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Sonic 2 Development Lore

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Chimes, Apr 5, 2023.

Is it Miles or Tails?

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  1. Willie

    Willie

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    Game Facts Special was created by @Overbound and I'm the person who upscaled, then colored the concept art for the video. So at least two people who worked on the video have been part of Sonic Retro's community for over thirteen years.

    We put enormous effort into researching our videos for Game Facts Special to reduce the likelihood of us getting facts wrong. We care a lot about accuracy, but there are instances where speculation is necessary when talking about unused game content.
     
  2. Forte

    Forte

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    I meant that waiting for Retro as a joke, sorry if it came out offensive in any way.
     
  3. RDNexus

    RDNexus

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    @Willie you planning to use the HQ arts of the island to recolor?
    I'd surely love to gather them for my personal art collection xD
     
  4. saxman

    saxman

    Oldbie Tech Member
    Way to go, Saxman!

    Hope my comment wasn't received as offensive. :shobon: I said that with the general population of content creators in mind, not Game Facts specifically. I have no opinion one way or the other, having no familiarity with it.
     
  5. Willie

    Willie

    Each day the world turns Laugh 'til it all burns Member
    Oh, I didn't mean to come across as defensive to your joke. My intent was to provide context on which people worked on that video. Nobody's rhetoric in this thread has offended me in any capacity.

    I'm slightly confused by your question. Could you elaborate? I mainly just upscaled, then colored them for the video. While I'm not a fan of Ai technology, I did find Adobe Photoshop's Preserve Details 2.0 resample option very useful for when I upscaled the image size of the islands. The island that features Chemical Plant Zone took me over ten hours to clean up and color because the original concept art was in horrendous image quality. I don't have any additional plans for the art, but in the meantime, I posted a video to my YouTube channel showcasing how the islands looked when I was finished editing them. I initially sent a similiar video to @Overbound over a week before the video was finished, but I decided to edit that video and make it public since there is a lot of interest in the island art. If anyone here has additional questions about my involvement in the video or what I did to the island art, feel free to ask. I don't view myself as an expert on Sonic 2's game development lore, but I tried my best to represent the different islands accurately. Most of the colors used for the coloring came from Sonic 2's color pallet. The pyramid's color came from Sandaopolis Zone and some colors from Green Hill Zone were used for a couple of islands.



    Eh, I didn't realize until now how defensive my post came across. I was mainly just trying to provide additional context.
     
  6. RDNexus

    RDNexus

    Member
    Recently came out an article about this very matter, with images of the islands in all highly glorious quality.
    I don't know why, but it seems people didn't keep those arts in mind...
    Here's a link with all of them: https://imgur.com/a/6WoKI5X
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2023
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  7. Slobo

    Slobo

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    I just now remembered that Craig Stitt was the main artist behind both Hidden Palace and Oil Ocean. Could someone ask him if he remembers anything about his zones sharing assets? He did plenty of interviews about Sonic 2 in the past and seems fine with sharing facts about his work with the community.
     
  8. saxman

    saxman

    Oldbie Tech Member
    I feel like he was already asked this, or something along the same lines. And I don't think he remembered.

    If I'm wrong, feel free to correct me. But I seem to have a recollection of that.
     
  9. Slobo

    Slobo

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    Here's an interesting tidbit I found from this interview:

    So it looks like he didn't receive any direction on making Hidden Palace similar to Oil Ocean, or the other way around. While there has been some zones that had reused assets and depicted the same zone in different time periods (Emerald Hill/Hill Top, or Sand Shower/Rock World if you believe the latter is the Ice Level), there were some that looked totally different, like Wood Zone in the present and Casino Night in the future. If Hidden Palace really is listed as the Past counterpart of Oil Ocean as suggested in the Tom Payne document, then I think that would be the nail in the coffin to the Olympus=HP debate, regardless of assets used.
     
  10. Blue Spikeball

    Blue Spikeball

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    Hmmm...
    1697344154793-o9n2hy3aHG.jpg
    Can we get a full translation of this? It might shed some light on the debate, considering it mentions Hidden Palace multiple times.

    Not to mention fill some of the gaps in what we know of the original plot.

    Edit: Derp, we already have one. Somehow I missed it.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2023
  11. DefinitiveDubs

    DefinitiveDubs

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    Why do you think the design documents were made at the exact same time the maps were? There's nothing suggesting they were. They could easily be from different points in development. The design documents contradict the maps themselves in multiple places.

    Even if there were multiple shrines, that still would mean Olympus isn't a normal level and is merely a "cutscene" level where an event takes place. Not Aquatic Ruin or whatever.

    I'm not sure why we keep going back to those maps. We've analyzed them from every possible angle and in excruciating detail.
     
  12. Blue Spikeball

    Blue Spikeball

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    Even if they're from different points in development, there's nothing suggesting that that there was a revision of the documents (or the maps) that explained the contradiction in particular either.

