Sonic the Hedgehog (Prototype)

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by drx, Jan 1, 2021.

  1. SystemsReady


    I Have No Idea What I'm Doing At Any Given Moment Member
    The Twin Cities
    trying to not fall asleep while writing Selenium tests
    ...the triangle teeth. Chao have them too!
  2. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

    this is what KLF is about Wiki Sysop
    Are we sure that sort of jagged teeth isn't just at a manga trope? i.e. is it not to convey an emotion rather than being actual teeth?
  3. Dark Sonic

    Dark Sonic

    Working on my art!
    That could be it, of course that wouldn't necessarily translate well in the US or EU especially back in the 90s. But in some of thoE oshima drawings on the last page like what emotion is it trying to convey? The 1st one that's super bendy gives me a sorta crazy, almost crash bandicoot esq villain wacky vibe and that ain't right.
  4. Gryson


    Both the Sonic 3 'Blue Gale' jacket and the promotional manga were done well after Madeline Schroeder went to Japan to de-fang Sonic.

    I just can't get over that we have such a good record of early Sonic concept art yet nothing has ever surfaced to support this quote from the SonicRetro wiki:

    So many problems/questions:
    • No concept art has ever shown fangs, despite there being a strong record dating back to the earliest sketch.
    • Tom Kalinske was never involved with the early design of Sonic - the character design was clearly finished before he was at Sega (as seen in the TTS prototype).
    • There is no evidence (that I am aware of) that Greg Martin was involved at an early stage in Sonic's design. I'm not sure what the wiki writer is basing that on.
    The facts that we can be reasonably sure of are:
    • Madeline Schroeder went to Japan at a fairly early point in time to make some suggestions about the character design, and Ohshima did not find the changes agreeable or necessary.
    • Tom Kalinske was only involved at a later stage, in the marketing of the character in North America. He might have been involved in the back story or the promotional portrayal of the character.
    The points that we should all be much more skeptical about:
    • Early Sonic had fangs / was goth / was menacing / etc. Many of these statements come from Kalinske, who was not involved in the early design. Schroeder claims there were fangs, but she might have been speaking in hyperbole or mis-remembering.
    • Tom Kalinske / SOA were responsible for salvaging Sonic. There is no good evidence that they had any input on the game itself.
    Why should be we skeptical? It's common for people (especially for CEOs!) to exaggerate their involvement in great success stories. Someone simply saying "I made Sonic the success that it was" is not enough - there should be some proof to support that.

    Does it really matter? Yes, I think it's incredibly disrespectful to the legacy of Sonic and his creators to say that the character as created by Ohshima/Naka was destined to fail without the helping hand of Kalinske/Schroeder.

    Unfortunately, the following excerpt is perhaps the most read account of the creation of Sonic, from the book Console Wars:

    Doesn't anyone else find that aggravating?!
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  5. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

    this is what KLF is about Wiki Sysop
    Yes I think that one's a mistake, probably inpsired by that video I posted using misleading images.

    This was the image used, which is a Greg Martin piece, but for the promotional comic (and some other guff).

    Whereas I'm almost certain this one, by Greg Wray, is older. In fact, it's older than our prototype, because it actually appeared at Winter CES 1991.

    (Greg Martin's piece, by contrast, is probably newer than our prototype, because it has a Robotnik shooting fireballs, a la Marble Zone. Though we couldn't have known that until two weeks ago.)

    Greg Martin's work makes for a better visual comparison between what would become the two competing styles, because Sonic has feet. But it's not accurate when discussing events of 1990.
  6. Gryson


    Both of those are clearly just particular artist's takes on the official design, which was already done before June 1990:


    (from the Tokyo Toy Show prototype)

    I think it's commonly known, but SOA just about always used its own artists for cover promotional art. They did not need to get permission from Japan for this - they were entirely free to market games coming out of Japan as they saw fit. Using Martin's/Wray's art over the Japanese art would have been standard practice. And honestly, the three versions are similar enough that I think many people would not mark them as different based on a casual glance.
  7. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

    this is what KLF is about Wiki Sysop
    Sonic the Hedgehog (16-bit)/Development

    I've put in a few references but I the top half of this page needs fact checking. There's also duplication of content explored in more detail further down.

    Some of the wider Sega stuff pre-dates Sega Retro doing this properly, so there's that to consider too.
  8. Toasty


    BulbaSAUR! Member
    Did anybody figure out why there are x's at the end of Starlight Zone's acts?
  9. Pengi


    Greg Wray and Greg Martin's Sonics both share distinct features, like the curved ear, that aren't in any of the Japanese art or sprites. So one of the Gregs must have used the other's work as reference.
  10. Childish


    A boy with a new hair cut Member
    Sonic 4 Blast Processed
    Given that we know that sega reused EEPROMs for prototypes of games, would it be worth looking in the padding of prototypes of games that were in development at a similar time to sonic 1 for leftover data?
  11. RDNexus


    Erm... It's been known since the beginning.
    It meant the levels were incomplete and inaccessible through normal gameplay.
  12. Toasty


    BulbaSAUR! Member
    Ok, but why not Labyrinth Zone too? The first act of Starlight Zone is actually playable normally, while none of Labyrinth Zone's acts are.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2021 at 1:39 PM
  13. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

    this is what KLF is about Wiki Sysop
    The X marks will almost certainly a leftover from an earlier prototype. Or Sega saying "don't photograph this". Or both.

    Hard to know without those builds though.
  14. RDNexus


    Oh, right, sorry, bad memory.
    I think it was that, most surely.
  15. Ceejus


    Apologies if this has already been brought up in one of these 21 pages of comments thus far, but does anyone know if this beta is the same one from the guy Leadbetter was in contact with back in 2018?

    If not, perhaps there is hope that the cartridge the guy in question has is an even earlier build than this?

    Again, apologies if there is already more info on the aforementioned story that I am unaware of or if this for whatever reason is a sensitive topic - it certainly appeared to be in the Sonic Retro forum that the article linked to.
  16. Qjimbo


    Your friendly neighbourhood lemming. Oldbie
    In the Hidden Palace article, it mentions a lead they had turned out to be a dead end, this may have been it.
  17. Azookara


    yup Member
    Greg Martin almost definitely was told to follow Wray's Sonic, it's way too similar for coincidence. Considering Wray's illustration was maybe the only thing the western promotional team had to go off of besides sprites at the time, he probably just stuck to it.


    And how.
  18. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

    this is what KLF is about Wiki Sysop
    Doesn't necessarily mean anything, but the EMAP magazines of the day (CVG and Mean Machines) seem to have covered this prototype. So if it's related to that, maybe not. But still maybe.
  19. Dek Rollins

    Dek Rollins

    size of a tangerine Member
    Do we know who did the art of Sonic on the back of the US box?
  20. Prototype


    The question is, then, who drew the original art for the title screen that was later copied by the Greg's?

    Guessing it was drawn by hand and then scanned into Digitizer format or however they did it?

    Therefore, presumably at least one of the Gregs received a scan of the original artwork to base the US art on?

    Was it Ohshima?