Sonic’s history is a tale of high and lows, twists and turns, and lots of mysteries. Sonic’s Classic era particularly has been a constant gold mine of information and surprising stories. For example, SEGA Technical Institute once pitched a SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive spin-off game called “Treasure Tails”.
Hang onto your blast processing chips! In the interest of game development preservation, Jon Burton, founder of Traveller’s Tales and GameHut has released some demo tracks for Sonic 3D Blast for the SEGA Mega Drive, composed by Jun Senoue way back in the early 90’s. It’s music that’s been hidden from us for decades, and now we have access to it!
The wait is finally over! The highly anticipated mini console is now available for purchase in the North American region. Here’s some information on where you can get your hands on it, and what games are inside!
Today marks 30 years since the SEGA Genesis (known as the SEGA Mega Drive elsewhere, the name was changed in North America due to trademark issues) made its debut!
This name would turn out to be quite fitting, as the SEGA Genesis became the system that would not only make SEGA and many of its franchises household names on the continent, it would also serve as the birth place for the company’s most successful character: a blue hedgehog named Sonic!
It seems like there has been no end to what the SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive community has been able to accomplish over the last decade. From impressive flash cartridges to wireless controllers, from homebrew software to component cables, to even a brand new FPGA-powered high definition clone console, modern Genesis gamers now have access to tech they could have only dreamed of a decade ago. This latest piece of technology from Terraonion is easily the most impressive thing to come out yet: the MegaSD. Continue reading New MegaSD peripheral lets you play SEGA CD games without the CD (for a price)
Last year, Nintendo has announced that they will be closing the doors of the Wii Shop Channel for the original Wii indefinitely on January 30, 2019. The change comes as the company has moved on to online networks for the 3DS and Switch, and so, after more than twelve years of activity, the Wii Shop Channel and all its services (Wii Virtual Console, WiiWare, and Wii System Transfer Tool) will go offline at the cut-off date early next year.
A new Sonic game has been revealed! Well, not exactly new, but still!
Joining fellow Genesis favourites Super Hang-On and Space Harrier in Japan, the one, the only, and the original Sonic the Hedgehog is coming to its native Nintendo 3DS eShop on May 15th of this year!
To be released as a 3D Classic, Sonic 3DS features the ability to play the original game with three dimensional depth, customizable controls, and the ability to toggle between the Japanese and “Overseas” versions, and Mega Drive 1 and 2 sound formats, as reported on Sonic Retro. Like the upcoming Taxman/Stealth remastered iOS version, players are also given the option to play the game with or without the Spin Dash.
A price is set for 600¥, and there is no confirmation of a Western release at this time.
Special thanks to Wraith on the SSMB for the tip!
Sonic the Hedgehog co-creator Hirokazu Yasuhara has officially joined the ranks of Nintendo, Sega’s old business rival in the 90’s, settling into NoA’s Nintendo Software Technology branch. While both Nintendo and Yasuhara have indeed confirmed the move, no details as to what is Yasuhara’s new role have been revealed yet.
To Sonic and Sega fans, Yasuhara is best recognized for creating Sonic the Hedgehog alongside Yuji Naka and Naoto Ōshima, working within SEGA as director, designer, and game planner for the Genesis and Saturn entries of the series. While he is known for his work from Sonic 1 through Sonic R, his portfolio also extends to other popular games such as Naughty Dog’s Jak and Daxter and Uncharted franchises, as well as the Pacman 30th Anniversary arcade game for Namco-Bandai.
Twenty years ago, on August 14th, 1989, SEGA’s most successful console debuted in North America to challenge Nintendo for dominance in the fourth-generation of console gaming. Without the console’s success, we wouldn’t be here right now talking about motherfuckin’ blue hedgehogs.
While the SEGA Master System was superior to the Nintendo Entertainment System with better graphics and sound, the console failed to establish a library of games to rival the NES’ stellar collection in anywhere but Europe. So, in 1989, two years before the launch of the Super Nintendo, SEGA debuted the Genesis with mild success. Shipping only 400,000 units in its first year, SoA CEO Michael Katz introduced his two part solution to boost sales. The famous “Genesis Does What Nintendon’t” slogan and, my personal favorite, the use of celebrities in games, like Arnold Palmer Golf and Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker.
It wasn’t until 1991 when Sonic the Hedgehog changed the gaming landscape forever. Originally, the awful Altered Beast was the pack-in game with the console, but a bold move by SEGA CEO Hayao Nakayama put Sonic the Hedgehog in the box instead. With critics claiming that the ‘hog was starring in the best game made thus far, people waiting for the Super Nintendo were convinced and bought a Genesis. Genesis took a 55% market share over Nintendo soon after.
However, the success was short lived as SEGA drove their biggest success into the ground with the SEGA CD and 32X add-ons. These disasters failed to establish a solid library of games and were too expensive. With five consoles actively on the market with the Saturn’s launch (Game Gear, Genesis, Saturn, Pico, and the Master System in South America), SEGA discontinued the production of the Genesis. With the Genesis outselling the Saturn in North America, the results were disastrous as Nintendo took total control of the 16-bit generation. The rest is history and now we have Mario and Sonic running triatholons together.
My older brother got the Genesis with Sonic the Hedgehog for his birthday. I was only three years old when this happened, so my first Genesis memory that I can recall is playing Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and getting trapped in Casino Night Zone. Those were some fun times.
If you have any Genesis/16-bit Sonic memories of your own, please share them with us in the comment box below to celebrate the Genesis’ 20th birthday.