TSS Timeline: The Year 2001

This is part of an ongoing series of features that looks back on the history of The Sonic Stadium. You can find out more about how this website changed the Sonic community, what it looked like back in the day, and even special images and update notes from the archive.

She’s Got The Look

The launch of The Sonic Stadium had a very good initial response – some thirty people or so were regularly visitng the website in just a few weeks since it’s opening, which is pretty admirable considering that it did so with no fanfare or anything. The first few months in 2001 would prove to be much tougher, as beginner’s luck would set in and the casually interested visitors would drop off and head to more interesting sites like The Sonic Foundation and Sonic HQ.

To combat this, towards the end of 2000 I began work on a new site design. One with a dark background, two sidebars and room for a lot of links to different pages. Still feeling my way around web design, I took a free template and fiddled with that to get the look I wanted. It wasn’t a very good idea at the time because I missed several updates because of this, but it taught me a lot about how to achieve certain things in a webpage.

While I was preparing this new design, I realised I needed more space than Angelfire’s 50Meg service provided. As a result of weeks of searching, The Sonic Stadium was moved onto a supposedly limitless, free host called Stas.net which included no ad-banners whatsoever. This became my undoing, as the bursting bubble of the dot com boom meant places like Stas ended up disappearing without so much as a ‘We’re closing down, bye’ message. There aren’t many images and backups of this design, as the only copies were on Stas. This meant I had to start from practically scratch. Even worse was I had my GCSE exams this year, so the revival would have to wait until several months later… Continue reading TSS Timeline: The Year 2001

TSS Timeline: The Year 2000

This is the first in a series of features that looks back on the history of The Sonic Stadium. You can find out more about how this website changed the Sonic community, what it looked like back in the day, and even special images and update notes from the archive.

Prelude

I’ve always been a fan of Sonic the Hedgehog, ever since I saw the Mega Drive game that my friend owned (which resulted in me accidently getting a Master System in my childhood ways). Every bit of my pocket money would go on the games, and any other merchandise I could fit in too. As time went on though, the Sony PlayStation became more popular and that (along with adolescence) made my interest in Sega and Sonic wane throughout the late 1990s.

My interest was to be reignited during my last year of school. Sometime in 1999, we had a new computer centre built, which brought Internet to the masses of kids attending there. Soon enough, every kid had a floppy disk with Genecyst and a Sonic 2 ROM that they would play during lunch break whenever the admins weren’t looking. Seeing the game being enjoyed again (and playing it a heavy amount myself) kick-started my love for the games all over again.

I eventually came across a website called The Moogle Cavern (now dead). It appeared during a random Yahoo search for ‘Sonic the Hedgehog’, not expecting to find as many fan sites as I did. In its prime, the ‘MC’ was known for its mish-mash of Mario, Sonic, Squaresoft and other assorted franchise information. I quickly joined the forums and became a solid part of their community. Continue reading TSS Timeline: The Year 2000