TSS Interview: Sonic Studio’s Developer Teases New Features

With all the hype surrounding Super Mario Maker 2 for the Nintendo Switch, there’s no doubt the thought of a Sonic-esque equivalent is on the minds of Sonic fans around the world. Indeed, what if there was a Sonic Maker?

Well, if you haven’t heard, one Sonic fan has gone above and beyond to bring this fantasy to life, and The Sonic Stadium is proud to provide you with an exclusive interview with the brains behind the project known as Sonic Studio!

Continue reading TSS Interview: Sonic Studio’s Developer Teases New Features

Keylogger Discovered in Sonic 2 HD, LOst no Longer in Team

[UPDATE] Earlier today, S2HD Project Manager Canned Karma announced that LOst, Sonic 2 HD‘s programmer who needlessly added DRM protection to the long anticipated fan game, is no longer part of the project, as stated in the Sonic Retro forum.

All of us had the exact same reaction everyone here did, and we’re actively looking into it to the best of our abilities. That said, we’ve heard just as much from LOst as anyone here has lately, so I’m not sure what, if anything, we’ll be able to find that corroborated or refutes what’s been brought to light. I will say this though. LOst is no longer a part of S2HD. I’ll have a more in depth response soon. We’re just as pissed off about this as the community is.

[ORIGINAL] Scarred Sun of Sonic Retro advises everyone who has downloaded the Alpha Demo of Sonic 2 HD to delete the entire software in light of a recent keylogger discovery, the cause behind triggered antivirus alerts. Read the full statement after the jump.

Continue reading Keylogger Discovered in Sonic 2 HD, LOst no Longer in Team

Sonic 2 HD Alpha Demo Now Available

After a tech demo over three-and-a-half years ago and a teaser trailer last year, the team behind Sonic 2 HD has now made a playable alpha demo available to the community. Eager players can experience the entirety of Emerald Hill Zone in high definition, complete with Sonic 3 & Knuckles-style act transitions and upgraded music.

As of now, the demo can only run on Windows operating systems ranging between Windows XP and Windows 7. Download links are available on the Sonic 2 HD homepage, as well as 1080p screenshots and beautiful desktop wallpapers. Further project details are available on Sonic Retro.

Check out some footage after the jump!

Continue reading Sonic 2 HD Alpha Demo Now Available

Check Out the New “Flooded Capital” in Sonic Fusion

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hGFvYtRswJI[/youtube]

More fangame action flyin’ at ya!

We’ve covered Sonic Fusion (by Felik of SFGHQ) here at TSS before and it has been better with each demo.  We haven’t played anything since the demo at SAGE 2009 in July, but this video is more than good enough.  On display here is “Flooded Capital Zone,” a lost empire submerged underwater, complete with ancient Greek/Roman architecture.

The level design is incredibly well thought-out and creative.  It bears a striking play-style to that of Marble Zone, except with a bit more bells and whistles.  Have I mentioned the graphics yet?  I haven’t?  Oh, uh… well… they’re THE BEST.  Rarely do you see custom graphics for an Advance-style fangame, so I’m thoroughly impressed.

Sonic Mayhem Continues 8-Bit Greatness

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LLbt31SfOdk[/youtube]

You’ve seen countless Genesis and Advance-styled Sonic fangames, but there is only one project out there that is channeling the look and feel of the 8-bit adventures.  I’ve talked about Sonic Mayhem before and I have been always one to praise the project.  Over the weekend, the project’s lead, Amesuki, has released a short demo, pictures of the new zones, and a gameplay video.

The brief demo (download here) runs for about a minute and, to me, is a picture perfect re-creation of the 8-bit Sonic games.  The music, the graphics, and the physics all feel correct.  I just wish it were longer!

Check the video for gameplay of one of the best fangames around and hit the break for screenshots of other levels.

