Super Bunnyhop looks at the first level of every main Sonic game

The YouTube channel Super Bunnyhop has uploaded a 39-minute look at the first level of every main Sonic game. Hit the jump to see it, and also to get a full list of the games covered. Continue reading Super Bunnyhop looks at the first level of every main Sonic game

The8BitDrummer Played an Amazing Cover of the Entire Sonic 3 & Knuckles OST in One Take!

8bitdrummer_s3k
The Man. The Myth. The Legend. & Knuckles.

Sonic 3 & Knuckles, compared to the original Sonic the Hedgehog and its sequel, had an entire team of artists behind the game’s musical score, compared to the talents of Masato Nakamura working on the first two games in the series solo. Spearheaded by the late Michael Jackson, the King of Pop himself, and Brad Buxer, the result was that nine different composers had worked on the soundtrack for the 1994 SEGA Genesis classic, leading to an incredibly cinematic and highly varied OST that still resonates with fans to this day.

One such fan, Jerod “The8BitDrummer” C., hosts a number of live drumming streams on Twitch, and sometimes in sessions where he would tackle not just given song requests, but entire scores from a video game on his drum set. Recently, he did an absolutely phenomenal job of covering the entirety of the Sonic 3 & Knuckles soundtrack from start to finish, thus adding a new layer of depth (and percussion!) to a soundtrack that folks can learn to appreciate all over again.

As for my other personal recommendations, you should definitely check out The8BitDrummer’s awesome drum covers for the soundtracks of Undertale, Dust: An Elysian Tail, and Shovel Knight.

Be sure to subscribe to him on YouTube and Twitch, and to follow him on Twitter!

Sonic 3 Composers: Michael Jackson’s Music is in the Game

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A new interview with credited musicians of Sonic 3 have added more weight to the age-old theory that the late pop star, Michael Jackson, was deeply involved with the Mega Drive classic’s soundtrack – and that his work was in fact left on the cartridge, not removed.

“Oh, it did get in the game. The stuff we handed in, the stuff we did, made it. To. The game,” said Sonic 3 composer Doug Grigsby III, who stated that the reason Jackson removed his name from the game’s credits was due to the artist not being satisfied with the audio capabilities of the Mega Drive console.

“Michael wanted his name taken off the credits if they couldn’t get it to sound better,” fellow composer Brad Buxer claimed. The long-form interview piece, found on the Huffington Post, adds that the music tracks ‘started out sounding like typical Jackson songs’ before Grigsby added that “it all had to be squashed down for the game.”

Former SEGA executive Roger Hector admits that Michael Jackson worked on the Sonic 3 soundtrack, however he claims that the pop star’s music was removed – and the deal terminated – due to Jackson’s high-profile molestation allegations that surfaced during the game’s development. “We had to replace it all,” he said, with Howard Drossin brought in to do the job of composing a new soundtrack.

Only problem is, that didn’t really happen, according to Drossin. “There was a lot of music already plugged into [the game],” he said, with the article adding that Drossin ‘didn’t change much… and certainly didn’t rewrite the whole soundtrack before handing it off to Sega for final processing.’

Buxer was the first to speak openly about Jackson’s work in a 2009 interview with a French Michael Jackson tribute fanzine. SEGA has always steadfastly denied Jackson’s involvement, and true to form commented on the story with, “[We’re] not in the position to respond… we have nothing to comment on the case.”

We really recommend reading the whole feature on Huffington Post, as it covers a lot of extra detail on Michael Jackson’s work attitude when composing for the game, as well as a bunch of other tidbits.

Aliens: Colonial Marines has a Sonic 3 Reference

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvCxg-CyXAE

Aliens: Colonial Marines was released last week and… it’s pretty bad. No really, it’s bad, and not in the good ‘Who’s bad!?’ kind of way.

Anyway, it’s also a game that’s full of hidden Easter Eggs, including a reference to the Special Stages from Sonic 3 and Sonic & Knuckles. During chapter 6 ‘For Bella’ you enter a large building and have to run past a room with a sentry gun on the left hand side. If you then enter this room and disable the turret, you can now safely check out the lockers. Inside one of the lockers are 3 small balls, one red, one blue and one textured exactly like ground you run on during these stages.

