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Sonic 2 Development Lore

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

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  1. DefinitiveDubs

    DefinitiveDubs

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    There are three prototypes that use it, one of which is dated 10 days before development ended. And which was after the sound driver was updated and the music IDs shifted around. Yes, it was meant for that zone. We know the final theme wasn't meant for it, we know the 2P themes were made for cut zones, and we know OOZ's intended music had to have been composed, as it was one of the earliest levels conceived that survived all the way to the final game. This is something we all figured out over 20 years ago, and which has not had any new evidence questioning it with all the research done and info that's come to light since then.

    Even if you think it's inconclusive, it's still tangible, real evidence in its favor. Not a "vibe". The theory that CNZ 2P was actually meant for CNZ itself relies on a countless amount of assumptions that don't follow much logical thought.
     
  2. Jaxer

    Jaxer

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    Do we? I was under the assumption that we still don't to this day.
    I've always assumed this to be true, but do we have any evidence for this either? Like, it would obviously make sense, but this soundtrack is full of so many oddities (like last minute addition WFZ having a music track that wouldn't fit for any other level) that I really feel obliged to question everything that isn't outright confirmed.
     
  3. Slobo

    Slobo

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    Regarding WFZ music, it is believed it was originally meant for Death Egg (it kinda fits if you look at the original concept art), and the final game's DEZ music would be for Cyber City.
     
  4. Not to mention the fact that Casino Night has always had its own unique theme? The same theme has been assigned to it from Wai to Final, soo yeah…

    If anything, I kinda think the movement of Oil Ocean’s music to 2P Casino Night might have been a change made to use as much of the unused zone music as possible in the stages, thanks to the 2P stages; if my theory is correct, perhaps they went with the vibes of the music for the 2P stages, and reassigned as needed. Obviously, none of the 2P stages would fit with Sand Shower’s theme, so that theme went to Oil Ocean instead.

    Heck, maybe this could be extended to Track $10 and the Hidden Palace music - Track $10 didn’t match the feel of any of the 2P levels, so they moved Hidden Palace’s theme to 2P Mystic Cave and put Track $10 in as the new Hidden Palace theme.
     
  5. I wouldn't be surprised if T-SQUARE and Casiopea influencied Masa in some sort. Since various video game composers at the was inspired by those two Jazz Fusion bands.
     
  6. XCubed

    XCubed

    Will Someday Own a Rent-A-Center Oldbie
    This just blew my mind! I never knew this and I loved dinging this out! I think music will always be derivative in some fashion and that’s okay. Homages and borrowing here and there happens all the time. It’s the new twists and takes that keeps it interesting.
     
  7. Antheraea

    Antheraea

    Bug Hunter Member
    holy shit, it's Sonic 3


    re: the discussion about new jack swing, Masa's stuff doesn't actually strike me like that at all, given that CD's JP OST was new jack swing and I don't think his stuff really sounds like that in the Sonic 1 and 2 OSTs.
     
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  8. Blue Spikeball

    Blue Spikeball

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    Time for more obsessive analysis of the timeline documents :V

    In this post when I mention maps, I'm mainly referring to the minimaps from the timeline document, unless I say "original maps", in which case I'm referring to the big maps, which seem to precede the timeline documents (going by zone names).

    One thing that strikes me about the timeline documents is that there is no mention of the past getting destroyed, and all instances of the past use the same map and are referred to as just "the past". Contrast with the ruined present, which uses an altered map and is called "the present 2".

    This seems to be implying that that plot point was dropped by that point, possibly because it would have complicated the plot too much (and likely created some major paradoxes).

    Strangely, the past map they used in these documents seems to be based on the ruined past's original map, suggesting that when they decided to have a single past map, they opted to make the ruined past's layout the standard layout:
    2023_11_21 18-39-14.gif

    Another thing that strikes me is that the Death Egg seems to be present in the original visit but not the second, suggesting that the second time you travel to an earlier point in time before the DE started construction.
    2023_11_21 15-08-09.gif



    Changing subject, the playable maps all have a tiny black square. Its position is consistent from one timezone to the next, and it matches the location of "WARP POINT" from the two first original maps, suggesting that it's marking the spot from which you change maps by timewarping.

