Sonic + Bad Influence = Awesome

Are you from the UK? Do you remember an old gaming TV show on CITV called Bad Influence? No? Then you were either too young to remember or living under a huge rock. Bad Influence was the coolest TV show of the 90’s, you just couldn’t wait to get home from school and watch it. No-one had the internet to keep up with the latest videogame news, previews, reviews and gameplay video’s – sure, we had our magazines but to see games in action we needed our TV shows.

The show was presented by Andy Crane and Violet Berlin and contained news, previews, reviews(from actual gamers), reports on the latest technology, U.S. coverage, reports from the latest gaming events, cheats from Nam Rood and competitions. It was awesome!

Anyway, what has all this got to do with Sonic you ask? Well, the show covered the early console days back when Sega and Nintendo were rivals. Sonic features a number of times on the show and thanks to amazing James Osborne who has managed to get permission from Patrick Titley at Yorkshire Television(who own the show) the public now have access to a new website and a YouTube channel for the show and it’s episodes.

Sonic 2 proved to be very popular on the show, in Episode 4 their panel gave the game 2 5/5’s in their review. In the same episode Violet show’s a copy of the first Sonic character design sketches handed to her by creator Mr.Kanari. It’s the same sketches we’ve seen around the net for ages now but still cool to see an official copy.

Andy Crane got to visit the Future Entertainment Show where SEGA were in attendance allowing the public to get their hands on both the 16 Bit and 8 Bit versions of Sonic 2 for the first time ever in Episode 3 – Part 1(8:40, Future show begins) Part 2(0:04 Sonic 2 segment begins). You can also see a couple of the first official SEGA Sonic and Tails costumes, Tails suit has bushy eye brows for some reason.

In Episode 8 Violet visit’s SEGA Japan HQ to look at SEGA’s arcade machines and meet’s the head of the Sonic 2 project team who’s name couldn’t be revealed due to security reasons(anyone who recognises him, let me know by PM over at the SSMB). Violet is shown alot of Sonic 2’s design sketches for the Zone’s, 2 of which are shown up close in the episode. A cool Sonic statue/model can also be seen on the desk(Do want very muchly). The SEGA visit starts at 6:14 and the Sonic 2 bit starts at 6:42 just after the funny sleepy SEGA employee at 6:40.

Sonic Spinball got reviewed in Series 2: Episode 9 and given 2 5/5’s.

Sonic & Knuckles got reviewed too and given 2 4/5’s.

So, have any of you seen/remenber this show? Do any of you guys new to the show like it? What are your thoughts on Sonic 2 zone design sketches?
Let us know in the SSMB topic.

Sonic 2’s Day Anniversary

Today is Monday. Unlucky for those of you who’ve just woken up thinking it was Sunday; you’ve just missed work. But 16 years ago, it was Tuesday. The most awesome Tuesday ever for a kid in Britain, or the United States. On November 24th 1992, the sequel to the hottest video game of the time was released – Sonic the Hedgehog 2 on Sega Mega Drive. Such a huge media circus this event was, that a special chartered ‘Sonic 2’ plane carrying nothing but crates of the game landed in London a few days ahead of the launch to masses of TV cameras and news reporters. Those were the days.

So here’s to Sonic the Hedgehog 2. A wonderful collaboration between East (Sonic Team, with Yuji Naka returning after leaving Sega briefly) and West (an enthusiastic American team called Sega Technical Institute that were heavily involved in the coding and designing). For a few moments, Sega wasn’t at each other’s throats internally and teamed up to produce what many fans consider the very best in the entire Sonic the Hedgehog franchise. Can’t exactly disagree. Celebrate by playing the game and seeing if you can nobble that final boss without dying (always keep falling through his nose onto his spiky hands, the f&%$%*). Or even by trying out Sonic Retro’s work in progress, Sonic 2 HD.

Sonic 2 Turns 16 today! – Sonic Retro

BlueTube: Sonic 2 Ending in CG

It’s a very old video, yes we’ve seen it before, but did we have a cool regular feature to show it off with back then? No, we didn’t, and that’s why Chris Phyffer’s Sonic 2 CG Ending is in today’s edition of BlueTube. If you’ve seen it already, watch it again and remind yourself just why it’s so awesome – if you haven’t, watch it anyway because it’s… awesome. Captures a magic that hasn’t really been present in any 3D Sonic cutscene we can think of. Maybe it’s because Sonic doesn’t go into a goofy tirade about ‘smiling’ or ‘power of teamwork. Or generally because his flap doesn’t open at all. Good times.