Nothing happens once you find this, just a small hidden extra added to the game. Please, do not buy this game just to see this for yourself, it really isn’t that good.

Thanks to… I can’t believe I’m typing this… Barack Obama on SSMB for bringing this to my attention.

Mash-Up Monday: Rolling in the Depths of Hydrocity

You’ve been tuning in to either the radio, or maybe a few albums lying around the house. A person seated next to you might have her music on full volume from their iPods. There’s no denying that Adele is definitely one of the most popular artists in recent history, and it shows: it is almost foolhardy to escape or even drown out her music these days.

Get it? Drown out?

No?

Well, you should be able to get it now, because Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” collides with Acts 1 and 2 of Hydrocity Zone, the famous and fan-favourite water level from Sonic 3 & Knuckles, for this week’s Mash-Up Monday!

Here’s Act 1! Take the water slide down to Act 2 after the jump!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C89aJND2QsI

Continue reading Mash-Up Monday: Rolling in the Depths of Hydrocity

Sound Test Saturday: A Funky Premiere of Green Symphonies!

Hello, readers! I hope you’ve all had a wonderful week through April’s first seven days. If not, then hopefully this is the sort of that is sure to boost your spirits!

Ladies and gentlehogs, you are now reading the premiere article of an all new weekly column: Sound Test Saturday! Just like Mash-Up Mondays feature music mash-ups between Sonic and any other party, Sound Test Saturdays will highlight music – original compositions, covers, or remixes – made by the Sonic community. That’s right! Sound Test Saturdays will concentrate on music created by you!

So, what better way to start things off than to feature one of each from the get-go?

Let’s kick things off with Badnik Factory Zone, composed by TheSymphonicGames!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7BoJnaSOIis

Check out Badnik Factory Zone Act 2, a groovy drum cover of HydroCity Zone Act 2, and a wonderful reinterpretation of Frog Forest after the jump!

Continue reading Sound Test Saturday: A Funky Premiere of Green Symphonies!

Sonic Stars in New Progressive Insurance Ad

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfUsKWyRRm0

Take note, guys, as this’ll probably be in some Summer of Sonic trivia one day: Sonic’s insurance rate with Progressive is $380. Definitely the most surprising crossover I’ve seen Sonic involved in in years!

Source: SEGAbits

Update: Progressive’s people have got in touch to say they’ve got a page dedicated to Sonic. If you really need a transcript of the ad above, you know where to go.

Sonic 3 MegaKONATA Mix & Sonic Doesn’t Need A Story

Ever wondered what Sonic 3 mashed with one of Lucky Star’s most annoying yet funny character would sound like? Akhts decided to try it out in the below video.
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6KZ8iY4XjdM&feature=sub[/youtube]

Direct link
Thanks to Pearl at the SSMB for the heads up.

If that wasn’t enough Alex Day has expressed his thoughts about modern Sonic games in song which even the most hardcore Sonic fans should get a laugh out of.

Direct link

Thanks to Indigo Dude at the SSMB for the heads up.

SEGA blogs take the strain of heavy traffic on Hedgehog Day

The fans have flocked in their hundreds to the SEGA blog giveaway, with the lucky 333rd comment winning themselves a snazzy signed copy of Sonic 3. In fact they were so impressed with the traffic, that the competition was up’ed from every 50th entry winning a prize up to the 500th post to the 2500th!!!  RubyEclipse was impressed; “You guys literally broke our blogs for a few minutes from sheer traffic!”

The entries still need to be straightened out, with any spam posts getting deleted, so on Thursday the finalised list of winners will be announced – so if you’ve got a comment close to those limits, you will have to hold your breath until tomorrow to find out if you have nabbed some goodies!

I wonder though…with all this hype about this game possibly being titled Sonic 4…is it a coincidence they’re giving away copies of 3?

Stay tuned tomorrow for what will hopefully be a massive day of info on Needlemaus!