Continue reading Sonic Mayhem Continues 8-Bit Greatness

SAGE Spotlight: Sonic Robo Blast 2

Review by Kain of SFGHQ, Submitted to TSS

As a preface to this review, I will say that I am being particularly harsh in my criticisms of this game, because I feel no need to patronize this team or treat the game as “just a fangame,” mostly because of its enormous size, publicity, and history.  I’m also sore because I get motion sickness from playing jerky 3D games and am being doing it for spite from all the physical pain it put me through.  On to the review…Sonic Robo Blast 2 is a project that has been in development for over a decade and it shows.  In the eyes of many fangamers, including this one, it’s in a class of its own.  The volume of content and detail in this game is incredible.  It is and it feels like a full game.  However, it’s far from feeling like a complete game, as there are a large number of truly unfortunate glaring flaws with this game which keep me from really enjoying it. Continue reading SAGE Spotlight: Sonic Robo Blast 2

Project Mettrix Becomes First Sonic Fangame On Wii

blz-exampleStealth is the master of bomb-dropping.  To list a few, he has ported Tweaker’s Sonic 1 Megamix hack to the SEGA CD, tricked morons with news tips, and released a port of Sonic 1 for the Game Boy Advance that doesn’t suck.  At this year’s SAGE though, Stealth has outdone himself.  His long-time project, Sonic: Project Mettrix, has been successfully been ported to the Nintendo Wii and Sony Playstation Portable.

Project Mettrix uses Stealth’s “E02 Engine,” a multi-platform game development tool for 2D games.  Mettrix has been around for quite some time, but it is really flourishing with the E02 treatment.  Now, you can play and create custom levels for Mettrix on your Wii and PSP.

Those with homebrew enabled Wiis should download this game right away and experience this momentous occasion.

VISIT E02’s BOOTH AT SAGE 2009!

Sonic Amateur Games Expo 2009 Now Open!

sage_inviteThe 2009 Sonic Amateur Games Expo is celebrating its 14th showing and does not disappoint yet again with 40+ fangames for you to play.  InstantSonic, KTZ, and the members of Sonic Fan Games HQ have been working for months to put this annual event on for all of you, so head on over there and have some fun!

Aside from the fangames, there are many cool events to check out.  The SAGE chat room is always happenin’ and ridiculous.  An awesome chat client is provided on the site, but can be accessed through programs like mIRC (irc.rizon.net, #sagexpo).  In the chat room, you will be able to talk to Mike Pollock, the voice of Doctor Eggman, and Tom Payne, the level artist for Sonic 2.  Check the “Events” tab to see when they pop in the chat room.

Also, the ever-entertaining SAGEcasts are broadcast from a flash player on the site.  Sonic community members from all over will be broadcasting their music, thoughts, and sketches throughout the week.

The biggest online Sonic community event is waiting for you to come on over and enjoy yourself!  It runs from July 25th through the 31st.

ENTER SAGE 2009

Get Your Hands On “Sonic Robo Blast 2,” Version 2.0

srb2

Sonic Robo Blast 2 has been in development for 11 years.  To think that we’d be playing a “version 2.0” makes me feel old, despite me only recently turning 22 years old.  A day before the 2009 Sonic Amateur Games Expo opens, Sonic Team Jr., the game’s developers, have released this new version, three years after the last demo.

Version 2.0 has a completable, polished, yet unfinished single player campaign.  The team’s leader, AJ Freda, has assured that there are so many improvements to the game that “to list them would be exhausting.”  With this release, however, AJ will be leaving the team and turning over control to his other members.  He is expecting a child soon, so we in the community wish him well on fatherhood and his future endeavors.  It certainly is the end of an era.

Download the SRB2 v2.0 Torrent

Visit the SRB2 Homepage

SAGE Sneak Peak: “Sonic Attitude!”

sonicattitude

Above is a screenshot of a game coming to SAGE ’09 in 2 weeks, called Sonic Attitude by SFGHQer Endri Lauson.  The game is a 2D sidescroller in full 3D.  LOOK AT THE PRETTY.  LOOK AT IT.

Endri originally designed Attitude for the Nintendo DS, but the recent screenshots that have been coming in have been for the PC version.  Endri built the PC version from the ground up in his own custom software development kit:

One thing that I would like to note is that I redefined the engine for the PC version. The PC version will now feature a brand new engine entirely customized by me myself. I like to call it, “Attitude Engine”. It’s an entire SDK for developing Sonic games for PC. In fact, you can you it to develop other types games but Sonic games, but the main sources included are for Sonic in general.  The main features in the engine I belive is SSAO and almost-with-no-pre-calculations-at-all Global Illumination.

