Every year in June, Sonic fans and press alike (and the guys at The Sonic Stadium happen to be both!) descend unto the arid, star-studded land of Los Angeles to take on the ‘Video Gaming Superbowl’ that is E3. But, every year, on the Sunday before E3 festivities begin, there’s a whole other party happening in the same city just for Sonic fans. Continue reading Talkin’ Bout a Sonic Revolution: We Visit the 2019 Fan Convention
Can you believe that in three days time it will have been a whole 28 YEARS since the original Sonic the Hedgehog game launched on Sega Mega Drive? To celebrate, SEGA Japan is throwing a massive party at its Tokyo Joypolis arcade, on Sunday 23 June – and there will be special music events as well as awesome merchandise to collect. Take a look at what’s in store – you’ll want to check back on this page to check a livestream on the day too!
Continue reading Tokyo Joypolis Hosting Sonic 28th Birthday Party & Ohtani DJ Set on 23 June
CRUSH 40 performed Team Sonic Racing’s Green Light Ride at the Sonic X PUMA Launch Party last night and we got it all on video. Green Light Ride is the band’s first new Sonic song in roughly nine years, and this was its first live performance.
Check it out below:
If you can’t make it to SXSW to see this year’s Sonic panel, you’re in luck: the event will be hosting a livestream of the panel on its SXSW Gaming Twitch channel, which you can find here.
Gotta Go Fast: The Official Sonic Panel, will start running on the Twitch stream at 3:30 PM local time, 4:30 PM EST, and 8:30 PM GMT. There may be a game announcement at the event, and there may be more than one announcement overall, if this SEGA Europe tweet is any indication.
If you can’t watch the stream for whatever reason, don’t fret: we will be reporting the news as it’s announced on the front page and through our Twitter feed.
The panel will feature Sonic Team Head Takashi Iizuka, Sonic Social Media Manager Aaron Webber, Sonic Western Product Development Director Austin Keys, Unit Production Manager & Sonic Boom contributor Jasmin Hernandez, and Sonic comic artist/Sonic Mania Animation Director Tyson Hesse. The panel is located at the Austin Convention Center Gaming Expo, on the Discovery stage, in Exhibit Hall 2.
You may recall how we brought you the news that Sonic’s 25th Anniversary would bring special events throughout the year. Well… we can now bring you details of those events including dates for some of them.
- Games Developers Conference – celebrating Sonic Dash 2, 25 years of Sonic, art and music.
- Sonic @ SXSW – History of Sonic Panel.
- Art Event & Celebration Mural.
- 25th Aniversary Party
- Comic Con Events
- YouTube Unboxing Events & Original Videos.
GDC is March 14-18th, SXSW is March 11-20th and Comic Con is July 21st.
The rest, anyone’s guess, but one of the interesting things is the Unboxing Events, have they just accidentally confirmed a collectors edition of a game with that one?
I for one am quite interested in the 25th Anniversary Party.
Picture Source: Idle Hands
Weston Super Sonic, the South West’s Sonic Convention is only a week away on the 17th, and in the past few months, a plethora of details have been revealed about guests and what kinds of things Sonic fans can do at the event.
Attendance: Can I still get tickets? Can I pay ‘On the Door’?
The answer to both of these questions is unfortunately not. The convention completely sold out of both premium and free tickets towards the end of last year, and as a result cannot accept any further registrations to attend. There are also no on the door tickets, so it may be worth saving yourself a journey if you haven’t already gotten tickets. Thankfully, the awesome peeps at The Sonic Show will be live streaming directly from the convention space so you can see all the action as it takes place.
I’ve got tickets! Where do I go?
Weston Super Sonic is taking place on the Grand Pier in Weston Super-Mare. Full details on how to get there can be found here.
Who is coming in the way of special guests?
The convention has a wealth special guests attending. Here’s our brief, but comprehensive list of guests that we’ll have joining us:
Richard Elson: StC Artist
Nigel Kitching: StC Writer & Artist
Carl Flint: StC Artist
Ferran Rodríguez: StC Artist
Deborah Tate: StC Editor
Mike Pollock (via Skype): Series’ Dr. Eggman VA
Duncan Gutteridge: Classic Sonic/SEGA Illustrator
Radio SEGA: Internet SEGA Radio Station/Official Event DJs
The Sonic Show: Sonic the Hedgehog Podcast/Youtube Channel
VGM Awesome: Internet VGM Radio Station
Louisalulu Arts: Independent Artist
Sam Webster: Independent Artist
Sci-Fi Collectibles: Collectible vendor/retailer
What events have been announced?