Confirmed: Michael Jackson Did Work On Sonic 3 Soundtrack

sonic_jacksonOne of the last remaining disputes hanging around the Sonic community has been the ‘did he, didn’t he’ surrounding Michael Jackson’s supposed involvement in Sonic 3’s soundtrack. Turns out such rumours have been well and truly confirmed, as a French MJ tribute magazine, Black and White, spoke to fellow composer Brad Buxer about his involvement in the game.

I’ve never played the game so I do not know what tracks on which Michael and I have worked the developers have kept, but we did compose music for the game. Michael called me at the time for help on this project, and that’s what I did.

Brad Buxer is a well known collaborator with Jackson on several projects, and his appearance in Sonic 3’s credits suggested that perhaps the King of Pop had a hand in music creation as well. But Jackson’s name does not appear in the credits, perhaps using an alias or even removing himself from public knowledge at all. Buxer explains:

If he is not credited for composing the music, it’s because he was not happy with the result sound coming out of the console. At the time, game consoles did not allow an optimal sound reproduction, and Michael found it frustrating. He did not want to be associated with a product that devalued his music…

It was also revealed that the links between the Sonic 3 Credits theme and Jackson hit Stranger In Moscow do share the same beat because the former was used as the base for the latter.

Several months after Michael Jackson’s untimely passing, his deep roots with the SEGA of the 1990s has been truly revealed, allowing us to respect a great artist’s work even more. Thanks to Sonic Retro for the posting of this news, and to Silva Rymes for sending us a tip (which we noticed after we posted this – sorry!).

Update: ArchAngelUK has informed us that there is specific mention of Michael Jackson on Sega Mega Drive Ultimate Collection on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, under the Sonic 3 ‘Museum’ section.

Upon inspection, the March 2009 compilation confirms nothing of Jackson’s actual contribution, only that he “was originally going to be” composing. In fact, the exact wording of the phrase implies an outright denial of Jackson’s eventual involvement. Buxer’s comments in the Black & White magazine almost negate the Sega Mega Drive Ultimate Collection reference entirely by confirming Jackson was in fact involved after all.

“Hydrocity’s Nightclub” All Kinds of Hip

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CoxLxTlD5rw[/youtube]

The latest Sonic remix to hit OCRemix, the popular video game music site, is a funky remix of Hydrocity Zone by Dr. Manhattan.  “Down to Hydrocity’s Nightclub” takes the already catchy tune of Sonic 3’s high-speed water level and throws in some killer organ licks, screaming brass, drum fills, and some dirty bass grooves.  This remix is one that you want in your playlist.

Download “Down to Hydrocity’s Nightclub” at OCRemix.

Smooth Criminal + Ice Cap = ‘Bad’ Remix

And by ‘Bad’ we mean good (and Michael Jackson’s album of course). The link between Sonic 3 and Michael Jackson (R.I.P) has been documented many times in the community, so it’s always nice to see some fans make use of that and try to merge the two together. This recent remix, by Yuzoboy, mashes up MJ’s Smooth Criminal with Sonic 3’s Ice Cap Zone (Acts 1 and 2) together to make an awesome whole. Apparently Yuzoboy’s remix is a new take on an already-existing Smooth Criminal/Ice Cap mashup by MixerProductions too. Fantastic mixing here.

Note the video includes a sneaky bit of Sonic MegaMix as well. Very nice. And there’s more where that came from if you click here too. Thanks to Rio for the spot!

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FdpaR4cgP3U[/youtube]

S3&K Boss Theme – Fatty Remix

tweakertantrum

This video could possibly be the funniest thing that I have ever seen.  Watch as this kid shakes, grooves, and mugs the camera to the Sonic 3 & Knuckles boss music.  And no, it’s not actually Tweaker, but it makes it all the funnier that the site says it.  Damnit, why is this video so awesome?!

CLICK TO WATCH.

Sonic 3 Hits Xbox Live Arcade

xblasonic3
SEGA have released Mega Drive classic Sonic 3 among a few other titles onto Xbox Live Arcade today as part of its SEGA Vintage Collection. Developed by Backbone Entertainment the port supports online multiplayer in Competition Mode aswell as online leaderboards and for anyone wondering, they have kept Competition Mode’s Time Attack in there. The download weighs in at 19.23 MB in size and costs just 400 MS Points. The game also of course has 12 new Achievements for you to rack up and show off. Sonic & Knuckles will be released later this month and will incorporate the lock-on feature with Sonic 2 and 3 but will it lock-on with Sonic 1 for the Blue Sphere game? We’ll have to find out.