To play the 2008 tech demo of Sonic Attitude, check out Endri’s website (translated from Portuguese) and follow the progress Endri makes on the game at the official thread at Sonic Fan Games HQ.

SAGE Sneak Peak: “Sonic: Time Twisted”

Sonic: Time Twisted has been a mainstay at SAGE since 2006 and, if you remember my review of it on the Stadium front page last summer, I was let down by how little of it had changed over the years and how the awkward design choices ruined the experience.  Well, it looks like Overbound, the game’s creator, has addressed all the issues with his project and is looking to deliver at SAGE 2009.  Below is a video of the new hotness:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XK0bkBilQ2M[/youtube]

The 2009 Sonic Amateur Games Expo runs July 25th through the 31st at “http://sagexpo.org.”  It is the biggest online community event that showcases the best Sonic fan projects around.

UPDATE: Since people decided to be silly and troll the comments box with “NEW SKOOL RULZ,” Overbound has now made sure to cater to your audience.  You can thank him later:

#17 A Sonic MMO? WTH?

It’s a reality! Look at the gameplay footage!!! All around the community people have been talking about the concept of a Sonic multiplayer online role playing game. Well did you know one has been online on since november 2008?!?

With 400 registered players, and a fairly active server during the evening (in the uk time zone) it would appear they are doing something right.

With a world that goes from day to night, quests, pvp, fishing, and capture the flag (wtf?!?!) it would appear it’s something worth looking into. Especially since it’s free to play (what fan game isnt though lol).

This video contains a trailer from SAGE 2008 last summer before the game came out and some poorly recorded game footage of me wondering around trying to play while my pc lags at using hypercam XD.

Community Interview: Super Sonic Knockout!

‘Sup, chumps?  You like good fangames?  Me too.  So, today, I managed to get my buddy VexusVersion (the artist formerly known as “Project ShadowBlaze”) to spill some details on the past, present, and future of his Sonic fighting game, “Super Sonic Knockout.”  Amidst the walls of text, you’ll see some awesome new screenshots of the 2009 build of the game, debuting right here on TSS.

Brad Flick: What it do, PSB?

VexusVersion: It’s actually VexusVersion now.  The name “Project ShadowBlaze sucks too much.”  XD

BF: Fair enough, dawg.  So, before we get to what’s new with SSK, there might be some TSS readers who have never heard of it.  Would you mind briefing us on what the project is?

VV: Sure!  “Super Sonic Knockout” is a platform-fighting styled fangame, which has been in development for over 3 years now.  The game is an expansion of my first project, “Sonic Knockout,” which was to get many Sonic characters and have them fight in many places across the Sonic universe. When people think about SSK, the Smash Bros. series is usually the first thing people compare it too, which is funny, because that was never really the priority.

So, I guess that it’s fair to say that SSK is kind of like Smash Bros., but just with Sonic.

BF: Yeah, I’d wager that a Smash Bros. comparison is fair.  I had never heard of “Sonic Knockout” before.

VV: That’s probably a good thing.

BF: Haha!  Anyway, what is the development history of SSK?

VV: Back in 2005, I almost finished my first fangame project, “Sonic Boom.”  I already had an idea for a sequel to continue what I started, only better. On September 23rd, 2005, I officially started programming the new project, titled “Sonic Boom 2.” However, progress stopped for a long time on both titles because of other commitments.

However, in 2006, the first Summer of Sonic event was a few months away and I thought it would be a good idea to try my hand at fangaming once more. I renamed the first game to “Sonic Knockout,” hastily put together all the pieces, rushed the ending, and submitted it on SoS 2006.

BF: S0S 2006 is a blur to me.  I don’t even remember there being fangames there aside from BlazeHedgehog’s Sonic 2K6 2D-adaptation.

VV: Well, it was and since that the original was finished, I began continuing work for the sequel, which I renamed to “Super Sonic Knockout.” I think that the first demo was released in January of 2007.

BF: You gave me such a specific date for “Sonic Boom” and for your current project, you say, “I think?”

VV: *shrugs* XD

BF: Speaking of whens, when and what was the last demo that you released to the public?