Sonic 2 Ending – Youtube (thanks Maiku)

Sega interviews Masato Nakamura

Sega of Japan conducted an interview with Masato Nakamura of the Japanese band: ‘Dreams Come True’. Dreams Come True has been a popular band in Japan for some time now, their second album: ‘The Swinging Star’ (released November 14, 1992) was the first to sell over 3 million copies in Japan.

But even before Dreams Come True’s success one company realised the bands potential, and that company was Sega. Sega employed Masato Nakamura to compose the music for ‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ and then again for ‘Sonic the Hedgehog 2’. In return SEGA offered sponsorship to Dreams Come True, and Sega began promoting Sonic through them.

Sega of America have translated that interview, and it gives an interesting insight to the development of the games soundtrack. It’s interesting to note that while Masato was composing music for both Sonic 1 and Sonic 2, he was also recording the Dreams Come True albums: ‘Million Kisses’ and ‘The swinging Star’, which would explain why certain songs from each album were inspired by themes from the game. For instance the song ‘Sweet Sweet Sweet’ from the album ‘The Swinging Star’ is a lyrical interpretation of the ending theme from Sonic 2.

The interview is as follows: Continue reading Sega interviews Masato Nakamura

Yuji Naka talks about Hidden Palace

The focus of this articles is on the secretes revealed about Hidden Palace, if you wish to read the full interview then please use the links provided in the ‘media links’ section of Sonic News.

On September 30th 2005 Heidi Kemps of the games site ‘Gamespy’ conducted an interview with Yuji Naka.

The interview’s true purpose was to discuss the many Sonic games that Yuji Naka and Sonic Team were currently working on, and to give Yuji the chance to have his say on the next generation of videogames consoles. The interview, however, soon lost its original focus, the curiosity of Heidi lead to some interesting revelations on the subject of the original Sonic Mega drive games, particularly the Hidden Palace level of the Sonic 2 Beta. Continue reading Yuji Naka talks about Hidden Palace

Sonic 2 Remix Album Released

The Sonic 2 Remix Project recently released their Sonic the Hedgehog 2 remix album, “Hedgehog Heaven”. The group, made up of members of remix site Overclocked ReMix, worked on the album for over a year and a half.

The final album comprises 21 tracks from 18 artists coming to just over 75 minutes. It contains remixes of every piece of music in Sonic 2. The album is available to download for free in MP3 format from the Sonic 2 Remix Project site, but they ask that you use BitTorrent instead to save OCReMix’s bandwidth.

Movies, Music and… erm, Navigation Bars

Right, I did a few things today, let’s try to remember what the heck I added… New movies have been added to the Movies Zone – they are the Sonic & Tails and Sonic Ride movies from Sonic Jam and the entire Director’s Commentary from Sonic Adventure DX director Takashi Iizuka. Split into 4 parts, mind. The Music Zone has had a brush up, with previously submitted MIDIs and a slightly new format now added to Sonic 1, Sonic 2 on both Mega Drive and Master SystemSonic 3 and Sonic & Knuckles.

Also, the first step into listening to people’s suggestions as to improving this site navigation wise, I’m changing the navigation bar to it’s old format. This is the format where everything we had to offer on The Sonic Stadium would appear as a seperate link in a simple menu. Many people felt this was the best navigation bar and made the TSS design previous to this one the best ever made. So who am I to argue with that eh? Won’t be on every page for a while though, so just be patient. Also added three links just for the hell of it – the Donation page returns, as does the Banner Service, as mentioned in the last update. Finally, since it’s been ages since there’s been any word of it, and people are starting to ask the questions again, The Sonic Smash Cards information page returns.

Sonic Mega Collection Details

This has prolly been mentioned in every other website and board under the sun, but… more info on Sonic Mega Collection!

The game’ll come with:

  • Sonic 1
  • Sonic 2
  • Sonic 3
  • Sonic & Knuckles
  • Sonic 3D Flickies Island
  • Sonic Spinball
  • Mean Bean Machine

+ Two unlockable games – Flicky and Ristar. Yes, Ristar! Continue reading Sonic Mega Collection Details

New Game Genie Discovery – The Key to Wood Zone?

The Sonic Stadium has uncovered an alternative version of Emerald Hill Zone without the use of ROM hacking tools – using a Game Genie and a retail copy of Sonic 2 plugged into a Mega Drive.