You can download Sonic 3 from Xbox.com or from your Xbox 360.

Sonic 3 and Sonic & Knuckles XBLA Coming This Summer

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SEGA UK have today confirmed SEGA Vintage Collection 2 for Xbox Live Arcade. Among the games to be released in the new collection are Sonic The Hedgehog 3 and Sonic & Knuckles. Sonic 3 has been known about for a while after the achievements were released to the net a few weeks back which you can check out in our article here.

Sonic & Knuckles will also include the lock-on feature we informed you about 2 weeks ago if you have Sonic 3 and Sonic 2, a feature missing from the recent SEGA Mega Drive Ultimate Collection version.

Other games to be released in this collection are –
Gunstar Heroes(XBLA, PSN)
Comix Zone(XBLA)
Shinobi (Arcade) (XBLA)
Phantasy Star II (XBLA)
Altered Beast (XBLA)

New features in the games will include:
Re-worked for High-Definition
Online Leaderboards
Network Play (Excludes Phantasy Star II, Shinobi, Comix Zone)

All of the games are currently planned to be released summer 2009 except for Sonic & Knuckles which will be released late summer 2009. No news on the collection being released outside of the UK yet but we will update you when we hear news.

UPDATE:
SEGA Of America have confirmed in their blog that the games will be released in the U.S. too.

Also, SEGA have posted a blog entry about this news on their European blog confirming their release in the whole of Europe.

Sonic & Knuckles for XBLA To Feature Lock-On Ability

Old technology becomes new as ‘lock-on technology’ has been reported to feature on the Xbox Live Arcade version of Sonic & Knuckles, according to Netherlands Sega Online Website which holds pictures of the feature in action. This would allow you to couple Sonic & Knuckles with any of the previous Sonic XBLA titles to unlock their ‘& Knuckles’ feature. The lock-on feature was missing from the recently released Sega Mega Drive Ultimate Collection.

Sega developed lock-on technology for the original Mega Drive/Genesis cartridge as a way to basically split the game in half to release two Sonic games in 1994. Combining Sonic & Knuckles with Sonic 3 created ‘Sonic 3 & Knuckles’, basically the complete version of Sonic 3.

Sega were also able to make Sonic & Knuckles work retroactively with Sonic 2 placing Knuckles as the sole playable character, something that was never though of on Sonic 2’s release in 1992. Finally coupling Sonic & Knuckles with the original Sonic game gave you access to a vast number of ‘Collect The Blue Spheres’ special zone

No news is available regarding a release date for either Sonic 3 or Sonic & Knuckles on XBLA at this time

Thanks to TSSZ

Sonic 3 for XBLA Confirmed, Achievements Revealed

Details of Achievements for the Xbox Live Arcade version for Sonic The Hedgehog 3 have been released today along with a number of other classic Sega games. All of the games have been found most recently found on the Sega Mega Drive Ultimate Collection but will be available individually should you not want to pick up a collection with 50+ mostly great other games.

The Achievements for Sonic 3 are as follows:

sonic3achive

There’s no news on a price or release date yet or even if some technical trickery will allow for an assumed release of Sonic & Knuckles to connect with this game and create Sonic 3 & Knuckles, a feature lacking in the Ultimate Collection.

Other games coming soon to XBLA are Altered Beast, Comix Zone, Phantasy Star II and Shinobi, the achievements for which you can find on the links provided.

Sources: TSSZ & Joystick

Fanatics: Death Egg & Sunset Park Memories

January 6th belongs to Hazard the Porgoyle (What in the blue hell is a “porgoyle?” Fan characters just get weirder and weirder.), because he absolutely dominates at Sonic art. The two pieces that I’d like to display here are absolute gems, giving moments in Sonic history a new perspective, literally. The top one at right here is a rendition of a boss in Death Egg, act 2. You all recall this encounter, I’m sure. Use gravity to make the spike tanks hit the giant egg ball, rinse repeat, get owned by the giant Egg Mech. It’s a wonderfully drawn scene from the game that someone could mistake for an HD remake of Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Hazard comments:

Sonic doesn’t seem too concerned about Eggman’s new devious machine as he checks his glove cuff. Well, he’s done this stuff enough, right?