    Now let's look at its location. In the first 2 maps it's southeast. In the 3rd map it's in the same spot but it's crossed out (perhaps denoting that the warp point was destroyed by the eruption?). From the 4th map onward it's west instead:
    2023_11_21 15-29-21.gif

    The implication might be that you use a certain warp point in the first half of the game, then switch to a different one in the second. Maybe there are two shrines after all, the first one getting destroyed by the eruption? Or maybe you use Eggy's time machine at first, and later switch to Hidden Shrine/Palace for warping?

    Either way, the change of warp points happened at the same point in the timeline that Sonic activated Hidden Shrine/Palace to return to the past (going by the presentation). I don't think it's a coincidence.

    It also goes with the fact that pyramid labeled as warp point in the old maps was intact in the original present and past, but was destroyed in the ruined present and ruined past (and absent in the future).


    Back to the past maps. It appears that some of the levels were moved around during development, with Tropical Plant/Summer/Sun being north now. I know this from comparing the first two past maps. Each map has multiple x's marking the locations of its zone, and a zone list below. From looking at the zone lists, Tropical Sun is excluded in the second visit, and the only x missing in the second past map is the one north, meaning it was marking its location.


    Lastly, something strange is that the past maps have one extra x. The other maps have as many x's as zones listed (not counting Death Egg, which isn't marked on the maps, presumably because it's supposed to be in airborne). Perhaps the extra x is Olympus, and it isn't listed in the level list due to it being a cutscene-only area? The fact one of the x is in the center of the map (matching Olympus' location in the original maps) supports this. However, that would mean that Olympus is not a warp point (at least at this point in development), as it doesn't match the locations of the squares (warp points). But the timeline documents call Hidden Palace the warp point, which would would make it separate from Olympus.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2023 at 2:57 AM
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  9. PsychoSk8r

    PsychoSk8r

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    This is probably my favourite topic in here right now, it’s great to see even Sonic 2 still has a lot to talk about with development potential.

    You can guarantee that what is spoken about here will be the fuel for fangames, hacks, and mods to come!

    I thought I learnt everything with the S2 betas, but daaamn I was (gladly) wrong.

    I look forward to seeing how this understanding develops as more is revealed!
     
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  10. Pie Eyed Piper

    Pie Eyed Piper

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    Just to be sure I'm not misinterpreted or anything, the only case for NJS I was making was for Spring Yard Zone because of the source material. The rest of the post is basically what XCubed (and indirectly, Crimson Neo) said but with more words. I would think that a city pop artist would use more material from other city pop artists primarily, though, yes. You're likely to be influenced by what you know nationally before you would internationally (but this rests on the individual. Keiichi Suzuki/Hirokazu Tanaka seemed to primarily take influence from the Beatles for Mother 1 and 2, though you can find other western inspirations in those sound tracks including Pink Floyd and Frank Zappa. Aside the point, but I want to cover my bases)

    While I'm here, put me down as another on the side of CNZ2P being Oil Ocean. As many prototypes as it was in, especially the August prototype, it doesn't seem like a mistake. The Masa demo also sounds a little industrial in the percussion, and the sleazy mute trumpet sells the area as being kinda seedy/dirty (though in fairness this can work with Casino Night as well, aside from the fact that it had a consistent song from the beginning that wasn't likely to belong to anything else). Also, in one of the later prototypes (I forget which, though, maybe the August proto), the 2P zones still use the 1P music. SyntaxTsu's explanation makes the most sense, otherwise they'd have a soundtest full of unused music, even though it would be far from the first game to end up that way.
     
  11. Yeah, I think so too! WFZ music sounds quite close to something you'd hear in the Star Wars movies which the Death Egg is a reference too. DEZ music being for Cyber could work too, or the final boss music which sounds like somebody breaking into an army base with the alarms going off.
     
  12. saxman

    saxman

    Oldbie Tech Member
    The only thing I'll add here is it's possible that not all the tracks were done. Which I may have suggested before, I don't remember. But unless they wanted certain zones to share songs, I find it hard to match another song with Wood Zone. I still disagree about the GCZ using DEZ music thing, but there's no way to know for sure at this point. No matter what level/situation DEZ music was written for, it's a weird song. I can't imagine listening to that noise of a song for more than a minute.
     