VV: The last demo I released? That was way back in March of last year. It was a bug-fix of the last beta that I made and was titled “Beta 3.3.” I released the last beta one month before, and I had quite a list of glitches to fix.  Unfortunately, I made one new glitch that people STILL mention as if they were the first to find it.

BF: Heh, it’s the Internet.  People have a tendency to be complete fuck-ups and not read anything.

VV: I still find it funny, too.

BF: Are you looking to erase that famous glitch in your next demo, along with other developmental strides?

VV: Well, people who have been following the project probably know that I have started a new engine from ground zero, which will eliminate the glitches in the previous builds. I’ve dubbed it the “2009 engine.” The old engine was showing its age. It was built around code that I developed over 2 years ago, so it was unorganized and had a lot of unused stuff. That, and some features had to be cut because they just wouldn’t work.

The new engine solves that though. Basically, everything that I wanted from the beginning is in the new engine, from throws and arial combos to tag-team and multi-stage elements.

BF: That’s the gameplay side of things, but I know that you have a story lined up for this game as well.  Are any story surprises going to surface in the next build?

VV: Surprises?  I look back at my first game and I see the story as a disaster… it didn’t make a lot of sense.  As a result, I’m rewritting the original game’s story and putting that as a secret story in SSK’s “Story Mode.” The improved story should make much more sense than the original did, plus it would help shed some light to story elements in SSK’s story, too.

BF: You ever going to tell me what that damn, red fancharacter is doing there?

VV: You and fancharacters.  I swear.

A video package of Beta 3.3.

BF: Sue me.  I digress.  After you release a demo with the 2009 engine, what are your future plans?

VV: I plan to continue working on SSK and to make sure it gets done and done right, of course. I’m also helping STi work on Sonic Firestorm, working on zone backgrounds. I’m also going to be working on refining my art skills, so I’ve always got something to do.

BF: I know what STi is, but again, some people might not.  What is it?

VV: Sonic Technical Institute is the formerly named “Sonic Cage Dome Technical Institute.”  We work on SSK and Sonic Firestorm, two popular fangames.  If anybody wants to join our team, visit our website and inquire.  Make sure that you have skills!

BF: Mad skills?

VV: Sure.

BF: Well, I’m done here.  Say “hi” to your mother for me, ok?

VV: …ok?  XD

Make Your Own Fangame with a New Build of Sonic Worlds

We have a community project over at Sonic Fan Games HQ that’s not a fangame, but rather, the essential tools for you to create your own.  Yeah, it’s something manageable and not a community game, which never see development past the first stage (if even that far).  Making an engine is one of the most tedious parts of the game creation process, especially with a Sonic game, so Worlds provides a pre-made engine with a basic set of objects and features in order to allow designers to mainly focus on level design. Due the collaborative nature of this project, everyone can freely use this pre-made engine, modify it and submit additions to the official releases to enhance the quality of the engine.  The engine is created in the Multimedia Fusion 2 software.

The engine has been used a countless number of times since its initial release in mid-2007.  It was debuted alongside the release of Sonic Nexus’ second demo at the 2007 Sonic Amateur Games Expo.  The engine has become incredibly popular for fangamers and you can see many YouTube videos whoring it out.  Yeah, the downside to a engine completed for the public is that there’s only about one good project for every dozen or so.  Still, when you get a good project, it is good.

Here is the entire list of improvements, with authors cited, to Sonic Worlds:

Ceiling Landing – If Sonic hits a curved ceiling at a high enough speed, he’ll “land” on it and continue run on it. (Damizean)
Peel Out – This has been set so only sonic can do this action (look in Actions [10] Peel Out) (APPO)
A save point – This saves all the data such as ring count, what shield you had etc.. so that at the beginning of the app if you press continue all of this will be loaded (AZU)
Checkpoints – Not the same as a save point as this only places sonic at the last checkpoint you ran through and doesn’t hold ring count, or what shied you had, just position (APPO)
Protection shield – Sonic can be hit a number of times before loosing his rings (AZU)
Magnetic shield – Rings are attracted to sonic when in frame also sonic does an extra jump if you press jump in the air again (NITEMARE & APPO)
Flame shield – Makes sonic immune to fire and also allows sonic to do a little dash forward if you press jump again while in the air (APPO)
Water shield – Stops sonic from drowning and does that bounce thing if you press jump again in the air (APPO)
Boost pads – gives sonic a boost as he runs over them (APPO)
Water slides – sonic slides down them (APPO)
Drowning – If sonic is underwater for to long the music will change and a warning will flash above sonic if he doesn’t manage to get air, sonic will drown (APPO)
Air bubbles (under water) – Gives sonic air if he’s drowning (APPO)
Water run – the ability to run on water at a fast speed (AZU & APPO)
Breakable Rockswall – When jumped on or rolled into destroy and produce

