. Likewise with Shadow; his skating animation is incredibly believable and makes his gameplay feel much different to Sonic's.


I also thought Sonic looked really nice in the Sonic 06 3D artwork (and during the opening cinematic at least), but he looks incredibly awkward for the rest of the game, so I can't exactly count that one...


The current design is a nice blend of old and new, which I probably liked best in the Storybook series. However, I've never been really pleased with how the running animation looks now. He starts really early with throwing his arms behind, which doesn't look as cool now that he's stretching his fingers out so much. SA1/2 had them either balled as fists or at least halfway bent. Also, all you see is shoes! His shoes are huge now and take up a lot of space when looking at Sonic from behind. I don't even understand why that's happening - his shoes weren't exactly small before. Maybe it's just a matter of camera perspective?


I think I'd like the proportions to be a little less exaggerated, with a slightly smaller head, hands and feet, but not as far as Sonic Boom went.

Sonic looks awesome in Smash Bros:


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I do like the current design -also fine with the Boom redesign- and I don't really have any qualms with either of the two, but I personally have always preferred the original (Japanese) design from the Genesis/Saturn era. The Mickey Mouse/Felix the Cat-esque facial features and proportions keep the design simple but also as instantly recognizable. His spiky look and attitude has also enabled the design to pull off looking cute and cool as well, which I think helps distinguish it from the likes of Mickey and Felix. The screensaver artwork of Sonic in particular is also a delight to look at and is some of my favorite artwork of the series.


Barring the official American the Assface retooling of the design design commissioned by Sega West, I think other takes of the design have gone down very well. The design really comes to life with the 2D animated takes (such as the OVA, Man of the Year short, and various Japanese commercials), with his description in CD's anime opening/closing (above) being my personal favorite take on the classic design. The 90s CG takes and models aren't anything special, I don't think classic Sonic was properly done in a 3D space/model until the Generations revival of the design, which I think looks excellent. That design in particular I hope they use if they decide to start using the classic design nowadays (which I totally wouldn't mind if they did). I mean just look at his Generations animations (starts in the video below @2:55), I'm actually a bit mad the scrapped animations didn't make it into the game as extra easter eggs. Such vibrancy in how he moves! (and that's not to discredit modern Sonic's stuff in the video, he has some really cute stuff too like the air guitar and his dancing).




EDIT: Also worth nothing there are past threads that also talk about designs and potential redesigns:


Edited by Space☆Gabe
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I'm usually impressed by how Sonic looks in his games. His original Japanese design is the perfect look for the Classic version of the character, especially in CD's cutscenes. He looks appropriately youthful and cute, but still carries the image of a hip, heroic little badass that's going to get shit done. Boom's redesign is growing on me as well, I don't mind the blue arms as much, and the sports tape+Nathan Drake esque scarf combined with the rougher looking fur makes him look a bit more edgy, and I like it overall, but it still doesn't hold a candle to the traditional modern Sonic design from Secret Rings/Unleashed-onwards.




Vertekins basically summed it up for me, but you really can't get much better than this. Sonic's got that older look, but he still retains his teenage, free-loving image we know and love him for. I like that he's a little taller without going overboard, he's still kind of got a pot belly, but it's toned down from his classic counterpart, and the hair spikes are just about perfect for me. Modern also has the widest range of facial expressions, which adds to his charm quite a bit. 


Modern Sonic is a prime example of how to successfully redesign any video game character, honestly. It retains the spirit of what made the original design so iconic and amps it up to a few levels, while still trying to remain faithful to how Sonic originally looked in a few ways. I can't get enough of it.

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