The second piece follows a similar style, but of a bit more esoteric moment. Sure, most people can recall that boss fight from Death Egg, but how many of your friends owned Game Gears and experienced Sonic: Triple Trouble? I know that most of us at TSS and SSMB have. The photo at right is a scene from Sunset Park’s famous train boss. I can hear the song now…

Check out Hazard’s DeviantArt profile for awesome renditions of moments from Sonic games, including boss fights from the Adventure and Advance series!

SEGA Mega Drive Ultimate Collection for 360/PS3 Announced

Because you simply cannot own enough copies of Sonic the Hedgehog on the Mega Drive, SEGA have announced today they are developing the SEGA Mega Drive Ultimate Collection for the XBox 360 and PS3 consoles. Looks like our original rumour story wasn’t that far off the mark.

As well as being the first opportunity for players to have a go on Sonic 3, Sonic & Knuckles and Sonic 3D Blast on current generation consoles, this compilation will also include other kick-arse titles from SEGA’s extensive 16-bit catalogue, including Streets of Rage 1, 2 & 3, Alien Storm, Golden Axe 1, 2 & 3, Ristar and Ecco the Dolphin. Not only that, there will be a whole host of unlockable 8-bit Master System titles as bonus material too!

Some fans will be a bit miffed that they have already shelled-out a few hundred Microsoft points for these games already, but I think that will probably be drowned out by the fact there are well over 40 titles to play; that’s a lot of gaming for your pennies! Plus, there will also be a set of achievements for XBox owners to collect – always another incentive to play through those classics once more!

The collection is due out early 2009, check out the Official Website for more info.

Me? I’m thrilled they’re putting Dynamite Headdy on there! YEEEEAAS!!!

1up Reviews Sonic 3 and Sonic 3D Blast on VC…

Gaming website 1up.com has caught up on a large backlog of Virtual Console reviews. Among these are reviews for Sonic 3D Blast and Sonic the Hedgehog 3. As for 3D Blast, we could all care less, but Sonic 3 gets…

… A THUMBS DOWN?!

Citing “messy level designs”, “dull and forgettable enemies”, and a “tepid soundtrack”, among other complaints, the blasphemous esteemed writers at 1up apparently don’t feel that the Genesis/Mega Drive classic is worth the Wii Points.

Now, I’m not advocating a mass protest… yet… but I think 1up should be made aware of exactly what we think of this game that they describe as “decent”. To arms! To arms!

Sonic 3 coming to Virtual Console

Thanks to Australia’s Office of Film of Classification, we can now confirm that Sonic the Hedgehog 3 is hitting the Wii’ Virtual Console service sometime in the near future.

The game has been rated G (likely E in the US), and will be sold for 800 Wii points ($8).

Please check out the source for the rest of the upcoming Genesis/Mega Drive titles revealed by the OFC.

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

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

TSS REVIEW: Sonic 3 & Knuckles

When Sonic 3 and Sonic & Knuckles are locked together, they produce one of the greatest Sonic the Hedgehog games ever made. This page largely focuses on the changes between playing the games together compared to playing them individually.

Our extensive guide starts off with when Sonic and Tails defeat Eggman at Launch Base. You don’t fight Big Arms from Sonic 3 in this extended version, which is nice. You are then moved on to S&K’s Mushroom Hill Zone, but SEGA have added an extra scene to the beginning of it. It features Knuckles being very sneaky and hiding something. Continue reading TSS REVIEW: Sonic 3 & Knuckles

TSS REVIEW: Sonic 3

A new character, Knuckles the Echidna, is the guardian of a very special Emerald. This is called the Master Emerald, and it is even more precious and powerful than all of the seven Chaos Emeralds. The Master Emerald is situated on the Floating Island, and Knuckles has sworn to protect it – no matter what. Continue reading TSS REVIEW: Sonic 3