A few events have been announced already:
Speed Run Contest : Complete Sonic Adventure 2’s City Escape stage in the fastest time to win!
Gaming Tournament: Only one will come out the victor in this gaming knockout tournament! Bring your best skills!
Art Contest: Flex those pencils (though not too far, because they’d break otherwise) and demonstrate your artistic talents to the folk at the convention!
Cosplay Contest: Don your best Sonic gear, and show us your great costume making skills!
Mike Pollock Live Skype Q&A: Series VA and voice of Dr. Eggman Mike Pollock joins the convention live over skype in this Q&A segment, where he will be answering fan’s submitted questions!
Sonic Off 2.0: The age-old rivalry between VGM Awesome and The Sonic Show rears its ugly head. In this two part quiz, will VGM Awesome take home the elusive Sonic Off Trophy once more? Or will The Sonic Show win the day after last time’s humiliation..?
‘Where’s Sonic?’ Contest: Where’s Sonic Hiding? Pick a zone, and win a SEGA Prize Europe Shadow the Hedgehog Plush! All funds raised from this contest (£1 per entry) will go towards the Burnham on Sea Rainbows Group.
What about other prizes..?
Winners of the various contests will each take home one of these awesome engraved Chaos Emerald trophies. There are 4 trophies up for grabs for the Speed Run winner, the Tournament winner, the Cosplay winner and finally the Art Winner.
What other events will there be?
Lucky you asked… Next week, WSS will be revealing the complete line up of events scheduled to take place via their Facebook page in a series of announcements leading up to the event. We’ll be covering the announcements as they come!
One more thing…
Those of you on social media may have noticed this coming from First 4 Figures’ Twitter/Facebook feeds. Whatever could it mean? You’ll have to wait and see what we have planned in regards to that
With all that said, Rurifuu and I look forward to seeing all our attendees on the pier this coming Saturday!
Many of you will no doubt have heard of SEGAWorld Sydney, that once stood proudly on Darling Harbour. Although housed in a grand building and offering a variety of attractions, SEGAWorld Sydney was only open for four brief years during 1997 and 2000, with the park closing November 2000 and the building being demolished in 2008. The park was host to many rides and a whole bunch of merchandise that now goes for crazy prices on ebay, but one of the main attractions was a live hour-and-a-half stage show involving actors dressed as a host of characters and a plot loosely based around the SatAM universe (with some pretty cheesy songs which you can hear if you’re lucky/unlucky enough to own the “Sonic In Sydney” soundtrack CD).
Unbeknownst to most this show was not the only to grace the SEGAWorld Sydney stage. Forumer SonikkuForever has been doing some digging and has been in touch with Philip Einfeld of Philip Einfeld’s Puppetoons, who was comissioned to produce an puppet show to replace the stage show. Philip has been kind enough to share photos from the show along with a description in his correspondance, and considering I think very few have heard of this, or even know this show existed, it deserves mentioning here on TSS.
The Sonic the Hedgehog Puppet Show performed 3-4 half hour shows daily in Sega World Sydney throughout 1998-99.
It was performed on center stage, pretty much in the middle of Sega World next to the food court. People could dine at their tables while watching the show.
The show was designed, written, produced and performed by Phillip Einfeld Puppetoons. It involved 2 puppeteers and a live hostess.
Dr. Robotnik had devised a plan to finally defeat his arch enemy Sonic. He has concocted a robot making machine that would build the ultimate, evil, robot with every device needed to catch Sonic. With the help of his buddies Tails and Princess Sally, Sonic defeats the robot (Grounder) who turns out to be a bit slow physically and mentally. Robotnik blasts off back to his secret laboratory in anger and everyone lives happily ever after.
Originally, a show with dancers and costumed characters performed on the stage. The soundtrack you have heard is from that show. I think I may have the puppet show sound track in my files somewhere but it could take some time to find it.
When Sega decided to disband the original stage show, due to it not being very dynamic, late 1997, I was brought in to replace it with the puppetshow and some animatronic displays.