I hope you fangamers create a nice, solid product out of what is provided for you.  Study how these gimmicks and badniks are programmed so that you can create your own, thus making your game more original!

Click here to get the .mfa file of the latest Sonic Worlds build!

EDIT: Link updated to a site that didn’t exceed bandwidth!

Fanatics: True Chaotix

Don’t you tell me that this isn’t cool!  SFGHQ member, Ironrind, posted this yesterday in the General Fangame Discussion forum and I j’d in my p.  He explains his concept:

This is still an early protype, but the idea is that each act is broken up into three ‘tracks’. Scattered throughout each track will be buttons, switches, doors and various types of gimmicks which link all tracks together. I plan to design most of this game in a team-based fashion simular to Knuckles Chaotix.

Visit the True Chaotix thread.

Fanatics: Game Gear Fangame Action!

January 8th’s 9th’s  featured player is my main man, Amesuki, and his glorious return to the fangaming scene. He has returned to shed some light on new details of his fangame, Sonic Chase, formerly known as Sonic Mayhem 2. Sonic Chase is an 8-bit, Game Gear adventure, something that is rarely seen in the fangaming scene. Did I mention that there’s a demo?

Amesuki is planning on making a staggering 25 zones for Sonic Chase. A number that is down from his originally planned 35, but it’s still a feat nonetheless. He is also trucking along in order to finish this game in time for SAGE 2009. He might be the only person there with a finished game!

Hit the break for a gameplay video of Mechanic Coil, Act 1. Continue reading Fanatics: Game Gear Fangame Action!

Mecha Madness fangame releases new demo

Mecha Madness, a well-off Sonic fangame by Streak Thunderstorm, has a new demo for everybody to play. Check out the bitchin’ gameplay in a video that Streak has provided for TSS above.

Mecha Madness differentiated itself from the pack with its “metal” (like the music) feel, widescreen presentation, emphasis on fighting with a combo system, and stunning backgrounds. This new demo presents improved framerate (for some computers), new visual effects, a new boss AI engine for multiple movement routines, and the release of the full combo level. The full combo level’s release will allow players to try out the extended combo system, making Sonic more destructive than he was in the past demo.

DOWNLOAD THE MECHA MADNESS WINTER 2009 DEMO

Sonic Nexus music contest puts $20 up for grabs

Hunter Bridges, the composer of the Sonic Nexus fan project, is offering $20 worth of digital download points and a free copy of the completed Nexus OST in a contest where users create faithful, MIDI arrangements of the game’s music.  All the contest asks people to do is to create MIDIs of the zone themes (not the Retro Remix tracks) and submit them to Hunter by January 7th, 2009. All the tracks have been put in the on-site music player.  This contest is the second of a series of contests to hit the Sonic scene.  Take advantage while you can!

For full information about the contest, visit the contest page.

Win $20 worth of PSN/XB/Wii Points at SFGHQ

Sonic Fan Games HQ is having its third annual “Sonic Minigame Contest” and is offering a sweet grand prize this time around.  The winner of this year’s contest can choose from either $20 at the PlayStation Network, 1600 Microsoft Points, or 2000 Wii *ahem* I mean…Nintendo Points.  Check out these rules, straight from the source:

  1. Contestant submits one Sonic themed minigame for the contest.
  2. Minigame is defined by a shorter game with simple mechanics, typically inserted into a game to add brief bits of variety.
  3. Sonic examples include snowboarding, the star post bonus stages from Sonic 3&K, or ANY special stage.
  4. Entry may be made using any format as long as it runs on my (or a Judge’s) PC without having to buy anything.
  5. 3 Judges picked from all over the Sonic community.
  6. Open to anyone, but an SFGHQ forum account would be nice.
  7. Prize will be one of the following based on the winner’s choice: $20.00 PSN Card OR 1600 Microsoft Points OR 2000 Wii Points. If winner is unable to use any prize, sorry. If less than 5 entries, the prize will be substituted for something else.
  8. Due to Gmail’s file restrictions, entries will be submitted by yousendit. Optionally AIM file transfer may be used, or just e-mail with a URL. e-mail is ilascottATgmailDOTcom.
  9. Entries due by Noon, December 1, 2008.

That’s right, guys!  Any format!  That means it can be made in flash, Games Factory, Multimedia Fusion, Game Maker, C, anything!  Hop to it, because the contest ends in a month!

Sonic 2 HD Tech Demo Released

If you did not see the desperate, red banner of attention at TSSZ already, Sonic 2 HD, the project spearheaded by members at the Sonic Retro community, have released the first, playable demo of the game. Personally, I cannot play it myself, as the game absolutely munched every last bit of my RAM (and then some), but if you manage to get it running smoothly, I heard it is a nice showcase of their physics engine and the artwork, especially the fluid animations.  I also heard that it is fun distraction at work.  Take your pick.  😉

Head on over to Sonic Retro, download the demo, and comment!

Comments enabled on Nexus site, time attacking continues

I want you to play my Sonic game.  I want you to read the articles on the site.  I want to make sure that you are actually reading the site by commenting on the posts.  So, that is what we have done over at the Sonic Nexus Development Blog. You can freely comment on anything you want over there, so when an article peaks your interest and a question arises, you can now ask it and promptly get an answer.  We will be more than happy to answer it.

Cheating. This guy did it.

Secondly, we are eleven days into the Time Attack Challenge and we currently have 13 entries.  That number is pretty damn good.  So, hey, let’s keep it up!  Record yourself playing the latest demo and upload it to YouTube as a video response to the “hub video” and you could win a $15 gift card.  No joke here, folks.  Spread the word!

Play Sonic Nexus

Yeah, the demo is here. Once we missed SAGE, we took our dear sweet time, but now it is here to make your Labor Day even more awesome. You can play two acts of Sunset Shore and that’s about it. However, the level is sprawling with branching paths, so it warrants a few playthroughs for you to see everything. Nexus truly illustrates what a person can do in the brand new Retro-Sonic interface, so we hope it is a clear too you indication that this summer was a long, time-consuming process on making a brand new iteration of the engine. We also felt that we should take our time in creating our ideal product, as a hasty release definitely will piss people off (see: ProSonic). It was time well spent.

Secondly, you can record your best time with screen capture software and upload it to YouTube for a chance win $15. Yes! All you have to do is post your time attack run as a video response to the contest “hub” video, WHICH IS RIGHT HERE!

Finally, I encourage everybody to read our Nexus website and development blog, as the team and I will be updating it frequently, Smash Bros. Dojo style! You’ll see new screenshots, features, gameplay videos, and updates at least once a week, if not more. New music will be added to the on-site player periodically, as well. The community has always been left in the dark when it comes to Nexus’ development, as I only have been shedding light on details around SAGE time, but now, you can read about it year round. The website is essentially the game’s manual, so it will have all the goods. The first feature on the site is “Meet That Badnik,” where we go in-depth on one of Robotnik’s mechanical mercenaries. You can expect articles of similar quality coming down the pipe.

So, without further adieu…

HEAD ON OVER TO THE NEXUS WEBSITE AND DOWNLOAD THE LABOR DAY DEMO!

SAGE 2008 Interview: Richard Jacques

SAGE director, Shadix, and I got to interview Richard Jacques during SAGE and we had an extensive discussion on his favorites, creative process, and various other thoughts. The interview takes about a minute to get into it, as there’s a strange hiss for a bit, but yes, there is an interview after that noise. Also, whenever a caller-hangs up, there’s a bit of dead air. Technical difficulties, ya know.

DOWNLOAD THE RICHARD JACQUES INTERVIEW NOW!