    Not sure what you're suggesting here. That there must have been another version of the maps in which Olympus exists in all/most timezones, explaining for instance why the timeline document has Sonic using Hidden Shrine/Palace in the ruined present to warp?

    I mean, it's possible, but it's also just speculation by this point.

    I mean, we have a precedent of a cutscene-only area that became a level at some point in Hidden Palace/Shrine.
     
  13. DefinitiveDubs

    DefinitiveDubs

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    I'm suggesting the documents and maps were made at different times and represent different ideas, so Olympus was just another name idea for Hidden Palace/Shrine.

    If Yasuhara says it's "the shrine", and the only shrine we know of is Hidden Shrine, then we have to assume it's the shrine. Occam's Razor. There's no need to overcomplicate this. Yes some of the design documents seem to contradict this, but the storyline presented in those documents makes zero sense to begin with.
     
  14. Blue Spikeball

    Blue Spikeball

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    The timeline documents seem to be earlier to me, seeing how it has more basic names for the zones. Ocean Wind is just Ocean, Oil Ocean is Oil, Casino Night is Casino and so on. They sound like placeholders until they came up with better names. And it's not that they're not just deliberately shortened names, as some zones like Tropical Sun and Hill Top use two-word names.

    Whereas the maps have names that sounds more final and are closer to the names used in the level concept art, suggesting that the maps were drawn after the timeline documents we have. Can we agree on that?

    So if we assume that Olympus is Hidden Palace/Shrine, why would they include it only in the original past when they created the maps? They would already know by that point that it's supposed to be a pivotal area visited by Sonic in other eras, not just in that one.

    Also, why would they call it Olympus when the name Hidden Palace is already present in the timeline documents? Going by that, it would mean that the area's name went Hidden Palace > Olympus > Hidden Palace.

    Edit: Welp. I just looked at it again and I think they're just shortened names after all, as the same timeline document has Blue Ocean and Blue, which are obviously meant to be the same zone.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2023
  15. Willie

    Willie

    Each day the world turns Laugh 'til it all burns Member
    WTF??? I can't believe some of those islands were available in high quality. o_O
     
  16. RDNexus

    RDNexus

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    Last edited: Nov 19, 2023
  17. DefinitiveDubs

    DefinitiveDubs

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    Can anyone do a quick-and-dirty job replacing the blurred words on the new maps with "genocide" so they can replace the images on the wiki?
     
  18. Blue Spikeball

    Blue Spikeball

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    So I just analyzed the two timeline documents and the translations.

    Some notes:

    There appears to be a sphere (likely the Death Egg) in the mountains in the original past but not the original present. This was changed from the maps, in which there was one in the present. The implication here seems to be that after Eggman traveled to the past after Metropolis, he began construction of the DE in the past.

    The ruined present section shows two maps: before and after. The sphere is in the first but not the second, implying that the Death Egg finished construction and launched. This goes with the text, which says that the Death Egg appears (as it wasn't in the original present) and is visited as a level. It also goes with Totoya stating that Sonic 2 would have had the Death Egg launching from the island to space ala S3K.

    -.GIF
    -2.GIF
    It also says that a volcano erupted and destroyed the island, explaining the ruined present. Since the main thing Eggman changed in the past was starting the construction of the Death Egg in the mountains, the implication seems to be that this is what triggered the eruption. This goes with the classic games' environmental theme; Eggy upset nature and caused the destruction of the island.


    After that, there are references to the Death Egg escaping multiple times, until the future in which it's finally taken down (we see a sphere falling back into the mountains, and the text says "falls and is buried")

    -3.gif

    The implication to me seems to be that the Neo Death Egg was the Death Egg after being upgraded in the future, rather than a separate Death Egg II. The text even refers to it as just the "Death Egg" by that point, despite listing it as "Neo Death Egg" in the level list.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2023
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  19. RDNexus

    RDNexus

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    So that gives some context to the maps and the game's original plot progression, with or without cutscenes or any kind of visual indicators outside the levels.

    Seems like the kind of thing that could be executed nowadays, with more modern ways of programming games and so (I guess).
    But since S3K deals with a lot of those themes, I guess it may never come to happen outside of fan-games...

    Also, seems to me the game would abuse a little of similar levels across different time periods, which might've bored or pissed some players.
     
  20. Blue Spikeball

    Blue Spikeball

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    So I just noticed something I missed. The past is revisited one last time after the future, and it's there that the (Neo) Death Egg is destroyed:

    -10.gif

    It appears to be a cutscene-only (or rather ending-only) revisit without levels (EDIT: other than maybe the final boss, as that section was labeled as "the last battle in space" in the presentation), but I feel it might explain how the timeline was fixed in the end.

    So apparently at the end of the future, the Neo Death Egg warped to the past and was destroyed there by Sonic. Perhaps the idea is that it lands on its past self (ie: the Death Egg when it was still being built), ironically preventing itself from being created and the island from being destroyed? The sketch even depicts it as landing on the same spot where the Death Egg was originally.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2023
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