I redesigned the stage to represent planet Mobius, on either end were magic mountains, every 15mins except during show times, audio animatronic Sonic and Tails characters rose out of top of mountains and spoke to each other and audience, anouncing show times and upcoming events in Sega World. In center of stage stood the large, fully sculpted puppet theatre. Perched above the theatre was a big ,purple, animatronic bird that spoke to the audience. Above the stage was a large vid screen. Segments of the puppet show where filmed and appeared on the screen i.e when Robotnik blasts off in his space ship he is seen flying across a planet strewn sky above the audience (on the screen).
The puppets were large, muppet style creations, Sonic, Tails, Princess Sally, Dr. Robotnik and Grounder the Robot. A large ‘Robot making Machine’ prop was made along with special Sonic hats for children chosen from audience to wear. The show included much audience participation. I had 3 original songs recorded (I attached the lyrics).
I used all my own people for the voices (all approved by Sega) From memory I voiced Grounder, Dennis White voiced Dr.Robotnik, and Sonic, Tails and Sally were voiced by Alexis Nagy. The original music and songs were written and produced by myself and Mark Rosenberg.
Here are a selection of photos also sent by Philip:
Many thanks once again to SonikkuForever and Philip for giving us a peak into one of the many forgotten chapters of SEGAWorld!
Did you ever witness this show or any other on a visit to SEGAWorld Sydney? Let us know in the comments!
For more discussion, head to the thread in the SSMB.
After the original leak, SEGA have now officially unveiled the third trailer for the hotly anticipated Mario & Sonic Olympics sequel which this time round see’s them join the Winter Games in Vancouver. This new trailer officially reveals Silver the Hedgehog and Bowser.Jr as new playable characters to go with the last trailers revelations of Metal Sonic and Donkey Kong.
SEGA Europe have also had an exclusive interview with David Corless, Head of Marketing on the game who reveals the differences between this game and the first one and his favourite events among other things. Check out the full interview in the video above.
Source: Sonic City Blognik
SEGA have also revealed many new screenshots from both the Wii and DS versions of the game including new areas like Sonic Adventure 2’s Radical Highway level, some new Dream Events and even Dream Snowball Fight. You can find more screens over at Official Nintendo Magazine’s website.
The Taxman, real name Christian Whitehead, sat down with portable gaming website Touch Arcade to discuss his Sonic CD proof-of-concept port to the iPhone, which we unveiled yesterday. Eli Hodapp asks questions to Christian about the flexibility of the RSDK and its future. Christian also manages to clear up a few misconceptions that have been swirling in comment boxes across the gaming internet.
Last week, I talked to Mike Pollock, the current voice of Dr. Eggman and we had a grand ol’ time. If you’ve got 21 minutes to spare, you can listen in as we discuss Mike’s work on Sonic Unleashed and other Sonic titles. In addition, Mike talks about how he got into voice acting and he reminisces on his early days in New York radio and his work on his only film, Little Tug’s Big Adventure. He also does some voices for us!
Mike is currently signed to do voice work on an upcoming, to be announced Wii title. He recently was the announcer for AC/DC’s Black Ice album and has acquired credits for his work on commercials, Ultimate Muscle, and Kirby! Right Back At Ya!. For more information on Mike Pollock, visit his website.
Embedding and audio playback here at Sonic Stadium is wacky, so Jay (Disco Ponies) has hosted it at the Sonic Show website.
Do you have a question for Mike that was not asked during this interview? Who do you think that the Sonic Stadium should interview next? Post a comment then, dummy. 😀
If you’re not involved in the Sonic fangaming/hacking community, or even the fan community at large, you might have heard of or seen either Sonic XG or Retro-Sonic at one point or another while perusing forums and websites. Both titles are not only fantastic re-creations of classic 2D-Sonic, but they are influential to others wishing to do the same. At the 2007 Sonic Amateur Games Expo, both of these titles were among the best of the lot, but were each lacking in a department that the other excelled in. XG had extraordinary graphics and design. Retro-Sonic prided itself on its far-superior engine.
Soon after, these projects combined to form a fangaming juggernaut. The perfect Sonic engine and the definitive fan-sequel to Sonic 3 & Knuckles merged to become “Retro-Sonic XG.” However, the buzz was short lived. The RSXG team, Christian Whitehead (Taxman), Euan Gallacher (Sir Euan), and Joseph Waters (Nitemare) are rarely heard from and thus, XG gradually vanished… until today.