Also, reminder! At 9 PM EST on Thursday, August 20th (which would be today), Mike Pollock, the voice of Dr. Eggman, will be in the chat channel to field questions and on the air to host a gameshow! It’s a can’t miss event!

SAGE ’08: Sonic – The Fated Hour

Kuzko.  He found his groove.The man on the left is Kuzko. He found his groove in Disney’s The Emperor’s New Groove. In this forgettable animated movie, starring David Spade and John Goodman, Kuzko (Spade) is turned into a llama by some crazy, usurper bitch and Pacha (Goodman) has to save him. They run around and do a whole bunch of wacky shit, avoiding the crazy, usurper bitch as much as possible. They get to Kuzko’s palace to reverse the process, an epic battle ensues, and Kuzko returns to being emperor and the big, stupid, comic relief character teaches some kids how to talk to woodland creatures. What does Kuzko learn? While a llama, he changes his arrogant, selfish ways and embraces the world and the people that inhabit it. His 180-degree turn is truly heartwarming, albeit formulaic and uninteresting.

What does Kuzko have to do with a Sonic fangame? Well, BlazeHedgehog’s Sonic: The Fated Hour has been in development for ten years. Ten. Read up on it, because I’m not lying here. Finally, after years of gameplay changes and data wipes, Fated Hour has finally found its “groove” in the alpha version of Sonic Worlds. Kuzko’s change of heart happens after he is transformed back into a human and Fated Hour is at this point still in the “llama” stage. The project has made a huge change for the better, hopefully leading to greater things, but there is still a long way to go to fully develop its character, like Kuzko.

Fated Hour offers up your standard fare of Genesis-styled gameplay, while expanding upon it to keep it more unique amongst the sea of booths at SAGE this year. These new inclusions are first made apparent by Amy Rose, who offers to explain the controls to the game. Rather than only have the jump button, there are four in use during the game. However, only two are in use during this showcase: jump and jump cancel. Jump cancel will break the ball Sonic normally goes into during a jump and allows him to grind a rail or wall-kick. The multiple button setup sounds good on paper, but trying to wall-jump between two walls with two buttons is cumbersome and mapping Sonic’s wall-stick to the jump button or making it automatic would work better. When the game offers high scores for best times, the time-attackist might have difficulty trying to blow by a section of wall jumping. This button tandem is like an old man, because it threw off my groove. Continue reading SAGE ’08: Sonic – The Fated Hour

SAGE 2008 IS NOW OPEN!

IT’S FINALLY HERE! THE 2008 SONIC AMATEUR GAMES EXPO IS HERE!

We invite any and all Sonic fans to come to the 13th iteration of this long-standing, Sonic community tradition, hosted by one of the community’s original sites, Sonic Fan Games HQ. Play the latest and greatest fan projects all in one place for one glorious week of celebrating not only Sonic the Hedgehog, but our community as well.

Please, hop right into the chat room, look at the schedule, and just read everything there is to read about the show! It’s going to be great!

A word of warning about certain booths: Sunday is usually the slowest day for the booths section, as dead links will be weeded out and some people will be putting up their demos throughout the day, due to time zone differences. Bear with that fact, because it happens every year. Come Monday, everybody should be ready to roll.

Be sure to check here for TSS Staff’s input on all the fangaming action!

With that said…

ENTER SAGE 2008!

SAGE ’08: Previews, Mecha Madness Release, LeeBro

It must be that time of the year, being that the few days before SAGE are always filled with last minute hype videos for just about every project. I am well prepared to wait and let ’em all pile up, rather than flooding this here front page, devoting a single news post to a game’s preview video.

With one entire day before the show (which starts at 12 AM EST, by the way), SFGHQ members Aylingling, Nitemare, and Shadow5561 have released preview videos of their SAGE demos of Sonic Zenith, Super Mario Kingdoms, and Sonic Unleashed Advance, respectively. You can check them all out in the links below:

Check out Sonic Zenith in action!

Check out Super Mario Kingdoms in action!

Check out Sonic Unleashed Advance in action!