  13. expansivelovestories

    expansivelovestories

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    The map with domed cities, and time travel seemingly attempting to defeat a doomsday device, very much is reminiscent of Chrono Trigger, which is interesting because development for it started in 1992!!

    So the Sonic 2 creators had already figured out a story that would soon enough be realized in another game, one which would also become beloved worldwide!!
     
  14. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    it wasn't a good sprite to begin with
    Here comes Mr. Pedantic:

    Chrono Trigger wasn't released in PAL regions. It would take until February 2009 in its Nintendo DS form to become officially available, so we couldn't enjoy it at all!
     
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  15. expansivelovestories

    expansivelovestories

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    Oh!! that is incredible, and surprising too, thank you :) :)

    Yes, i also misread the development timeline, it actually began in 1993

    ~~

    After spending over a year considering the difficulties of developing a new game, the three received a call from Kazuhiko Aoki, who offered to produce.

    The four met and spent four days brainstorming ideas for the game. Square convened 50–60 developers, including scenario writer Masato Kato, whom Square designated story planner; development started in early 1993.

    An uncredited Square employee suggested that the team develop a time travel-themed game, which Kato initially opposed, fearing repetitive, dull gameplay.

    ~~
     
  16. I'm a strong believer that ARZ's music was originally meant for Wood Zone and the western sounding tune is the Tarzan yell and the American and Japanese staff got confused between deserts. Sega of America pictured a more Texas/Mexican desert and Japan had the Middle East in mind, hence the tune that ended up being used for Oil Ocean echoing an stereotypical Arabian melody, and in Sonic 3 why Sandopolis has a pure Egyptian aesthetic in music and design, because it's what the Japanese staff originally wanted for Sand Shower.

    ARZ = Wood Zone and not Sand Shower.

    DEZ does have unnerving and unstable music, it feels like an lullaby gone wrong, like Dr Robotnik/Eggman has had enough and he's actually lost his mind. They did say that they wanted a edgy sounding name for GCZ/ Cyber, so who knows?!
     
  17. Mookey

    Mookey

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    Tarzan yell? You're the one that's confused, the whistle at the start of ARZ is the little whistle in The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly theme:


    (About 15 secs in)

    If anything I've heard plenty more people try to connect the theme to Sand Shower Zone, but it's all conjecture either way.
     
  18. That's why I mentioned Sand Shower and the confusion between deserts in the post above. The theory is that ARZ is not the whistle to the Good, the Bad and the Ugly theme but the Johnny Weissmuller's Tarzan Call. If you want to believe that it's homage to the cowboy movie theme, then that's totally fine.
     
  19. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    it wasn't a good sprite to begin with
    I think the music is one of the big red herrings when it comes to Sonic 2's development. How many years were people peddling the idea that Wood Zone was "Metropolis in the past" on the grounds it had the same music assigned in the Simon Wai prototype.

    The story goes that Masato Nakamura was given some vague concept art (that we can't confidently say we've ever seen), he went away, then came back with some music. The only conclusion we can draw from that is that "the music was based on something", which is about as useful as "the music has notes".


    I don't think anyone knew what the game would sound like until August/September 1992-ish. The prototypes suggest music was moved around - I don't think any of it was necessarily intended for scrapped levels, they just had a pool of songs to choose from and they picked what worked best.


    Here's a fun one: Sonic 2's option's screen music isn't really befitting of an options screen - it sounds like a short jingle being looped indefinitely. Most Sega games of the era didn't even put music on their options screens. There's very much a "make do with what you've got" feeling in Sonic 2 that isn't quite there in say, Sonic 3.
     
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  20. And then that turned out to be a Marble Zone leftover (Both MZ and Wai MTZ music shared Music Slot $83, and back in S1, MZ was assigned Music Slot $83. The music wasn’t changed when they implemented WZ, and when they moved MTZ’s music to $85, they replaced all instances of $83 with $85 in regards to music, including WZ)
     
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