The creator of the Retro-Sonic engine, Whitehead, re-surfaced when it was announced that my Sonic project, Sonic Nexus, would also be using the engine, thus creating the “Retro-Sonic Series.” The 2008 demo of Nexus motivated Whitehead to construct a brand new version of Retro-Sonic, one that would optimize the development of both games. After the successful launch of Nexus’ demo, Christian retuned to Retro-Sonic XG. Now that months of work has been put into the title, he’s ready to unveil new information and screenshots with the world. Click the image thumbnails to make them full-size.
BF: Welcome to the TSS Interview of Christian Whitehead, Christian Whitehead.
Christian Whitehead: Thanks?
BF: OK, let’s begin with the question that is on every RSXG fan’s mind. The project has been out of the community’s conscience for the past year or two. Nobody knows if it’s dead or alive. When you joined the Nexus team, that raised further suspicions that you had left the project. Could you assure the readers and the community at large that RSXG is alive and well?
CW: Yes, I can. As most people know, a fair portion of development time in 2008 was spent creating the new revised edition of the Retro-Sonic engine, along with the RSDK and the 2008 Nexus demo. Before then, I had already converted a fair portion of the assets from Sonic XG into the 2007 version of Retro Sonic. While most people will groan at yet another engine change, this is the definitive change, and has already increased the productivity on the RSXG project. 2009 will be the year of Retro-Sonic XG though, as part 1 is slated for release, much in a similar vein to how Sonic 3 was released before Sonic & Knuckles.
BF: Part 1, eh? So, we’ll see 6 of the 12 zones in Sonic XG this year?
CW: Yes. Rather than putting out another 1 level demo of Final Fall, I wanted to finish a ‘complete’ work of sorts… and half a game is a more realistic target to keep us motivated.
BF: That’s an idea worth stealing, if you’re a fangamer.
CW: Haha, yeah. Even as half a game, there will be a lot of content. The aim is the same scope as Sonic 3, in terms of level sizes, bosses and the like. Which I guess makes sense, since RSXG is a sort of spiritual sequel that picks up where Sonic 3 & Knuckles ended.
BF: Yes, RSXG does what a lot of “Sonic 4″ fangames wish that they could do, in my opinion.
CW: And there are a LOT of those.
BF: Tell me about it. Now, after Nexus’ release, you talked about the new Retro-Sonic Development Kit (RSDK). How does the new RSDK benefit the development of XG?
CW: One of the big benefits, I reckon, has been the improved stage editing tools within RSDK. It’s now much quicker to setup tile mappings and stuff, so the process of building all the level set pieces is much less tedious. The updated scripting system, ‘TaxReceipt,’ is also more powerful than before, which makes for some cool cutscenes, graphical effects, etc etc. We’re aiming for a level of graphical quality on par with the 32bit Sega Saturn.
BF: Excellent! We talk about the RSDK, because we’re plenty familiar with it and how it works. However, readers might not understand what we’re talking about. What exactly is the Retro-Sonic Development Kit?
CW: Basically, the RSDK is a suite of tools that I created to design content for the Retro-Sonic engine. There are visual editors for Stages, Parallax, Tiles, Objects, etc. In addition there’s text based scripting with syntax hilighting and other additional setup menus for stuff like stage ordering and resource management. Since everything is scriptable, it’s actually possible to make games other than Sonic, too.
BF: I’m totally making a Socket fangame after Nexus then.
CW: Haha! Man, there’s a new Sonic clone discovered every minute isn’t there?
BF: Yeah, I should start ripping backgrounds from it and editing them to match my foreground tiles. Nobody will notice!
CW: They will now. You just said so.
BF: Well, damn. Let’s move on from my flub and talk “Part 1.” What are we going to see? Levels, characters, features? Give us the low down!
CW: Well, without giving too much away, you’ve got the standard triple threat of Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles as playable characters. There will be 6 zones: Final Fall, Peak Panic, Wood Works, Palm Paradiso, Scorched Spire and Robotic Resort, two of which some some keen players might recognize from their previous incarnations as Retro-Sonic levels. Also, the 7 chaos emeralds make an appearance, which means Special and Bonus Stages. Finally, plenty of bosses will be ready to attack and a data select menu will save your progress.
BF: When part 2 is released far down the road, will players be able to merge their Part 1 data with Part 2’s data to make a SUPER game?
CW: Definitely, although to make it simpler, we’ll just provide the full game to download and players can just use their existing save file to continue where they left off.