The ‘Emerald Hill Zone’ discovered is playable with different textures and Wood Zone style graphics. This may not look like much, but this can be the start of something special. This code was provided by fellow Sonic Stadium-ist and affiliate, Roareye.

How do you get to it? Simple. You need a Mega Drive of course (this code has not been tested on ROMs and Emulators, however since it’s the same game, it will probably work anyway), Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and a Game Genie, of all things. Using the Game Genie, Roareye was able to pretty much ‘hack’ into either a Beta Version of Emerald Hill (which may seem more probable) or, the beginnings of hot-on-the-heels access to Wood Zone. Roareye simply got there by accident, modifying the Game Genie Code to get to the Hidden Palace Zone. Here’s the code to get to Hidden Palace: Continue reading New Game Genie Discovery – The Key to Wood Zone?

Official Sonic Mega Collection List

This is the official list from Sonic Team’s Mega Collection site, the compilation game will include Sonic 1-3, Sonic and Knuckles, Sonic 3D Blast, Sonic Spinball, and Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine. The list from before was either fake or another mistake. Click the link below for official screens.

Source: Sonic Team’s Sonic Mega Collection Site

Exclusive: Possible Remnants of Sonic 2 Beta Found in Sonic 2 Cart Via Game Genie

We all know about the Sonic 2 Beta, the pre-release version of the 1992 classic that never saw public release, that contains a whole bunch of cancelled or prototype elements and stages. But what if there were some remnants of that prototype within the cartridge that ended up on store shelves? Well, we did some digging using Game Genie codes and found some interesting things… Continue reading Exclusive: Possible Remnants of Sonic 2 Beta Found in Sonic 2 Cart Via Game Genie

Watch Sonic 2 Beta – Nick Arcade TV Clips Found

Who wants to know what Sonic 2 used to look like before it came out on store shelves? I know I certainly do! Well, one way is to read our review of the Sonic 2 Beta, but another way is by watching these cool videos from Nickelodeon TV in the 1990s, where kids were tasked with playing a beta version of Sonic 2 long before the game was finished. Continue reading Watch Sonic 2 Beta – Nick Arcade TV Clips Found

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 BETA – Playing the Legend

Sonic 2 Beta. The image that sparked the biggest conspiracy in the Sonic community was a picture of a level select screen that no-one had seen before, found in the Official Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Guidebook. The booklet featured whole black and white maps to all the levels to the Mega Drive classic and included every cheat possible… Of course, there was one little thing that no-one could quite figure out. Continue reading Sonic the Hedgehog 2 BETA – Playing the Legend

Games Update: Classic Cheat Codes for Your Mega Drive Games

Remember the good old days, when you could use a third party cheat cartridge to expand the limits of what you could do in your favourite Mega Drive games? We do! Which is why we’ve updated the Games Back Catalogue on The Sonic Stadium with a range of codes that you can use on Game Genie carts to play around with some classic Sonic titles.
Continue reading Games Update: Classic Cheat Codes for Your Mega Drive Games

Sonic 2 Gets A Cheeky PC Port in Japan

Remember when Sega of America was producing a Mega Drive classics pack for the Dreamcast? Well, it seems like Sega Japan is also getting in on the compilation action – only on PC. Whereas a single Sega Smash Pack exists in the US right now, in Japan there are three such bundles for Windows computers, one of which includes Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Continue reading Sonic 2 Gets A Cheeky PC Port in Japan

TSS REVIEW: Sonic the Hedgehog 2

Unlike most sequels, the Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is actually BETTER than its predecessor. Featuring a new character, Miles ‘Tails’ Prower, and a new two player mode, there’s a lot to keep you occupied. Robotnik starts terrorizing the planet again by capturing all of Sonic’s furry friends and turning them into robots. But now he also has something more sinister in mind. Continue reading TSS REVIEW: Sonic the Hedgehog 2

TSS REVIEW: Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (8-Bit)

The Master System and Game Gear counterparts of Sonic 2 sees you play as Sonic and Sonic alone. You must rescue Miles ‘Tails’ Prower from the vile clutches of Burger Boy (ahem, I mean Dr. Robotnik ^_^) as he plans to rule all of the planet. Luckily for Sonic, ‘Eggman’ appears to have lost the Chaos Emeralds. Continue reading TSS REVIEW: Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (8-Bit)