In other news, SFGHQ member, Streak Thunderstorm, has jumped the gun and has released the SAGE demo of Mecha Madness early. You can access his SAGE booth, which has the download to the demo, at the following link:

Mecha Madness’ SAGE ’08 Booth

One last thing to be on the look out for is the ever-updating schedule, because we have added two new guests to SAGE: Lee Brotherton and Eric Iwasaki, a developer from Naughty Dog studios (Crash Bandicoot series). Times have yet to be set in stone, but they are confirmed to be guests in the SAGE chat room. Special thanks goes out to SSMB member EXshad for annoying the living shit out of us until we got him into the chat room schedule.

When the show begins, we will have the entire front page staff reviewing all the games with playable builds. You read correctly, I will not be the only one doing SAGE reporting. Please check back throughout the week for more SAGE 2008 coverage (100% free of pretentiousness and the word “first”).

SAGE Booth Registration Extended to August 16th

I pretty much called this one.  Since everybody always works up until the last minute on their games, booths, or both, you can register your booth all the way up to the 16th of August, the last day before the show.  If you have already registered, but did not submit a link to your playable demo, you can re-register to make your booth a “featured booth.”

Remember, only booths with demos will be accepted as “featured booths,” getting bigger advertising than those without.  Another key point to remember is that if you are a banned member at Sonic Fan Games HQ, you are not allowed to enter SAGE under any circumstance.  If a member on your team happens to be a banned member, but you are not, you should probably consider kicking him out if you plan to register to what is to be the biggest SAGE of them all.  Finally, booths that have dead links on day 1 will be removed without notice.  That is all.

SAGE Booth Registration NOW OPEN

From now until August 8th, those interested in participating in SAGE are clear to register their project’s “booth” on the expo’s website.  Before you go all gung-ho about it, be sure to have the required elements:

  • Booth Name
  • List of Member(s) Involved
  • Your project’s website (booth URL)
  • Booth image for use on the expo floor (must be 320×240 and a JPEG, GIF, or PNG under 30 KB in size)

An optional element is to include the download link to the game you will be showcasing.  Seeing how nobody is ever done with their demos by now, it better be an option.

SAGE runs August 17th through the 24th at sagexpo.org

REGISTER YOUR BOOTH HERE!

‘Sonic 360’ Fangame Engine Does Hedgehog Proud

Hey, hands up who’s kinda sick of the way the 3D Sonic games are going? Oh, a lot of you? Yeah, me too. Well, Sonic Unleashed is looking like an interesting direction, and a somewhat return to form in terms of at least not-broken gameplay. We’re looking forward to blasting around dragons, yesiree.

But Sonic Unleashed isn’t out yet. Won’t be out for a bit. So until then, cast your eyes on the video above, which is a fangame engine that first cropped up on Sonic Fan Games HQ some months ago. Creators ‘Mark the Echidna’ and ‘Damizean’ have built a crude, if not absolutely awesome Sonic the Hedgehog 3D game engine (nicknamed ‘Sonic 360’).

It ticks all the right boxes for everything we feel should be present and correct in a Sonic game – open, expansive areas, multiple routes, momentum and physics based gameplay, slow platforming elements to complement the ability to run like a maniac, spin dash, pudgy Sonic (we’ve never seen a cuter, more awesome looking Sonic model), loops, no homing attack, etc. You see? ‘No bottomless pits’ can be done, and this is proof that you can inject some forward thinking in a classic-looking 3D Sonic game – watch that little bugger run up those walls! Awesome.

Best thing? You can actually download this engine. Trufax. You can grab it here, found via the Youtube page.

SEGA, Sonic Team? Take notes. Hire these guys. Whatever. Just get it done. K?

SAGE 2008 Teaser Surfaces on YouTube

The 2008 Sonic Amateur Game Expo, hosted by Sonic Fan Games HQ, is exactly one month away and to celebrate, TSS member Huepow00 is helping build excitement by releasing a teaser video.  The video also serves as a reminder for those who are thinking of entering to start working if you haven’t already, so get going people!  The show can never have enough projects!  Guests (most notably, Ryan Drummond, who is back for his second year) and events are being finalized and added as we speak, so it looks to be another stellar community event.

SAGE 2008 will start August 17th at 12 AM GMT.  Registration for booths will happen August 4th through the 8th.

Check out Huepow’s SAGE 2008 Teaser

Check out the SAGE 2008 Press Site