BF: So, players will have to manually copy their data into the new EXE? Sounds simple enough. Do you think people will manage to fuck that up? Haha…
CW: Anything’s possible, haha. I guess we can make an installer… but most people dislike that.
BF: Usually. Everybody at SFGHQ hates that shit.
I’ve heard rumors that all the level art is completed. Is it true that you’ll have to do no more graphical work for levels? I ask, because the level graphics always seem to be the hardest part for fangamers and hearing that all the level graphics are done will be a great sign of RSXG’s progress.
CW: Yes and no. We have graphics for all the zones, but I guess things always get tweaked or updated as you go, due to new ideas that might come up or tile considerations due to the change from MMF2 to Retro-Sonic. But overall, yes, level graphics aren’t too much of a worry now. In fact, it was one of the great benefits of the merge to me.
BF: It was a good choice. Retro-Sonic got what XG lacked and vice-versa. Who initiated the merger and were the level graphics a main reason that you decided to go along with it?
CW: Well, I was the one who extended the offer to Euan and Joseph. I was really impressed with the graphics, presentation and the overall feel of the game. They were paying attention to little details that I, up until that point, hadn’t had a chance to do in Retro-Sonic. I thought, “I should really be doing that!” Then, I considered that I’d only created graphics for about 3 of the Retro-Sonic levels and how much more work it’d take on top of all the other stuff I was doing. The merge just seemed like a good idea to me at the time, and when we had discussions about it, everything just seemed to click.
BF: What was the thought process behind joining up with the guys and I on Sonic Nexus? Months before the release, I was as surprised as people were on release day on the news that Nexus and Retro-Sonic were joining forces. You and Damizean were talking without my knowledge, as I never even considered asking you due to the XG merger.
CW: Haha, the fact you guys were considering using the Torque game builder? XD
BF: Oh…right. Well, it looked like a good idea at the time.
CW: No, seriously… Torque? XD
BF: It’s in the past. What’s it like working for two projects anyway? Besides that fact that it is time consuming and probably sucks at times.
CW: Well, for one, I guess, it has been one of the main driving forces that made me do a final restructuring of the Retro-Sonic engine! At least that’s over and done with, but it keeps things fresh for me too, I suppose. If I get a creative block or am bored with one, I can switch to the other.
BF: Fair enough. So, back to RSXG. I remember seeing pictures of old builds that had appearances from classic Sonic antagonists, like Nack/Fang and Metal Sonic. Are they still hanging around and/or other villians coming to the party?
CW: Well, everyone’s favorite Egg Garden boss will make a comeback… does that count? Seriously though, in terms of actual “intelligent characters” no, but there may be a few cameo appearances from a classic boss or two.
BF: Coo’. Well, I’m out of questions. Do you think that I missed anything?
CW: Yeah, we’ve covered all that there is to know.
The Sonic Amateur Games Expo has hit again, and the shows so big this year, it’s gonna need two parts to this massive News Special! Unfortunately, due to lack of time, the Sonic Stadium did not manage to get through the immense wave of games on show – perhaps a longer show period for September’s show, guys??? Continue reading SAGE 4: Complete Coverage
The Sonic Amateur Games Expo has opened once again for a 2001 showing. This is the place where all kinds of Sonic the Hedgehog fan games come together and show the community what they’re made of. This is the third SAGE to ever take place; the first happened last year, which we missed, but we were able to report on SAGE 2 back in March – you can read that here. Check out the new show by going to the SAGE website.
What good is an anniversary without a party to celebrate? Sonic Team plans to do just that in honour of Sonic the Hedgehog’s 10th, with two events happening in Japan which will allow fans to net some swag and schmooze with Sonic Team developers. Continue reading Sega Plans Big Parties for Sonic’s 10th Anniversary
SEGA revealed more of their third-party publishing plans during the first day of E3, with SoA President Peter Moore confirming a slew of games for Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s PlayStation 2. Continue reading E3 2001 Roundup: Day 1 Coverage
It’s time for the opening of the second ever Sonic Amateur Games Expo. I felt a bit silly for missing the show six months ago, so I thought I’d give you full coverage this time around. And, to tell the truth, I’m glad. SAGE 2 was a lot more successful than its predecessor – although a technical hitch did occur during this year’s show, by and large it was a barnstorming success.
So, what can we expect from all the budding Sonic Fan Game developers then? It’s a good job we’re here – take a look after the jump. Continue reading SAGE 2: Complete Coverage